When being prepared comes in handy

Last you heard from me we were a few weeks out and now we are heading way, way, way, West (or East – I guess it doesn’t matter which direction you travel when you move halfway around the world) in less than a week!

This will be international move #7 for us in 9 years (including one move from New York City to Toronto, Canada before joining the State Department) and I’ve learned a bit over all that time like that being prepared and starting making (and checking) those lists early is never a bad idea.

In fact, some have called me someone who’s always a few steps ahead of the game (I take that as a compliment! German genes and all make sure that I mail out upcoming birthday presents before we leave even if they’re a long time away….’cause you just never know, right?) while others (the husband?) might have complained that the empty fridge and pantry a few weeks before take-off aren’t particularly helpful.

Nevertheless, it is not just a nice feeling to get some of the crazy moving logistics taken care of early but it also helps to have some “free” time right before you head out in case anything out of the ordinary comes up.

For the past 9 years, our moves have been smooth sailing – we had made arrangements for our car early on, figured out what to pack, ran those last minute shopping errands, and had those final doctors’ visits all taken care of with important documents scanned and emailed and saved in a cloud.

Cue in 2 weeks ago when this happened:

presenting - the shark tooth
presenting – the shark tooth

Luca’s first permanent tooth arrived! Yay?

Can you find it? It’s right behind that ginormous front tooth that is actually 2 baby teeth fused together (what a funny sight that was when he was a baby). This is altogether not too uncommon I learned when googling this “shark tooth”condition – but when the other surrounding teeth didn’t start wiggling, I thought it best to have a dentist take a look, which then lead to this:

First baby tooth out!
First baby tooth out!

A last minute tooth extraction – scary? no! painful? not much! Happy that the tooth fairy could finally pay a visit? oh yes!

But that’s not all the excitement that’s been going on, no. A few days later we finally found out what’s been bothering Luca’s skin for the past few months; the poor kid has been having rashes all his body over that have come and gone for no apparent reason; finally, many pediatrician and dermatologist visits later and a number of tests and screenings and more needles we know – he’s gluten and lactose intolerant.

And now that I have had so much “free” time banked up due to my early preparations for the move, I’ve had amble time to read up and stock up on special ingredients and bug our awesome sponsors about what’s available in Mongolia (almond milk anyone? No? Well, not to worry, it’s not to Luca’s liking either even if you put chocolate syrup in it).

Seven moves and this one is the first where I’ll be bringing food on the plane with me to make sure I can bake gluten free bread and other treats for him/us. Fortunately there are many resources and excellent blogs online, I just hope his rashes will finally fade away (a week into a new diet and his rash has gotten much better although it seems like water/sunscreen/chlorine still exacerbates it – good thing we won’t be hitting a pool anytime soon in Ulaanbaatar!)

Oh, AND, I’ve finished making our scrapbook for our year in the U.S.

Am I a rock star at being prepared or what?

Now, there must be a bottle of wine around here somewhere….. see you on the other side!

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4 thoughts on “When being prepared comes in handy

  1. Almond Milk YES: I’ve been amazed by what we can find here! Of course, if Luca doesn’t like it, there’s rice milk, goat milk, and soy milk. 🙂

    1. So great to know! He can’t have soy either apparently (not that he would like that) so working with what we’ve got. My next try is convincing him to like coconut milk …. oh and yeah, no goat milk for him either 😦 See you soon!

  2. Nicole- Loved reading this. I’m amazed at your preparedness. My goal is to eventually be this way when I’m as seasoned as you. So… welcome to gluten intolerance! My son, Alexander (the younger one), has celiac disease. For now, he can still have dairy. I’ll send you a PM about the little I’ve learned of gluten-free life. Hang in there, it will soon be second nature to read food labels and you’ll do it.

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