Independence Days: We are moving back to Australia in 2011

It’s been a busy month as you can probably tell by my sporadic posting lately. The good news is that I think I’m over the worst of it.

I’ve spent an inordinate amount of time this month completing an application and preparing for an interview for a new job next year. The good news is….I got the job! We’ll be moving back to Canberra, Australia in early 2011. Prior to learning about this job opportunity, I was really struggling to feel motivated about going back to work in Australia. My mindset has totally changed in the 2 1/2 years since I left and I couldn’t imagine what work I would find stimulating, challenging and rewarding. I think this job might just work out for me. It’s in a new program created recently to undertake reform in my organisation. Everything about the way we do business is open to change and I’ll be a part of the team making that happen.

I have also been working on a paper for the last couple of months which I hope will convince senior management that we need to prepare for a future where energy is scarce and expensive. My new job will be inside the program that will consider such things. I hope that will get me some leverage to make the required changes. I guess only time will tell.

Anyway, I now feel a little more settled knowing what I’ll be doing next year. Now we can just enjoy our last seven months here in the USA.

Now that life is getting back to normal, I want to start refocussing on my  plan for Self Sufficiency and Independence.


  • My goal of getting back in shape was unfortunately put on the back-burner these last few months. Time to make it a high priority again. I do not want to come back to Australia with all those extra pounds gained in America.

Getting off the economic grid

  • When we get back to Australia, we are going to have to set our lives back up. That means furniture and white-goods for the house, and a car purchase. This is a great opportunity for us to set ourselves up for more self-sufficient and sustainable living. We’ll be researching low-energy appliances and a fuel efficient vehicle. At the moment I’m leaning towards a diesel car, but I’m also thinking about something that runs on natural gas since Australia has a lot of that. Time to start saving our fiat currency so we can purchase everything with cash.

Grow some food

  • We’ve been spending a lot of time in the garden clearing weeds which have grown like crazy in the warm spring days.
  • We’ve also cleared out most of the winter garden (except for some things we are letting go to seed).
  • I’ve started a few tomato plants already, but we’ll need to start thinking about the rest of the summer garden soon.

Reduce Energy Dependence

  • I must get back into riding to work. I’ve been really slack recently and have got into the bad habit of taking the car.

Plan to own some productive land

  • Housing prices are still high in Australia and we continue to watch and wait for the correction. There are more signs that China’s bubble is popping which is likely to translate to economic pain in Australia. I’ve also been reading some articles indicating that a high percentage of ‘first home buyers’ are struggling to keep up with mortgage payments due to the rapidly rising interest rates. Who knows how much longer this bubble can inflate.
  • While we wait for prices to become more realistic, we will be renting. Unfortunately Canberra rents are painfully high. I just hope we can find something reasonable, close to the city which will allow Zoe dog to live with us.

Photo by: Sam llic


    1. Congratulations on getting the job, I hope your paper is just as successful. I’ll be wonderful for you to be in a position where you can make changes from within.

      I’m slighly biased but I would consider going with the diesel car, especially if you are considering doing any travelling. We have a VW Jetta and drove from Brisbane to Sydney on one tank of fuel with a bit left over. It’s also quite reasonable around town.

      I kind of envy the fact fact that you are starting with a ‘clean slate’ and that you’re getting a chance to do everything the righ way.

    2. Congratulations on the job! If you’re looking for a great way to shed pounds, I can’t recommend anything better than Joel Fuhrman’s book “Eat To Live”.

      I lost 70 pounds/ over 30 kilograms on the program – and have kept most of it off for over four years now. And several of my friends have had success with the same program.

      It’s approved by the Cancer and Heart foundations etc. and is very healthy, and there are vego and non-vego versions in the same book.

    3. Congratulations Mia! That is good news that you are headed home to a secure job. I am sure that it will make life a lot less stressful.

      I would be very interested to know how the new reform program progresses in due course (if it’s not all confidential). Given the inherent conflict between large organisations (with their requirement for growth) and the hard limits to growth imposed by the environment I would expect that the ride may be bumpy …

      Still, you will be part of a fascinating microcosm of the larger world.

      Regarding the housing bubble in Australia. If you are right that China’s economy is about to take a downturn then we will be in for a lot of pain. Especially given the recent announcements about big new taxes on mining exports. It looks like the government is pinning it’s hopes for future public spending on our exports.

    4. Great work, congratulations! It sounds like a fantastic job, to get to influence the future of your organisation… hope it’s not too frustrating!

      See you in Canberra next year!

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