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In Australia, we are divided up into eight states. I live in New South Wales, so proudly call myself a New South Welshman [woman] as this is where I was born and raised. However, many of my ancestors started out over in Western Australia, where they, along with other convicts,were all sentenced to build a new life in their designated colonies.New South Wales is Australias most populated state with over 6.2 million inhabitants. The state houses the countries largest and arguably the countries most well known city; Sydney, home to the Sydney Harbour Bridge and the magnificent Sydney Opera House. Sydney is the place where over 3.25 million Australians call home. The state’s area totals 802,000 square kilometres
We live about 30 kilometres west into the growing suburbia!The NSW Coat of Arms is based on the Southern Cross with the British Lion in the centre and symbols of agriculture in the corners. It is supported by the British Lion and the Australian Kangaroo and was formally adopted in 1906. The Latin motto translates as “Newly risen, how brightly you shine”.

Telopea speciosissima, was proclaimed the official floral emblem of New South Wales on 24 October 1962. Otherwise commonly known as the WaratahThe Waratah is a stout, erect shrub which may grow to 4 metres. The dark green leathery leaves, 13-25 cm in length, are arranged alternately and tend to be coarsely toothed. The flowers are grouped in rounded heads 7 to 10 cm in diameter surrounded by crimson bracts, about 5 to 7 cm long. It flowers from September to November and nectar-seeking birds act as pollinators. Large winged seeds are released when the brown leathery pods split along one side. This flower has a special meaning to me, personally, as it is fairly widespread on the central coast, where my mother once lived and adjoining mountains of New South Wales, occurring from the Gibraltar Range, north of Sydney, to Conjola in the south. Lake Conjola being where my Grandmother purchased her lovely little cottage by the beautiful lake! Both loved the waratah, and during my ovarian cancer campaigns, I held a few awareness stalls at the Waratah Festival in Telopea,[named after the flower] a suburb of Parramatta.
Further reading and facts:http://www.about-australia.com/facts/new-south-wales/

For more facts and wonderful images on Sydney:http://www.koalaexpress.com.au/sydney.htm
Cheers mate!

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