We are just so happy to be living near the 45th parallel. What lead us to move from the big city to a quiet, rural neighborhood came to us in baby steps. We live around rolling hills, acres upon acres of farmland, orchards, & vineyards, miles of woodland trails, an abundance of blue water, and a slightly-larger-than-small-town. Except during tourist season, then we upgrade to large-small-town status. We are passionate about where we live, but we weren’t always attracted to this way of life.
I went to college in a big city, and I loved every minute of it. I relished the culture, architecture, and the diversity of it all. I liked to imagine what the city once was with all of its former grandeur. But most of all, I loved the melting pot people, culture, and ethnic food that was readily available. My husband went to the same college, and was living in the city when we met. We knew each other casually for years, until one night we had our first real conversation, and we never stopped talking. We married 3 years later. We were idyllic and fashioned ourselves as “urban pioneers,” wanting to be a part of the revitalization of our beloved, but crumbling city.
Our first house was in a charming, mixed use neighborhood. We liked that ours was one of a few single family homes among many flats and apartment rentals. We enjoyed being able to walk to church, and dozens of restaurants, taverns, and coffee shops. But our fondness for our urban lifestyle eventually started to wane. By the time we were blessed with our eldest son, we had been the victims of several crimes, and decided it was time to move to a “safer” neighborhood. We moved to a suburb bordering the city, as we were not ready to entirely abandon it, and we wanted to be able to readily soak up its culture on the weekends. We met many dear friends in our new neighborhood. Our family continued to grow with son # 2, and then son #3 a few years later.
Shortly after son #3 was born, hubby was faced with a major turning point in his career, which caused us to reevaluate just about every aspect of our lives. We were very restless and not at all at peace. We brainstormed what was truly important to us. We wrote a family mission statement. We prayed about it A LOT. We’d always felt centered and at peace when we were in nature, so we knew that we wanted to raise our boys somewhere where they had room to run. Somewhere they could really experience nature, play, explore, and just be. We wanted to be near farms so that we could pick fruits and vegetables, and our boys would know where food really comes from. We quickly decided that we couldn’t do that in the metro area that we were living in, however it was important that weekend visits to family and friends would be feasible. We chose two areas in our state that we enjoyed, and Bacon Slayer concentrated his job search. Then we prayed–a whole lot more. We knew God would guide us in the right direction. That direction came nearly a year later when BS was offered a job in the area of the 45th parallel. It was at that point that our winding journey became to move at an accelerated pace. We sold our house and moved up north less than one month after BS accepted the position.
I am often asked why on earth we would choose to move away from all of our friends and family to the north country. Well, the photo above is one of the reasons. The simple answer is that it is just so beautiful here, all the dang time. This is just where we are meant to be.