What a difference a week makes…
Last Saturday, I wrote my stream of consciousness post in NYC at the airport still reeling from the fact that I was six rows away from Meryl Streep and Hillary Clinton. I was still in awe over the fact that I met Debra Winger and Ingrid Michaelson at a private party the night before RIGHT AFTER OPRAH WALKED PAST ME.
This week is a bit different. I’m still clearing the dirt out from under my fingernails from doing yard work all week. I’m aching from the cleaning and painting as we prepare to put our house back on the market this week. And I’m left wondering if Meryl Streep ever does yard work. Probably not.
More importantly, I’ve been thinking a lot about my house and where I live. Mostly, these thoughts were prompted by my friend Stacey. She asked of her friends on Facebook, “How do you feel about where you live?” It was a mixed bag of answers and definitely worthy of a five minute brain dump.
Today’s (Optional) Writing Prompt: How do you feel about where you live?
Here we go…
Where you live…
That really is a mixed bag isn’t it? It will be interesting to see what people write about. It could be your house, your neighborhood, your city, your state. It all depends on how you interpret it and I suppose how you interpret it indicates what is the most important or satisfactory (or unsatisfactory) part of your life.
I love my house. It was a new house – new construction. We picked our lot, picked our floor plan, picked our cabinets and floors and countertops. We landscaped the yard and built our deck. We never called it a dream house but it seemed like a good enough house to live in for a long time.
As we prepare to try to move (AGAIN), I feel sad to leave my house but anxious for the newness of another house. I would love another new house to make my own but that might not be an option this time.
But when I think about where I live, I think about Raleigh, North Carolina. It was a city I never really picked. I never wanted to live in the South but I followed a boyfriend here and thought change might be good. In hindsight, it was very good. It’s brought me to where I am in my life right now. But it’s not the place I really picked.
The next place isn’t really what I picked either. We’re planning to move to the Baltimore-Washington area which is essentially where I grew up. I feel like I am going home and can find both negative and positive aspects in that. Where do I want to live? It’s more like how I want to live. I want a nice house, nice yard, nice neighborhood, close to major city with lots of things to do, wide variety of ethnic foods, good school, lots of friends, temperate weather, picturesque scenery, all the right shopping, and an affordable cost of living.
Is that too much to ask?
*I* don’t think it’s too much to ask at all! 🙂 But then again, I think you and I are in a similar place emotionally on this topic.
I grew up on the same street, in the same house, for pretty much all of my formative years. A trip through Oregon on our way to Canada when I was 11 planted a seed for wanting to live among the beauty of that state (yes, it made that big of an impression on me). When it was time for college, despite not having any family or friends or even having visited the campus first, I applied to and was accepted at University of Oregon. I CHOSE Oregon. It’s where I became a real adult, it’s where I became a wife and a mother. It will always be the home of my heart.
Being in Texas has been hard for MANY reasons, not the least of which are the millions ways it is so different from Oregon. And I don’t know how likely it is that I will ever actually get back to Oregon. But I would love to live somewhere that elicits from me the same type of peace, the same awe for nature, the same feel of community.
We’re scheduled to move this summer, but just to another spot in Texas. Right now we’re debating whether we want to just proceed as planned, or shake things up (like, WAY up), and get back to the West Coast. It’s a crazy hard decision, but all I know is that I am SO ready to love where I live again.
Now, is *that* too much to ask? 😉
That’s funny, Stacey. When I was a kid, I loved the movie The Goonies and I made sure I watched the credits to the very end to find out the town I knew I wanted to live in someday: Astoria, Oregon. I’ve still never visited Oregon but I’d love to at least do that someday.
Yes, I want a place that I enjoy living but mostly that gives me access to things I love: city, nature, good food!
I guess it’s always mixed feelings when one has to move. I’ve stayed in the same place for the past 9 years and it has been great. Don’t intend to move house until the kids are all big and off to college. It’s too much a hassle physically and mentally moving house.
Tell me about it. I’m dying here!
You list sounds right to me. I haven’t found that place yet, but I’m holding out hope we will live there one day.
Right now we are living in a place we didn’t plan to live, and don’t really want to stay. The thought of moving makes me very happy.
I have a friend whose husband is from Washington, D.C. They lived there for the first few years after they got married before moving to her hometown, Chicago. They’re always talking about how they miss the mild D.C. weather.
I know a few people who live in that area and love it, so I hope you can find a new passion and love there, though I know how it feels to go home and have it not feel like quite the right fit. Good luck with your house selling! It’s a crazy market out there! (but you know that!)
We definitely have to meet before you go! If its just for a photo op. How often does the world of blogger get to meet one another “in the neighborhood” and take a photo together? Let’s make it happen.
We’ve lived in Georgia for 8 years now, away from my family and my husband’s family. While we love our home, the state itself has never felt like home. Maybe we just picked a house in the wrong county? It seems there is never anything here to do, we always have to go into the city of Atlanta. Which is fine but can be a headache with traffic, etc. So now we are moving and every time I come to Raleigh, I am at ease. Of course I have noticed some big differences…namely that most places don’t have big parking lots or that any of the Starbucks I saw had drive thrus! But I can deal with those issues…I think. 🙂
Also…going to be selfish and hope your house doesn’t sell until AFTER we get there so we can at least hang out once or twice! So pencil me into your calendar for June, please!
I always wanted to live in Atlanta, and now that I live here, I’m happy, it feels like home…sometimes. I grew up in DC. I miss it, and think about moving back all the time. But never do. But whenever I go back to visit, it’s like a big hug and I feel instantly at home. Right now, we are considering moving to the west coast. SMH. I’m hoping that one day, I’ll wake up wherever I am and it will just feel RIGHT.
A lot of times the things we don’t pick end up being the best for us.
I wish you luck in your new home!
I hope you land in a home where you are content to be for a long while. Relocation is one of those deal breakers for me.Travel for business – yes, but no relos. I’ve never been willing to pick up roots & call home anywhere else, but you are a brave one for being so flexible. Glad your destination this time will be a city you know very well.
Your post has been heavy on my mind for a while. Thanks for writing about it!
I am 100% with you on that last little portion of your post. As long as there is a variety of things for me to do within a resonable distance I am ok.
Awesome topic! 🙂
Well, from a selfish perspective, I’m glad to hear you’re moving up this way. 🙂 I wrote about this recently, and I’m going to write about it again later this week. I don’t love where I live, partly because I keep comparing it to NYC and DC will never compare.
Since my SOC is off topic, I’ll use the prompt for my comment. Last week over at iVillage, I talked about how much I love living in California. I specifically love Santa Cruz. The downside is we cannot afford a home here, so we must rent. This sometimes means we end up moving every few years and making a new home. Still, I want to live and raise my family here because no matter where we live, a walk on the beach or hike in the woods is minutes away.
But to be so close to DC! Jealous (a little!)
I don’t love where I live, but now that we have found our friends and our children are in schools they love with great friends of our own I know that we are settled for a while. It will be more important to me to love where I live once my children are grown. Snowbirds, here I come!