Not sure where to start. Let's say that from the moment I stopped blogging, life became very challenging, in many ways. My blog is not the right place to tell the whole story, so you'll just have to believe me when I say that it's been the toughest year of my life, so far.
In case you hadn't heard it yet........we are going to make a fresh start by moving back to England in 3 weeks! That was not the plan when we moved back to Holland this time last year, but sometimes things change unexpectedly.
In August, the boys went to school for the first time in their lives. Boaz and Levi adjusted very quickly. Adam had more problems getting used to the system, to the different way of working and learning. But now, after more than 8 months, we can honestly say that all three of them, but especially Adam and Boaz, have grown tremendously. We are still happy with our choice to homeschool them for years, but we also think that this year was the right year to send them to school.
Because Adam was struggling in the first months of being in school, one of the benefits of moving back to England seemed the opportunity to homeschool him again. The moment I started doubting whether that would be a good idea and started checking the possibilities of other ways of homeschooling/flexi schooling etc him, Adam told us that he'd rather go to school. We were astonished. But there is no better country to try it than the UK.
As the English don't do 'repeating a class', the boys will all go to the year with kids their age. That means that Boaz will start year 4 (group 5 in Holland) in June, start year 5 in September and will only be in primary school for another two years. Levi will hopefully start year 2 (group 3) in September. They don't have a place for him this school year, but with Boaz in school, he'll be ok. I'll probably homeschool Levi for 2 months ;-) and in September he'll start. Adam will go to the first year of secondary school (year 7) in June and move up to year 8 in September.
Quite some adjustments! But they have (all three) shown us that they are capable of adapting and we are confident that they will be fine (but please don't mention the word 'uniform' to me. Mentally, I'm not ready for that yet!).
When we moved in 2009, we were very lucky to find this house. I still call it our 'castle'. Just last week, we heard that it will be up for rent again from August this year onwards. We had at that point (last week), already signed a contract for another house. Which is fine. We loved loved loved that house. But with almost no neighbours I didn't really feel safe when Job wasn't there during the night.
This house was south of Exeter (where Job works). A 20/25 minutes drive. Our new house will be east of Exeter, a 12 minutes drive. It's not a castle ;-), but it still looks like a very nice house (haven't been there myself yet) and it has looooads of neighbours! It's a really nice compromise between Job's and my wishes.
Open view from the back of the house. There is a church at the end of the lane behind the house, that's also where the swimming pool is. The area is quite flat, so the boys can use their bikes in the street. There is a karate club in the village, so Adam can continue doing that. We've also found a place nearby where he can continue snorkeling (and under water hockey). So it looks all good.
I'm not nervous about the move itself. It's not a lot of work either, as we don't have to pack our stuff ourselves. But knowing that we're going to leave now that we finally feel settled, leaving the school that the boys enjoy going to, and last but not least, leaving my friend who only lives 8 doors away, is going to be tough. I remember that from 2009. And I guess it won't be any different this time.
But as we feel this is the right thing to do at this point, I'm trusting we'll all be fine.