So, I’m sitting here in front of the computer and reflecting on the past few months. A good bit has happened including our trip to Port Douglas and our visit back home. Port Douglas was like no other and I really hope we get the opportunity to go back before we leave Australia. I highly doubt it though since we are planning other trips. Our trip back home was much needed and everything I could have expected. I got to see my friends and more importantly, my family. These two trips back to back have really made me understand how lucky we are to be given this opportunity. Not only has it allowed us to experience different things such as snorkeling at the Great Barrier Reef and feeding kangaroos but it’s also given us the opportunity to grow as a couple and individually. It’s amazing how close Matt and I have gotten while being over here. We depend on each other so much and it’s an incredible feeling knowing that we share something that not very many couples can/will share. If ever you are given the opportunity to live abroad, do not pass it up. There are times that it will be tough and all you want to do is move back home but in the end, it’s 100% worth it. You’ll grow mentally, physically, and emotionally. New cultures, new languages, new experiences! It’s unreal. It’s surreal.
Okay, I’ll get off my soapbox now. Port Douglas is a fabulous little resort town near the Great Barrier Reef and the Daintree Rainforest. We got to snorkel, hike, explore, and sunbathe all weekend long! Words cannot describe how beautiful Northern Queensland is and how much there is to see and do! I think we probably took about 500 pictures while visiting and definitely could have taken more. Here’s a slideshow of just a few pictures that we took.
I would have to say that the best thing there is snorkeling at the Great Barrier Reef. Granted, Matt and I got 100% sunburned but it was totally worth it. We visited 3 different reefs and snorkeled the WHOLE time while visiting each reef. Guess that’s why we were so sunburned. Out of the entire boat, we were the only ones that stayed in the water the full time. We just couldn’t get enough! I was so amazed at all of the different coral formations! I felt like I was filming my own little nature documentary. Quite cool! On a side note, my bathing suit top broke right when we were leaving! Luckily, Grandma MacGyver was there to help me out. She had a few little pink rubber bands and tied me into my top. Not sure what I would have done if she didn’t come to my rescue! I’m pretty sure that snorkeling topless is not permitted.
The Daintree Rainforest is so beautiful. Just driving through it was a major highlight of our trip. The vegetation is so lush and thick and just knowing that it’s the oldest rainforest in the world with the largest range of plants and animals on earth makes it that much more mystical. We even got to see a Cassowary, the strangest prehistoric-looking bird ever, while driving through the forest.
Other places we visited that I don’t want to leave unnoted are: Mosman Gorge, The Wetlands, Barron Falls, Cow Bay, 4 mile beach, Mt Hypipamee Crater, Dinner Falls, and Millaa Millaa waterfall circuit.
Even though all places that we visited were absolutely beautiful, our resort was the icing on the cake. We truly felt like we were in a postcard. We typically had the entire beach to ourselves and what an amazing beach it was. I would describe it as a posh Gilligan’s Island beach with all the bells and whistles yet the majority of it was untouched. Thala Beach Lodge could not have been any more perfect. Our self-contained bungalow was situated in the rainforest any only a short walk to the beach. What a perfect combination! There were times that we woke up to frogs bellowing or birds chirping but we just rolled over with a smile on our faces and fell back to sleep. I still get goosebumps just thinking about it.
Our trip back home to Atlanta flew by way too fast! We packed it full of meals out with friends, shopping, and hanging out with family. We are so lucky to have such an amazing support group back home. Everything seemed just as we left it. The best part about the trip was meeting my new nephew, Owen. He is such a happy, healthy little boy and I am so happy for my sister and her husband. Emma, their 3 yr old is super smart, energetic, and has grown heaps since April! She is so much fun and I love running against her! I think we have a track star on our hands!
Another few highlights of our trip back home was going to a cabin with our close friends and celebrating Thanksgiving with family! Like I said before, we are so fortunate and lucky to have amazing people in our lives.
As far as our jobs are concerned, lululemon is still amazing and I love the people I work with. Everyone is so supportive of each other and very likeminded. The great thing about my job is that I continue to learn new things every day. Not many people can say that that are in the retail world.
Matt does enjoy his work and still seems to maintain a good work/life balance. It’s rare that he’s working past 5:30pm on weekdays. I think that the entire time that we’ve been here he’s only worked twice from home on the weekends.
We continue to make friends and love the culture. The only thing that we find something to complain about is the weather. Since I started writing this blog, the weather shifted from a beautiful sunny morning to torrential downpour! Of course we had to move to Melbourne when it’s had record rainfall! This winter/spring has been the wettest seasons for the past 14 yrs. Other than the dodgy weather, we have nothing to complain about. We have our health, Jackson, and each other.
We love you all and will make sure to update this blog more frequently. A month and a half is a little ridiculous! Hugs and kisses from Aussie world!