This week marks a year since our trek back from the Great White North into more familiar territory. It's been a year since we decided that yes, we would "homestead" back to both of our hometowns. "It will be worth it, we'll make it work, and it will be the right thing to do."
A lot happens in a year. Family members passed away, friends buried their own children, babies were born, babies were miscarried. There were parties, medical emergencies, and house projects. After moving, it wasn't until February that we bought and moved into our house, and it was only a month later that we found out #4 would be here. Before the end of 2012 we will be a family of six.
Within the year our oldest learned to tie his shoes, ride a bike, swim and do monkey bars. He does math and reads, and can buckle and unbuckle himself in the car. Our three year old potty-trained, and figured out how to put undies, socks, and pants on by himself. He proudly knows his shapes and colors, and identifies his favorite letters. Our toddler learned to crawl and walk, and then scoot around on a baby bike. He knows to hand me a cup when he's thirsty, or bring me random items from the pantry when he's hungry. He waves goodbye and blows kisses.
However small these accomplishments may seem, they are huge in our house, and something to celebrate and make a big deal over, because a year ago, they weren't present.
When I look back at our year in the Great White North, I can't help but admit that it may in fact, have been the most difficult year in my memory. We've lived much further away in the past, with different geographies and more diverse demographics, and yet, this one move proved the most difficult.
With that year before, and this year under our belt, I can happily say that the pendulum swings both ways, and this past year has been a wonderfully joyfully time for our family. Nothing has been perfect or easy, but it has been contenting. When I sit outside with the boys for hours while they ride bikes down the driveway, collect sticks for swords, smash rocks into smaller rocks, and use their imagination in ways they couldn't before, I am so thankful that our move happened at just the right time.
A little bit country and quite a bit small town. It's right for us. As a mother, to watch your children grow and thrive is a gift unlike any other. Here's to small accomplishments. Let's hope next year Luke can play baseball with a little more understanding and conquer his shyness, Paul can learn to pedal his bike and know all his letters, and Michael starts to talk and use a spoon a fork!
It's a simple life, but it's ours, and I love it.