Expats in Singapore

Monday, February 18, 2019

If you've ever wondered what compels someone to become an expat, this post is for you.

I'm going to preface this by saying that I love traveling and adventures; I have wanted to travel near and far since I can remember. For me, traveling is like reading, it's a way to learn about the world and the incredibly varied experiences people can have.

So when the opportunity arose  for our family to move to Singapore for several years (for my husband's job), we decided to go for it. When I say go for it, I mean we said yes but still had a plethora of details to sort out before actually moving ourselves and our two kids around the world.


We've moved pretty frequently, but getting all of our affairs together before leaving the country was such a PROCESS. We were renting a home in Texas, owned a home in Oregon, and so had two houses to sort out, one house to sell, 3 cars to sell, international school applications to complete, and tons of packing to be done. This was happening all while my husband was commuting to Singapore from Texas. It was a serious undertaking, with quite a few ups and downs- 2018 ended up being an incredibly busy and exhausting year in a lot of ways but I'm so happy we decided to go for it.

For those of you that care about details, saying yes, wasn't the result of one simple conversation. We had a series of conversations about what we thought would be best for our family, what kind of opportunities we would get from living abroad, and what sacrifices we would make. Ultimately, we decided that the opportunities would outweigh the stress and the perceived sacrifices.

Our list of pros and cons looked a little like this:

Pros:                              

Have an adventure
Opportunity to travel around Asia
Amazing school for the kids
Bring our family unit closer together 
Get to have a new cultural experience
Expand our comfort zones
Opportunity for all of us to stretch and grow a lot
Singapore has great healthcare and English is an official language
The weather (for my husband)

Cons: 

Uprooting our kids
Leaving behind friends and family
Figuring out all the details of a new country
Singapore can be expensive
The weather (for me)

We are a little over six months into our expat life, we anticipate being here for at least four years, and we are loving it! Of course we've had some highs and lows, like kids feeling homesick, us feeling homesick or frustrated by the logistics of figuring out our new home, but overall, I know we are all growing so much more than we would have if we had stayed in the states.  This growth, the incredible school our kids are attending, plus the travel opportunities we have are what excite me the most.  

We explored northern Vietnam in the fall, journeyed over the border to Malaysia for a trip to Legoland at Christmas and just spent a long weekend in Bangkok.  In the coming months we'll be going to Tokyo/Kyoto/Hakone, Japan, Bali, Indonesia and the Golden Triangle in India. It still seems a bit surreal that this is our life- but we want to embrace all of it while we are here and do and see as much as we can.

Since our life has changed so much in the last six months, I think it's only natural that what we share here on Tee & Penguin is going to change a bit too. We will still be sharing amazing books, but we're broadening our scope to include some of our personal favorite books in addition to picture books and we'll be sharing more about travel and food, and some of our other interests.

Taryn also has some exciting changes on the horizon, but I'll let here share those with you. In the meantime, if there is anything you have been curious about or questions you have about our life in Singapore let me know. 

xo,

Sarah




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