2. We're going to buy a house. It may not be in Mount Pleasant after all. Probably closer to the Salisbury area since we both work there. Minimum three bedrooms, separate bathroom & laundry, ducted air conditioning with one room reverse cycle for the really nasty days, a shed or space for one, and a kitchen. Doesn't matter what the kitchen looks like, anything's better than the one we have now.
Since I'm not yet a permanent resident, if we decide to apply for a home loan together now, we'd need a 20% deposit/down payment. If we wait till I get PR, it's 5%. So once that comes through, we'll be looking at loans and houses very very seriously.
3. Get back to the US for Christmas. There are many ways of doing this: fly Qantas & American through Sydney/Melbourne, LA, and Chicago to Minneapolis; fly Air New Zealand & United through Auckland, LA, and Chicago to Minneapolis; or fly either of the two just to LA and get a car from there, taking a week or so to drive from the west coast to Wisconsin. We kinda like the idea of a road trip, seeing all those national landmarks up close rather than from five miles overhead.