This past week my daughter Sam and her friend Stephanie from Toronto joined us in Brisbane for a couple of weeks of family time.

Both Zach and Sam had been in Japan for two weeks with my ex and instead of flying back to Toronto they came to spend two weeks with us in Brisbane.

Unfortunately, it’s only for a short time as Sam starts her summer job the day after she arrives back.

She’s saving for her Master’s program at the University College of London (UCL) in September and will need all the savings she can for her yearlong course in the UK.

The good thing, other than her completing her master’s degree in Computational Finance is that it will be another place that Judy and I will have to plan to visit and enjoy a little more family time.


There is never a shortage of places to visit and explore and this will be a great excuse for us to get to the UK.

Her friend Stephanie also joined us and this is her first time in Australia so the girls have spent some time at the beach as well as exploring the Redcliffe Peninsula where we live.

Of course, no trip to Australia can be complete without a visit to a wildlife park so yesterday we set off to see the Koala’s at the Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary.

Not surprisingly, although a koala sanctuary in name it’s far more in that it also is home all manner of native Australian animal including a large free roam area full of Kangaroos and wallabies, native birds, dingoes, and wombats…

A true immersive experience as you can walk amongst the kangaroos and wallabies and pet them at your leisure.

Clearly, some great photo opportunities!

Family time also means meals together which is always amazing especially since it’s been two years since Sam visited and spent time in Australia with us.

I’ve spent time with Sam on three occasions over the past three years.  Last past two February’s I was in Los Angeles for work, and she flew down to spend a long weekend both times.

Then last year when we went to NYC to visit Judy’s parents Sam also came down to visit for the weekend.

As a parent there is no better feeling than having your kids at home with you, especially when they’re adults.

I dropped Sam and Stephanie off at the airport this morning as they were headed to Sydney to spend a few days exploring and taking in the sights.

After they come back mid-week we only have until the weekend before they head back.

It never gets easier to say goodbye…

Fortunately for me Zach and I will be heading back to Toronto and attend Sam’s graduation from the University of Waterloo the following Friday.

I’ll spend a week back in TO during the second week of June catching up with friends and spending some family time with Zach and Sam as this will be my last opportunity for some time…

With Sam working until she leaves for London in early September and Zach back in Toronto until around the same time, I won’t see them again until who knows when.

Starting in September Zach will be undertaking another Master’s program at the University of Chicago with the hopes of continuing on to do his Ph.D.

He’s lived with Judy and I since last December when he graduated from ANU in Canberra so we’ll be going from a house full to just her and I again.

There is no question it will be quiet, but we’ll soon get back into our routine, but it won’t be quiet the same.

Then it just comes down to the planning of seeing her parents in New York, time with Zach in Chicago or Toronto and Sam in London.

I guess my adventurous spirit and love of travelling has rubbed off on each of them.

Clearly, the best option would be to meet them in a third location somewhere in the world.

Sam has always wanted to visit and spend time in the Greek Islands, Zach may be persuaded given his love and appetite for history plus I know Judy would love to visit.

However, if we decided on Spain, we could also include Judy’s cousin who lives in Madrid.  Then there is always a family trip to Italy…

So many choices…

I guess it will all sort itself out in the coming months, so you’ll have to stay tuned to find out about our plans for 2025.

Judy and I have one final big trip planned for this year.

We’re heading to Singapore and Hong Kong for Christmas and New Year.

It’s going to be amazing!  Always something great to discover in both of these incredible cities.  I think I’m drawn to the exotic and often frenetic way of life in each city.

Zach and Sam will likely be heading to Florida to spend time with their grandparents over Christmas and New Year hence we’ll need to find another time to coordinate our visits/meet up.

A full and hectic life with Zach and Sam, but we wouldn’t want it any other way.

Until next week