White Christmas

Hi everyone,

So we are a little over 3 weeks in now. I have had my first white Christmas although its only starting to get really white now. It’s been hard being away from the family during Christmas but awesome at the same time to have the opportunity to see first hand what its like in a different country. Snow is really falling hard now which is really exciting. There’s some awesome snowboarding to be done soon =)

My orientation at Thompson River University starts soon. I’m nervous about meeting people but this is what its all about I guess. I should have told you guys by now that Kody and I are living together off campus about a 20 minute walk away. Buses are really convenient from here to go to the uni when I get sick of walking which is something we factored in when choosing our accommodation. So if not all of you want to stay on campus for whatever reason you now know that’s its possible if you didn’t before. We have taken out a 4 month lease on a apartment in a building that is mostly rented by uni students. I’m 24 and married so the on campus life style is a bit too much for me these days lol.

Another really crazy piece of information I have found out lately after speaking with my exchange supervisor is that students studying for less than 6 months in Canada do not require a student permit/visa!!!! This is a crazy good thing if you have decided to exchange last minute and your really worried getting a visa or permit on time. I have the paperwork now to back it up if anyone asks me about why I still don’t have my permit yet. Most customs officers I believe aren’t all that privy to this information as I wasn’t.

So we are really comfortable in our little town here just outside of the uni. We have definitely settled into life here in Canada. People are nice and there’s a few things to adjust to but we are having a blast. Another little bit of advice that I have been thinking about adding lately is that when it comes to Centrelink payments (really important to try to get as it helps heaps to have income while your away), it doesn’t pay to go into Centrelink and ask for help. Because of the abilities of there website now, people who work there have become really lazy and unhelpful. They will give incorrect information to save themselves time! Try to get as familiar as possible with the website and only go in when you need to hand in forms etc. One lady gave me a huge run around and had me thinking that I couldn’t get student benefits while in Canada due to me being deferred before I went on exchange. She was an idiot and as soon as I decided she was wrong and went through the site normally, I went to give my exchange uni’s confirmation letter to them as soon as I got it and I got approved in no time. Just FYI in case anyone is having trouble with them.

Here’s a photo of the great snow we have just started to get =) The photo isn’t doing it a lot of justice but you get the idea lol. The second one is our apartment building.

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Well that’s it for now guys. Thanks for reading =)

Last few days in Mansfield and goodbye!

Sunday December 14th

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So today I said goodbye to Mansfield it was very sad to say goodbye but hopefully someday in the future I will get to go back and visit. Although I had only lived in Mansfield for four months they were four months that I will never forget. Had some really great memories and made some amazing new friends!

good timessssss

On Thursday night I celebrated that the semester was over and went to the bar for a little bit then I went to a social gathering with friends which was pretty fun but it wasn’t a late night as I had two hours of sleep the night before as I was studying for my last two finals.

On Friday I said goodbye to Ashlee as she was  going on her vacation/holiday.I also said goodbye to other friends  as they were all leaving too. Had my last meal at upper Manser so no more gross Manser food! That night I went to the bar like usual and hung out with friends.. don’t remember what time I got home


On the Saturday which was my very last day in Mansfield I had lunch at Gregory’s bar and had wings for the very last time and they were delicious too!  I went back to my room and paced most of it up and just enjoyed the last afternoon.


I ate dinner that night at the Hungry Monkey which was really good and said goodbye to my friend Sam! Then I went to my friend Kristen’s apartment for drinks.. I went to the bar that night for the very last time..  I had a very good last night in Mansfield..pretty sure I got home around 2 am..

black   friends3


Today my parents came and collected me around 10:30 am with my puppy of course.

Hopefully someday I will be back to visit.Thanks for the great semester Mansfield 🙂


Keep posted for my next blog!


Almost the end of the semester…

snow days

Thursday December 11th

Sooo since thanksgiving break ended everything has been rather busy. Today I finished my last final which marked the end of my academic semester at Mansfield University. I am leaving Mansfield in three days time which is really sad!  The past week and a half has been filled with saying goodbye to everyone, enjoying my last weekend in Mansfield, studying for finals, packing and just enjoying the American college life. Last week apart from doing school work and studying I went to the bar like usual with friends.

katieeeeeeeeeeeeeeee  miranda

My last weekend in Mansfield I was meant to take a trip to New York City however as My parents only live an hour away I decided to wait until the break and we wouldn’t get back until after midnight so I decided to stay in Mansfield and enjoy my second last weekend here. I went out both on Friday night and Saturday night with friends to the bar and social gatherings. It was nice to hang out with everyone for the very last time before it was time to say goodbye. Last night we also had our very last international gathering which consisted of cake,bisquits and chocolates!

mountie  good times

lauraaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa   kayla!

This past week has been really cold and it has snowed as well.  Today I had two finals in which hopefully   I did okay!

semester over  bye

Tonight I will be going out to celebrate that finals are over but also that I am now on break/holidays until march next year!

Its been a great semester here at Mansfield and I am sad to leave.. However I still have three more days to enjoy it before it really is time to say goodbye!


keep posted for my final blog of my time in Mansfield 🙂


Thanksgiving Break!


So the past week we had Thanksgiving break which started from last Tuesday until today. We go back to classes tomorrow.


My family doesn’t really celebrate thanksgiving however I did go home and we did have a turkey though!

Last Monday and Tuesday night I went to the bar it was good just to be able to hang out with friends before the break!


On Wednesday morning my parents came and collected me with my puppy too. It snowed really heavily on the way home back to New Jersey and the few days after I was home it was really cold.  I didn’t go much this break just stayed at home and had a lot of catching up of homework to do. It was also bloody cold and it snowed for a little bit of the time. on the Thursday I watched the Macys day thanksgiving day parade and because my brother was busy that day we had turkey the next day which was really nice. It also snowed on Thanksgiving!

snow2    thanksgiving


It also is beginning to feel like Christmas because the Christmas tree in the town that my parents live in has been put up and it looks really pretty


In exactly two weeks time today my time at Mansfield will be over! Im going to miss it here but I am looking forward to going back to university in Australia.

Keep posted for my next bog 🙂

International week, ball and other randoms!

Sunday November 23rd


So this past week has been really busy. The International club that I am apart of had International week in which a few of us did presentations on our country and we made food as well. I did two presentations one on Australia and the other on England. As I am both  English and Australian I thought it would be a good idea to do both countries. Ashlee helped me make food for the Australia presentation. We decided to make Pavlova, Fairy bread, sausage rolls and people even tried vegemite. The presentation on Australia was about the culture and history, many people were surprised to learn that Australia was inhabited by Aboriginal’s many years ago and that it does snow in Australia. The food was really successful and everyone seemed to enjoy learning a little bit about Australia. Other presentations included Liberia, the virgin islands and Jamaica. For my England presentation I had cucumber sandwiches, biscuit’s, tea and spotted duck pudding. I talked about thee royal family and how the English really love their football/soccer. Everyone seemed to enjoy the food and the presentation for that one too.

Englanddd   Australiaaa

fairy-bread   england

On the Saturday night We had an international ball which was a Chinese theme. We all got dressed up and there was even Chinese food! It was a really fun night. International week  was a success as we got to learn so much more about other cultures as well as teaching everyone around us about ours. Other events from this week included typical bar nights with friends, staying up late doing homework and attending other peoples presentations. I also went to the movies during the week to see Dumb and Dumber two with friends. the movie theatre was in Wellsboro and it was a very small movie theatre!

balll   ash

arthur1   blackwhite

Last Night after the ball I went to a social gathering and hung out with friends. It was a pretty fun week overall 🙂


Keep posted for my next blog which is Thanksgiving!

ps. There are more photos from International week and when I get them I shall upload them

Where I am now

Hello there!

After a hectic few months of travelling and studying at the same time, I can now say that I have come to a relaxing stage of my journey. I am currently writing this blog from Oulu, Finland. I am staying with my good friend Evie who was an exchange student at CSU Bathurst campus. We became really good friends and she welcomed me by allowing me to stay with her and her family in Finland around Christmas. So here I am beside a Christmas tree, looking out at the large amount of snow outside. It is currently -7 degrees. My Canadian clothing has become really useful! However, before I talk about Finland I should tell you what has been happening these last few months.

My last post was of a trip I took to Cardiff, Wales. After that little journey we had a week at Chester University called development week. A week for catching up with your studies. However, my international friends and I came to look at the week as a travelling week haha. Two Americans, another Aussie and I decided to travel to Ireland and then Portugal. Christina (American) and Mallery (Aussie) went to Ireland a day earlier while Mitch and I traveled there the next day. Mitch and I had to catch a early morning flight from Liverpool to Dublin. With the last train arriving at midnight it meant we had to sleep at the airport. WORST IDEA!! The sleep was terrible with a man who knew how to snore through our ear pugs and a homeless man trying to evade the many police officers in the airport.

Once we arrived in Dublin we made our way to find our Hostel and the girls. All of us then went on a free walking tour (not actually free as the guide expects tips. However, still worth every Euro!). We found the history or Dublin really interesting the people and incredibly welcoming, “cead mile failte” (One hundred thousand welcomes). That night the guys went to bed earlier because of the big bus trip we had planned for the next day.



Second Day in Ireland

We rose early for a free breakfast in our Hostel and then made our way to where we were meant to meet the bus for our tour. This tour first took as to a truck station that has been named after President Barack Obama. To my surprise they had TIM HORTONS (A Canadian fast casual restaurant that I fell in love with in Canada). I ran inside to discover they did not have my favourite Canadian coffee, a french vanilla 😦 However, the rest of the tour was fantastic, we saw the Cliffs of Moher, many castles, other beautiful scenery!!

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The day ended by travelling north to Belfast.

Third Day in Ireland

This day was my favourite day! We decided to do another tour! This time to the Giants Causeway!!! 😀 The Giants Causeway is a special rock formation that has taken millions of years to occur. I could try and describe it. However, pictures can only show you how amazing this place is!

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The Giant’s Causeway


The gang :)

The gang 🙂

On the forth day we did a Black Cab Tour (Yes another tour!) and then returned to Dublin to catch our flight to Faro, Portugal the next day.

Portugal will be my next post.

Have a Merry Christmas 🙂

Hope to talk to you soon

Joe 😀



Yesterday I went to my first ever NFL game and it was awesome!!

but first I will go back to what has happened in the past few days.. Thursday night playing monoplpy with friends and doing homework was fun..


On Thursday we also had even more snow and it was ridiculously cold!!

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Friday night it was my friend Lauras 20th birthday so Ashlee and I bought her a cake and puts heaps of sprinkles on top. We all then hung out with Laura and just chilled in her dorm room.

lauraalaura bday

I later went to the bar with my friend Kristen and others was a pretty good night.


Saturday I got a lift into New York City with my friend Kayla and Ashlee and then I got the train back home to Madison New Jersey. It was good seeing my parents again plus my puppy and cat too! I went out to dinner with my parents and had a really nice meal.

Yesterday was the game .

My dad, brother and I drove to Met Life Stadium which is in New Jersey but not far from New York City. We saw our team the SF 49ers vs the New York Giants and we WON!!!

It was such a great atmosphere being at my first ever NFL game!! It was bloody cold that day though and although our seats were really high up it was still a great view! However we only ended up seeing one touch down the entire game which was the 49ers. The score ended up being 16-10. Even though it was a really cold day it was well worth it!


I am now back in Mansfield.. Check out my next blog