Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Getting Settled

We're in our new home, busy unpacking (yes, we've been here a couple of weeks--but unpacking is an ongoing process) and organizing. There is so much more to moving than just going to a new place and being in a new house. Here's my partial list of things that go in to "getting settled":

--finding a home
--working out the finances of the move
--learning your way around
--registering cars
--getting new driver's licenses
--homeschool registration (and learning the laws of the new state)
--finding new doctors--family practice, pediatrician, specialists...
--finding and choosing activities and classes for the kids--music teachers, sports, etc.
--finding and getting involved with local homeschool groups
--learning where to shop--where to find what and who has the best prices
--finding service providers for whatever the family's needs are--hair cuts, plumbers, repairmen, auto shop, piano tuner...honestly the list is endless
--updating mailing addresses and subscriptions
--adjusting and getting involved in a new church
--making friends (we all need them)
--Oh yea, unpacking and organizing

I'm sure others could chime in, the list is far from finished. For those with children in school, substitute the homeschooling items for new school registration and adjustment issues. And of course I haven't had to deal with any of the myriad issues that arise when a move is to another country--I have no idea how my mother managed to navigate through 8 different international moves. It's hard enough finding my way around the local grocery store when I don't know the lay-out, at least I don't have to rely on the pictures on cans to figure out what is inside! Of course, the real challenge is that regular life has to go on while all this is happening--meals have to be fixed, children need to be taken care of, people get sick...

Growing up, I always felt like it took me 18 months to feel settled in a place. Of course, we were dealing with all of the living overseas, needing to learn a new language issues on top of regular moving issues; even so, it just takes a long time for the dust and chaos of moving to settle down, and for a place to really start feeling like home.

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