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Discussion in 'Visas / Migration' started by karl and caroline, Nov 17, 2011.

  1. We are due to move over next Friday with the family. The packers start tomorrow so there is a lot of frantic activity here at the moment! We arrive on Sunday 27 November & move into a rented house around 1 December as long as we have rented furniture by then! Our container won't be with us until the New Year

    With the move, we have not really thought much about Christmas and my wife & I want to get the children into the Christmas spirit so they can get involved in something as soon as we are in our new house. We have 3 children aged 3, 2 & 8 months.

    We don't know anyone in Brisbane at all at the moment and we've no idea where we can find information about what Christmasy things are going on in the local area. Is there a pantomine, carol concerts, Santa's grotto, Christmas craft markets, school fairs etc. Our elsest is worried Santa Claus won't know we have moved so is keen to meet him just to make sure he knows!

    Any suggestions for children friendly Christmas events and activities greatly appreciated !!

  2. cal

    cal Super Moderator

    I replied to your post on PIO, but will ask again here anyway,lol, Where in Brissy are you moving too? It will help us narrow down whats happeneing for you.

    Cal x
  3. We are moving to the Clayfield/Ascot area next weekend. Wasn't sure whether to post to both forums or not in case different people followed each one !

  4. jendav

    jendav Guest

    Hi Karl,

    I'm in Aspley, and I noticed at a couple of local shopping centres that everything is all set up for Santa to start daily visits soon. As far as I know, you don't have to book to see Santa here and can just go along any time to see him. They are just little displays with a nice chair for Santa to sit on and meet the kiddies; I'd imagine at bigger shopping centres in the city there would be grottoes and a bit more to see. There's also Christmas carols in the Botanic Gardens on 12th December - think the details will be on the Brisbane City Council's website (I've yet to look...just noticed it on a flyer and have to look it up myself yet). Carols by candlelight are a big thing in Oz, so even if you miss the Botanic Gardens, there will be others worth going to. It will be your first taste of a hot Christmas :). Santa used to visit at the carols too - assume it's still the same. We've also ordered a real Christmas tree through Not sure how it will compare to a British one but thought we'd give it a try ;) Best of luck with your move!

    Take care,
  5. madcatjane

    madcatjane New Member

    Hi there, good luck with the move.

    There are so many Christmassy things going on so you will be fine. Check out these websites:, The Brisbannittes facebook group and if considering moving to the Brisbane North (which we have done) then you should also join Brisbane North newbies with young kids facebook group. You can also look on and

    We moved from the UK in October and after 5 weeks in an apartment in the city we have now rented a house in Bridgeman Downs which I would highly recommend (also Albany Creek, Eatons Hill McDowall and any of the surrounding areas). My husband gets the bus to the city for work and it takes 50 minutes door to door, he has a 'Go Card' similar to an Oyster card in London. It has a great leisure centre here and local shopping centre with pub, restaurants, coffee shops, library, etc. Great choice of schools - our eldest is starting prep in January at Albany Creek State School (they start school a year later here and prep is a bit like reception in England but not compulsory). The school facilities (most of them around here) are fabulous, libraries, great outdoor areas, computer rooms, etc. There is a fab shopping centre at Chermside not far from here, it's massive and has everything you could possibly want under one roof, including 2 supermarkets.

    It's easy to drive to a beach from here and there are some great playgroups I've found if your kids are at that stage. There are great parks and softplay indoor play centres, pools and stuff like that here in Brisbane. Let me know if you have young kids and I can send you more information on what I have found.

    I would say to definitely rent a house with either aircon or ceiling fans and if possible a pool as it's fabulous!

    Feel free to ask any questions you want as I know what it's like and having just done the move with 3 littlies I feel like I'm going a little stir crazy without adult conversation so am happy to use my brain for this!!! Our kids are 4, 3 and 14 months.


  6. Hi Jane

    Thanks everyone for their suggestions. We have joined the facebook groups which look really useful - loads of questions we wanted to ask(and more besides) have been asked already and plenty of answers!

    We are in a similar situation to you, we have three littlies 9 months, 2 and nearly 3. We've been struggling a bit with the pre-schools and we still don't have a place for our eldest to start in January which will be tough as she really needs it.

    We've been delayed a bit but should be there before Christmas - which poses it's own problems. Do people order ahead for Christmas - fruit, veg, meat, fish etc - like in the UK or are the shops better stocked over the festive period ? I know if I tried to buy Christmas dinner just before Christmas there won't be much left in the shops. This might be a tough question for you as I see you only arrived in Brisbane in October so haven't had an Oz Christmas yet.


  7. madcatjane

    madcatjane New Member

    Hi there, I lived in Perth a while back and from what I can remember it's pretty much the same here as back home, shops get manic closer to Christmas and shops might run out of stuff.

    When are you expecting to arrive now?

    With the schooling here there is no formal pre-school until they are turning 5. The cut-off is June so my son will go in January as he will be 5 in December. That's called prep and is school hours but not compulsory. Apart from that it's just paid daycare (like private nursery) or kindy (C & K) which is the year prior to prep and they do a 5 day fortnight, so 3 days 1 week and 2 the next, it's reasonably priced and they learn through play and have a bit more structure there.

    The Brisbannittes have regular meetups and we have been to 2 and we also do girls and boys nights out which is also fun and nice way to meet people.


  8. Hi we have been looking at the C&K option but it seems they all fill up years ahead of the start date - the nearest one to us has just filled its January 2015 intake for the pre-prep year!

    We won't know anyone when we arrive which is quite daunting, how have you found it making new friends - do you find children's groups/play groups good for that sort of thing or are there better ways - I guess your eldest starting school will be a big help - did he/she go to Kindy or any play groups or children's classes (music etc)?


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