I’ve been waiting to share this news for a while and I’m thrilled I finally can – we’re moving to LONDON this summer!
How This Move to London Came About
For quite a while, Dan and I have wanted an international living stint. My job can be done from anywhere, but Dan needed to get approval from his to be able to work abroad. So he’s been floating it here and there for a couple years to see if we could make it work.
Dan switched roles back in August, and this new team finally had a reason for and was supportive of an international move. We were actually open to a number of different places, and London was one of them. It turns out London was one of the only opportunities where there were big enough offices and was connected to his role, and it just so happens that we love it and have always said we’d love to live there. We were absolutely delighted when they said we could make it work!
How We Really Started Planning
Even with a verbal agreement, Dan still needed to wait a few months in the role before he could officially apply for a transfer. We originally considered moving this spring, but the timing didn’t quite work out. With a new baby, my dad passing away last fall, and with the kids in schools we all love, it seemed best to wait until the school year was finished, anyway.
So this spring, after he got official approval, we’ve been working through all kinds of things like visas, housing, schools, and more.
Will It Be Permanent?
As of now, we’re thinking we’ll probably spend a couple of years in London. Dan’s position probably couldn’t remain there permanently, and N, our oldest, will be starting high school in a couple years. We’re tentatively thinking we’ll return to the US before that happens so he and the rest of our kids can have a stable high school experience if possible. I moved in the middle of high school and it actually turned out great, but that felt lucky and was entirely based on the school and community to which we moved. Had I moved the other direction, it would’ve been really unfortunate, and I definitely would’ve preferred to be in that second spot for my whole high school experience if possible. It’s definitely also possible that we’ll fall in love with London and want to stay forever, though. 😉
We’re not selling our home here in California, and instead will be renting it out to a wonderful family that already lives in our area. Their landlord was selling their current home, so they were looking for a great home that was still in the same school district. We’re so happy it worked out!
When Will The Move Happen?
Dan still has a fair bit of parental leave after the birth of baby S, so we’ve long been planning to do some traveling this summer after the kids finish school. So while we’re planning to leave the Bay in mid-June when our renters will be moving in, we won’t actually be arriving in London until mid-August.
Since right now we’re only planning on a temporary move, we’ll be renting a place instead of buying. We’d of course rather not pay for a couple extra months of rent if we don’t have to, so we’ve just recently been trying to secure housing for a place that will be available come August. We have one place that looks like it will be a great fit for our family – we’d appreciate any prayers/thoughts/good vibes if you’d like to send them our way!
Will You Take All Your Stuff?
Since this is a move we’re choosing (rather than one we’re being asked to do), Dan’s company (sadly) won’t be paying for our move like they did when we came to California. And it turns out moving a whole house is quite expensive, ha. So we’re not planning on moving with very much.
We don’t have much furniture we’re particularly attached to, so for the most part, we’re planning on selling or donating it. We may store a few pieces, along with personal items, books, kitchen goods, etc. We’ll be shipping clothing and things like that, but are hoping to keep it fairly minimal.
How Are The Kids Are Taking It?
Since we’ve been talking about this for so long, they’ve mostly accepted the idea. Our older two kids especially aren’t thrilled about leaving friends and the only schools they’ve known, but they’re having great attitudes and being supportive. It helps to know we’re not selling our place here!
It’s definitely hard leaving a home we’ve lived in and loved for the last 7 years, where we’ve brought home 3 of our babies, and which is the only home that 5/6 kids remember. We’ve had countless hours of playing, crafts, backyard adventures, cooking, reading, and more. We’ve put love and thought into home renovations and it’s been so special to see it become ours both in terms of functionality and style. It will for sure be sad to leave it.
What’s Happening Next?
Honestly I feel pretty overwhelmed with all the logistics and details of moving a family of 8 across the world ocean. This feels like an enormous privilege and gift, and it also feels totally bonkers. Whew! Most days, I barely know where to start because everything is connected so it feels like a chicken and egg sort of situation. But I’m trying to take things just one small step at a time, while also carving out time to spend time with beloved friends in this area, enjoy our home together, and possibly work and sleep a little in between.
The next few months will definitely be a little nutty. I’ll still be writing and sharing here and on Instagram, but it will look a little different and from a few different locations. I’d love for you to join in this crazy and exciting journey with us. Thank you so much for your ongoing support and love!!
Ah, my heart is bursting for you! Such wonderful adventures and memories ahead for all of you! Sending extra mama-strength to you for all that’s ahead!