Anne Marie's Australian Adventure

Follow the Adventures of Anne Marie, Fergus, Cooper and Bean Sidhe in Australia!!

Archive for the ‘shopping’ Category

Computer Skills & Junk

Posted by Anne Marie Serrano on June 11, 2009

I have been venturing into new areas in the past couple of weeks. I have listed the house on a website called Info Tube. It’s a For Sale by Owner site. I had to enter info about the house etc. I only have one picture on it  so far but once I get everything looking the way I want to show it I will get the next updated package that allows more photos.

I am also trying to sell some things on Ebay. That’s a bit more work than I thought. So far NO ONE has bid on the items – not a good sign. The garage sale is still going strong. I am getting rid of lots of “stuff” things we haven’t used or seen in years. But it is getting old hanging out in the hot garage all weekend long, people moaning about something being a dollar, people rummaging through boxes and leaving a mess. I am ready to call the Junk Boys and have them haul it all away. This week is the city wide yard sale hopefully business will pick up when they compare my junk with other people’s junk.


This week however wasn’t all work, I had lunch with Misty on Monday. I have seen her a couple of times since we have been back. She has come to my garage sale and bought some items for her theatre and she brought Storme, her sister by one day and she went book shopping in the basement.

My only other excursions have been to the grocery store and the hardware store – my personal favorite. Have a good week and thanks for keeping in touch. My stats showed that one day over 28 people viewed my blog – I can’t imagine who all is following the continuing saga so drop me a note when you get a chance.

Posted in housing, Info, People, shopping, Uncategorized | 1 Comment »

Click Your Heels Together…

Posted by Anne Marie Serrano on April 16, 2009

If  it was only that easy. We have been agonizing about what to do regarding returing to the US. We love it here. For the first time since I’ve known him, Fergus is happy to go to work. He loves teaching medical students, the hours are reasonable (no 24 hour shifts or over nights), he gives lectures, has PAID time to prepare his lectures, PAID time off for vacations, holidays off when everyone else is off, reasonable patients, no worries about paying malpractice insurance. He goes to work early and comes home not so crabby.

I love it here because I can teach drama to students who want to learn drama and not have to deal with grades or discipline problems. I can work part-time, I can work with young adults on productions without having to worry about how to fund it. I could get involved with all types of theatre groups here – just haven’t because of all the travelling we have done.

We like Canberra because it is a big city but feels like a small one. Lots of parks, shops, theatre and things to do. We have met some pretty amazing people and have done some amazing things while we have been here. The weather is a lot like Kansas but no snow. And there is still so much we want to see throughout Australia.

Several months ago Fergus decided to see what it would take for us to stay. We thought once we find out then we can decide if it is worth staying or just go home to the US. Well, the medical board has had his paper work for fours months now and it seems every week they want something new – silly things like proof that he speaks English. We were hoping the hospital would extend his contract but because of the finacial situation they don’t have money to extend the contract but if he got the approval of the medical board and then the College of Emergency Medicine (the board the governs the standards of Emergency physicans) then they could hire him. Well, we are still waiting for the medical council to forward his paperwork to the college. His contract was up at the end of March. We are living on his paid vaction leave money. Once we knew this decision was not going to be made before the end of April we realized how much we really did want to stay.

In the meantime, reports back on the house in Kansas are not good. The renters were having problems with the sewer system, leaking pipes and aging water heater. Either way I was going to have to go home and get those things taken care of. And then there is the issue of the dogs. We know that if we fly them back to the states – at great expense and major trauma for them in a kennel for 20 + hours, we would never bring them back here again. It seemed that we had to resign ourselves that we were going back to the states.

Our friend Sue said that if we needed to go home and are sure we want to come back to Australia that maybe she could find someone from the Airedale Rescue group who could foster care them for a few months. Then Fergus and I could return to Kansas, he could work, I could get the house fixed and put up for sale and we could come back once the paper work here in Australia gets sorted out. That’s it in a nutshell.

Well, last night we got the final word that we have found two families willing to take one dog each – they already have dogs so the two of them would be a problem, one family has a male dog who wouldn’t be happy with another male around and the other family has a small dog which we would be concerned that Bean Sidhe would see as a snack. The two families are willing to make sure they visit each other and with Sue there as a guardian we think this will be a reasonable solution. It won’t be great leaving them but our hope is that it’s only for a few months.

So everyone we are coming home in May. We will stop in the Bay Area to see our families and then head back to Wichita. If all goes well with selling the house and with the paperwork here in Australia we will be coming back. I know this might be a shock to some of you who had no idea we were thinking about staying but I didn’t want to publish anything until we decided for sure. We have flights back on May 4, 2009. I will have time to write another update. We will be driving to Melbourne with the kids and spend a few days there to make sure they are settled in.

So the Australian Adventure will continue with reports from Cooper and Bean Sidhe signing in for me. I hope to see many of you when we return to the states. There will be a major yard sale going on if you’d like to visit Kansas for some shopping.  Look at it this way – if you didn’t get a chance to visit us while we were here this year now you’ll get another chance.

Posted in dogs, housing, Info, shopping, travel | 5 Comments »

Skiing…shopping in the Snowy Mountains

Posted by Anne Marie Serrano on August 9, 2008

Fergus couldn’t wait to hit the slopes of the Australian Alps, I went along for the ride since I just don’t find skiing to be as much fun as it use to be. I hate the cold and the hassle but I do enjoy the LOOK of snow and the idea of being somewhere different. You will have to read Fergus’ new blog at to find out how the skiing actually was. I can tell you the shopping at Thredbo was okay for an afternoon – nowhere near Vail or Aspen – but enough to keep me busy while Fergus skied with Mike and his daughter, Emma. The next day Fergus and I went to Perisher Blue and I didn’t have much to do. It was cold and foggy and there wasn’t any wireless Internet so I couldn’t work on my blog.

I did see an emu walking along the side of the road and we heard and spotted our first kookaburra – awsome!! We stayed and Mike & Caroline Miller’s townhouse in Jindabyne about 20 minutes from the ski resorts. Our friends, Pat and Britt are suba diving at the Great Barrier Reef – sun and warmth, now that sounds like a vacation. Here some pictures of our trip.

Posted in Fergus' Observations, People, photos, shopping, travel | Leave a Comment »

We have a House!!!

Posted by Anne Marie Serrano on April 18, 2008

We found a house today. It’s an older home near Canberra City Centre in a suburb called Turner. It has a nice fenced backyard for the kids. It’s old but clean and well maintained. There are three bedrooms – only one bath with a shower but it will do. Wireless internet (that’s important) cable TV and it’s furnished. It even has a fully stocked kitchen i.e.;pots, pans, dishes, appliances, microwave oven, utensils, glassware the whole shooting match. The beds have linens and blankets and bedspreads. There are two TV’s one in the living room and one in a spare bedroom. The house is brick so it stays cool in the summer, gas heating (not central but it’s a smallish place) one in the living room and one in the hallway near the bedrooms. After all the crummy places I’ve looked at it was unbelievable to find such a nice place.

The house is just blocks from a neighborhood shop area with an IGA (grocery store), post office, pharmacy (more like a drug store), an assortment of other shops, and our very own pub. Yet we are only blocks away from Canberra Centre, a large mall with all the brand name stores – three stories high and about four blocks long.There are parks all around us, Australian National University is across the street (the Theatre Arts Centre on campus is within walking distance) and there are main parkways (highways) in all directions to get around Canberra. The hospital is only about 15-20 mintues away depending on traffic.

We are under the shadow of the Telstra Tower, which sits atop one of Canberra’s highest hills – I’ll send pictures once we get into the house. I plan to start moving on Saturday. Fortunately we haven’t accumulated too much stuff since we got here and we haven’t unpacked all our boxes yet so moving should be fairly easy. The address for those of you who have been asking is: 68 David St. Turner, ACT 2612 Australia. Overseas mailing is expensive so don’t write, email instead – I’m especially talking to you, Martin Thornton!

Fergus and I have never lived in a neighborhood before – this should be an adventure. We went out to celebrate at a great Spanish restaurant called Legends – tapas & Spanish rice. It was very good. This is in Manuka near where we are staying now. Once we move we will have other new places to explore. As they say in Aussieland “Ta”, for now.  

Posted in food, housing, shopping | 2 Comments »

Exploring Canberra

Posted by Anne Marie Serrano on April 1, 2008

This week has been about exploring our surroundings by foot and taxi. The apartment is in a very nice suburb – Kingston. Across the street is a cricket stadium (?) or field. Every day there are guys out there playing. It looks very odd. CricketWithin three to four blocks there are two shop areas with restaurants and food stores, bakeries, and small grocery stores. It seems hard to believe that all the restaurants can stay in business but they all seem to be busy.


fyshwick-markets.jpgOn Saturday we went to the Fyshwick Fresh Food Market- not unlike our farmers markets. There were some strange fish I’d never seen before a a really creeping looking thing called a “bug” – looked like a giant (fist size) flea – reddish like a cooked lobster and not anything I would want to try very soon.


From there we walked back to the apartment, dropped off some purchases and grabbed a taxi to go back to the Woden Center – the shopping mall we went to on our first official day in Canberra. After getting our Australian cell phone numbers, (see the Contact button for the number) we wandered and got familiar with the shops in the mall. There wasn’t anything really unusual there.  We called it a day and went back to the apartment for dinner.

Sunday was an interesting shopping experience. There is a great Sunday Market with crafts, food, music, and great people watching opportunities. They have jewelry and ugg boots, antiques and roasted peanuts, fresh baked breads and sauces, honeys and teas. They also had lots of free samples – I felt like one of the old folks who go to Sam’s Club or Price Club for their lunch. we found some really nice treats there. We walked to Manuka (pronounced Monica). This a really upscale yuppie kind of neighborhood, very chic. There is a restaurant that serves authentic Australian food – kangaroo, emu, and crocodile. We might be brave and try that one night. I’ll let you know how that goes.

Posted in food, photos, shopping | 1 Comment »