It’s the 31st January, and I haven’t written much at all this year, have I? But this is a good sign! I mean, I haven’t been sat at home depressed by the normal January doom and gloom. Quite the contrary. It’s been a fantastic month – and I’m keeping my fingers crossed for the rest of the year to follow suit. I’ve been so busy this month, good busy, been working, doing something I love doing, and have been spending time with friends. And now I’m packing a suitcase to go on holiday. I’m sooo excited! Tomorrow is S’s big birthday, and the day after that, we’re heading off for a whole week of fun in the snow, with lots and lots of our friends “from the old world”. We’ve been planning it for so long, and I can’t believe it’s happening now. I cannot wait, it’ll be so good to see everybody again, and to have a proper break.
But although this prospect has been making me very happy those last few weeks, I know it’s not the only reason. It struck me this morning, as I was pounding the leafy, hilly streets of the Loyola part of Los Altos on my Monday morning run (like the good suburban housewife I am), when I looked around and was hit right in the face by the sheer beauty of this place, that I finally feel like I belong here. I mean I don’t think this is where I want to stay forever and ever, but what I mean is that I don’t feel so alien and disconnected anymore. It’s been a very slow and gradual process, but somehow I feel “right” now. I feel like me again. Somehow, we’ve become part of this community. I’m not alone anymore, I have friends here now! People I care about! When I said we were going away for a week, and E and F’s grandparents were here looking after the girls, I was inundated by offers of help, from school pick ups to playdates etc. It was quite overwhelming, and made me realise that people do care. People like us, they like me, they like my kids. We’re very happy as a family, happy to spend time just the four of us, and happy to spend it with friends. And it’s so good to know that after this coming week, which will be so much fun (and I especially look forward to seeing my sister, and my sister-in-law!) I will come back here, knowing I have people waiting here, too.

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