Monday, November 15, 2010


This post may contain elements of whinginess, protestations, whining and general 'woe is me'-isms. Reader discretion is strongly advised.

I knew it was going to be crazy. That while the kids and I were moving to Switzerland, he was moving to the company. We joked about that a lot. I even once, in jest, told him he could have a few years to get settled in. That we'd plan holidays for January 2012.


Not that I'm keeping score or anything...but:

I deal with everything concerning the kids' schools. From payments, to lunches, to homework, to meetings. To driving children to and from school, events, birthdays, activities. To be fair, Mike chips in when he can (ie. not often).

This may not sound so bad, but it bears saying that most of this is new to me, and the learning curve has been pretty steep. The school is run differently from our school in Canada. There's much more homework for the B boy (amazingly, the older boy STILL gets no homework...), as well as numerous extra-curricular activities and events where parental presence is requested.

Similarly, the carting around of the children to places I've never heard of, let alone know how to find, on small, narrow and dark Swiss roads is not my idea of a good time. Especially when the GPS invariably suggests routes that only exist on a map and proceeds to repeatedly yell 'turn around when possible' to me while I frantically try to find the birthday party location or a new friend's house.

I am, of course, also responsible for everything concerning the house we are building. From kitchens to bathrooms, fixtures to electrical outlets. Minute details to massively expensive decisions. And let's not forget those meetings with the architect and various sub-contractors - I am at their beck and call. Two or three times a week, minimum. Preferably with zero notice and all in French. I hope someone's having a laugh, because my gesturing ain't getting any better.

And then, of course, there's the Clash of the Schedules, also known as the kids' school holidays vs. the father's work plans. Where there is a clear winner who....

....was away for part of the boys' fall break
...and will be away for part of their Christmas break
...and for the boys' winter break
...and part of their Easter break

And, of course, the first part of their summer holidays.

But to top it off? The real reason why I am feeling overwhelmed and frustrated right now. The cream on the cherry. Or is that cherry on the cream? THE TOP THINGY...whatever it's called... that just today I was informed by my builder that our house will be ready to move into on February 25th. Three weeks delayed. Which is frustrating, since this little rental house of ours is starting to feel seriously claustrophobic.

But, even more vexing, February 25th is a mere two days after Mike flies to Toronto for a week long stay.

Guess I'll be managing the move on my own, too.


My poor hubster is working so hard these days, and I do try to be supportive of him. I hope I am generally pretty good. Today I am just feeling a wee bit overwhelmed, and I can't really see the light at the end of the tunnel. I'm sure it's there, just hidden behind construction dust. Dust that won't settle until February 26th. Grrr....

Friday, November 5, 2010

And Finally...To Breathe...

Things have calmed down over the past couple of weeks, and I have actually had a chance to relax. It feels good to not be overwhelmed all the time. To take time to do things I want to do, and not things I have to do.

Like getting caught up on TV shows. I only just discovered "The Good Wife", and have now watched all of season 1 and have almost caught up on season 2. Love everything about that show, and am almost regretting not sticking to law school. Who knew legalese could be so sexy?

Even though Mike still works long hours, he is in the country now, and will be here until after Christmas. It is nice to have him come home in the evenings. I didn't realize how much I'd missed him while he was away.

We have decided to spend Christmas with my family in Norway. We are even planning to drive north to see them, because, well, we can! Funnily enough, the kids are not thrilled at the prospect of an 18 hour drive, so we'll put them on a flight up once school is out. Mike and I will drive up through Europe, taking our time and stopping for shopping and to experience all the Christmas markets that Germany is famous for. Then we'll drive back down as a family. Part of the return trip will be spent on a cruise, to cut down the amount of actual driving.

Upon our return to Switzerland in the new year, Mike flies to Hawaii for a supershort stint. So short, that I am staying behind with the kids. I don't really feel up to two 24 hour flights (there and back) for a 36 hour visit!

The house-building business is not proceeding as quickly as I'd like, since my architect has been out of the country for the past couple of weeks. I realize now that he is the force behind the operations, keeping everyone (myself included) on task. And while I've certainly enjoyed the peace this last fortnight, I am looking forward to his return and to see some progress at the house. Our current small abode is bursting at the seams, and we are in need of space!

Today is a gloriously sunny Friday, and tomorrow's equally glorious Saturday will hopefully be spent up in the mountains, hiking with the boys. Or at least with one boy, since the other boy apparently has plans. Plans that include girls. And not even the beautiful Swiss Alps can compete with that!