When Will It Be Time To Go Home? Taryn Silver’s top 3 considerations

Living in New York is exciting. It’s full of ups and downs. And there’s nothing quite like it. I always tell friends that living in New York is like opening a Pandora’s box of excitement and adventure. Once you open it, you can’t close it. Living in America made me appreciate that despite the wonders of technology, Australia is still quite isolated.

Over the Summer I had a coffee with a friend, and she said that she felt she was ready to come home. Then Melbourne was named the most livable city in the world yet again. Americans are always asking me, “Why would you come here? I’d love to live in Australia, it’s so beautiful.” So I asked myself, would I ever be ready to come home? Should I go home? Here are three things to consider on this topic.

#1 Missing out on major life events

Living overseas means missing out on the big life events of your friends. A couple of years ago I Skyped into my cousin’s wedding, we’re the same age and had grown up together.  While it felt like I was there, it wasn’t quite the same. I wasn’t in any of the pictures and the weeks leading up to the wedding. I kept on dreaming that I would arrive last minute and surprise everyone. One of my best friend’s is engaged, and I know there’s a good chance I’ll miss her wedding too.

#2 ‘Nothing changes’ is a myth

One of my favorite haunts on the Upper West Side is Earth Cafe, they serve Toby’s Estate coffee, and more often than not I bump into Aussies looking for decent coffee. One expat, I bumped into had just returned from a visit home. I asked about her experience and she said,  “nothing changes.” But things do change back home, and sometimes in a sad way. The question is, do you want to be 22 hours away? My grandparents have aged rapidly this year, and it’s been hard not being able to lend a hand when I can. I worry that one day my parents could need me to be there.

#3 When it’s no longer fun anymore

Moving to America with very little family means giving up my well-established support systems and networks. That was abundantly clear when, as an exchange student, I found myself alone in the hospital. But right now New York is still fun. I’m meeting new people all the time and seeing more theatre than I ever did in Melbourne. Plus, I’ve just been home for Christmas! But it’s also hard, and I’ve always told myself that if it isn’t fun any more than maybe its time to come home.

I’m always flexible to reassessing my situation as it changes. Right now I just try to live every day, one day at a time. It’s very easy to get caught up in the what if‘s. And when that happens I remember that none of us really know where we’ll be in a year – I certainly never dreamed of coming to and living in New York City, and yet here I am…

About the author

Taryn Silver is another Aussie transplant who has been living in New York for over two years. Taryn recently graduated from Columbia University with an M.S in Strategic Communication and now works as a Senior Account Executive at Orangefiery, a communications consultancy. Taryn is also a classically trained Soprano with a Bachelor of Music from the Melbourne Conservatorium of Music and is still loves sharing her passion for music with anyone and everyone. Connect with Taryn on Twitter @vegemitecheese or on her website www.vegemitecheeseburger.com a place where Aussie and American culture come together.

AWNY AGM is just around the corner!

AGM pic

Dear AWNY members and friends,

Want to get involved with a dynamic group of women,
give back, make fabulous friends and have fun?


The Liberty NYC
29 West 35th Street, New York, NY


Monday, April 17, 2017
6.30pm for 7:00pm start

Meeting and election procedures
Networking before and after


Each year we hold our AGM, where you, our members, are provided the opportunity
to join the AWNY Committee.

Established by the American Australian Association in 1999, AWNY is a dynamic group of women of all ages & backgrounds. We host a diverse range of social events, educational & professional networking opportunities.

Our Vision is to be known as the MUST join group for all Australian women when moving to New York, by providing a forum for women to come together: network, share ideas & experiences, whilst helping to make the transition into New York life as rewarding as possible!


All positions are open for re-election including: President, Vice President, Secretary, Co-chair positions available for Mums & Dads, Communications, Events, and New Member. Plus there are positions available for committee members as Event Coordinators, Communications Team members and Charity Coordinators.

Submit your nomination by Thursday, April 13 online here.

Join AWNY online

Website – Facebook  –  Twitter  –  LinkedIn  –  Instagram

What’s on in New York in February

January didn’t bring much winter feel with it but as I type this the mercury is dipping toward zero degrees C and I have it on good authority that February and March could pack a cold punch. So why not grab a cuppa, sit back, and read through AWNY’s picks of the best Feb events to help get you through the chillaroo…

Curated by the AWNY Communications Team

TOP PICK! Make sure you zip on over to our Facebook page and check out the AWNY Art Auction. Two very special artists, Jacinta Stewart and Trish Callaghan have donated an art work each for the online auction, and all funds raised will go towards AWNY’s 2017 charity, The Dwelling Place. Bidding ends Feb 8 at midnight! It’s really easy to place a bid – just add your bid in the comments section under each of the art work pics on the events page. Bid here for Jacinta’s work and here for Trish’s work. Thank you for your support for this great cause!

Aussie Cabaret performer Michael Griffiths performs his ‘In Vogue’ show (Madonna tribute) at 54 Below on February 7.  The cabaret experience of 54 Below is reason enough to go but I have a hunch Michael will make this an unforgettably fun night. Tickets and info available here.

The Gondwana Choir, comprising the most accomplished choral groups in Australia, perform on February 2nd at 1pm at the Trinity Church. Additional info about the event can be found here. Entry is free (can you think of a better way to spend your lunch break tomorrow?).

TOP PICK! Join ANWY’s Love, Sex and Romance panel discussion on February 15 at Impact Hub. New York based Australian authors Rachel Hills and Skye Cleary will lead the discussion that will explore myths, fantasies, and unspoken assumptions about romance and relationships. AWNY member tix are a bargain at $15 and are available here.

Why do us grown-ups get all the fun? Kids night on Broadway, held on Feb 28th, is a great initiative that allows kids the see Broadway shows for zilcho (must be accompanied by a fee paying adult). Search the list of participating shows here (includes the Lion King and Wicked – both excellent) and BOOK NOW. Tix won’t last.

If you’re not a super bowl fan but need to at least know the who and when, then this info is for you: The New England Patriots and the Atlanta Falcons will battle it out on Feb 5. If you’re more of a die-hard fan, here’s some additional specs: kick off for the main game is at 6.30PM Eastern. It’s being played in Houston, Texas, and Lady Gaga is scheduled to perform the half time show. Seriously, if you’ve never experienced a New York City pub on super bowl night, do it. Get in early though to grab a seat near the telly.

There a many great things about New York in Winter and Fashion Week is definitely one of them (I’m always reminded of one of my favourite Sex and the City scenes when Samantha gets fake blood squirted over her beautiful white mink coat while coming out of Bryant Park. “God I miss love New York!’ was her completely awesome response). It runs from Feb 9-16. This link will tell you who’s show is on and where. Most events are industry-only (but hey, great celeb spotting). This link will give you events open to the public.

Time Out have put together a great list of events around Mardi Gras (Feb 28) this year. In NYC, Mardi Gras is not celebrated in quite the same way it is in Australia. The event is actually a religious celebration (eating richer foods on Shrove Tuesday before the fasting of Lent). But in New York (and New Orleans, if you happen to be down there) it’s celebrated with a lot of Jazz. Check out Time Out’s list of some of the amazing events taking place in the city to celebrate it.

Photo credit: Joanna Hishon

Designing the Perfect Tote for City Girls; Discover Overt Accessories – AWNY Startup Stories



Sarah Saxty and Lauren Kozica have travelled similar paths. Both grew up as beach kids in Australia. Both started working in fashion more than 10 years ago. And both were drawn to New York as one of the biggest fashion powerhouses in the world. This week, AWNY Start Up Stories catches up with Sarah to learn more about how the pair came to launch their very own accessories label, OVERT.

How did you meet Lauren and when did you both decide to go into business together?

We were brought together by a mutual friend in New York City, and over a coffee became friends instantly.

Both working from home we started to co-work together, and found ourselves often brainstorming creative ideas together; the OVERT concept and “city life” was one of them. It stuck.

What should we know about Overt?

Connection is one of the most important parts of OVERT. We always consider the reality of the story we are telling, representing the women in the city, and the daily challenge of “doing it all”. We hope that we identify with real women doing real things and connect with the emotion of being a woman doing it all.

Your website says you were inspired by the ever-evolving essence of New York City and girls-on-the-go, tell us more about this?

We started to recognize how busy our lives were in New York City. It’s not rare to leave your apartment at 7am and not get home until 1am the next morning. One day, we listed all the things we do in a day and what we carried around with us in our multiple bags – it was excessive and ridiculous! We knew then there had to be a better way and that we wanted to create products that allowed the ‘city girl’ to transition from day to night with style and practicality.

The Noho bag was born from the fact that for a city girl, life is always on the go, on the commute. There’s a term: the New York bag ladies. We wanted our bag to combat that, and if the number of emails we get from girls that have newly converted to the Noho are anything to go by, it does.


What have been the hardest challenges you’ve faced in starting a business? What have you learned?

The design process for the Noho was an intense one – there are 62 pattern pieces! I remember countless nights brainstorming the design over bottles of wine in our apartments. We were very proud to see the first sample from the first factory. In fact we nearly cried – it was our baby come to life. We often felt like we were in a real life scene of “How to Make it in America”, which was kind of cool, albeit exhausting schlepping around the Garment District day after day. Sourcing the materials and finding a factory were some of our biggest hurdles.

I think as a new brand, one big obstacle is getting out there – standing out among the array of talented new designers and brands on the market.

We have learned that our belief in ourselves and our vision – and staying true to it – really does help.

Do you have any mentors? How have you found people to be with sharing information, advice and their networks?

We don’t have any “formalized” mentors as such. We do have a couple of people that we have turned to over the years though. The sense of community in New York is like no other – there is the reputation of New Yorkers being “rude” I still to this day do not understand where that came from! We have found the community here very nurturing; everyone is open to a new connection, or to share their expertise. The entrepreneurship community and platforms to learn from are bustling.

What advice would you give someone thinking about starting a business in New York? 

There’s no better city in the world than New York to launch or expand a business. New Yorkers are hungry and optimistic. They’re willing to give you a go and listen to what you have to say. Be prepared to network and make the big asks. And be aware it is a full pool already. You need to stand out, be clear on what you want and why you exist, be strong.

What is next for OVERT?

Where do I start? There are so many wonderful ideas to be explored. The best part about being such a young company is that we are so agile. It could be all about building our website one week, and the next we decide it’s all about designing a new collection of products, or building out networking events for our girls. All things we are working on day by day. Right now – our biggest focus is definitely to share the love, spread the word and help ‘city girls’ over the globe stop being bag ladies.

AWNY readers are in for a Treat!

Sarah and Lauren welcome you to join the OVERT community with 25% off your Noho Bag by using the code ‘OVERTGIRL SS’ (with a space between L and S).


Photograph by Bridget Badore

Follow Overt at:

Website: overtnyc.com
Instagram: instagram.com/overtnyc
Facebook: facebook.com/overtnyc
Pinterest: pinterest.com/overtnyc
Twitter: twitter.com/overtnyc
You Tube: youtube.com


Love this AWNY Startup Story? Want more?

Register for our monthly newsletter and be kept in the loop for our upcoming Startup Stories event where you can hear more stories like this first hand and meet some of Aussie women entrepreneurs.

Blog – https://australianwomeninnewyork.org 
Facebook –  https://www.facebook.com/AUWomenNYC/ 
Twitter – https://twitter.com/AUWomenNYC 
Instagram – https://www.instagram.com/auwomennyc/

Are you an Australian female who owns a business in New York?

If you do and you want to tell us all about it, email us at awny@aaanyc.org


What’s On in New York December 2016

2 down, 1 to go…

Holidays I mean, and it’s the big one left. Yes, we’ve done Halloween, struggled through the food and fun mountain that is Thanksgiving, and now we’ve got the 4 week march toward Christmas. Holiday Season is well and truly upon us and if you haven’t yet been out to see the department store lights, the holiday markets, or donned skates in Rockefeller Centre or Bryant Park, then I suggest you hop to it, like yesterday. Because New York will get be mad for all things tinsel and jingly between now and December 25th. To ensure you keep up that great holiday spirit, the AWNY Communications team have put together a list of the best things to do in the city over December. Starting with our Christmas party lunch. Hope to see you there!

AWNY Christmas Lunch is on tomorrow @12.30PM and there are still a few spots left. Don’t delay! Reserve you spot via the event page here.

Get in the Christmas spirit super early by catching a performance of Handel’s Messiah at St Thomas Church Dec 6 and 8. You need to purchase tickets through the church website.  For something a little closer to Christmas, it’s also being performed at Carnegie Hall on December 22nd

The America Australia Association Holiday Reception is on December 13th at The Australian, from 6.30PM-9.30PM. Open wine and beer plus great food from the chefs at The Lucky bee, Babu Ji, The Liberty, and The Australian. Register here.

The Radio City Christmas Spectacular is a must see for getting in the Christmas spirit. Some days have up to 4 performances – it really it that popular (we even mentioned the show in November’s What’s On!). Tickets and performance times are available here.

Did you know that you can literally shred away your bad 2016 memories to make way for good ones on Good Riddance Day? Held in Times Square on December 28th, smash ‘em, bash ‘em, and shred em’ to make way for great memories in 2017! For more info and times visit Times Square website.

The 30,000 LED bulbs that light up the Rockefeller Tree are officially on from November 30th and this week is a great time to see it before the Christmas crowds descend.

New Year’s Eve midnight run! Ok you don’t have to go crazy and actually do the run, but it’s likely you’ll be awake anyway so if you’re anywhere near Central Park, hop along to watch 1000’s of New Yorkers, in all kinds of kit-out – run a 4 mile loop of the park to welcome in the New Year. It’s great fun.

Merry Christmas AWNY members!