Monday 5 September 2011

New house, new start!

Phew, that was a long break from blogging! I'm typing this from our new living room in the South of England! We arrived 2 weeks ago today, and there is still plenty of unpacking and sorting out to do... boooring. It seems incredible to me that we've moved from a 2-bedroom flat to a 3-bedroom, 3-storey house, and yet we have too much stuff to fit in. We blame it on the kids of course.

So far so good. The weather has been pretty sunny and warm here compared to in Scotland, and I'm enjoying exploring the local area. Our little town is quite quiet, but there are a few good shops in the High Street. There is a good leisure centre about 3 miles away, and I've already signed Robbie up for swimming lessons there. There is lots of nice countryside around us, and we are near the coast, and some good beaches.

There are a couple of little flies in the ointment though. We haven't managed to sell our flat in Scotland yet. The property market is in a poor state, and there is no market for small, first time properties such as ours. We can't afford to keep paying the mortgage for much longer, so might have to consider renting it out soon.

The other problem is that Robbie has not been able to get a place at a local school. The South of England is densely populated - there's so much more traffic here than in Scotland! - and the 2 local schools are full. This means he is in a school 3 miles away, so he's not going to make any local friends there, and it's not a particularly good school academically. I've got him on the waiting lists for the 2 local schools, which have better reputations, but this morning we had to drive him to his first day in the car. The local schools would be walking distance, so I really hope he gets a place nearer here eventually.

Meanwhile I am not making a lot of progress with my fitness. Before we moved my running had got to a low standard - I was running short distances slowly. After more time off, I'm not much better. However, last week I started running here. I went for 2 runs without my Garmin, so I could just explore the area and run without worrying about my speed. That was a nice change!

Last weekend, I took my Garmin as we now had an internet connection set up, and ran about 3 miles at a 9.01m/m pace. Not great. But as today is the first day of school, and Emma starts nursery tomorrow, it is time to start new routines! I'll be trying to increase my running a little, and work on speeding up and getting back to full fitness. I'll also be finding my way around the many footpaths here, and working out some new routes. I'll be sure to take some pictures of those for the blog!


  1. So nice to hear from you. I've thought about you over the last couple of weeks, wondering how the move had gone - and now I know. Pity about Robbie's school. I hope something opens up for him soon at one of the closer schools.
    Good luck with the unpacking.

  2. Cute picture.
    Here the school takes you if you live in the district. It is our problem that there are too many kids, not the parents. Interesting how things are different in different places. And by here I mean VErmont not the whole country.

  3. Phew - that's a lot of change. I REALLY hope your son gets into the local school. I can't imagine being told that the school is full! I think our schools are required to take kids regardless of enrollment.

  4. Good to see you back! I'm not surprised you're feeling a bit out of your fitness routine, it will come back! I hope you're settling in!

  5. Very frustrating about the school situation but I can relate as we have a similar problem here in Belgium. At some schools, parents camp outside the school for up to a week to ensure their kid gets a spot! Luckily we didn't have to do that, but we had to phone into a call center to get our son a spot in the secondary school we really wanted, which ended up being kind of a lottery and was very stressful. Thankfully, in the end he got a place! For younger siblings there is priority so once we got the oldest in, we were okay. Will you have that once you get Robbie in the school of your choice?