The big news this week, besides moving day tomorrow, is that the kids started school yesterday! The whole process is similar to the States' public school system. You chat with the school district of your area, give them the proper documents and applications proving your address, etc... and they find a school for you. I started this process when I cam in mid-March, filled out the applications, sent copies of passports and visas and did a few tours of the primary and secondary schools (where Henry will go next year in the Fall). The only glitch was we needed to prove our address which meant we needed to show a formal copy of our signed lease. Easier said then done. They had to reference check us first, which meant getting documents from the bank proving we had an account set up. As you can see from the above "waiting for the mystery package" statement, you can't just request a bank statement. You both have to go the bank, request a statement and then it takes 8-10 working days for it to arrive. It didn't help that we had moved from one flat to our current flat and had two different addresses.
So long story short, it took a good couple of weeks to get a signed copy of our lease to prove residency to the "borough council" (school district). Throughout all of this, the staff at the council knew what was happening and that we wanted a specific school - Polehampton Primary. But Polehampton only had room for Henry and not May. They had ample time to contact them but they ended up waiting until the school was closed for two weeks during Easter Break. So come this past Monday, I called the borough council to check the status as I knew the staff was back from the Easter Break and kids were returning on Tuesday. Out came the PUSHY AMERICAN! "A couple more days and we will sort it out, blah, blah, blah!" Not acceptable!! So I popped in to Polehampton, knocked on the door and spoke with the Head of School. She was very nice and suggested the kids come back on Tuesday to see the school in action with the kids back. On Tuesday we got a tour from the Assistant Head who indicated they did indeed have room for May and Henry so she made the call to the borough council and finished things up. I got a call about 20 minutes after we left for the Assistant Head asking if want would like to start the next day and could we come back and get some school "jumpers" for the kids and fill out some paperwork! Yes, they were in! As of today, Thursday, I still have not heard from the borough council indicating that we could start at Polehampton. I sent them a very nice email, thanking them for all their help! It sounded sincere, but deep down it was all SNARK!
That afternoon we furiously shopped for uniforms, shoes, lunch boxes and pencil cases! The kids started yesterday and had a GREAT day. They were each assigned a buddy and Henry came home with several phone numbers and Xbox Gamer Tags. May's class is studying China this term and her Year learned a Chinese dance yesterday and performed it for the entire school that afternoon! Apparently, Henry's year is learning how to clog dance on Monday-that will be hilarious!
Post First Day tea, milkshakes and caaakkkke!
Second day and off they go. Rainy and looks just like Sunny Hills!
I am sooo proud of my kids!! They have rolled with the punches throughout this entire transition with grace, flexibility and humor. They were calm, cool and collected yesterday. So amazing.
Next hurdle to tackle is the BIG FINAL MOVE. Our sea and air shipments have arrived, cleared customs, and will be delivered tomorrow and unpacked on Saturday. It will be great to get out of this flat, get some space, sleep in our own beds and organize our stuff. My FAVORITE part is unpacking and getting organized! I will post some pictures once we are settled and organized!
Oh and apparently, Pete is worried our king sized bed (the top mattress) will not fit up the stairs to the 3rd floor master bedroom, so sleeping in my own bed MAY not happen.
Now off to Costco to buy a TV and probably some other things as well!