Amanda van Mulligen


Amanda van Mulligen is a British expat who made the Netherlands her home in 2000. She has three Dutch sons, who she is doing her best to tinge with a little Britishness, and a pure-bred Dutch husband.

In a previous life she worked in the world of Human Resources (HR), helping new expats get settled in the Netherlands or helping employees and their families get ready to embark on a life in a far-flung remote location. It was in this role she learnt that not all expats are equal; some expats are more expat than others. Hence Amanda realised she lives her life in a little piece of no man’s land situated between being a British expat and a local Dutch woman. To complicate her sense of identity further she now also has Dutch citizenship.
Amanda left HR to dabble in writing and is now a published author, freelance writer, translator and blogger. She has contributed to expat anthologies Dutched Up! Rocking the Clogs Expat Style, Once Upon An Expat and the upcoming Knocked Up Abroad Again. She has also translated the children’s book Langmuts is een Held from Dutch into English, one in a series of books written with highly sensitive children in mind.
You can find her scribbling her thoughts and experiences about her expat way of loving, living and parenting at Turning Dutch. She also writes about raising highly sensitive children on the Happy Sensitive Kids blog and you’ll find her all over social media like a rash: FacebookTwitter and Pinterest.”

Becky Hellwig

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Becky Hellwig is Silicon Valley-born-and-bred.  Less than two months ago Becky and her German husband packed up the kids and the house and moved to a small village just outside of Chemnitz (formerly Karl Marx Stadt), Germany. Becky has three beautiful girls: Stella, 8, and identical twins Marybelle and Rosalee, age 4. The children and the husband are adjusting well.

Becky is enjoying a fresh change from the hustle and bustle of Silicon Valley. Sometimes you can find her travelling to larger cities such as Berlin, Leipzig, and London to attend international film festivals and is always on the look out for up and coming designers with a bit of edge for the over-40 crowd. You can follow her on Instagram @Beckswunderland and Twitter @beckswunderland.

Amanda Settle

Amanda Settle

Amanda Settle is a blogger/writer and housewife living on and exploring a Greek island. She started the blog when moving from Qatar, detailing expat life with food, thoughts, photographs and travel.

With a BA in English literature, a former English teacher who’s travelled the world working, she enjoys writing about things that matter in the world around her. From the refugee crisis to expat life and arriving at middle age.

She is passionate about travel, detailing her trips around Greece and the islands, loves exploring and is excited by discovering new places. Her recipes are Mediterranean-themed, using organic, locally sourced ingredients to help maintain a healthy body in middle age.

She is a 47yr old British expat, married for 6 years with 3 cats and a dog, all rescued in different countries.

Concita Demicoli

concita demicoli

Concita Demicoli was born and raised in Malta, a small island in the middle of the Mediterranean, south of Sicily. Daughter of a restaurateur, her family life centred around the love for food. She started baking at a very young age with her grandma who lived right next door.

Concita moved to Belgium with her family in 2010.

With such a drastic change in climate and produce, her cuisine needed adapting. Her repertoire now also includes soups in July and August, unheard of in Malta, but the Belgian summer sometimes calls for warmer dishes.

She is married and has 3 beautiful girls. The elder ones are already enjoying cooking their own meals and experimenting with local ingredients by adding them to dishes they already knew. So Tiramisu is now made with Speculoos biscuits and Pasta carbonara now includes Jambon des Ardennes.

You can follow her adventures in Belgium and the rest of Europe on Instagram @bakinginbelgium or Twitter @bakinginbelgium.

Lisa Ferland

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Lisa Ferland is a public health consultant, writer, and mother of two adorable children. In 2012, she and her husband decided to relocate from Atlanta, GA USA to Stockholm, Sweden in the middle of winter (that was a shock) and raise their family in a more family-friendly culture. 
She became pregnant with their second child and experienced Swedish prenatal care firsthand. Her childbirth journey resulted in a fast and painless delivery of her daughter at their home—completely unexpected and unattended—with only her husband and two-year-old son around to catch the baby! 
Ferland Family
Her remarkably different experiences led her to collaborate with other mothers around the world to publish an anthology about pregnancy, childbirth, and parenting cultures experienced as an expat in the book, Knocked Up Abroad. She is currently developing the second book in the series, Knocked Up Abroad Again. She is very active on Facebook and Twitter @knockdupabroad. When not in front of the computer, she can be found playing outside with her kids who are most likely barefoot if it’s summer or bundled up if it’s winter.

Claudia Landini

Claudia Landini

Claudia Landini is a cross-cultural trainer and mobile career coach. She has lived in Sudan, Angola, Guinea Bissau, Congo, Honduras, Peru, Jerusalem. Her husband’s work for the International Red Cross brings her in contact with the most vulnerable side of local populations. Twelve years ago she created, and since then she has been writing about her life abroad and helping expat women to have rich and meaningful experiences. She virtually leads a team of nine creative expat women living in nine different countries over five continents. She has several achievements under her belt, her two sons being the best of them. She is currently enjoying her empty nest in Jakarta, Indonesia.

Sarah Durbridge

Sarah Durbridge
Hi, I’m Sarah. A Brit—a proud Londoner to be exact. I have been living in Houston for three years with my husband and two children. We are first time expats and moving countries was a huge step for our family—we were creatures of habit; the kind of family that like to revisit a holiday destination (11 years in a row) and live in the same house for over 10 years! Friends and family thought we were joking when we told them about ‘the big move’ and I didn’t quite believe it myself – not even when the packers arrived. It wasn’t until I boarded that one-way, long-haul flight with my then 6 and 17 year old (the husband had gone on ahead a few months before) that it started to feel real.

Everyone told me we would need a year to settle in. I admit to thinking that sounded way too long to adjust, especially given we were moving to the US—I mean there’s no language barrier (yeah, right) and I’d worked for an American organisation—how hard could it be? Hmmmm, let’s just say I was a little optimistic, or is it naive?

Sarah Durbridge2 - week 3I’m happy to say that I do feel settled here (most days) and I have made some
great friends. My son, especially, loves his life here and we have all really taken to baseball, so much so I was Little League Team Mom (see what I did there?) last season! Baseball has given me exposure to local (non-expat) families and this is a huge plus for me. I love my expat network but sometimes it’s easy to forget we are the anomaly. My biggest challenge is being apart from our daughter who is now back in the UK at university, and aside from the obvious things such as family and friends, I really miss being able to walk to grab a pint of milk (or glass of wine) and yearn for my old job.

I was keen to try this experiment—to embrace something different and to challenge myself. I was an avid tweeter until a few months back. I needed an excuse to get back to into it.

Alie Caswell

Alie Caswell

Alie Caswell is a Brit who just passed the five-year mark in Southern Germany. Musician, writer, expat supporter, fluent in the language of international hand gestures and with an always unwavering enthusiasm for marzipan and museums. Originally an accompanying partner (not a trailing spouse) with a detailed 12-month plan to travel, learn a language and check out German culture from the inside. Life decided to extend those plans and she ended up with a Dirndl, a love of beer festivals and living in a wonky half­timbered house in deepest Baden­-Württemberg. She blogs about Germany, the expat life and the good, bad and ugly of living somewhere which both exasperates and delights her on a daily basis.

You can find her on social media any time she isn’t working, reading, swearing at her sewing machine or taking photos. She loves connecting with expats because they get it; they understand being the stranger and the crazy ups and downs of the expat adjustment lifecycle in a way that locals and friends and family back home mostly can’t. The transient nature of expat life has not stopped her putting down roots: she was always a European, but she now considers herself a local in more than one country.

Dave Hazzan

Dave Hazzan is a Canadian that has been living in the Seoul area for 14 years. He has five years of experience writing about Korean society and culture. Dave has been published in over 20 magazines and newspapers around the world, including in Canada, the U.S., the U.K., Japan, Singapore, Australia, and here in South Korea, where he writes regularly for the English-language press. He’s covered nearly all areas of Korean and Asian life, but especially the way Korea views the wider world and is viewed by it. He’s also done in-depth reporting on Korean music, art, social affairs, international politics, food, drink, and expat affairs.

The following passage is an “about me” adapted from Dave’s 3-part article on South Korea in Outpost magazine. You can read the article in its entirety here: “Visit Korea in 2 Weeks.” 

Dave and Jo

I came to Korea on January 15, 2002, on Asiana Flight 271 from Seattle to Seoul. I was 25 years old, and had been drunk and/or stoned for about a year.

I had been living in Vancouver, in a basement apartment on 20th Street and Cambie. I was jobless, broke, and deeply in debt. When I had money, I drank. When I didn’t have money, I sat on the couch and stared vacuously at the wall, too depressed to open a book or even turn on the hockey game.

I smoked enough pot to stuff a loveseat, and when the doctors prescribed me Ritalin, I crushed the pills up and snorted them, fistfuls at a time. When my girlfriend woke up in the hospital from emergency gall-bladder surgery, I was at a Halloween party in the East End, blasted on ecstasy, with no nagging feeling at all that I was forgetting something.

I went to the new Korea. Travel to work there came like a saving angel, as it has for so many young, unemployed Canadians. In my five months in Vancouver, I had sent out hundreds of resumes and applications (or so it felt), and had gotten two interviews, neither one successful. When I applied to Korean recruiters, I sent out six resumes and was interviewed by all of them. Within a week of accepting a job I was in Seoul, teaching kindergarten and primary school, of all goddamn things.

If Vancouver is the world’s most liveable city, Seoul is its most explosive. It explodes with red Christian crosses on tin roofs, a dozen to a block. It explodes with dilapidated brown brick housing, at the feet of monstrous white tower blocks that go on for miles. People burst out of its shops and offices, restaurants and bars, subway stations and temples, bus shelters and car parks, roads, highways and overpasses, trees and rivers and mountains, and it never seems to end.

You can hop on a train at any one point and get off after two hours of random transfers and swear you haven’t moved an inch. You are always surrounded by this amorphous mass of people, things, food, drink, smoke, sweat and life that can only be called Korea. In the day, it is like some kind of Asia Disney on meth. At night, it looks like Blade Runner.

Most teachers back then just did a year, took their money, spent two months in Thailand getting blasted, and then went home to kids, car, and mortgage. But I stayed. I had a plan.

I moved out to Ilsan, a new and modern satellite city north of Seoul. I found a decent job and got promoted. I got a girlfriend who became a fiancée who became a wife. I wrote in the mornings and worked in the afternoons, and completed a master’s degree. And then every four years, we strapped on a backpack, quit our jobs, and disappeared.

The nearest flight to the Banana Pancake Trail is to Hanoi, about four and a half hours away, and North America, Australia, and Europe are a solid 10 to 14. So the best way to explore, leaving from Korea, is to make it a good, long trip—and crawling through China is guaranteed adventure.

But don’t forget Korea, and don’t make the mistake most visitors do of spending a day in Seoul and then moving on. The country is small, but it is fascinating.

I have spent three-quarters of my adult life in Korea, or backpacking somewhere in Asia. We have no house, no children, no pets. People often ask us when we are going to settle down and return to “real life.” We are living real life—it’s so real, I feel it in every breath. People who say this isn’t real life think real life has to suck.