Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Reasons to move to Paris (and why I'm not)

(Taken from This is Paris by Miroslav Sasek found via Words & Eggs)

"But it's Paris!"  I said to my sister a couple of months ago.  We were eating a late lunch at a Thai restaurant and I had spent the last ten minutes explaining why I should move to Paris.

A new opportunity had presented itself to my little family and we were grappling with a big decision.  I sat across from her and tried to explain why cheaper living, no language barrier, better weather, a better daily schedule, better connections for Jeremy and the opportunity to continue my work would somehow not compare to living in the City of Lights.

"You should definitely move to California," my sister said

"But, it's PARIS."  My only argument was dwindling.

A month before, my husband, the one who talked me into this whole move-to-Paris-for-eight-months thing, approached me with cold feet.  The dollar was tanking even more than normal and he had started looking for other options for the coming school year (see our original plan here).  It looked like all of the money we've been saving may still not be enough for us to be secure. He had found a school in the South Bay area of California and wanted to check it out.  I was surprised, confused, and maybe a little mad too.

I started to see this adventure through his eyes for the first time.  While I was strolling the streets with the girls looking for my next pain au chocolat, and lounging on the lawn in front of the Eiffel Tower, he would be slaving away for long hours at school.  A very good school, mind you.  He would often attend school on Saturdays and get few breaks.  The family togetherness and great relaxed schedule we hold dear would be gone completely.  My responsibilities would increase greatly and I'm not sure if this blog or my budding business would have to be put on hold.  We would also return to the states with little to no real connections in the culinary world.

Nine months of imperfection is fine with me, but being poor in a foreign country with two small children is a very real thing that I don't want to experience. 

So, after months of debate, we are moving to the South Bay in September and staying until July.  We are in love with the French Culinary Institute there (especially their nationwide connections) and feel really good about our decision. The classes are only three nights a week, which will allow my husband to continue working full time from home with us.

 (This is San Francisco, also by Miroslav Sasek)

The reasons I wanted to move to France vary, but all fall under the category of "change is good."  I love the growth that comes from being uncomfortable and in a new environment.  I love to see how other people live and do things.  I want to let go of my "American dream" more and focus on experiences and living in the moment instead. I've realized that moving to a new state can still do all of this for me in some way.

Of course, we can't let France go completely. Continuing to learn the language and prepare ourselves for international travel is a big part of our life. We are already planning our trip for part of the summer next year.  We are hoping to stay for a month or more.

Sometimes you're life is heading one way, and then you suddenly realize things aren't right and you just have to go with it.  I'm very loyal to my decisions so it was really hard for me to change my mind, but wisdom is calling and I have to listen..

Sorry for the long, incredibly personal post. I've been putting it off sharing this news for so long.  I promise I'll be back with something upbeat and pretty tomorrow!


  1. we were at a point last year that we thought we'd live a certain life in a certain place and it all changed for us.
    we ended up elsewhere and it's brought great things, too.
    things we wouldn't have wanted to miss had we been further away.
    sometimes i freak out thinking about how our choices in life connect us to certain people and what connections there might be had other choices been made.
    accepting what is can be a challenge, but can settle the heart on the great things that exist now, too.

  2. Good for you for doing what seems right to you rather than what seems the most glamorous/exciting/adventurous! I totally understand how hard it is to change your mind after it's already set, so I applaud your decision to go in a different direction. Can't wait to hear more about it as it all unfolds.

  3. but it's SAN FRANCISCO!
    some big adventures are still to be had.
    can't wait to see what becomes of SWOON San Fran.
    Love, Lindsay

  4. Oh man, I saw Midnight in Paris this last weekend and instantly wanted to move there. But San Francisco is pretty fabulous too. Good luck!

  5. I completely understand how hard it was for you to let go of your dreams about Paris. We live close to the bay area, so if you need some play dates before you meet friends in your immediate area, we'd love to meet in the middle somewhere. Good luck on your new adventure!

  6. That is still super cool Randi!!! Very excited for you guys, and I think it is just as wise of a decision!! You will love planning that trip too! :)