California Dreaming

Just got back from a 6 day trip to California for work. I usually have to go out there about once a quarter but this was the first time I’ve been out for a long time and also the first time I have left Cupcake baby at all!

I had mixed feelings going into the trip, mainly due to the fact I was going to be leaving the kids for such a long time. How was clingy girl baby going to manage without me? Would toddler Munchkin boy, who is now much more aware, cope if I wasn’t around? More importantly, would my husband manage alone with the kids for the first time without going into a tailspin?

I didn’t have to worry. Prepping Munchkin the week before turned out to be a good idea so that when asked he could say that mumm had gone away on a plane but she’d be back on Friday. Never mind that he has no real concept of how far in the future that Friday is, it just helped him to know that I was coming back.  I also think that it seems to have been good for my husband to spend a little more time by himself with the kids. This, of course, means that I should start planning a girlie weekend away (pause, while he threatens to kill me..).

Workwise the trip was a bit bonkers as I was in back to back meetings every day from about 8.30 till 6 and then dinners in the evening. The big question I also wanted to try and answer is how practical it would be for us to move out there as a family. We’ve talked about it for years but now that the kids are both “here” we are starting to try and turn it into a reality. There are still many question marks about what would be a major change to our lives but I feel that this week has helped me figure out whether I think it is a good one.

Here are some photo highlights of my week:

lk bennett bag

bag lust

Jer bought me this bag that I had coveted in LK Bennett for a couple of weeks. He wanted me to have a nice bag as I was flying fancy Virgin Upper class. He rocks..


first time on the swing

Got sent this photo of Cupcake’s first time on the swing. Loved the photo, was a bit gutted I’d missed it.


black squid ink sushi

Dinner the first night at my favourite sushi place just under the hotel. Yum Yum Yum.



A carefully posed photo taken by my nanny. She said it took at least 10 minutes to get both of them looking at the camera at the same time.

american breakfast

small portions....???

Breakfast at a 1950s diner round the corner from the hotel. It is called Flames and it was so much fun. Endless coffee refills, old timers seated along the bar.



One of my colleagues from the UK office relocated with her family to the Bay area and she very kindly had me over for dinner and to stay the night (so we could drink lots of red wine). They have bought a place right in the woods and this was the view from my bedroom. Makes a change from London rooftops.

heat magazine

so classy

Heat magazine and a glass of champagne on the flight home. What more could you want?

The best bit?

Seeing my kiddies the minute I got through the door. Bliss


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7 Responses to California Dreaming

  1. Shelley says:

    So….does moving to the US seem like a reasonable thing to do? Where would you move? CA assuming Ebay transfers you?

    • londonmum says:

      Definitely looking like a real possibility. We would move to the Bay area and I would try to get transfered via eBay. Jer would have to get a job out there. We’ll see what happens, there are lots of variables right now.x

  2. mumof4 says:

    I live in US but am a Brit….all my kids were born over here…. it is a very different way of life but I will always miss home. Look at the school systems in comparison….cost of nannies and healthcare…

    GO you for flying Virgin Upper Class (God I remember those days)…..

    • londonmum says:

      the school system is one of the reasons we are thinking of moving. Trying to get the kids set up for primary here is a nightmare. In terms of nannies and healthcare, are you saying it is better in the US? Would love to know what you think. x

      • Shelley says:

        You didn’t ask me but I’ll give you my opinion. A nanny like Fiona would be upwards of $30,000 per year if you do not go through an agency. Through an agency it will be more and either you will pay the agency a fee and then be responsible for the nanny’s taxes or you will pay the agency a high wage and they will pay the nanny a percentage of what you pay them
        With regard to health care. Insurance is expensive in the US (probably much more than you currently pay in VAT for national health.) But all insurance is private so you do have your choice of doctors (or at least your choice of those covered by your plan) and depending on the plan you may or may not have a gatekeeper which is like the GP in England. And you will pay something (again depends on the plan) every time you see a doctor and you will pay for drugs.
        Kaiser Permanente a LARGE health care provider is in CA and Robyn knows all about them since she both worked for them and had her health insurance with them.

  3. mummykimmy says:

    Sounds like an exciting trip! My friend from New York had her baby in Scotland and has been living here for a year and a half now. She cannot get over how great the NHS is, how cheap the childcare is and how good the schools are – but that’s NY/Scotland not SF/London, so not sure if that helps?!

    • londonmum says:

      Definitely pros and cons to both places. I know that even with insurance healthcare can be really expensive in America. However, on the schools front I think we’d actually be better off there. There are lots of good free schools in the area we’d be living in without the crazy criteria they use here to get into them. Thanks for the comment, all useful x

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