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For me, there are few things more soothing than getting lost in a good book and drinking an enormous cup of coffee. So when you find yourself moving to a new city, like I have just done (in the middle of a pandemic, no less‽) I find that reaching for an old favorite and returning to a familiar time and place within a story can be really comforting.


This is Where You Belong by Melody WarnickThis Is Where You Belong by Melody Warnick is one of the many titles I will be picking to read over the next month or so. There is a ton of non-fiction out there to support all the feelings that come with moving to a new place. This Is Where You Belong looks at what makes people attached to a place, and what makes somewhere feel like home. It also gives some insight into how you can embrace that “I’m not happy here” feeling that sometimes accompanies a move, and turn that into “I never want to leave!” Along the same lines is Love Where You Live: How to Live Sent in the Place You Call Home by Shauna Pilgreen.


Braving the Wilderness by Brene BrownBrené Brown is wise in a most significant way, and since I’m such a huge fan of self-improvement books, I seek hers out over and over again, including Braving the Wilderness. As a research professor who studies courage, vulnerability, shame, and empathy, she believes that these emotions shape the way we interact with the world and each other. Packing up your life and moving to a city you’ve never been to before, all while starting a new job definitely takes courage. Her flair for storytelling, and sharing her own most vulnerable moments makes it easy to relate and in turn find our own strength to be vulnerable with others. I will definitely be reading this one again for some of Brené’s soulful advice.


My New Home by Marta AltesJust like me, children may benefit from a story to help understand tough topics or new emotions. If I think moving away from friends and family is scary, I can only imagine what that would be like for a kid who has only known one place. Luckily there are a ton of books out there about leaving home for a new one. There are so many fantastic titles to choose from but a few of my favorites are My New Home by Marta AltesAlexander, Who's Not (Do You Hear Me? I Mean it) Going to Move by Judith Viorst, Bella and Stella Come Home by Anika A. Denise, and Kiss Goodbye by Audrey Penn. And I just know there’s some brilliant guidance in there that even adults (including myself) could use.


As a side note, did you know that Tom Hank moved ten times before he was ten? He credits always being the new kid to his developing his kind, unthreatening persona. And why he’s so good at acting, since with every move he had to slip into a new role.


Letters from the Country by Marsha BoultonNow, I didn’t move from the “big city” of Toronto to a rural Ontario farm like Marsha Boulton had, but reading about her struggles with adapting to farm life in Letters from the Country is so heartwarming and entertaining at the same. Documenting her experiences and hilarious mishaps through a series of short essay like entries really makes this book easy to pick up whenever I need a good laugh, or put down when I feel like stepping out my front door to explore. Each season on the farm comes with its own set of unique problems for her to solve, and makes me feel like discovering my fancy wine glasses not surviving the move isn’t the disaster I thought it was.


Home Again by Michael KiwanukaAt the end of the day, the song Home Again by Michael Kiwanuka I think sums it up nicely. Just like reading, music evokes emotion in all of us and can bring us comfort during challenging times. Having just taken this exciting step forward and settled into my new place, putting on a favorite album really makes things feel like home. And I think most of us can agree, there’s nothing better than music to make the unpacking go by faster!


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