For the longest time, our family “tradition” involved having at least one child (usually Liam) puke on any given trip. It wasn’t a good trip unless we could count on Liam vomiting somewhere, and bonus if it was multiple times (remember that trip to the US when he puked 11 times???). As Liam has gotten older, this phase seems to, thankfully, be waning. However, a new “tradition” seems to be emerging. Continue reading
In one of my last posts, I mentioned that it’s time to start living for the now. The expat life is filled with a lot of uncertainty and often times (ok, all the time) we are really only about to plan our lives one year at a time. We have no 5 year plan, much less a 10 year plan. We have no ties to anywhere at this point beyond where we are in this moment. And often times, it makes it difficult to make even the simplest decisions because we don’t know where we will be in a year’s time. It’s also hard to define what is home. Is it where you lay your head? Where you are from? Where you lived most recently?
Tomorrow morning the kids and I head home for the summer. Seems weird since it’s already mid July but as the kids only finished school at the end of last week, we’re just getting started. For 5 glorious weeks, we’ll be home. As always, it will be chaotic, but it will be worth it. Continue reading
So while I’m ready to get home for the summer, it doesn’t mean that I’m necessarily ready to give up expat life. Two years. We were only supposed to be gone for 2 years. A quick adventure while the kids were still young. But two years has quickly turned into 6 1/2 with no end in sight. How in the world did we get here? Continue reading
There comes a time in every expat’s year when you just need to get the hell out of dodge and regroup. I don’t mean vacation. No amount of vacations can help when you hit the point of no return during the year, the infamous wall. The only thing that can help at this point is the annual trip home. Continue reading
40. It’s been a mixed bag of emotions. It’s been a year of (unintentional) change, and more importantly, growth. It’s been both scary and cathartic. It’s only taken 40 years, but I’m finally figuring out who I am and who I want to be. I’m not quite there yet, but I think I’m on the right path. Ok, I hope I’m on the right path.
Last year we celebrated Thanksgiving just the 4 of us. Josh was still recovering from his knee surgery and we really didn’t have any friends. It was the first time we’d ever celebrated “alone”. And it sucked. I hated it. We were alone in yet another country. The anger took over me for a long time – especially over the holiday season. Continue reading
I was talking to a friend recently who was preparing to move to Qatar. We got to talking about the weather and what it’s going to be like over there. With extremely hot weather the majority of the year and overall pleasant winters with next to no rain, it is going to be nothing like what we have in the Netherlands – if anything it will be completely opposite. One of the things we talked about is her eventual first visit back here and how she will be absolutely freezing in what the rest of us would consider tee shirt weather once she has acclimated to her new climate. And it got me to thinking about how we adapt to our environments. Continue reading
So as you read recently, things have been better here so far this year. I have been actively making changes in my life, or Changing the Dance, as my mom likes to say. But despite my efforts, I’ve taken one step forward and what feels like many steps back. It’s like I can’t win. Or maybe the Netherlands is out to get us. It’s starting to feel like it – even though this most recent problem has absolutely nothing to do with location. Continue reading
My mom always says to me that if you aren’t happy in life and change isn’t happening on it’s own (or in the way that you hope), sometimes you need to “change the dance”. I obviously complain a lot as she’s said it many times to me. But I don’t think I really “got” what she meant until recently. Mainly because I hadn’t been applying it to my life. Continue reading