updated 04/13/2010 AT 7:10 AM ET
•originally published 04/13/2010 AT 11:40 AM ET
Still boyishy handsome, Ricky Schroder will celebrate his 40th birthday on Tuesday with a pizza party – no small feat, given that he and his wife and four children now live in Spain.
“I feel good,” the former Silver Spoons star tells PEOPLE, also noting good-naturedly that he does suffer occasional lower back pain and possibly needs reading glasses. But most of all, reaching the milestone has afforded him perspective – which explains, at his wife Andrea’s urging, why the family packed their bags and moved to Spain last June.
“Our oldest son is going to college in the fall,” Schroder tells PEOPLE, speaking by phone from the family’s rented home in Barcelona.
“Andrea had this dream of living abroad for a year and giving the family an international perspective. My first knee-jerk reaction was, ‘I can’t do that.’ Then I went to see the movie Up with my daughter Faith,” says Schroder.
“In the movie, the man finally made time for his wife to take a trip to their dream destination and it was too late. I felt like the movie was speaking to me. I thought ‘I can’t let my wife not have this dream.’ ”