When we bought our house, it was a good midpoint between our jobs. Then John and I both changed jobs, and suddenly the location became really inconvenient.
Our move will put us closer to the boys’ schools, closer to my work—and maybe John’s, depending on where we buy. Less driving and more time together? I can’t wait!
But I was thinking that there must be something I’ll miss about living in our home, the first home John and I have owned. So I made a list.
1. Being in the house our children first came home to. I remember vividly the nights we arrived home with each of the boys and their eyes as they discovered this new place full of warmth and love and food and toys.
I remember Leo waking up from his long car ride and looking around our living room with wonder, then jumping off to run over and start pulling children’s books off the shelves. The night we brought Daniel home we stood in Leo’s bedroom with his new brother in our arms, crying with joy and relief (and, let’s admit it, exhaustion) that we were home and together as a family of four. Weeks later I heard their sweet toddler voices shout “Home!” and “Our neighborhood!” as we drove the last stretch of our long commute. This home is packed with beautiful, unforgettable memories, and it will always have a special place in my heart.
2. Our friends who live nearby. We’ll still see them, of course, but probably not as often as we see them now—even though we’re not really moving that far.
3. The Brothers’ Tree. Shortly after we adopted Daniel, John asked the boys to help him plant a little tree in the backyard. He called it “The Brothers’ Tree,” and so it is.
That’s Darth Vader standing next to it.
It has grown so much since they planted it, and I’m happy to think that it will continue to grow, though it won’t be in our yard. John also has a rock for each of us in the front yard, and I suspect our four family rocks are staying here. He’s not exactly looking for more heavy things to transport. I’m sure we’ll find rocks and trees at our new home.
4. The frog doorbell. It’s far from the only wonderful feature of this house, which John has poured so much time into improving over the years, but isn’t it fun?
5. The wildlife. Of course, that’s a positive and a negative because I love the rabbits and don’t love the snakes, but we see so many different birds. And you should see the bugs! Check out this beetle that was living by our house for a few days last week.
We think it’s a female Hercules beetle, and it was huge.
6. The Trolley Trail. We don’t walk it often enough, but it makes for a perfect way to spend a spring or fall afternoon, especially if you walk all the way into downtown Ellicott City, which is another thing I’ll miss.
7. Dimitri’s. John introduced me to Dimitri’s International Grille, which he has been enjoying since Monsignor Anthony Sauerwein introduced him to it years ago.
“Dimitri’s” was among the first words both Leo and Daniel learned in English, and when Leo was 2, some days he would wake up from his nap yelling, “I want Mee-tree’s beef kabob sammiches!” The boys love watching the waiters light the saganaki—flaming Greek cheese—so we took them today to enjoy some.
There may be a place that makes better tzatziki, but I doubt it.
8. St. Mark’s Church. John and I have been fortunate to find a parish that felt like home on each of our moves, and I know we will find one on this move, too. But I have grown to love the St. Mark’s community—and even moreso the priests. Fr. Gene greets us at the door even if he isn’t celebrating the Mass we’re attending, and he and Fr. Whatley give some of the best homilies I’ve heard. It’s a beautiful church—and it also happens to be the church where John and I attended Mass on our first date. I’m sure we’ll be back to visit.
9. The free address labels have finally started coming. For years we had to write out our address, but finally the nonprofits figured out where we lived, just in time for me to have to throw them away.
10. Knowing that if we were to adopt again, we wouldn’t have to have another health inspection. If this sounds silly to you, I’m betting you’re not an adoptive parent. Before we could adopt, we had to have a health inspector check the whole house. My heart was pounding and I was frantically cleaning even as he pulled up. And that was when we had no children. I don’t know whether we’ll adopt again, but in Maryland—or at least in Baltimore County—if your house has been inspected, you don’t have to have it inspected again. It was always nice to know we were sort of grandfathered in, even though the floor had become a magnet for dry cereal and stomped-on Play-doh.
I’m sure I’m forgetting something. I’ll let you know what it is after we make our move in a few weeks.
What do you love most about your home or where you live?