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Moving to Chicago...any advice?

(9 Posts)
RileyRoo Mon 27-Apr-09 22:39:22

Hey all,

I am moving to Chicago with my husband and 18 month old son (due to my husbands promotion within the company). I currently live in New Zealand and would LOVE to know the best places to live? My husbands work is going to be in Rosemont so do any of you have any advice?
Thanks so much!

StillOverHere Tue 28-Apr-09 14:52:20

Hello RileyRoo - how exciting for you all! I live in the North suburbs of Chicago and have done for far too long. I have to go out now but will be back later with my long-winded thoughts on life here for you! Are you thinking of city or suburbs? How long a commute will your husband tolerate?
More later!

StillOverHere Wed 29-Apr-09 15:21:41

Well RileyRoo, Chicago is a lovely place and I am sure that you will have fun here. Are you on a fixed assignment and will it be your first stay in the States? It is a huge city and there are so many neighbourhoods and surrounding suburbs that there is probably something for everyone. Given the scope of the area my opinion is really limited and very personal. I also do not have experience of living in the city but I think SuperBunny does.
I do not know the area around Rosemont and have only driven through. If I had my time again I would live in a town called Lake Bluff. It would be about a 30 to 40 minute commute but according to all the expats I know that have lived there it is fabulous. The schools are very good, there are plenty of pre-school options, you can walk to the beach, the village shops, the farmer's market, the train station etc. There is also a newcomers group giving you an instant group of friends - within the group there are subgroups for your own interests. Anywhere from Lake Bluff south along the lake is lovely and most of the towns have a village/community feel which is sometimes missing here. Remember though the closer to the lake you are the more expensive it is! Another option further from the lake but also good is Libertyville. I will not bore you with all the information but just ask if you want to know about anywhere.
Things I wish I had known when I moved here are that the summers are so hot - everyone tells you how cold the winters are but don't mention the humidity and heat of the summer! If you are looking at houses (and not appartments) make sure to find one with a screened porch - bugs are wicked and you may find yourself trapped indoors longing to sit out! I also wish I had known how conservative people are - save your Great British humour until you know someone really well!
I also spent a great deal of energy and emotion on worrying about schooling. I understand why people do this. I watched all of my friend's children in the UK toddling off to school and learning to read whilst the most mine were doing was two mornings a week sloshing paint all over themselves. Ten years on mine still love school and are at the same place academically as their contemporaries back home. They just take a different route to get there. If you go back when your son is five yes he probably will be behind but if it is closer to 8 then by then he will be at the right place! Just take your time and find the right area to live - there is so much choice it is overwhelming. Don't let anyone rush you. That can be the differnce between a good and a fantastic experience.
Oh yes, Target is the greatest store ever! smile

SuperBunny Thu 30-Apr-09 02:58:56


I live in the city. What do you want to know? Rosemont is out in the burbs - do you plan on living there? I live in the city. It's a fab place for families.

Here is a thread I did ages ago for someone.

SuperBunny Thu 30-Apr-09 03:01:55

Also, there is a thread for people in the US if you have more general questions.

Come and join us.

RileyRoo Tue 05-May-09 07:58:02

Thanks everyone!!! Hubby gets his contract from Chicago either tonight or tomorrow so will keep you all posted. Excited but nervous of course!

pollypentapeptide Tue 05-May-09 08:52:50

We stayed in Naperville for a few months, also due to my husband job. TBH I found Naperville a bit boring although getting into central chicago was easy enough and we loved the city.

I would live there again in a heartbeat!

Rosemont sounds wonderful.

SuperBunny Tue 05-May-09 19:27:59


mathanxiety Mon 31-Aug-09 05:01:55

Just joined MN. Where did you end up? How is it going? I live in a close in west suburb.

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