Last week marked one year exactly since we moved from Edinburgh to Hertfordshire, and I am pretty proud of how we are doing.
DorkySon has settled amazingly well in his new nursery – it has been an absolute delight seeing him grow in confidence, become so much more curious about the world he lives in, and spend the majority of his time as an incredibly happy wee boy. He is a lot of fun to spend time with right now.
DorkyDad is working harder than I have ever seen, learning new skills and absorbing information about a sector he hasn’t worked in before, travelling to parts of the world he never imagined visiting, and trying hard not to let the unpleasantness of a daily commute get him down.
I feel like I have whinged quite a bit about things since we moved – and it’s no secret that we don’t want to live here forever – but it has also brought some amazing opportunities for us all.
So I decided to have a read back through some of my blog posts, and reflect on ten things – big and small – that we would not have had the chance to do if we hadn’t made the move.
1. Blogger Events: I haven’t done a whole lot of these, because I’m still choosing not to run very much commercial content on the blog, so I’ve been turning down a lot of event invites. But I did make it along to BritMums Live and the MAD Blog Awards, neither of which I would have attended if it had meant the expense of accommodation and travel from Scotland.
2. Save the Children campaigning: I’ve loved doing a few bits and pieces with Save the Children over the last year – from a petition hand in at Downing Street, to a blogging conference, to an evening spent listening to Aselefe – an amazing young woman from Ethiopia. They’re all opportunities that I’ve been able to say yes to now that London is only forty minutes away.
3. A Day at Willows Farm: Edinburgh does have a city farm, but nothing quite like Willows, near St Albans. This still counts as one of the best days that DorkySon has had since we moved down here.
4. Celebrating the Jubilee: I think it’s fair to say that we would not have done anything to mark the Jubilee had we still been up North. I reluctantly went along to the Open Day at DorkySon’s nursery, and he had an absolute blast. I stand corrected.
5. London Transport Museum: We have visited the Transport Museum twice in the last six months. I’m not sure if DorkySon prefers the buses, or the chocolate milkshakes that always follow at a nearby restaurant, but either way it is a lot of fun.
6. Visiting London during the Olympics: This was a rare day just for me – a haircut, some shopping and a wander round London in the sun. It was lovely.
7. Visiting Edinburgh Festival as a tourist: It did feel a bit odd being back in Edinburgh over the summer and staying in a hotel, but there are definite bonuses to being there as a visitor rather than a resident. I got much less huffy about the crowds and the constant flyering than I used to!
8. Learning to love the countryside: Don’t get me wrong, I still miss the buzz of living in a city, but I’ve been working hard to see the positives of living in the middle of nowhere, and I have most success doing that when I go for a walk with my camera.
9. Seeing Dancing on Ice being filmed: When my Mum came down to stay earlier in the year, we managed to get tickets to go and see Dancing on Ice being filmed at the Elstree Studios, which are just a short train journey away. I’d never watched it on TV, but it was so much fun.
10. Making new friends: People who don’t understand social media can think it is a bit bonkers to meet people that you’ve only spoken to online, but one of the lovely things about moving down here has been the chance to turn a few of those ‘friends in the computer’ into friends that I can go for a coffee with. BeingMrsC and The Start Up Wife have both kept me sane and fed me lots of cake during this first year in a new place, and I am very grateful to both of them.
I’m linking this up with Reasons to be Cheerful over at Mummy from the Heart