That time we moved to Amsterdam with a Baby PART 1

Moving to Amsterdam with Children

It’s been over three years since we have moved back from Amsterdam and there still isn’t a week that doesn’t go by when we don’t mention it in some way, normally with a sigh and a “wasn’t that brilliant?”as we look back with rose tinted glasses.

Cycling with children

We had no idea that the move would be as good (or as hard) as it was and to say it changed our lives sounds dramatic but really is the truth. I remember so vividly when was I first told the news at work that mine and my teams roles would all be moving to the Netherlands to a “marketing powerhouse” that would support the growth of the brands within Europe. I was eight months pregnant and I remember feeling a sort of numbness about the news, I believe that your mind and your body has the ability to protect you from so many things when it needs you to focus on what is important. All I really cared about was having my baby and so I left on maternity leave not knowing what I would return too, there were options but it wouldn’t be the same role I was leaving.

Baby carrying in Amsterdam

Then Henry arrived and for those first 6 weeks I enjoyed life in that intoxicating newborn haze. Without a care in the world (aside that of the health of Henry) I didn’t give work a second thought. But as my brain slowly woke up again I started talking to my colleagues again who shared a few snippets of information about the move with me and I decided to join one of the information sharing sessions to learn more about what it may mean for us. I took Henry to the meeting as I was still feeding him and thought how ridiculous it was for me to even be contemplating this move when I was enjoying life so much with my new baby friends and to be having a break from work for the first time in nearly fifteen years. But something that was shared on that day, sparked my interest and despite having always living in the same town for most of my life I just couldn’t shake the feeling that perhaps this was an opportunity that shouldn’t be passed up. 

Cycling the canals

So Ed and I would go for brunch and taking our laptop with us whilst Henry slept in the buggy or on me and we would talk and contemplate about what this could look like for us. Of course we had his job to consider too and so he began negotiations to get a secondment to the Netherlands. After what felt like months of thinking and talking, but in reality was just a few weeks we took the leap and I made the call to confirm we would be Amsterdam bound in September.

Boating on the canals with small children

In June we spent a week in Amsterdam living in my friends empty apartment, getting to know the city and deciding on where to live. I had found a house on Funda (the Dutch version of Rightmove) and despite many attempts by our estate agent to convince us otherwise, I was sold the moment we walked through the door and convinced Ed that he was too!  

Amsterdam Bos Winter Walks

And that’s where the adventure began, a few months later our house rented out, we were shipping most of our belongings to Amsterdam and had boarded a plane with clothes for a month as well as a small baby! My company were amazing at helping us organise all the legalities and administrational side of things in the Netherlands and that made such a difference, I’m not sure our experiences would have been quite so good if we have had to figure out how to navigate the Dutch laws ourselves! 

I’ll leave things for now. I’ll be sharing a blog post later on all the things I learnt whilst living the Netherlands! Spoiler it was a lot!