My husband recently asked if I was okay with our move to Orlando. I had lived in Texas for the past 22 years and my family all lived within an hour of us. While I love my family and miss our weekly or monthly visits, I grew up in a household that moved every year or so. Moving is not traumatic for me. It is a pain in the rear but not an emotional roller coaster than some encounter. Even with my experience,
Here are a few “Staying Connecting” suggestions I have for those that struggle with the emotional side of moving.
FaceTime – My family enjoys catching up over Facetime. The kids LOVE it and they have enjoyed taking family members on tours of our home, sharing school projects or just connecting with them to make a silly face. They enjoy being able to share not just a phone call but an actual video conversation with them. It makes them not miss them as much and allows those on the other side to see where we live now.
Skype – This is a great tool and it’s free! It works just like a telephone, except that the basic service is free and works via the Internet. You just need a microphone and speakers for good quality sound. Handy add-ons include the ability to chat on line, and send data of all kinds. If you opt for the paid version, then you can have simultaneous multi-person communication, too.
Email – This may be one of the easiest forms of written communication online. Using a free email provider, you can set up multiple mailing lists and send identical messages/updates to all of your friends and family members. We have even set up email addresses for our kids that we monitor so that they can email their grandparents, aunts, uncles and friends whenever they want.
Blogging – Making sure we stay in touch was one of the main driving points for Scott to create Taking the Florida Plunge. Blog platforms like WordPress and Blogger are relatively simple to use, and they have add-ons and additional features should you want a more elaborate website.
Write a Letter – Today, many people don’t write letters anymore, but I think that staying in touch this way is more personal. Taking the time to actually write a letter will allow you to slow down and process what you want to stay – as opposed to a quick email. If you have children consider adding in some new school pictures or a picture or drawing from them. Also, encourage family and friends to write back. Kids (as well as parents) love getting letters in the mail.
Scheduled Visits – Our extended family made a point of scheduling vacations to come see us during the first year. It really helped the kids by allowing them to reconnect and share their new experiences with the family. They loved being able to show how much they learned about our area and took ownership of their new home.
Random Meet-Ups with Friends – By keeping Facebook friendships up-to-date, we are able to connect with friends from “home” by meeting up at the parks. Whether you meet up for an hour, lunch or a whole day together, seeing those familiar faces in our newly adopted stomping ground gives the kids lasting memories.
Unfortunately, there may be tears and sadness over leaving your old home, however focusing on the positive things that Orlando and other areas of Florida has to offer helps tremendously. My favorite holiday is Thanksgiving and I love to cook for a huge group and celebrate together. We knew our first Thanksgiving would be different so we decided to embrace our surroundings and head to Daytona Beach for the long weekend. It was a wonderful trip and hopefully will become a new tradition. Just because it’s different, doesn’t mean it’s bad. New experiences help create lasting memories and creating that legacy of good family time is what it is all about.
Mrs. “Taking the Florida Plunge”