Hey friends! I finally have that home and life update for you today with more details following my post about a big dream coming true for us (catch up here if you missed that post). This will be part one of the story (it’s almost a book, ha!), so grab a cup of coffee or tea and get cozy!
If you just want to get to the news right away, here it is! We are MOVING! We are selling our house and are in the process of buying a new home. I can hardly believe it, but it’s such a whirlwind but fun story! Read on for the backstory (and know that I will continue to share updates as things continue to unfold!).
I can’t believe been sharing our family, life, and our home stories on the blog since 2007, longer than most of the home influencers on the internet, ha! Fourteen years as of a month ago. It’s not always been easy to know how to live a private life but also share one’s life on the internet with grace, integrity, and consistency.
To share the blessings, the twists and turns, the unknowns and even hard times in front of hundreds of thousands of people you don’t really know feels quite vulnerable at times. But my blog readers have been following along since the beginning. I loved sharing our story with you! We are heading into a new season of life and with it will come a new and exciting change for our family!
The past year has been a roller coaster of emotions, not only because of 2020 but just knowing our kids were going to be heading out again. Our empty nester life would begin for real this year (my husband and I were empty nesters for just a few months two years ago before the pandemic changed that!).
After years of praying for clarity in our future “empty nester life” and searching for the right next path, many pieces of that puzzle began falling into place just in this past year and many only in the past two months. Some of the final pieces fell into place just this week! Honestly, it’s felt like a series of miracles and dreams coming true. We are so thrilled that we can now see our destination and we are almost there.
We are quite family oriented, as you have probably gathered. We have been quite accustomed to living near our kids and all of them and their pets moving in and out over this past year. We loved every minute of the unexpected and extended time with our family. We would’ve kept them all here forever had it been what was best for them! :)
A few pieces of our own puzzle had to do with decisions our kids would make this year: Courtney moved to an apartment in Bellingham this year (1.5 hours north of Seattle). Kylee and her husband just bought a house in Portland (3 hours south of Seattle). Our son Luke made the decision to move to a house with friends while he finishes his last two years of college (he just moved out last week!).
All of our kids chose to move in slightly different directions on the map. It might not have been our “ideal” scenario, if a perfect one ever existed like us all living next door to each other, ha! But our kids are building their own lives as they should! We’re so proud of them! And we’re all in the Pacific Northwest! I know many times kids end up in other parts of the country or world, so we’re happy being close enough to drive to all of them.
Waiting and watching for each of them get settled in their decisions and homes helped us to feel free to begin visualizing our own direction.
We had several things we wanted to find clarity on over the past few years. One was regarding if or how long we wanted to stay in our current home. We moved here six years ago so our son could go to high school near his siblings who lived in Seattle. We never had committed to staying past those four years of high school, but we were open to whatever the future would hold.
Over the years I felt pretty certain I didn’t want to move. Many times I said we were staying here and I meant it. HA! We have loved living in this house and I don’t like moving :). We had so many plans for this place so we also wanted to continue to work on it! But even though we love living here, I started to feel in my heart that more change was coming.
At first when our kids made their decisions on where they would live, it made sense to us to stay here. We didn’t really have anywhere else we wanted or needed to go. But just as we started to settle into that idea of another few years here, things started to shift. We soon realized there would be a change for us, too!
Life is full of surprises, isn’t it?
One weekend several weeks ago, our kids along with my parents and niece and nephew walked along a beautiful boardwalk in Bellingham (near where my daughter Courtney lives). My parents began talking about how wonderful would be for them to move up here closer to us and the water and all of the adventures they would have.
As we were driving home (and after some conversations in the coming days), I began to feel a stirring in my soul that maybe there was something more for us than just staying where we were. Following our day on that boardwalk, I talked to my dad more on the phone. I heard his heart and some of his dreams. I knew my mom had dreams. My husband and I had dreams for our next home and our empty nester life, too.
Our dreams all seemed to come together in a way that all made sense to us in this very moment in time. For the first time in a long time, my husband and I were free to make some new decisions and dream new dreams.
You don’t always know which experiences of your life are shaping the next part of your story, or which moments will become a significant turning point. Once you are able to start reflecting back on those moments, you can see where you need to go, or find that you are on the right path.
That’s how I started to feel. It became clear that so many parts of our history and the dreams we’ve had were preparing us for this very season.
When I was a kid we had a sailboat and spent a lot of time traveling around the San Juan Islands. Being up here in Washington around the water brought back those memories for us. Once we had kids of our own, my parents bought a beach house on the Oregon Coast near Cannon Beach. It was where our family gathered every summer and holiday. You might remember me showing it on the blog! You can take a tour of it here.
We loved that house and Cannon Beach, but they sold it after our family moved to Washington years ago.When my dad shared a dream he had to recreate something like the experience we had with our beach house, but up here near the San Juan Islands, that’s when the lightbulb went off in my head.
As my husband and I started to think about that vision, as well as reflect on our own dreams and what we wanted to do next, we realized we could live like we were on vacation every day :). Why not? Every day is so precious, life should be an adventure with the people you love!
But tempted as I am to rush decisions at times, I find the most at peace when I learn to let go and just trust. So that’s what I did. I just let go and let the story unfold. Through those experiences on the boardwalk that day and in the conversations and circumstances that followed, it began to make sense to us for many reasons that we could best create a life of adventure for all of us by moving closer to the San Juans.
I didn’t know what that would look like, exactly, but even without knowing all of the answers or even the timeline, I felt so much peace in it!
This move wouldn’t be about finding the perfect dream house, it was first and foremost about seizing the adventure of life by the sea. But as a homebody, it had always been hard for me picture a path forward without the house. With the market as wild as it is, it all seemed a little crazy. Would we just sell our house without anywhere to go? I prayed like crazy that we would make the right decision about selling our home, that we would find the right place at the right time, and that I wouldn’t get in the way of whatever was meant to be.
There is a beautiful area not too far North of where we live now that I’ve felt drawn to go explore, for years I couldn’t get it out of my head. I felt inspired that it was finally time to go take a look! We’d actually been in the area many times before, but had never looked at it as a potential place to live. It seemed like it might be the perfect destination for us to begin this new season of life, but we wanted to see it for ourselves.
So my husband and I hopped in the car that next weekend and went a little road trip! Little did we know that day we’d not only find the perfect location for the life we dreamed about, but the home of our dreams was there waiting for us, too.