Packin' up and movin' on

Conversations at 70Candles! Gatherings, and posts on blog, often turn to the challenges of moving; downsizing from the family home to a new location, maybe nearby, or perhaps to a far-off destination. Yes, such moves can be scary...but they can also be exciting.

We moved from Ohio to Texas to be near our children and grandchildren. It took a lot of effort to make the transition, but we have had no regrets.

There are lots of big steps...down-sizing possessions...selling a house....finding a new residence...leaving jobs and old friends...meeting new people...exploring new terrain...and ultimately, figuring out what to "do" once settled in a new location. It helps to create a plan, get help when you need it, and stay the course with optimism.

There are professionals who can help with sorting possessions, selling furnishings, and staging a home for sale.There might be friends or family members willing to do the same. Sometimes it does take a village.

It is interesting to be a tourist for a while when exploring a new town, for each unique aspect of a place will appear in high relief. Such novelty engages our attention and becomes embedded in memory. Eventually, as life returns to its normal rhythms, we adapt to the similarities, established rituals and habits that keep order in our lives, so enjoy those early impressions and appreciate what makes a new place distinctive.

Leaving old friends is hard, but visits and frequent communication by phone and FaceTime help a lot. Keep in touch with old pals, because making new friends is a challenge, and takes time. Seek activities that you enjoy, and chances are there will be people there with whom you'll eventually want to spend more time.

It seems that "newcomers" are everywhere, so know you're not the only one. Towns throughout the country have active Newcomers' clubs and Meet-up groups for every sort of interest. Religious venues, recreation and senior centers offer further opportunities to get involved. Volunteer opportunities abound. Much can be discovered by talking to new neighbors, or just Googling.

Take your time exploring and enjoy the process as you create the next chapter in your life story.


70Candles! Women Thriving in Their 8th Decade by Jane Giddan and Ellen Cole is available from Taos Institute Publications,
70Candles! Gatherings-A Leader's Guide by Jane Giddan and Ellen Cole is at