In four days we are moving to Ireland. I keep talking to Henry about it and really the only thing he takes away from the conversation is “airplane.” But duh, my head hasn’t even grasped the fact that we are MOVING and not just taking a very long vacation with our kids, so at least Henry and I are on the same page.
Speaking of which, let me brag about him for one second here. He sometimes asks us to switch between languages. Gillis speaks Swedish with him and I speak English. But lately he’s been asking us to sing one song in English and then again in Swedish and same for counting numbers. Kid isn’t even two yet, but is basically a genius. Mom brag over.
So I am currently spending my last Wednesday in Sweden swing on a hammock, Sixten nestled into me, with a view of the Swedish countryside. We moved up to my in-laws for the next few days and it really is a lovely farewell. Nothing is more Swedish to me than their home.
It’s been a whirlwind of planning and packing the past few days, weeks. I’m sure there is a ton we have forgotten about, but I think that we are fairly prepared for moving to another country.
We’ve heard that we are crazy, exciting, and terribly adventurous for moving internationally with two young kids. Which sounds about right, and thank goodness I can drink now because JEEZ!
Gillis won’t start his new job till September 1st, but we figured it was smart to move as soon as possible and take a month to get acclimated to life in Ireland instead of rushing it all in two weeks. So while our past month has been insane, I am hoping it will pay off once we arrive and are unpacked.
And if you are curious, here is basically how we have planned to move to Ireland in a month:
Finding a house:
We started out by seriously studying a map of Dublin and then asked around various internet forums for recommendations on where to live. We read and read and read about every single place that was suggested to us and then we looked up each area or village on Daft.ie, which is where you go to find housing in Ireland.
It took us about a week to finally start to make sense of the map and the different areas of Dublin. (Remember, we’ve never been).
We also made a short list of the things we wanted in a home. 2-3 bedrooms, bathroom with a tub, washing machine, dishwasher, in a good neighbourhood, and a small grassy yard. This was fairly easy to find BUT since we weren’t physically in Dublin a lot of rental agencies wouldn’t even consider us as tenants (they wanted us to view to place first, understandably) or there weren’t enough photos of the houses the satisfy us in renting sight un-seen.
We found our home by luck and by even more luck with realtor has been very eager to help us out. I’ll write more about that once we arrive and know that it’s not a big scam. :)
We’ve heard that renting in Dublin can be tricky and that good properties go fast, so when we were offered our house we jumped on it.
On Settling In:
Find our house gave us a good jumping point and after two quick google searches I found a few daycares and local doctors. Based on internet recommendations for both, I already have a well-baby check up for Sixten scheduled and three daycares to visit for Henry scheduled as well.
The most important thing to me in this move is making sure our kids stay happy and healthy. Henry loves daycare so he will continue with that and Sixten is still a tiny newborn so making sure he is gaining weight and gets his vaccinations is at the top of my list.
We couldn’t even consider this move if we didn’t hire packers and movers. We used an online bidding site to receive different quotes on how much it would cost to have professionals pack our stuff as well as move it to Ireland. Yes, it’s crazy expensive but we get a small relocation package with Gillis’ new job AND it saves us on the stress of it all when we are already a bit stressed with a two year old and newborn.
Also, we have a moved A LOT in our six years together. This will be our ninth home! We are quite good at culling stuff now and despite moving just six months ago, we still managed to curate three trash bags of stuff to donate as well as five trash bags of trash. We also decided to give away almost all of our books, all of our houseplants, and return our records and record player to Gillis’ dad.
We also sold a few pieces of furniture and will store two bigger pieces at my brother-in-law’s apartment. So while we appreciate our stuff, we’ve learned to not be sentimental for most of it. If you move as much as we do, minimalism is the way to go. Thankfully, I love that.
For the first week in Dublin, we are renting a little townhouse through Air BnB. Gillis’ parents will eventually join us and help us look after the boys while we unpack. We figured it was smart to have a clean, calm place to go to each evening while we deal with the chaos of unpacking and making our house into a home. We will also rent a car during this week since there will probably be a few IKEA runs.
Tying up Loose-ends… kinda:
We are keeping a lot of ties in Sweden open for now. Financially, health wise, etc etc etc. I know that eventually we will move everything over to Ireland, but for now it is a bit easier for us to keep part of our life in Sweden. But if you are moving you’d probably want to talk to the tax office and your insurance company.
Also, we will always have ties in Sweden since Gillis is Swedish and our kids are half-Swedish. Same for America.
Are we ready? YES. So let’s just cross our fingers that it’s not a complete bust and that our new life in Ireland is everything that we hope it will be.