And so it begins

It may well be impossible to accurately describe what it is to make a trans-atlantic move with a family of five. I have been sitting at this keyboard for long moments trying desperately to grasp the image so as to share it here. It’s elusive at best.

Still, I shall try.

A rollercoaster may be apt  if we are talking about one of the new gyrating, rocket powered, swiftly twisting, loopy things that require one to sign a waiver thick as a phone book before boarding.  But it’s not all that, because there is a steady pace to the preparation of culling a house and packing the important items for shipping.

What it also is not is a carousel ride. There is no predictability to it and there is certainly no circular path in such a thing. It’s possible to liken it to a bumper car attraction but that’s really not it either.

I am not a runner, not even by a long shot. Apparently, I forgot to pass through the long leg line when signing up for body parts for this go at life. But here’s the thing. Getting here was nothing short of the longest endurance run I could imagine.

The journey started for our family with an email exchange in October of 2008. An exchange which ultimately led to a stateside trip for my husband to to a meet and greet of the potential employers. Employment which would change it up all over again for us and bring us across the ocean, this time returning to a home port (if not our home state) of the USA after 4 years in The Netherlands.  November also brought an official job offer. November changed our lives.

In January, we announced the move to the children. As predicted there was some weeping and wailing and then ultimately some build of excitement and enthusiasm as the prospect of stateside life returned to the mindset of the family.  Ultimately, I have exceptionally resilient children and as part of the international world we had all grown accustomed to (but not comfortable with) the comings and goings of international families such as ourselves. Meaning, we’d said goodbye before, we could prepare to do it all again.

That left us with simply the logistics of getting it all done. And overwhelming as you might expect such a task to be, there is system and order to such a monumental undertaking.

I like making lists anyway.

Without harping too much on the point, I want to make only this point with the first official post of this blog.

We made it.

We packed it all up (at least what we didn’t sell, toss, or give away) and we made it across the ocean.

We are stateside dwellers now, strange in our misfitedness, but oddly recognizing ourselves returning home.

We are indeed finding our way. You’re welcome to join us for the journey.



21 thoughts on “And so it begins

  1. Teresa says:

    welcome back – i have missed you!


  2. I love me some mo’ thoughts from Jenn. I’ve downright missed them. Welcome stateside. You’ve been missed on this land and your perspective will bring much insight, art and humor.

    Let me get another glass of wine and settle in for the glorious read that will unfold.

  3. Welcome back, Yank. It’s been a long road, I know. The fun begins anew.

  4. bestlight says:

    Wow. I can only imagine the gazillion details you had to take care of to make the move happen.

    Happy re-entry! I hope things go smoothly from here on.

  5. jenn says:

    and here you are 🙂 love the site, looking forward to wandering down this road with you.

  6. Betsy says:

    You made it! Congratulations! I hope the rest of the transition period is smooth sailing for you and your family!

  7. I’m so glad you’re safe and sound! And I LOVE the new header!

  8. Pearl/Connie says:

    Can’t even imagine making such big moves…You are going to have great memories and stories to tell us all.
    Wish you all the best to you and your family in your new home.
    Take good care.

  9. SandyCarlson says:

    Welcome home after quite a ride!

  10. Isabella says:

    I’m going to keep following you! I can say, from my own experience, I am happy for you being I live in the same situation. 😉 Well, except for the moving back to America-portion, but this is something my Dutch husband has been trying for himself. I look forward to reading what you have to share about with your new adventures back in America!

  11. Lilacspecs says:

    Yay! Glad to hear from you again. I got the t-shirt, by the way, thanks! And I may be asking your advice for moving in a few years.

  12. anno says:

    Funny, I was just thinking about you… good to see you around again. Welcome back!

  13. Gunfighter says:

    Hi Jenn!!!!!!

    Welcome home!

  14. Brillig says:

    The world is a happy place again. Thank goodness you’re back. I can’t begin to tell you how much I’ve missed you. xoxoxox

  15. patois says:

    So happy to get your email saying you’re back. Welcome home! Welcome home to the U.S. and welcome home to the little ole Internet. Nice to see you again.

  16. Penny MacGahan says:

    What a surprise! I had thought of you as semipermanently established in Kijkduin. I would think moving with a family of 5 would be a lot more challenging than it was for just Peter and me, so I am in awe. On the other hand, 11 1/2 years for 2 packrats living in a big house created its own challenge for moving.

    I suppose it’s wise not to post your new address openly on the internet, but I am curious where you are now living, and if it’s very far from the Washington d.c. area.

    I am reading all these comments from people who missed you and welcomed you back, but now I am thinking of another large set of people who will miss you and your family. I hope you will get back to Holland for a visit some day, and of course I have the same wish for myself!

    Lots of luck to you and your family in getting used to the U.S.A. again, and a special hug to Andrew!

    • mojenn says:

      Penny, it’s lovely to hear from you! Thanks for stopping by the blog and wading into the whole comment thing as well!
      It will be nice to catch up with you! Since you’re ahead of the game in the re-patriation avenue, you can coach me along…

  17. jodifur says:

    welcome back!

  18. Jami says:

    Well, crap! No, not about your being back in the U S of A and not about your returning to posting – those are good things! The bad thing is that now I’ll have to go back to posting. I’ve been justifying it by telling myself that I’m really busy trying to find a job and “besides, Jenn isn’t posting either.”

    So thanks for that! Although I still love you.

  19. Goofball says:

    We’re gonna miss you here. What’s the opposite of “stateside”?

    Glad you arrived safe though and glad you’re blogging again. If you are homesick for Europe, do hop by on my blog and I’ll tell you how much it’s raining here. Let me know if I need to ship any weird disgusting Dutch food :p (not much chance there huh…well you never know).

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