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31 March 2006


Dear Reader,

I have been keeping something from you. Remember that we went on a crazy family trip to Seattle and California at the beginning of February? Well, there was method in our madness. The Husband was actually flying out for a job interview with MSN at Microsoft HQ in Redmond.

And they offered him a job. And they made him an offer it would be incredibly foolish to refuse. So yes, later this year we are moving to Seattle for a few years.

It was an extremely difficult decision for me. I just feel like I've settled into a great routine after the upheaval of having a baby last year, and in the last few months it seems that mirror mirror has really started to take off (we've had an awesome Mother's Day and March in general) after working so hard at it for over two years, right the way through pregnancy and the early months of motherhood.

But the role is a career-defining one for the Husband and the money will transform our family finances which have been looking a bit precarious since we've been investing so much in the business. So we don't really have a choice - I can't stand in his way on this.

I have, however, made two conditions. One, that we come back in time for the Minx to start full-time education in the UK. This opportunity has come at a perfect time, in that I think the Minx will be fairly portable until she is five or so. After that I really don't want to put her through the upheaval of moving school AND country, though obviously I might change my mind when the time comes and we're having too much fun. And of course there's going to be all the trauma of BEATING her American accent out of her.

My second condition is that at all costs I want to keep mirror mirror going. I actually think it's going to be excellent news for the business. We will be in a position to hire someone to take on the day-to-day running of the business out of the UK, which will leave me with more time to find new suppliers (can't wait to start buying from all those fabulous designers I keep reading about on the US design blogs) and expand our marketing.

The other good bit of good news is that by the time my husband has worked out his notice and he's got his working visa sorted out it looks like it's going to be October before we go out there, so, for any customers and suppliers who might be reading, it will be business as usual for the time being, and I get to enjoy one last summer in Notting Hill.

Because the truth is, dear reader, that I don't really want to go.


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Oh Sweetheart this is an amazing opportunity to taste a whole new life on the proviso that you can always, always come home...

Wonderful for your babba, wonderful for your business and almost guaranteed, wonderful for you.

Be brave...

Congratulations to the Husband on landing the job and to you for making the brave and right decision to give the West Coast a whirl. Thank God for this blog and the World Wide Web which means we can all keep in touch just as regularly as now - would have missed you terribly otherwise. And I just know that mirror mirror will continue to go from strength to strength...

So, I've got several months to come up with the Minx's second long haul flight amusements pack...that's if I can stop playing that damned online boggle. Am crap!

What will you be doing with your lovely flat..?


My first reaction was NOooooooooooooo

Then I read that you'll keep mirror mirror going so I calmed down a bit. In fact, things could be pretty amazing as you'll have so much to blog about and SO much new stuff to sell. I see an international import export thing building up here.

You are right about the accent though, my brother's godson went to Boston at the same age and came back in time for school and now, 4 years on, the accent still lingers, though it's quite sweet on him.

I'm sure you will make the most of it and will ultimately get as much out of it as the husband. And if the locals want to know you better they just need to read your archives, how handy.

Oh wow Paola ... that's so exciting! It's hard to let go of what we already have and what we already know ... our comfort zone. I'm sure this will be a wonderful thing for your whole family.

Yay for you.

Thanks all for being so nice.

It's been a bit difficult getting my head round this when it all started as a bit of a joke and a way of getting free tickets to the West Coast (we never in a million years imagined that he would a. be offered the job b. be offered enough money that it would make sense to accept).

And I do know that it's a huge opportunity and will be a big adventure (though Kerry, you are quite right about the comfort zone). But mostly I'm worried about 'mirror mirror'. I've put my heart and soul into it for two years now and I would HATE to see it fail.

Oh and Cally, I so DIDN'T want to hear that about your brother's godson.

Have horrible vision of a teenage Minx whining 'oh mo-o-o-o-o-o-o-m' and rolling her eyes.

Paola I know you are scared to relocate, but think of it as a growing experience and a way to learn more about American design by actually touching it and cruising stores here. The west coast is much nicer than the east in my opinion, more scenic - and the people are much more laid back than here in the northeast. Seattle gets a lot of rain, but you are only a quick southwest flight ( away from San Francisco, Arizona, LA... and you can drive down to Oregon to Portland and Eugene...also up to Vancouver (great city). I personally think you're going to love it and you'll really enjoy the experience. You'll also be near the coast, which you aren't really now there in Notting Hill. Although London is amazing, you'll find Americans to be very welcoming and also, that our accents aren't nearly as bad as you may think. At least not all regions sound twangy or nasal - I don't. I sound quite cute actually. :) Plus, can you resist the fact that you'll be living near the coast so you can perhaps take daily walks? How deliciously exciting is that?

I have a question because I can't figure out what you are referring to in some of your posts, what is a minx? I'm thinking of a rodent type of pet maybe?

Anyway, chin up - you'll love your new experience.



Thanks for taking the time to write such a nice long comment. One of the things I'm most looking forward to is being able to travel the West Coast. I've got a very good friend from Vancouver which I've visited before and loved and my aunt, whom I hardly know, lives near Laguna Beach which was completely amazing (though crazy) when we went there.

And yes, it will be wonderful to be near the ocean, the people we met in Seattle really couldn't have been nicer and the accent there IS very soft - almost Canadian which is just about acceptable ;) I think the thing which is scaring me most at this point is the thought of everything which has to be done before we go...

As for your question, the Minx is my name for my baby daughter! I didn't realise that Americans wouldn't understand the term.

Simon Cowell famously called Kellie Pickler a minx on American Idol a few weeks back (yes, I'm sad like that) and she didn't understand either (thought he'd called her a 'mink'!) but I thought she was just being Kellie Pickler.

Anyway it means a girl who is naughty but in quite a charming way (often used with 'little' as in 'she's a little minx'. defines it as 'A girl or young woman who is considered pert, flirtatious, or impudent' (though it can also be used for a girl who's a bit of a tease).

Now, tell me how I can go and live in Seattle when you guys don't even speak English!

That is so cute, I learned a new word today! Thank you so much for teaching this American writer English. :)

I'm not being cheeky either, I mean it!!!


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