THAT WAS 30

30th birthday Bondi

I’m turning 31 in a couple of days and I’m a little sad to see 30 go. Thirty has been truly life-changing. This time last year I was living in London and had travelled to Sydney to mark the occasion with a big trip. I had no idea what it had in store. Thirty – so many happy memories.

Climbing the iconic Sydney Harbour Bridge on the morning of my 30th birthday. Making a wish when I reached the top, not knowing that I was looking down on the city that would become my home.

Meeting Oliver on the last day of my holiday when a very special mutual friend suggested I join them for lunch to avoid the summer rain. Thank goodness for Sydney’s changeable skies.

Crying with laughter trying to melt butter to bake post-birthday party One Direction cupcakes with one of my bests.

Telling my Mum about my holiday and that I had fallen in love. The tears flowed when she told me to follow my heart, even though that meant moving being on the other side of the world. As always, her support gave me the courage to try.

Spending hours navigating the time difference to have our first dates over the phone. Staying up too late and spending my days waiting for his mornings.

Seeing my magical city through the eyes of a five year old – my favourite place the Natural History Museum, the Science Museum and finally, the London Eye.

Picnicking at windy Richmond Park with my Urbs. Waking up to group messages in the mornings, grateful that chance put us four girls in the same university halls; creating an ‘urban family’ that has become lifelong friends.

So many special goodbyes with good friends. A Stoke Newington pub crawl, a New Orleans inspired dinner, a surprise spa break.

Sitting on the floor of my childhood bedroom while my Mum plaited my hair the day before I left.

Shaking with nerves and excitement as I arrived at Sydney airport to begin my new life.

That first week. Actual dates, exploring his Sydney, meeting his friends and family, celebrating his 30th birthday.

Whale watching in our own backyard.

Making new friends and reconnecting with old ones.

Waking up on a long weekend camping trip to find that a friendly roo had pinched a banana from our camp and subsequently relieved himself in our make-shift kitchen.

An impromptu sunset salsa lesson on the beach at Bendalong.

Learning the joys of Aussie favourites AFL, lawn bowls and the spring races.

Starting our very own touch Aussie rules football team, the Sheriffs. We may not have been too quick to pick up the rules but we were the best dressed team on the field!

Welcoming my Mum & Roy to Australia for their first visit and sharing a special few days in the Hunter Valley.

Getting last minute tickets to see Florence and the Machine in the Royal Botanic Gardens whilst on a work trip to Melbourne. The first bars of You’ve Got the Love caught me off guard with a flood of emotion thinking of much missed friends at home.

Road-tripping to Adelaide for my first summer Christmas. Road-tripping home via the stunning Great Ocean Road and seeing the most amazing sunsets over the beautiful, ever-changing Australian landscape.

Spotting my first wild koala at just the right moment when our trip threatened to be ruined by car troubles. Our koala angel.

Rediscovering childhood pleasures – riding a bike and colouring in.

Completing my 30 day yoga challenge and prioritising my physical and mental health.

Witnessing Jose Gonzalez performing Kylie’s Hand on Your Heart at Sydney Opera House and being transported to the steep streets of San Francisco with Heartbeats.

Discovering a new found appreciation for thunderstorms.

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