Monday, June 01, 2009

In the seven years since the Diminutive Englishman and I have used the same toothbrush (not really; it's a euphemism I picked up from Pogo, and my memory is that someone says it of John Smith and Pocahontas--"And the next thing you know, they were using the same toothbrush!") we have moved 16 times. Now, for many of those moves, a lot of our belongings were in storage, but I have counted every move where we have left one address, never to return, for another. We are moving again at the end of the month--we'll be England for the summer, and then Iowa for the fall, and then we are headed for Austin, where we intend to stay.

I can't even wrap my brain around Austin, though I am looking forward to it tremendously. First, we have our first move that involves shifting two children around.

Pray for me. And give advice, please, if you have it. We fly to England on July 1.


angie said...

ooo, i'm interested in hearing the answer to this. not that we are moving in the next year, but i'm sure you will get some awesome advice on traveling efficiently with children. we are hitting central america in a few months.

Paul Lisicky said...

Ah, honey. And I thought we were bad. (During our 14 years we've lived in 14 places, I think.) And we're not talking about children--though there were animals during at least nine of those years. And only one country. I have no advice. But I'm heading to the church right now.

joanna said...

Sweet! Austin! I count myself lucky to call this place home.

Asa Maria Bradley said...

Am married to an Englishman myself who always makes fun of the 5 years I spent in Texas when I first arrived here from Sweden. A few years ago I took him to visit Austin (not where I lived in TX) and he constantly asks me when we can go back. You guys will love it!

Heather said...

I have both moved and traveled with a toddler in the past 4 months and here are my tips:
1. New books
2. Lots and lots of stickers and paper
3. Special treats - for my son Eliot, this can be as simple as fruit leather, or as exotic as lollipops.
4. There are times to be snotty about portable DVD players and children. Long distance traveling/moving is not one of them.
5. One or two really coveted new toys, and a few cheap-o ones you don't mind leaving behind.
6. Lots and lots and lots of snacks and a lunch box size cooler with an ice pack - goldfish crackers; yogurt; Veggie Booty is a no-guilt treat in our house; apple slices, dried (from Trader Joe's) blueberries, strawberries, mangoes - They'll think it's candy!
7. Insulated sippy/straw cups keep drinks cold for 12 hours and are anti-microbial.

Happy travels and hope this helps!

Good Egg Hunting said...

I'm afraid I don't have any advice for you since I don't yet have children (and the "yet" is optimistic). But I wish you and your family all the best as you seek new adventures!

I do have one question/request for you: Please tell me you are doing some sort of reading here in the Boston area before you leave. I mistakenly thought you might be around indefinitely, and that I had all the time in the world to attend one of your author events. Now I realize I should have been combing the event lists religiously to find an opportunity to come and hear you....

Elizabeth McCracken said...

Asa: I have been told by several people, English and not, that Englishpeople, as a group, love Austin. More proof for this theory!

Heather: wow, and thank you. What a great list. At the moment Gus doesn't watch TV, but I just recently turned to the DE and said, "He's watching cartoons on the plane."

And Good Egg (great name)--alas, none scheduled, and I'm leaving in a matter of weeks...

Rachel Heath said...

I've just found your blog! How exciting. First toppest tip: come and stay with us in UK. The big draw is that I am the proud owner of THREE travel cots and my youngest child is seven.

second tip: Give Gus transitional toys in a rucksack, which he is in charge of. Not many, in fact v. few. (By the time my oldest was 7, he had lived in as many houses - his rucksack was well travelled.) This is good for holidays too. My middle son - his transitional toys were disney's seven dwarfs - snow white was offed early on as she was too tall apparently, and kept falling over, like tall people do). As soon as you arrive anywhere, take their toys out and arrange in their corner, or next to the bed they will be sleeping in.

Persuade baby that their pushchair or sling is a home away from home.

Get a big bag.

Don't buy too much - you can get it when you're there. When we go away we now take nothing, take children to charity shops, stack up on books, comics, toys - and relish how random their choices are. Then take them all back at the end of the trip.