Update on New Zealand

I thought that I would give all of you, my lovely readers, a little update on how we’re progressing with our move to New Zealand.  It’s only 5 1/2 months away, and I can already hear the clock ticking.  I have so much to do, but there’s also been a lot accomplished.  So far, I’ve:

  • Passed my English exam to prove to the NCNZ that I can, in fact speak English and they should give me an NZ nurse’s license
  • Gotten about 3/4 of my NCNZ RN license application completed
  • We’re up to date on our immunizations
  • Found a good home for Bear (he will be living the rest of his life with my in-laws, as we won’t be bringing him to New Zealand.  That’s another story in and of itself, sniff sniff!)
  • Been looking at housing options once we arrive (the university provides a few weeks’ worth of furnished housing and a rental car, plus arranges for us to meet with a realtor, thank goodness)
  • Been keeping an eye on airfare, although the university will pay for this, too (also good, since it’s about $1000 per one-way ticket)
  • Gotten established with a doctor here in our new hometown so that we can get the physicals for our visa done next month
  • Called a nurse recruiter based in New Zealand to learn more about job opportunities for me over there

And now, let me interrupt this list with a picture of New Zealand on the globe:

You see it?  That’s New Zealand way down in the left-hand corner.  It looks kind of lonely, out there all by itself!  Australia’s pretty close, though – only about a 3 1/2 hour flight from Auckland.  Can you say, “future vacation spot”?  I can!

Alright, back to my lists.  We still have a lot to do:

  • Sell our cars and the majority of our belongings.  As of now, we’re planning to donate one of our cars.  It’s a good little car, but it’s 10 years old.  I would rather donate it to someone who is in need, than to go through the hassle of selling it.
  • Figure out how to ship the remainder of our things over there (the university pays for a shipping container, it goes over by boat, and it can take up to 3 months… that’s pretty much all I know about that!)
  • Finish the huge amount of paperwork involved in getting our visas (think x-rays, FBI reports, pages and pages of medical history, proof of employment, a copy of our marriage certificate, passports…)
  • Finish my NZ RN license application (involves getting transcripts sent from my school of nursing and documentation from the state board of nursing), then apply for my practicing certificate
  • Figure out more about New Zealand’s climate, and just exactly what kind of clothing and linens I should bring along with us (if you’re a New Zealander and you have any input on this, please advise!)
  • Replace any outdated electronics, since they’ll cost a bit more once we’re in NZ
  • Stock up on converters for all of our US electronics!

As you can see, the “To Do” list is quite a bit longer than the “Done” list, but we’re getting there.  I’ve really enjoyed looking at New Zealand rental properties and do so at least twice a week.  I want to have a good idea of what we want and what we should expect once we arrive.  I’ve also been reading the New Zealand Herald almost every day.  Again, I think that it’s important to know as much as you can about a new place before you arrive there – it helps make the transition easier.  And after moving as often as we have, I’m beginning to be an expert on what makes moving easier!

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8 comments

  1. Perfectly Imperfect says:

    Oh my gosh, it’s getting so close! I’m pretty sad for you that you can’t take Bear.. I don’t know how I’d deal with that. But at least you know where he’s going and that he’ll be well taken care of. Good luck getting everything else finished up!

  2. USCEmily says:

    Y’all have certainly been busy! I’m so glad you were able to pass that exam and prove you can speak English 😉 I still find that one a bit absurd!!

  3. Priscilla says:

    I agree with the others, you have already accomplished alot! I can’t believe what all is required to get a work visa for NZ! craziness. You’ll get through the rest of the stuff, you sound so organized 🙂

    Ok so as an Aucklander, I would say that the best thing is to have clothes for all seasons as the weather in Auckland has been known to be super changeable sometimes.. rainy one minute, sunny the next, then windy, then rainy and so on and so on. In the summer it gets pretty humid too but generally its pretty good weather for all of Jan/Feb/March. It’s a similar climate to Phoenix, AZ in the winter.. pretty mild overall (I can make that comparison b/c i was in Phoenix for a couple days during the US winter a couple years ago and it felt about the same as Aucks in winter). Also, most houses in NZ don’t have central heating (although some people have heat pumps) so you may find yourself having to wear sweaters etc inside during the winter. Anyways it definitely doesn’t have as many extreme temperature fluctuations as places like Hamilton, Wellington, Christchurch and Dunedin etc and is pretty good overall.

    As for linen, I use flannellette sheets, a blanket, and a duvet during winter (+ i have an electric blanket underneath all that) and then in summer just have cotton sheets, light blanket, duvet etc.

    Yep I would definitely replace any electronics while you’re in the US as it does cost a fair bit more to get the same things here in NZ (although there is a shop called Parallel Imports where you can get phones, cameras etc that are all legit for cheaper than regular retail prices).

    Cool that you’ve been reading The NZ Herald… did you hear how Tyra and co from ANTM have just touched down here? 🙂 They arrived yesterday and are here for around a month filming for part of Cycle 14 in Auckland & Queenstown. Here’s the link to the story about them arriving (some of my friends from church are in the background ha):

    http://www.3news.co.nz/Media-frenzy-as-Next-Top-Model-team-arrives/tabid/312/articleID/132741/cat/41/Default.aspx

  4. Kassie says:

    You’ve done so much!! I know how irritating it all can be. Sad that you’re not taking your dog with you! Quarentine is only 30 days in nz, but I guess it’ll be crazy with renting and such!

    The weather in Auckland is way nicer than where I was, in Christchurch. Chch is generally rainy and cold, kind of like Seattle I guess!

  5. Just Add Walter says:

    wow you have a lot to do for sure…. I am sure it is going to be an awesome experience though!!

    thanks so much for your sweet words on my blog this morning… it really meant a lot to me!!

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