Things I can’t wait to do when we move home

I had some comments on my last post (and emails from my mother) that implied I’d painted a grim picture of life in the UK. That honestly wasn’t my intention and I wholeheartedly apologize if that’s how it came off.

The last post was entirely about the things we love about our current home and that we’d miss when we moved back. I have noticed in the past that when I’m away from the UK I remember it differently to how it is in reality. I remember it as more grey, miserable and grumpy. So there’s always a lovely surprise at how green and beautiful the place is, how funny and down to earth the people are and how happy we are to be there. So, UK and UK people, I’m so sorry if I appeared to diss the place, that wasn’t the intention of my post AT ALL.

We are honestly super excited to be moving back. We are in the process of buying a house that we haven’t seen yet – we sent my parents to see it, as my mum is much more fastidious and I knew that if she liked it, we would too. The Husband won’t let me ‘announce’ it on social media until we’ve exchanged contracts and the purchase is definitely going through but we are fully intending to buy this place and we are honestly beside ourselves at living there!!! Can’t wait to be able to tell you more!

In the meantime, I thought that it would be fun to create a list of things I’m excited  about as regards moving home! It was pretty easy! Bearing in mind we’ll be on a much tighter budget, we won’t be doing all these things in the first few weeks but sooner or later, we’ll get there!

So…without further ado, this is what we’re excited about.

Our new lives!

  • Being near our families again!!!
  • Being near our friends again!!!
  • Our new house!
  • Our new garden!!!
  • Planting and growing our own redwood trees
  • Trying to grow vegetables for the first time
  • Growing some California poppies alongside their British cousins
  • The British sense of humour and camaraderie
  • Befriending newcomers and making them welcome
  • Befriending American expats and returning the favour
  • Getting involved politically
  • Finally having a garage!
  • Settling into our new church and getting involved
  • Meeting our neighbours and hopefully making some friends
parents family SFO
No more airport photos!!


  • Marks & Spencers
  • Waitrose
  • John Lewis
  • Farm Shops
  • The cafe that I have found online in our new town and am planning to adopt as my place due to its good veggie soups
  • Shopping at our local market
  • Go Outdoors
  • Corner shops!


  • Good bread
  • Good cheese
  • Good sausages (for my boys)
  • Good bacon (ditto)
  • Good tea
  • Scones, jam and cream
  • Good curries
  • Yorkshire puddings
  • Really good pies
  • Our mums’ Sunday lunches
  • Crumpets


Taking the Dude to Europe

  • Generally being just a 2 hour flight away from 30 different countries!
  • Speaking French and Italian again!
  • The Sound of Music tour in Salzburg
  • Switzerland
  • Skiing in France
  • Camping and cycling in Scandinavia
  • FINALLY visiting my dream town, Annecy
  • Greece, for the first time
  • Sicily!
  • Rome
  • La Coupole WW2 bunker, Normandy
Places that make my heart glad: Austria
This is a real place. Hallstadt.

Exploring the UK

  • Lots of camping!
  • Lots of cycling on quiet country roads
  • Running along canal towpaths
  • The Lake District
  • The Dales
  • The Peak District
  • Devon and Cornwall
  • The Scilly Islands
  • The Cotswolds
  • The Isle of Wight
  • Castles!
  • Joining the National Trust
  • Pub lunches
  • The Eden Project


  • Running on trails outside my new back door!
  • Joining my new running club
  • Wearing a club vest at a race
  • Exploring our new town on foot
  • Trail races
  • Going to Marathon Talk‘s Run Camp
  • Running on the South West Coast Path
  • parkrun tourism
  • Running/hiking the 250 mile Pennine Way
  • Hopefully meeting other local runners on social media
Umm…this will be my daily running route come September!


  • All the redwood trees in the UK listed on this website
  • Robins
  • Sheep!
  • Postboxes and telephone boxes
  • Old buildings
  • Cobbled streets!
  • Thatched cottages
  • Christmas markets
  • Seasons!!! Especially Autumn!
  • Pantomimes



  • Being nervous about wild animals when running!
  • Worrying about school shootings
  • Worrying about earthquakes
  • Having to pay for healthcare
  • Living under the current delightful president

So much to get excited about!! We just need to get Charlie safely back tomorrow! Cross your paws, people!

16 Comments Add yours

  1. Liz says:

    Pleased to hear you want to come back 🙂 we’re looking forward to having you back VERY much. Might have to decide what political issues you’re going to fight on as gun control, free health care and a woman’s right to chose aren’t really part political issues here amazing how different places can be isn’t it! Hope Charlie has a good flight home and you’re able to enjoy your picnic tomorrow. Love xxxxx

    1. Cathryn says:

      Isn’t it crazy how different countries have such vastly different issues!!! I do think we may need to fight to protect the NHS, so maybe I’ll channel my energies there! xxx

  2. I didn’t interpret your last post as you not being excited to go back. I understood the spirit of that post. All places have the things you love and things you’re not so crazy about and as someone who’s moved all over, you wish you could have the one place where you can have EVERYTHING you love about all the places you’ve lived.

    1. Cathryn says:

      Yeah, that would be PERFECT!!!

  3. Tim says:

    As a Brit in the Bay Area – with 2 Californian kids – your last 2 posts have been very well written and very touching to read. While my roots here are much, much deeper, I do try to remember and tell others what the differences are between CA and ‘home’, and I am sometimes asked what I miss. And that is a really tough thing to do…and of course we can legitimately miss (and have fondness for) both the good and the not so good things about home. That includes the grim parts, and the British grit and stoicism that goes with it (not to mention good British sarcasm).

    1. Cathryn says:

      Thanks for your lovely comment – I know you understand that ‘torn’ feeling all immigrants have, no matter how long they live somewhere. It’s tough! Will you get back to the UK at any point? I’ll think of you prancing around in your shorts as I huddle into my puffy jacket in July 🙂

  4. Cathryn, you must bring the boys up and come and run Osterley ParkRun when you do your PR tourism. It’s a gorgeous NT estate, and the cafe is cracking. It’s about an hour and a quarter from Swindon on the M4. It’d be ace to see you 🙂

    1. Cathryn says:

      Yes, I’d love to! I’ll contact you before we come!

  5. Mike says:

    Admittedly I’ll miss all the cracking (did I do that right?) tales and pictures from your Bay Area and West Coast adventures… but on the bright side, can’t wait for the new adventures to come! And being a 2-hour flight from 30 different countries? Now you’re just rubbing it in – I can barely get from SoCal to Oregon in 2 hours!

    Don’t forget too, on your list of things you’re excited about… competent leadership! (We’ll be living that dream vicariously through you for a while, so don’t forget about us…) 🙂

    Safe travels and hooRAY for the Internet, look forward to following your life in the UK!

    1. Cathryn says:

      Thank you! And yes…competent leadership is something I no longer take for granted. Ours is FAR from perfect but it’s a million times better than ‘other’ places! I’m grateful!

  6. Ju says:

    You FORGOT THE SOUTH OF EUROPE!! (Spain mainly) but you are forgiven as we owe you a visit first! But you have to put the Paradores and camino de santiago on there

    1. Cathryn says:

      Yes, yes and yes. I want to go to Valencia and Seville with you and the boys.

  7. Angela says:

    1) When is your leaving picnic again and

    (Also I might just turn up on your doorstep one day unannounced…….)

    1. Cathryn says:

      1) Tomorrow…Saturday. Boothbay Park, Foster City, 12 noon – 4.
      2) Yes. Will email.
      3) Please flipping do so.

  8. bt says:

    We will *totally* show up on your doorstep one of these days. E tells me that after this year, he gets a good year of California downtime and no travel outside of North America, but after that, we’re likely to hit up Europe every couple of years or so and we fully expect to come visit you or ask your family if they’d like to fly out to visit us wherever we may be, all of 2 hours from you. (Au moment, a Marseille, je suis en train de me demander porquoi nous ne faisons pas les vacances en France CHAQUE ANNEE!)

    1. Cathryn says:

      I always feel the same way. I was jelly of your Marseilles pic!! Give me a few hours warning to put clean sheets on the bed and you can come any time! xx

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s