Since having children 11 and 9 years ago, my husband and I have lived in three states of Australia, and two South Pacific Islands – Tonga and Vanuatu.
We’ve also been happily homeless for a year, when the girls were age 1 and 3, touring Australia with a camper trailer.
There have been lots of challenges along the way, but many more wonderful opportunities.
Check out this 19 minute interview with Emmy Petersson on Expat TV. We chat about my top tips for moving with a family, how to work best as a team, and also ways in which moving has become easier now we are moving as a family.
Key Tips for Relocating Your Family
- get the kids involved as much as possible for their age group. If they are toddlers, that might mean telling them two weeks before you depart, so they can pack their box of essentials. If they are primary age, offering them lots of opportunities to ask questions some months before, and looking up answers together as needed. If teenagers, acknowledging friends are a vital part of their support system and working out ways together to keep in touch with friends you are moving away from, and finding new friends at the new location.
- if moving with a partner, find the time to talk about how roles and responsibilities might change in the new location, what you expect to need help with, and what might they need before, during and after the move.
- spend lots of time together as a family during and after the move – go exploring, share the map and guidebooks, play card or board games, have joint adventures and create stories from these shared moments.
How Our Family Works Best as a Team when Moving
- when we’re open and accepting with how we’re each feeling
- when we treat it as an adventure
- when we remind each other how well we did last move – we can do this!
- when the kids help keep it real – for example, not letting us pack non-stop without breaks for food or a game every so often. We no longer fly ‘by the seat of our pants’ as we both did when we were younger, and single. We’re more organised and aware now that we’re moving as a family.
What would you add to this list? I’d love to hear your insights below!
Note: this course is free only until 28 April 2016. If you’re reading after this date, click on the image for the next free offer.