We’ve arrived. So much time and effort has gone into bringing us to this point that a week ago I almost forgot that this is not an end, but a beginning.

The journey itself was less emotional and less rigorous than I’d anticipated. The girls did well. There were no real hiccups other than being delayed by another passenger who mistakenly picked up my guitar instead of hers. Funny, at one time I’d have cried at loosing it; when I thought I had it seemed insignificant after loosing so many other things in preparation for this move. It’s been a great stripping, all this decluttering and down-sizing. I hope our family can keep up the minimalist attitude for a long while. At least to the extent of not being encumbered by our belongings.

The boxes we shipped will arrive next week. Bella is waiting for her toys. Her grandmother’s house, where we’re staying for the moment, is well equipped for children and Bella is so happy to push around the little buggy, dress dolls and make us domino sandwiches. For the past month we’ve used a lot of paper, crayons and glue and although her artistic ability has taken a leap forward it’s been hard to hear ask whether the various places we’ve stayed have toys. I need to be more mindful as we adjust to our new surroundings that she too has been stripped back, and at the tender age of three.

Yesterday we went out boot shopping. For weeks she has been looking forward to the snow and now she just wants to be out playing in it. She tried on several to get an idea of size and fit and picked out a pair of pink ones with sparkly, furry tops. They looked slippery to me and I tried to no avail to convince her that another pair was better. She cried. Standing in the middle of the shoe department I found myself wondering whether this one time it was worth purchasing her happiness with a pair of sparkly boots. In the end we put them on hold along with a slightly ill-fitting jacket and Daddy found a coat and boots at a second-hand shop. Today she put them on without a problem and made angels and butterflies in the snow.

Now to find a sled.