Monday, January 23, 2012

Bloomin' Monday : Before You Move

Welcome to the first (official) installment of Bloomin' Monday - making the most of moving to a new town!  (For an introduction to this series, read here.)

Thanks to the Internet, it's amazing how much you can do before even arriving in a new place.  Yes, you can do things like arrange for the utilities to be turned on, have your mail forwarded, get a new local phone number (although fewer and fewer people are actually doing this, thanks to cell phones with no regard for long distance numbers).  But you can also meet people!

Back in 2009, I wrote a post about how I met my friend Lora through Facebook.  She was an invaluable resource for us before and in the days and months after we moved to Fort Smith.  Through her, we found a place to live, a preschool for Nathan (before we started homeschooling), and a great babysitter (a MUST for living this far away from the grandparents!).  You can read more about the Lora story here.  (She's also got a wonderful blog that I recommend - tons of yummy recipes and great homeschooling resources.)

Before we moved here, I was able to get connected to a playgroup with lots of other Moms of preschoolers.  I applied to the group online and was put on the waiting list for a short time, but did have some contact with the group leader.  As it turns out, she was a student in my first Algebra class at the college here in town!  (She was/is a great student - which was a relief since it would have been extremely awkward to fail her and then see each other at play dates!  Ha!)  Anyway, I got in the group shortly after we arrived, and we were able to start meeting other Moms and other kids right away.

So if you are going to be moving soon, get online and see what all you can find!  Search for people from your new town on Facebook and send a message.  Look up groups involving interests that you have (play groups, cooking classes, book clubs, etc.).  When we lived in Seattle, we joined the local Auburn Club to watch football games in the Fall, so don't forget alumni or career-related groups, also.  You can learn a lot about churches from their websites, so it's never too early to begin checking out possibilities there, too.

To me, there's just something about doing research on a place *before* I get there that makes me feel so much more comfortable once the move actually takes place.  True, it's not the same as really being there, but it's a good way to begin the acclimation process while you're still in familiar surroundings.

If you've already moved but haven't yet gotten plugged in to a group of friends, it's not too late to do these same things.  Even if you have lived in the same place for 20 years, you can STILL Bloom Where You're Planted!

Next week: Won't You Be My Neighbor?

This post is linked up to one or more of the following blog parties.  Check them out! Monday: Menu Plan Monday on I'm an Organizing Junkie, Wednesday: Works for Me Wednesday at We are THAT Family, Friday: 5 Minute Friday at The Gypsy Mama, Company Girl Coffee at Home Sanctuary

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