Good FamilyTravel

Remembering to Pursue Play

Heather van Mil10 comments7390 views
Ambleside Beach Family Photo

When I started blogging almost 5 years ago, I chose my blog name because my life revolved around teaching children fine and gross motor development, language and social skills, plus so much more – all through play. 

Since then, life has changed. My work is different, my kids are older, and I find myself wondering what Life, Love and the Pursuit of Play means to me in this new phase. 

In the middle of my pondering, life has taken a sharp turn. My husband was offered a position in Halifax, Canada, and we are now in the process of packing up our bags, selling 99% of our possessions and at the end of March, we’re trading the West Coast for the East. 

Is it scary? Yes. Is it stressful? You bet! Is it heartbreaking? More than I could have ever expected. Is it exciting? 


All of a sudden my husband and I find ourselves dreaming again. The rat race we have been running (and not keeping up with), has been traded for finding a dream house that we can actually afford (something not possible in Vancouver’s market). We are dreaming of exploring the East Coast; the amazing music and food we will discover. We are dreaming with our kids, how they want to decorate their rooms, and what animals we should adopt. 

We are pursuing play again. 

I am excited to share this new stage of my blogging life with you all! In my millions of google searches on moving across Canada, there is a serious lack of resources. I plan on changing that. I’m excited to share Halifax and beyond with everyone – we can discover together! 

So let me know – have you done a big move? Do you have any resources or suggestions? Are you contemplating a big move yourself and have questions you want me to answer? And help me fill my bucket list! Tell me where your favourite East Coast spots are, or where you’ve always wanted to go. I’ll trek along, camera and kids in tow, and we can discover together!


  1. I moved a lot as a child ( RCAF father) and my parents had the same attitude you have. Embrace the excitement of a new adventure. You will thrive!

  2. Hi Heather. I can relate as I have moved around a lot. As a 19 year old I moved to Toronto from Norway to study. I ended up staying and getting married and having four kids. The six of us moved to Vancouver when my boys were 6, 4 and the twins were 8 months old. I met my best friends there. Two years later we moved back to Toronto. 4 years after that we moved to Chicago – loved it there! Two years later we were back.

    Tips? Advice? Explore where you live. Walk it. See it. Be tourists with your kids. That way it’s an adventure for them as well.

    As a result of moving so much my boys are adaptable and easy around new people they don’t know. They are not afraid of trying new things. The only thing they don’t have is that friend from kindergarten that they still hang with, but that’s probably very ok

    Good luck on your new adventure!!

  3. LOVE this approach to seeing a big move as play – such an important thing for us as adults to find those moments of wonder and excitement. Welcome to the BEST coast! 🙂

  4. So excited for you! Hubby and I would love to get out of Vancouver too, if only he could find a job in another province. We moved from Alberta to BC a few years ago. I’d say jump in once you get there… go to the library and the rec centre, get involved in the community or church, find a mom’s group. 🙂 Community makes a big difference! 🙂

    1. Keep looking, there seems to be a lot of opportunity these days! And yes, we’re definitely going to hit all the community hot spots to meet people and make friends. School helps with that too. Thanks for the encouragement 🙂

  5. We moved from Boise, Idaho to Lafayette Indiana two summers ago and it was possibly the most challenging experiences we’ve ever had as a family. My husband is a long haul truck driver and in Idaho he could only make it home every 4-8 weeks and out here it’s closer to more industry and freight so he can be home nearly every weekend. Our kids have never lived anywhere but Boise so it was a HUGE change to leave everything they’ve ever known behind, their family, friends and school to a complete unknown. It has had a lot of challenges for us but we have grown closer as a family and we know it was the right decision for us.
    My suggestion would be to purge anything you don’t absolutely need and keep good records of everything. Keep all your moving information in a binder or notebook and make sure all your utilities and deposits are set up on schedule. If you’re driving make sure not to pack up anything you’ll need for the trip there and color code your boxes with colored labels to go to each room and label them accordingly. Try to have kitchen boxes go in the moving truck last as that is usually what you’ll want first. Get as much help as you can with moving at both locations and delegate, delegate, delagate! Best wishes!

    1. Wow, congrats on a successful big move! You sound like the most organized person ever!! We’ll have it a bit easier as we are getting rid of 99% of our stuff. It’s cheaper to buy again, then to spend $10K+ moving it across the country. I am definitely going to start a moving binder. Thanks for the tips!

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