So much has happened since I last blogged that I don’t even know where to start. And quite honestly, I’ve very much considered not starting back up. Just, you know, moving on and chugging forward with life undocumented. It could happen.
But who am I kidding – like a reoccurring itch you just can’t scratch, I’m back. First things first – WE MADE IT TO BELGIUM about a week and a half ago.
The kids (and cats) did amazing on their first ever flight which just happened to be transatlantic. I had a lot of anxiety over the logistics – to say we had a lot of spinning plates in the air would have been a gross understatement. Because when 2 adults are responsible for getting 4 kids, 2 cats, 11 pieces of checked luggage, 6 backpacks, 4 car seats from one end of the globe to the other, what could go wrong?
Nothing. Nothing went wrong and I’m not even kidding – the almost 24 hours of travel went as well as could be expected. The next week or so we spent staying in a small hotel apartment in the heart of our new town, getting ready to move in and set up shop and making good on our promise of waffles and chocolate.
Our sea shipment (think semi-truck) filled with our very important personal crap (which I packed 1000% too much of) arrived this past Tuesday, and after all this time living like nomads, it was time to move in.
Welcome home, baby Paul. May this be the first house you will probably remember.
It took a crew of six men 4 days to move us out of our home in Indianapolis, and a crew of 4 Polish student-manboys a full working day to unpack us into our new place. And by move in, I mean they brought everything into the house, took the bubble wrap off the big stuff and ran a box cutter over the boxes, for us to unload at our leisure.
But we’re getting set up and trying to make this new place feel like us. Today, I did my first couple loads of laundry (which was challenging, considering I don’t understand French and am apparently not as intuitive as I thought) and even drove for the first time ever here in Europe to get groceries for the week and it only took me two hours in the store. You guys, I meal planned – which is a huge step in the right domestic direction. And last night we pilgrimaged to the Holy Grail of shopping, to IKEA, because our feelings felt like occasional lighting fixtures and Swedish Meatballs.
That being said, even though we have literal piles and piles of chores to do, I’m not in a hurry. I figure the kids go to school in a few weeks, and then it will just be baby Paul and I every day, so organizational details can wait. First up is working on culture shock with things like chocolate croissants and glasses of cheap French wine.
Lazy morning and warm afternoons are taking priority.
(front yard view from second story window)
(dining/living area, one day post-bubble wrap)
I hope everyone had an absolutely awesome summer, I really can’t believe how it’s basically over already. When we were kids, didn’t it last forever?
While we waited for our things to arrive here in Belgium, we spent a few weeks doing crazy things like white water rafting – horseback riding – mountain peak summiting in Colorado with our cousins, cottaging on the lake in West Michigan, and long days hanging out at Grandma and Grandpa’s house. Maybe someday I’ll blog about those pre-Belgium days. Because they were blog-worthy in their own right.
Guys, thanks for checking in and following along as our family transitions. Hopefully in these next few weeks and months we can find a rhythm that makes sense. I’m excited to share the good, the bad, the embarrassing and hopefully the downright ridiculous side of expat living.
Tomorrow we’re headed as a family to Ghent, Belgium on our first ever daytrip. Wish us luck and follow along for some real-time micro-blogging over on Instagram. Cheers!