Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Expat Women - May Features Now Online

Hi Everyone! We uploaded our new May features onto our home page and elsewhere on our site earlier today. Here's a quick run-down:

Success Story: Lyndall Sachs
Lyndall is currently Australia's Ambassador to Lebanon. She has led a fascinating life and we ask her about working as an Ambassador, working previously for the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) and about her experiences abroad.

Studying Abroad: Settling-In To An International School
No One Said It Would Be Easy
Special thanks go to Jenny Early, who helped us out recently as an intern, while on her gap year in the UK, for sharing with us her experiences of moving to an international school in The Netherlands for two years.

Feng Shui Your Way To Relocation Success
Samantha Honey kindly contributed an article for us on how to follow Feng Shui principles abroad - to cleanse and balance your new environment.

Adult TCKs (Third Culture Kids)
Our Expat Confession this month was written by one of our Expat Women Girlfriends (a trained psychologist), myself and TCK guru, Ruth Van Reken. If you are a TCK and you wonder if you can ever really 'fit in', take a read.

Courage To Fly
Robin Fay McNair talks about the 'fear of flying' - discussing 'trigger words' and giving us some great tips to help us gain more courage to fly.

Planet Germany
Jenny Early talks to Cathy Dobson about her experience trying to adapt to the local German culture, after a decade of living in Germany. (A very witty and entertaining book, by the way.)

And... if you want more... you will have to wait for our newsletter at the end of the week. Best wishes for May!


PS. For anyone who wonders why we are featuring two Australian Ambassadors in the space of three months, here's the answer...

Last year, I scoured the UK government website seeking women Ambassadors to approach for this Success Story feature. Not only were there very, very few women Ambassadors abroad for the UK at the time, but unfortunately, those that I wrote to all declined the invitation. This year, I wrote to four Australian women Ambassadors (hoping that at least one would say 'yes'), and three out of the four agreed to participate! So, Lyndall is number two being showcased and later in the year, true to my word to the third generous Ambassador who participated, we will showcase the lucky third. :-)

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

UK Expats Thinking Of Going Home?

If you are a Brit living abroad who is thinking about going home to the UK, then Angie Cox at Fever Media is looking for you:

"ITV1 are making the second series of 'No Place Like Home?' about British Ex-Pats who are considering moving back to the UK. We're keen to hear from Brits who are living abroad, but who are now thinking about returning permanently to Britain. Perhaps you miss your family and friends, maybe you are struggling with the language, or very simply you yearn for a bit of British culture. You'll be flown back to the UK and given the opportunity to 'test-run' the reality of living in the UK. We'll give you the information and experience to make an informed decision on whether to remain an expat or come home for good. If this sounds like you, or anyone you know, please contact Angie via email as soon as possible, or call 00 44 (0) 20 7428 5768. To watch segments from the first series please click here and then click on programmes in the menu. I look forward to hearing from you. Kind regards, Angie Cox."

Angie said in her email to us today that they have 30 episodes to make. So if you are interested - go for it! :-)

Sunday, April 27, 2008

Heard of Tomorrow People?

Last week, I came across an interesting site for the Tomorrow People Organization (TPO):

"Tomorrow People Organization is a non-profit organization dedicated to helping young people to become educated and ethical, globally aware professionals, committed to inflicting a positive change in the world. Our focus is on leadership and cross-cultural studies. By inspiring young people to develop new ideas and teaching them the skills necessary to put those ideas into action, we are creating new generations of responsible and successful global citizens - future leaders. "

"Tomorrow People Organization was founded in 2002 by a group of enthusiastic young people in Belgrade, Serbia and by now has grown into an internationally recognized organization with numerous respectful academic partners, references and academic programs held in dozen countries and 4 continents. In its academic programs, Tomorrow People Organization has hosted participants of more than 60 different nationalities..."

I see that they have a 3-day women's conference coming up at the end of next month. If anyone is in or close to Korea, or interested in attending, please click here to get more information from their site. In the meantime, here are the basics:

Women's Leadership Conference 2008:
25-27 May 2008, Busan, South Korea

280 Euros before 2 May (or 180 Euros for Student Observers)
320 Euros from 2 May onwards (or 220 Euros for Student Observers)

If anyone goes, please drop me a line afterwards to let me know more about the conference.

Thanks, Andrea.

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Have You Joined InterNations?

If you have joined FaceBook, MySpace, LinkedIn, Naymz, WAYN and 2BalanceU (Go Heidi!) and you still have an appetite for more, the relatively new InterNations site might be right up your alley.

InterNations was started (I am told, in September 2007) by three Europeans: Christian Leifeld, Philipp von Plato and Malte Zeeck.

The site claims to be "the first international online Social Network exclusively for people living and working abroad". The idea is to build a network of trust, "where its members can interact with other internationally-minded individuals sharing the same situation abroad, similar interests, and needs. Members of InterNations can get and keep in touch with private or work-related friends and acquaintances on a global and local level and exchange trustworthy and relevant information on specific topics with each other".

It's an invitation-only network, but if you'd like an invitation, just click here and go for it!

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

5 Key Points For Writing A Book

If you have some ideas that you really want to get out into print, take a read of Jasmyne Boswell's article 5 Key Points For Writing A Book , which we published on our site today, to get you motivated.

As Jasmyne says, " Writing a book is similar to starting any project. It takes planning, preparation, focus, commitment, and most of all a passion for what you’re doing. If you implement all five points, the odds of flourishing are in your favor."

Thanks go to Jasmyne for her voluntary contribution.

Sunday, April 20, 2008

World's Most Expensive Cities

Every so often, a survey comes out naming the world's most expensive cities, the world's best cities to live in etc. I just read an online news article on my local news site that was quoting ECA International's latest annual survey results, which surveyed 92 cities worldwide, in an effort to compare the cost of expatriate housing. Take a quick look to see how your city ranks in terms of the most expensive cities in the world to rent a three-bedroom apartment:

  1. Hong Kong
  2. Moscow
  3. New York
  4. Tokyo
  5. The news site accidentally missed this one!
  6. Mumbai
  7. Seoul
  8. Caracas
  9. Singapore
  10. Ho Chi Minh City
  11. Paris
  12. Shanghai
  13. Dubai
  14. Bogota
  15. Istanbul
  16. Beijing
  17. St Petersburg
  18. Lagos
  19. Rome
  20. Amsterdam

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Career In Your Suitcase

Great news, the long-awaited third edition of Jo Parfitt's Career In Your Suitcase book is now out! Jo sent me the PDF today and I spent more than an hour scrolling through its 298 pages. (Aren't e-books just amazing... the fact that you can get access to that much information without needing to touch a hard-copy any more?)

In short, this book is truly like a bible for anyone wanting a portable career and I wish I had read it years ago when I started the song-and-dance-trailing-spouse-routine. It is jam-packed with so much advice, that I look forward to reading every single page, when time permits. Do not be surprised if we feature this book on our home page in the coming months. It fills a genuine need for so many women in our audience, and it's practical and inspiring to boot.

If you're in need of a portable career, or just needing a motivational lift, you can order/pre-order your copy from the following sources:

Bookshaker (E-Book, immediate version) (Hard-copy version) (Hard-copy version)

Note: The release date on Amazon is only 4 May 2008, so this truly is 'hot off the press'!

Happy reading, Andrea.

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Bloggers: Heard of Voki?

I saw something very, very cool on a blog tonight that I have never seen before: a Voki. What is a Voki? Basically, a speaking avatar that you can use on your blog for free!

The official Voki definition goes as follows: "Voki enables users to express themselves on the web in their own voice using a talking character. You can customize your Voki to look like you or take on the identity of lots of other types of characters… animals, monsters, anime etc. Your Voki can speak with your own voice which is added via microphone, upload, or phone.Voki lives on your blog, social network profile and will soon be integrated in various instant messaging platforms. You will also be able to download it to most video supported phones. "Voki" is a combination of "vox", which is Latin for voice, and "Loki", which, is a prankster character in Norse Mythology."

Thanks go to our newest Expat Women Blog Directory member, Tamara of American Girls in Moscow, for introducing me to Voki. If you would like to see Voki(s) in action, check out Tamara's blog, as she features one for herself and one for each of her two beautiful daughters. :-)

Warmest regards, Andrea.

Saturday, April 12, 2008

New Trailing Spouse?

If you are a new 'trailing spouse', or 'accompanying partner' as some prefer to be called, you may like to check out this super-useful guide that we stumbled across today on the web, written by the Family Liaison Office (FLO), US Department of State.

The guide is entitled Spouse and Partner Guide to the Foreign Service and it was only just published in February (which explains why we have not seen it before when surfing the FLO website).

Now, you might be neither American nor in a foreign service, but if you are new to the role of trailing spouse, there should be at least something in here that you can find useful, as the PDF document consists of 39 pages - sharing lots of useful advice and links.

Thanks go to the FLO for posting this information onto the 'open' internet, rather than onto just a 'closed' intranet site, so that expat women everywhere can benefit.

Thursday, April 10, 2008

There Has Never Been A Better Time To Be An Expat

Robin Pascoe's article with this title was published last week in the To read why Robin believes this, and what she thinks has/has not changed over the 20+ years that she has been covering the "global living beat", click here.

To read our interview last year with Robin about her book 'Raising Global Nomads', click here. To read our interview last year with Robin about her book 'Homeward Bound', click here.

Happy reading!

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Living in the Olympic City?

Bustling Beijing, I have been told, offers countless new experiences for resident expats. Flicking through two review copies of books that arrived on my desk this week, Insider's Guide to Beijing 2008, by Immersion Guides, and a preview copy (that was distributed at the Beijing Expat Expo this week) of Beijing Explorer: The Complete Residents' Guide, by our friends at Explorer Publishing, who kindly donate our great monthly giveaway, I have to agree.

Is there anything this city does not have to offer? Maybe clean air is hard to come by, but I would hazard a guess that you could even find some clean air in Beijing if you needed it, via 'drop in oxygen bars' or something similar.

In short, if you are in Beijing, or moving to Beijing, I definitely give these books the thumbs up for helping you to make the most of your time in Beijing. From what I saw, there is just no way that you could discover all of the options presented in the books by yourself... or even through your local expat club... or even if you married a well-connected Beijing local. These books are a feast for the senses. Check them out if you are in, or moving to, Beijing. :-)

Warmest regards, Andrea.

Disclaimer: Expat authors and publishers sometimes like to send us review copies of their books. If we consider the books useful to expatriate women, we typically list the books on our Country Books pages. We may also mention the books here in our blog and/or feature them in our newsletter. For the record, we are not paid for these mentions.

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

Repatriation: Going Home Is Not Easy

If you are a repatriate, you will know that going home is not an easy transition. In addition to the physical requirements of setting up a new home and settling children into new schools (if applicable), repatriation can stir up a pot-full of mixed emotions - especially if it was not your choice to return home.

Repats need to re-establish their support networks at 'home', adapt (read: usually downgrade) their lifestyle and habits, re-shape their language to try to fit back into the typically more domestic-centered mind-set of the people that they meet, accept career changes , re-mould their identity and more.

If you are a repatriate, you may be interested in two women that I talked to in this past week:

The first is Kirsten Terndrup Hammarkvist, the founder of The Repatriation Network of Denmark and the Coming Home Network. (Note: These sites are in Danish.) Kirsten lived in California, US, for 8 years, before returning 14 years ago to Denmark. She recounted to me the struggles that she went through, thinking at times "What was wrong with me?", which led her to follow her passion and set up a network for repatriates in Denmark.

Several years on, some media articles and even a TV feature in Denmark, and Kirsten now has 262 members on the network's mailing list, who not only identify with her vision, but want to connect. Hats off to Kirsten!

If you are Danish and would like to get involved, or if you are a repat elsewhere and would like to talk to Kirsten about her experience setting up a network for repatriates, please contact Kirsten here.

The second woman is Madeleine Dobson. Madeleine is a PhD student in the UK at Royal Holloway, University of London. She was an expat in Singapore when her family moved there in the mid-nineties. When her family moved back to the UK she became interested in what it is really like to repatriate and how people negotiate this and the challenges and opportunities it presents. To avoid simply focussing on the economic ‘lead’ migrant, she is looking for households including dependent children who might be willing to take part in her research.

Madeleine is primarily interested in UK citizens who have lived at some point in Singapore as expats. If you can help her with her research, please visit her website and/or email her via this address. Thanks.

If anyone else is doing similar repatriate research work and/or managing repatriation networks, feel free to drop me a line - I would love to hear what you are up to.

Thanks and best wishes, Andrea.

Saturday, April 5, 2008

Expat Women April Newsletter

Warm greetings Everyone! We sent our April newsletter out earlier today. In addition to our home page features, the April newsletter also includes:

(1) Families In Global Transition (FIGT) Conference 2008 Highlights - thanks to Robin Pascoe;

(2) This month's Expat Women Confession - Job Restructure - talking about how to handle a shock decision such as a job restructure – especially when you have only recently expatriated;

(3) A plug for Robin Pascoe's (aka "The Expert Expat"'s) "Family Matters!" Survey - as mentioned previously on this blog. Please help Robin;

(4) This month's Winning Story - On Life, Being Busy and Moving On - written by Anita, an Indonesian in Scotland;

(5) An advertisement for a cool new site - My Week In. Take a look if you are in Paris, the Loire Valley, London or Edinburgh; and

(6) The announcement of our first winner of the fantastic Explorer Publishing book giveaway.

Important note: If you are an Expat Women Member and you have not received our April newsletter, please check your spam folder - as sometimes it can go straight to there. If it is not there either, just jump onto our online version and then drop us a line and we will investigate why you do not seem to be receiving it.

Thanks and enjoy your weekend!

Thursday, April 3, 2008

Want To Get Our News Faster?

Hi Everyone, Just a quick post to let you know that you can now get our blog news faster, directly via email.

We have added the FeedBurner subscription box on the right-side of this blog, so please just add your email address and any day that we post a new entry, you should get it delivered to your inbox sometime in the following 24 hours. It is super simple.

If instead, you would prefer to subscribe in a reader, we have added those quick-links further down the right-side too.

Thanks and enjoy your day/evening!

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Telling Tales Exhibition in Dubai

Friends, I do not normally use this blog to promote local expat-oriented events (because there are just too many, as you can imagine) but...

I just received word from our dear friends and supporters at Explorer Publishing that they are hosting a "photographic and oral history of Dubai through faces of the Emirati community" this week and that you are all invited. If you are interested and you are in Dubai, here are the details:

Telling Tales Exhibition
XVA Gallery, Bastakiya, Bur Dubai
Wednesday 2 April: 9am - 7pm
Thursday 3 April: 9am - 7pm
Friday 4 April: 10am - 5pm

For more information contact Shedan on 971 4 340 8805 Ext 201 or email or click on this link.



Expat Women April Home Page Online

Hello Everyone, we hope you are enjoying a great start to your week! If you have not jumped onto our new home page yet for April, here are this month's main features:

Success Story: Stacie Nevadomski Berdan - a shining example of how successful you can be if you take the plunge and accept a work assignment abroad.

Featured Book: Get Ahead By Going Abroad - which Stacie co-authored with Perry Yeatman. We deliberately opted for the double-feature for Stacie in the same month, because honestly, their book is great - full of real-life examples, quotes and feedback from many women abroad - and it made sense to keep the two features together, rather than separate them into two different months, so that the interview responses complemented each other.

1st Special Feature: Women in Transition - contributed by Dhyan Summers MA, Licensed Psychotherapist - an American Expat Woman in India. If you are trying to cope with various changes in your life, you may find Dhyan's discussion about N.K. Schlossberg's "4 'S' System" for coping with transition to be just what you need.

2nd Special Feature: Special Needs Children... What To Know Before You Go - contributed by Rebecca Grappo, M.Ed, C.E.P. - an American Expat Woman in Oman. Rebecca is an International Educational Consultant who has worked with hundreds of globally-mobile families in both private practice and as the former Education and Youth officer for the U.S. Department of State. Her feature is a great read if you have special needs children and are about to move to a new expat location. If you know of someone else in this situation, please on-forward this article to them, as anyone faced with this challenge could benefit from Rebecca's advice.

Our newsletter this week will feature a few more things. If you have not signed up to receive a copy to your inbox, quick, do so here.

Thanks and happy April everyone!

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