Michelle Laker


About Michelle Laker

A California native; I spent 10 years living, studying, working, (and falling in love) in the United Kingdom. I returned to the Bay Area in 2011, with my British husband in tow. I am re-adjusting to life in the bay, feeling more like an expat than a local. I have spent my career working with international student & families. I love learning about other cultures, languages, and traditions. My desire to welcome newcomers, and help you make the most of your new life in the Bay Area comes from the unforgettable memories (and mistakes) I made during my time in the United Kingdom. If you've just arrived, and don't know where to start, email me (michelle-at-lifeinthebay.org). I am happy to help!

Volunteering: A New Year’s Resolution Worth Keeping

With the arrival of each new year, many people take a moment to reflect on the changes they want to make in the coming year. I am ready to get out there again. Ready to make a positive impact in the community; to support international students, and young immigrants in a personal and meaningful way through volunteering.


But we’re just moving across town…

#sponsored My husband and I finally had an offer accepted on a house. We had been renting the most adorable cottage in Woodside for the past couple of years, but obviously couldn’t afford to buy there. We found our family home in San Bruno. We planned to manage the move ourselves. It wasn’t far, just up the 280. No problem, we’d just rent a van, as we had done so many times before. After all, we only had a little one-bedroom place. As moving day approached and our son started crawling, we panicked and called a moving company, just to […]


The Original Expat: The Life of a 1950’s Army Wife

In March of 1952, my husband left for Korea. Our eldest son had just been born in Kansas (where I was born and raised); 12 days earlier. We would not be reunited as a family until the following year when our son was 15 months old. However, the reunion was not a homecoming, as we next met in Japan.


Muslim Neighbors: What I Learned When I Visited A Mosque

I have to admit that I was a little nervous about attending. Should I have worn a headscarf? Was this going to be an event to try to convert the general public? (As I have experienced at events I have attended for other faiths). As soon as we arrived, all of my worries were dismissed. This truly was just an opportunity to come together, to get to know each other as individuals, as humans, as neighbors, and learn.