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Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Home Again

I'm a delinquent blogger, I'll admit it!

I'd like to give closure to my Swedish adventure and fill any of my followers in on the past couple of years. 

After trying my hand at helping launch a start-up company, and taking Swedish language courses, I decided it was time for a change.

SFI Language Class in Kungalv, Sweden


After months of frustrating attempts to find an English speaking position that actually utilized my background and skill set, an opportunity arose.  Finally in July of 2011, I landed an interview with one of the world's top advertising agencies for an opportunity to work in-house at Volvo Car Corporation. This opportunity came about as a direct result of networking with the American Women's Club in Gothenburg. In the early Fall of 2011, I began my position as an Account Support Manager with Volvo Car Corporation. I was elated. I received the opportunity to work for a reputable ad agency with great people. Better still, my hope to have a true "Swedish" work experience came true since Volvo is arguably one of the most "Swedish" companies around. 

Volvo Office Gothenburg, Sweden

Unfortunately we lost our lease on our incredible Gothenburg apartment in Spring 2012. At this point, we felt it was too late to start over, and for a variety of reasons, we decided to "come back home" - to the States.  In August of 2012, I moved back to St. Louis, MO with my oldest daughter so that she could start 1st grade on time with the rest of her class.  Meanwhile, back in Sweden, my husband and our youngest daughter waited for their Visas to be approved.  Five long weeks later, my entire family was back together again. We returned to our same St. Louis home. Looking back, it feels like nothing really changed.


I'm thankful for the opportunity:
To Work in an international environment 
To Learn Swedish
To Live on the countryside (cows and meadows anyone?) 
To Live in a high rise city apartment with a view 
To Learn what Non-Americans think of America
To Meet interesting people from all over the world
That my children were able to experience living in another country
That my children learned Swedish
Time with my husband's family including two grandmothers who passed away during our time in Sweden
To Challenge myself to navigate an unfamiliar city
To Travel  - A Northern Italy roadtrip, family time in Denmark, Romantic weekends in Barcelona and Paris and catching up with a friend in London.
To Enjoy Swedish film, TV & Music

If I had to do it over again, I would have tried to learn the language before moving, joined the American Women's Club of Gothenburg sooner, committed to create a social circle early on, bought a condo or something of our own, and get a driver's license.   It was a challenging and rewarding experience and all in all, I'm glad I made the move with my family.

Thank you for following along on this journey with me.  Please feel free to share your own personal stories about your life in Sweden or other similar situation.

Until the next big chapter....
Brandi 

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