Oh the excitement of a fun filled new project. I think we all need a new focus at times to lift us up and get us motivated again.
For the last 12 months, I have been in a strange place emotionally. I couldn’t put my finger on what was wrong. I love my family (& they love me), I love the work I do, I have a loving & fun home life and although the system for our children is a soul destroying challenge, I knew this wasn’t responsible for me feeling in limbo.
I’m a qualified Life Coach & have also studied NLP so I did some soul searching, asking myself constant questions; and hey presto, I suddenly got it! I realised I had itchy feet syndrome.
Having lived in our current home for 13 years, I realised it was the longest I had lived at the same address – ever. As a young child, we moved around a bit. Then my parents settled and I lived in the same address for 12 years. My parents still live there, but from the age of 18 – 32, I had 12 different addresses (plus a few returns to my parents in between). So in 32 years, I lived at 16 different addresses and then for the last 13 years I have stayed in one place.
“Let’s move” I thought!
I started hunting. I knew one thing, I wanted to be near to the sea. We currently live about 20 minutes away from the beach and I spend hours down there just watching the sea. I love the beach. I wanted to live nearer. I also knew that I love living in Kent.
Then the reality of having three children with special educational needs hit in. Moving when you have three children in three different schools, with three statements/plans, with school transport and a huge network of practitioners who work in your area, raises so many issues. If we moved, we would suddenly come under a different area, different practitioners and probably long waits to be reassigned to different teams; and then the battles over school transport would arise.
I decided this was too stressful and not something I could inflict on us. I needed something though so we came up with an alternative and I am super excited.
We’ve bought a caravan
We have bought a caravan on a site, opposite the beach, between Dymchurch and Hythe – two of my favourite places to sit and sea-watch.
It was a real moment of fate. We had gone to the beach after hubby finished work and on the way back one of the kids needed the loo. So we pulled in to the park and decided to buy a drink so we didn’t feel guilty about just using the loo. Once in there, we saw some caravans for sale and the one we have chosen was the only one locked up in the viewing area as it was due to be sold on to trade the next morning.
We get the keys next Friday.
It’s an old, 3 bed, 36 X 12 static caravan. As an estate agent would say, it requires some modernisation but it is purely cosmetic updates. The van itself is in great condition.
We have a caravan twenty minutes away, a place we can stay at weekends, a place we can spend weeks at in summer. The park itself is open 50 weeks of the year and the pool & other facilities on the park are open from March to October.
What we gain from having the Caravan?
- My eldest son, who likes things to be the same will have a home from home. No more leaving holiday homes early because he needs to get back to what he knows.
- My youngest will be able to navigate independently around the van and park within a few weeks.
- My daughter can take part in the kids clubs whenever she likes – she sorely misses socialising with girls and other kids.
- I get a new place to work (we had been looking at a lodge at the end of the garden but I like the idea of being near to the sea).
- I have a place to go for a weekend if I need to get away.
- Friends and family from up around the country can stay in the van if they want to visit, rather than having to pay out for the local B&B or sleeping in my daughter’s room.
- Once we are settled, it is also somewhere our fab PA can take the boys for a day, swimming in the pool, playing on the beach, being outdoors! All the things they enjoy.
- It’s also very flat so I can even get back on my bike (again)!
- It means a great new project – new colour schemes to choose, decorating, covering old tired seats, etc.
- I get my blogging mojo back as I can blog about it to keep you, and my family updated on the process.
- It means a whole new collection in my Bullet Journal.
- It means a whole new
reasonexcuse to spend a few hours on Pinterest.
What we lose from having the caravan?
- A lot of little luxuries have to go. On the plus side, this means no “what on earth can we get the kids for Xmas” chats as there’ll be no weekly visits to Game, HMV or Claire’s Accessories! We did discuss this with the kids before we went ahead and bought the van. They all wanted the van.
- Also, no summer holidays to other places for a few years. My eldest was delighted by this, he finds it all a bit stressful.
- The cigarettes have to go – I am day 5 today of no cigarettes! (And the week before that I managed just 20 in a week, compared to 20 a day). The money I previously spent on cigarettes will be the money paying for the ground rent and caravan so I can’t have both! This has worked better for me as an incentive than any other attempt.
So no really big losses – in fact the gains from no excessive spending and stopping smoking are huge!
Watch this space as I share our journey, how I use my Bullet Journal to keep us on track, how I tackle the interior and lots of photos of the beach and a happy family.