A year across the pond

On 24 June we celebrated exactly one year of living in our little terrace here in Mouvaux, France.

I can’t quite believe it has been a whole 12 months since we left Canterbury.  A lot has happened and then again we’ve had quite a chilled out year.  Here are some of the highlights from the last 12 months:

  1. June 2013 – we moved into 45 Rue Bir Hakeim, Mouvaux with the help of some wonderful friends.  We’ve enjoyed getting to know our neighbours with one side being particularly kind to Miriam and we recently had a lovely evening aperitif with some others on the road.  Looking forward to continuing and increasing these relationships.
  2. July 2013 – spent some precious time back in the UK with family who had come over from their home in Japan.  A rare moment when all three families on the Eaton-sibbling-side were together.
  3. August 2013- Roger, and when possible myself & Mim , helped out in a week of free BBQs put on by a churches together movement in the centre of Lille.  We made some great contacts that week including our dear friends Paul & Sandie who have been such fun and a great support to us this year.
  4. September 2013 – I started teaching English at the Catholic University in Lille and Loquendi, the same enterprise as Roger.  Miriam started going to her child-minder, Nani’s (Stéphanie), 3 and a half days a week joining another little boy called Noa who was born on exactly the same day.  This was pretty nerve wracking for us all but Mim has thoroughly loved each day at Nani’s and we as parents have felt incredibly blessed and supported by Stéphanie.  Also did a rather crazy journey up to the north of England for my brother’s wedding.
  5. October 2013 – Discovered we were expecting child number 2 who would arrive in the summer of 2014.  We spent some precious days in Rotterdam on a Relational Mission Church Planting conference.  It was wonderful to receive wisdom from this conference as well as spend time with some great friends.
  6. November 2013 – Life wasn’t too easy in the run up to Christmas but we were blessed with lots of visitors, letters and little parcels through the post which kept our spirits up.
  7. December 2013 – We enjoyed receiving quite a few visitors around the Christmas period, taking in the markets and the general atmosphere of Noël in northern France.
  8. January 2014 – I started making cupcakes for a local Salon du Thé as well as doing some private orders for friends and colleagues.  This has been really fun and I hope to develop this further towards the end of 2014
  9. February 2014 – I started French lessons which have just been invaluable and fun too.  Sara, my tutor, is really really lovely and makes the lessons both fun and useful.
  10. March 2014 – We found out we were having a little boy baby!
  11. April 2014 – Debbie Challen moved to Lille from Southampton to join us.  We’ve really enjoyed meeting as a small group each Thursday evening as well as spend time eating, dreaming and living life together in and around Lille.  Spent an utterly fab Easter weekend in Holland with dear friends at a Center Parcs equivalent.  Lots of swimming, chats, good food and exploring.
  12. May 2014 – Miriam turned 3 and we celebrated by going to Nausicaa, a sealife centre in Bologne-sur-mer.  We also spent a week back in the UK at the Relational Mission Leadership conference in Norwich which was fantastic in and of itself but it was also wonderful to see lots of friends and family

Which brings us to June 2014.  The weather has been lovely, I’ve gained a lovely pregnancy tan (I thank ya).  Our garden has been such a blessing to be out in and we spent a gorgeous day discovering the Belgian city of Ghent last Saturday.  Some wonderful friends from Canterbury utterly surprised me by showing up on our door step last Sunday for a lovely baby shower.  And now we are waiting for little boy Eaton to arrive, although it’s looking most likely to be July….watch this space.


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