Both Wendy Horder and John Smith have had long and admirable careers in the air force, while also raising four children.
Their service has taken them all over the world, and their current historic house on The Hill is a great place to show parts of their journey.
The family have filled it with treasures from their travels. They have lived in New York, Malaysia, Thailand, Solomon Islands and New Zealand.
"We wanted an older house and as soon as we walked in, I fell in love with the garden," Horder says.
Horder and Smith bought the home four years ago and moved in with their daughter, Chloe, two years ago.
Horder is originally from Aberdeen. Smith is from Western Victoria and this house reminds him of where he grew up. Prints of his childhood home grace The Hill home's walls.
"I would always hope to have a house like this," he says.
Built in the 1860s, the weatherboard house has plenty of history.
Built as a mining executive's house, it was originally owned by the Australian Agricultural Company. A few different families owned it, including several generations of the Foggo family. The four-bedroom, three-bathroom house has been through a few renovations, including a second-storey addition with windows installed in the roof.
Photos of the house tell them that by the 1960s the upstairs bedrooms had appeared. They think the kitchen would have originally been outside, a scullery room with a fireplace.
A stroll through the house is a never-ending journey of interesting details, big and small: high ceilings, expansive wallpaper, floral curtains and a variety of flooring.
They have beautiful furniture, rugs, cabinets full of china, and that's before you explore the big, beautiful secluded garden.
Both semi-retired, Horder and Smith work from home doing Reserves work in their shared office.
Horder describes the house as eclectic and interesting.
"It's a mixture of the old Australian house combined with old English antiques and our collection of Asian and Pacific artwork. We've collected a lot of porcelain china from Hong Kong and Malaysia." she says.
"A lot of the furniture is from John's house in Victoria."
"The Australian cedar dining table my grandfather made. I purloined it at some stage and renovated it many years ago. I French polished it," Smith says.
Smith has a numbered print of the 1977 centenary test signed by all the players. He bought it through the MCG, many years ago.
Their rosewood furniture was made in Thailand. The original Persian rugs and lacquerware are from Burma. They have celadon in their teak cabinets and they brought paintings, shelves and wood carvings back from the Solomon Islands. The leather pouffe was a gift from the Bangladeshi defense advisor. Horder received when she was defense advisor in Kuala Lumpur.
"We've done so many moves, our lesson is the biggest thing is to unpack. Do it quickly or you tend to leave it for a long time," she says.
There's plenty to choose from, but their favourite piece is the poppies painting (by Canberra artist Margaret Dimoff) in the dining room.
"The fact that it's poppies; we're both military people. It just sang out to me to buy," Horder says.
They did a bit of work when they moved in, including adding an ensuite. They renovated the kitchen and made one of the bedrooms their study, decorated with their many awards from the military, including Horder's appointment to command and a framed photo of Smith receiving his advanced military studies award from the King of Thailand in 1985.
They put a studio in the back where Horder does arts and crafts.
Their daughter, Chloe, works for Soul Cafe. The cafe collects community-knit crochet squares and Horder and her friends sew blankets out of them. They are given to Soul Cafe clients.
The family love the area and community. After travelling the world, they hope to stay in this house for at least another 15 years.
They've begun a beautiful chapter in Newcastle by adding their story to the house on The Hill.