Pat: We would be moving as a family and have a good retirement income. I am on a high protein, low carb diet for health reasons. Can I do it there? I would need to see a doctor on occation. We would be moving with school age children, how will that work? What is the climate? Is the economy stable?
Of course, you can do high protein, low carb which is basically meat and veggies. Food is locally grown and we are very seasonal with very little ethnic foods. Most cooking is done at home and we shop daily.
As for doctors, you can easily find an English language doctor and pay as you go, very nominally. Bring medicenes you will need for the length of your stay. You can buy them here too. Remember, without a visa , you will need to leave the country periodically. I keep an catastrophic USA health care plan, but would be very comfortable going to the hospital here. They are very modern and not crowded like people say.
Your kids can go to English language school at first (private). They are young enough that picking up Italian shouldn’t be to difficult. At our age, it gets more challenging.
As for climate: in Tuscany we have all four seasons similar to North or South Carolina. The north is mountainous, so more winter and Sicily is an island more similar to Florida. There is a big difference in lifestyle from North of Rome to South of Rome, so rent an apartment and try different areas. The seaside is quite lovely and there are many to choose from.
Climate politically, I think it is the same in every country. If you buy into gloom and doom, you can find it. On a daily basis, does it effect me or my family, no. We have elections and promises but we live a simple, wonderful life.
My biggest advice is come for 3 months and live like a local before you do anything and decide if this is right for you before you move anything. Do it in summer when the kids are out of school. Do NOt try to recreate you life in the USA with TV, computers, media, stuff and busyness. Replace these things with appreciating the culture, art, history, meaningful reading and spending long summer days in nature and really enjoy time, freedom and adventure to explore and discover who you are and your children’s talents.