The Kinnie Club

There’s no place like home

aj_sdc_200I have lost track of the number of times we have been to Sydney. Hubby’s brother lives there with his wife and their three kids. They are our only niece and nephews so we visit Sydney often. Weddings, birthdays, new babies, celebrations and just to say hello there is always a reason to pack up our bags and head up for a little break and a whole lot of family time.

Our early visits to Sydney felt like holidays and we certainly felt like tourists. But over the years that has changed. Sydney doesn’t feel like a place that is so foreign to us anymore. While we may not know her intricate ins and outs, a trip to Sydney now somehow feels like a visit back home.

A few weekends ago we went up to celebrate my nephew’s third birthday and spend time with the newest addition – our little baby nephew.






The cousins had an absolute ball together. They played pirates, played chess, chased each other and collapsed in fits of giggles. Giving my kids the chance to make memories, share moments and milestones with their cousins is something I often think about. Is certainly something that always tugs at my heart strings. My mind wanders to when these kids will grow up and how they will feel looking back on photos from their birthdays or celebrations and seeing their cousin’s faces in there.


So while home may be where the heart is, over a few weekends each year, our home is where our family is and that’s in Sydney. Some of the details are always the same, like my brother-in-law’s famous Greek BBQ’s. Some of the details change, like new little babies. There are moments when I wish they lived around the corner, but then I stop and count my blessings that Sydney is only a short flight away.



Trips for next year are already planned, a little baby will celebrate his christening and that same little baby will celebrate his first birthday, two events we cannot wait to be a part of. Sometimes I sit and think about how really lucky we are to live in a time where we are so connected and present in each other’s lives, despite living in different cities. I think back to a time when my own mother said good bye to her brothers and sisters and moved to the other side of the world. That distance was breaking.

So when I put on my metaphorical red slippers and click my heels three times whispering “there’s no place like home” the Universe chimes in and asks “where do you want to go?” Almost always the answer is Melbourne, in the depths of my heart the answer is sometimes Malta and every now and again the answer is Sydney. For home is where the heart is – but that heart lives with the ones we love.








When in Sydney we usually stay in the city, but this time we spent our time in Surrey Hills at The Cambridge Hotel. Oh my goodness what a gorgeous little place Surry Hills is. No hustle bustle, beautiful little restaurants, gorgeous shops, street graffiti and open space. We felt so comfortable and at home at the Cambridge, we would certainly stay there again.

Our room was perfect was a family getaway. Little kitchenette with everything we could need, beautiful balcony with sweeping views of Surry Hills, I loved watching my boys cuddled up together in a sofa bed and a separate bedroom for me and hubby meant that I was able to indulge in watching Eay Pray Love one night, without disturbing the boys.

In room Wi-Fi, indoor heated pool and a scatter of amazing restaurants within walking distance we loved it. One night PJ after slurping up his home made linguine at Baccomatto Osteria squeals “this dish could win a competition!” The same PJ who ordered a babycino with a side of bacon at Mr Mo’s the next morning. It is safe to say the kids loved it.

Disclosure: This post was written in collaboration with The Cambridge Hotel. All opinions expressed are my own. Thank you to The Cambridge Hotel for making our stay feel like a home away from home.


Do you have somewhere that is your home away from home?
Or family that lives far away?

Linking up with Jess for #IBOT

  • Leanne Shea Langdown

    Our home away from home is the coast (Hubby’s parents) and the farm (my parents). Although the farm has just been sold so that is one element of our lives that will disappear.
    I also have a relative in Sydney who I’ll bunk down with if I need to head up there for business etc.
    Otherwise it’s hotels, hotels, hotels.
    Josefa … I just love your photos! You can take a photo of a rock and it feels like art. The quality is fantastic. Puts my little happy snappy camera to shame.
    Leanne @ Deep Fried Fruit

    • Oh thank you so much Leanne for your beautiful words about my photos – much appreciated xx

  • Beautiful Josefa. I just adore that photo of the kids with their arms around each other. You are all building memories of a lifetime for them all. I don’t really have a home away from home. I’m lucky to have my family all live close by. My husband has a home away from home though – if only we could get back to his homeland often enough.

    • I love that photo too Renee! Sometimes I get torn over what photos of the kids to post on here – but that one was easy – had to go on!

  • LydiaCLee

    You were literally 10 mins from me!! Next time, at least allow a pre-dinner drink with us! (Us being bloggers, not my entourage…which could be more than anyone wants!)

    • No way! I have two more trips planned to Sydney next year – might have to organise something?

  • I love Adelaide. Such wonderful memories, such a beautiful city with a country flavour. Beach, city, rolling hills, culture, food, wine. Love it.

  • What a wonderful party that looks like and greek party – yes please! I agree, home is where family is.

    • My in-laws throw pretty fab parties with great food – and there is no doubt that home is where family is xx

  • I really experienced this sense of home being where the people you love are when we lived in Canada for a year. We especially got that sense when family visited us and of course we missed them greatly while we were away.

    • How incredible it must have been to live in Canada for a year – I have only ever been to Montreal and it was just beautiful, missing family is the hard part with distance isn’t it?

  • We stayed at the Cambridge about this time last year. It was in such a nice location. Of all the parts of Sydney I loved it the best. x

  • I love my home town (but enjoy Melbourne just as much!). Surry Hills (not Surrey love, shhhh) is a place that’s really special to me as I lived there for three years when I was a young whipper-snapping uni student. Back then it was a lot more run down and hipsters were barely invented, but it was still an ultra-cool place to be. I still miss living there and go back often. x

    • Thank you Maxabella – Surry is all fixed now 😉 Oh how completely crazy amazing would it have been to live there as a uni student – my mind could explode with how awesome that must have been. In our short stay I just fell in love with the place xx

  • Home is where the family is. How lovely.

  • I love Sydney. My husband is from there and I lived there with him for 3 years. We are in Geelong now, and we only get up to Kiama where Al’s family is every couple of years. Home to me is Geelong, though we have only been here two years. Elwood and St Kilda will always tug on my heart strings though.
    Your photos are just stunning by the way, and wow! How impressive is the cake and other bits at that birthday party?
    Dani @ sand has no home

    • My sister in law does throw quite an impressive party! Sounds like you may have a few places that are your home away from home – which is just beautiful xx

  • I suppose Darwin is still home in many ways. Though home is also where you are, and I’m trying to be present here. I do miss the North though. Some days a lot more than others.

    • Darwin will always be the home in your heart Jess. You are doing an awesome job of making PL your right here and now home – be proud in that xx

  • TeganMC

    Your family creates such gorgeous family events. I too think that home is where the heart is. I don’t live near any of my relatives but I like having them come to visit. I think we would take them granted if they lived just around the corner.

    • Sometimes I think I take some family who do live around the corner for granted – but then there is a certain beauty in that too xx

  • Gorgeous photos Josefa. I love visiting Sydney but don’t get there much now that we have our little family. I also wish my girls had cousins that they would play with. My brother hasn’t had kids and Jacob’s brother in Adelaide has but it’s a trip we have to plan and save for. I just want to say I really love your blog design. It’s so clean and welcoming. x

    • Thank you so much Bec, your words and compliments are very kind and generous. Hope that trip to Adelaide is soon xx

  • Lovely photos. I wish we had family any where in Australia. My home in my heart will always be nyc but because we lived in Sydney for our first 8 years in australia we do think if it as our australian home and miss our friends there. Xx

    • I think NYC is quite an amazing place for your heart to be and very few of us can say that – just love xx

  • Gorgeous pics!! Sounds like a great weekend.

  • What beautiful photos and the barbecue looked amazeballs! After living all my life in London, I’m thrilled to call Sydney home but all with all our nearest and dearest being in the UK, every time we go back, it still feels like it’s our home away from home. I used to visit Sydney on holidays every year and now can’t believe I’m lucky enough to live here – totally living the dream!

    • Sydney is an awesome place to live! Yay! and the barbeque is always amazing and we always eat too much! xx

  • Loree

    Hopefully your red slippers will one day bring you here and we can meet up. It would be fun. I would I will ever make it to your part of the world; I doubt I would survive the trip. An 8 hour transatlantic flight is just about all I can take.

    • Loree I do so promise that when I buy those four tickets one day to come to Malta you will be one of the first people I call – I do not know when that day will be, but it will happen, I owe it to my boys to bring them – gosh I am getting all sentimental just thinking about it xx

  • Hugzilla

    I was born and bred in Sydney but I think I’d make a good Melbourne girl. As Sydney gets more expensive and polluted and crowded every year I kind of wish my family lived elsewhere, so we could leave. I compromise by living just outside Sydney.

  • LydiaCLee

    I can’t see my comment to respond on your reply – but that sounds fab….

  • DreamingOfMalta

    I have been to Melbourne recently and love it. Brunetti is an amazing place if you love the coffee scene. Wish we had something like that in Sydney. Melbourne is also cheaper than Sydney and it seems like a more down to earth place. Not rushed like Sydney. Not sure how I’d go with the cold Melbourne weather though. Fashion and food is what Melbourne is known for and I can see they are more fashionable there and food great and cheaper. Also went to Malta recently. Gorgeous place. It’s the world’s best kept secret. But guess most of my family are in Sydney so i’ll have to stay put.

    But Sydney is becoming more and more unaffordable unfortunately and I’m sure people in Sydney will be looking elsewhere to lay down their roots.

    Love that quote ‘our hearts live with the ones we love’. So true.

    • There are so many things I love about Melbourne and so many things I am learning to love about Sydney – if our hearts don’t live with the ones we love – then I would wonder if they could live at all?

  • Yes two places. My Mums house in Tasmania will always feel like home to me. And Melbourne has a large part of my heart too. Perth has never felt like home to me, despite being here for 10 years. Funny what the heart feels! x

    • Ten years and it still doesn’t feel like home? That really has me thinking….hope that you have the chance to visit Tasmania and Melbourne often – to connect with the coming home feeling xx

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