The positive side-effects of moving overseas

I was laughing with my friend Adam about why we felt we needed to move somewhere else before we made a start on our ‘A Better Me’ to do list. For example, I just ‘knew’ that once we moved to Finland I would cook my way through Ottolenghi’s Plenty cookbook, despite only using it twice in NZ. I also ‘know’ that in winter I will read all the novels I have on my bedside table and use my time wisely, doing craft and baking rather than lying around eating cheese toasties like I do at home. And Adam ‘knew’ that once he moved into his new house he was going to do yoga on the balcony each and every morning. I must check in with how that’s going….

Artist's impression of me baking this winter

Artist’s impression of me baking this winter

…because I’m making some headway on my list! Although its all by circumstance, rather than self-discipline. Which makes me think perhaps I wasn’t really identifying enough with why I thought I should do some of these things in the first place and therefore never did them. Here’s what I’ve managed so far:

I’m walking everyday

Original reason: I love to exercise and make it a part of my daily life

Real reason: We don’t own a car here

I no longer watch TV

Original reason: My time is valuable and I use it wisely

Real reason: Everything I’ve seen so far is in Finnish or Swedish except for McCleod’s Daughters or Emmerdale. Having said that I did watch a bit of Miss Finland and a doco on Abba but am not tuning in to tune out every night.

I’m not reading the news

Original reason: I don’t need to fill my head with the bad things that happen in the world

Real reason: I don’t really feel too attached to the world of news here or overseas at the moment

I don’t drink wine every night (despite it being good for your heart)

Original reason: My body is a temple and not one that takes communion every day in large glasses*

Real reason: They don’t sell wine at the supermarket and the Alko store is a fair walk away (more on that later)

We eat simple meals each night together at the table

Original reason: We eat mindfully and value our together time

Real reason: We don’t have a fridge full of food accumulated over time and we are also trying to buy conservatively as we are still spending NZ dollars. Jonny now finishes work at 6pm at the latest and not Miko’s bedtime like he did in NZ. (Also see item above about not watching TV).

We live minimally and are not tied to our possessions

Original reason: Something about not needing ‘stuff’ to feel good

Real reason: It’s all in shipping containers and isn’t here yet!

* I realise this is a mixed religious metaphor but nobody says ‘my body is a Catholic church’

3 thoughts on “The positive side-effects of moving overseas

  1. Well Mel I saw that pic and thought it was you with a new hair style !
    Great common terry on the way things really are for you in Helsinki !..
    You have such a delightful sense of humour — Keep it up !
    Love Dad xx

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  2. Some times we are delightfully and effortlessly transported to these new ways of living without even thinking and I love that this is happening for you! I just adore your blog and the insights. Keep them coming x

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  3. Great post Melanie. I love the way you reasoned out the different parts of your list, LOL. You have a great writing style which is something I wish I possessed. I am more of a photo blogger but I really wish I could tell a story better. Have a great day 🙂

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