Thank you for your reply.
We actually went out there last week, man its a lot of travel when you're 2.5 hours from melbourne! We flew from melbourne to brisbane (1.5 hrs), then waited an hour for a flight to emerald (1.5 hrs), then drove 1.5 hours to Middlemount. Long day! The company paid for us to stay in the hotel for the night and paid for our meal, then the next day I checked out the town while DH went to the mine for 5.5 hours. Needless to say I exhausted the town pretty quickly but was pleasantly surprised! A lot of the feedback I had must have been from people accustomed to cities, whereas we are from a smallish country town anyway. The difference is we have a lot of small towns around so our region has everything you might need/want but Myers! So Middlemount has everything you would need for a day to day basis, everything else you can stock up on in the large towns on a weekend trip or buy online, I guess. And there were quite a few parks which the kids would love.
I also had an appointment with the kinder, where the staff were lovely. I was shocked at the price difference. Not sure if its the shire or QLD in general. We pay $165 per term here, its app $800 there.
I was quite looking forward to seeing the houses and was a bit let down, as they were.. older I guess you'd say... than I was expecting. Not that we're snobs or anything and our house certainly isn't brand new but they were a bit like our cheap commission style houses are here. But its what you make it, and by the time our belongings are in there I'm sure it would feel more like a home.
DH was really happy with the mine, and all the people we meet were lovely. The company paid for us to stay in Brisbane the nest night so we only had to travel from middlemount to emerald to brisbane, then to Melbourne then home the next day which was great. Great? Apart from motion sickness on all 4 flights! argh, awful.
So, DH just got back today from another job offer in Glenden, closer to Mackay. There are aspects of both he likes but I do think we will be moving to one shortly!
Still .. scared?... of the change and leaving behind friends and family but there's the telephone, can fly my mom up for visits, come down once or twice a year and maybe even skype etc (no idea how to do that but still!)Its only the other side of the country, not another country and should mean we have the chance of more quality family time together, with some nice places to visit and a bit more cash to be able to do it! So, gotta think positive about it....