Sunshine and I have just been talking about this after reading your post... I've known the girls for quite a while, nearly 4 years actually. Again, I speak with the kids on the phone, the older one on the computer, and while I was there, I wasn't just a lump sitting on the couch. When things needed to be done, I would tell them and they would accept it from me. They respect me and love me, that much I can tell and I know Sg and Ab know it too. They've been doing a great job in raising respectful children.
I agree it's different being there for three weeks than living there. Of course there will be hurddles. I don't intend on coming in both guns blazing and take over, not at all. It will be an adjusting process for all, but the kids DO know me, and know me well and I know them. Its not like it was the first time they saw me or spoke with me when I got there.
They were counting down the days until my arrival before they were so excited. I look at things realistically. The kids are already accepting and love me and I love them, and that's the first step really. We're not saying everything is going to go perfectly, of course not, but it's a good step in the right direction. They want me there with them and are very excited that I'm moving to Australia. Even more excited when Sg asked what they thought if I were to move in with them. In fact I'VE spoken to dd 9 about it myself. She's thrilled as is dd 6, even ds 2 'talks' to me on the computer and on the phone.
Sorry if I seem defensive but just need you to know it's not a spur of the moment decsion without thinking of the kids. I'd never do anything I knew would hurt them, and I know Sg and Ab will only ever do whats best for the kids.
"Thou art to me a delicious torment." - Ralph Waldo Emerson