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Barren Trails

Dear Diary,
When I first began to envision what my post-graduate, "grown up" life would look like, it did not appear in this format.

I thought for sure I'd find myself in New York City, living in an overpriced studio the size of a closet.

Never did I imagine I'd find myself here.

(Both Landen and Madelyn were driving and operating heavy machinery by age 4.) 

Here, is where we wound up after leaving my hometown in 2011.

I was drawn by the allure of starting fresh with a blank slate in a city few people knew our name.

And with relatives 6 hours away, we were completely reliant on only ourselves.

Even with the challenges this posed, I was excited to have full creative control over my life as my husband and I established it.

This is the culmination of a few job changes and career moves, one apartment, one flipped house for sale, and many conversations about what would best suit our lives, our marriage and how we're raising our two children.

This is Ground Zero for our dreams, goals and plans for the future.

This is the place we cannot wait to come home to after traveling, and now that we're settled, our itineraries have been filled with new zip codes to explore when the school calendar allows. There are plans to allow our passports to help raise Landen and Madelyn, to cash that cultural paycheck. We believe the direction that our role as parents is to TEACH and not DIRECT, as self-determination is a character trait I'd like for both of them to nurture.

(Helping Dad sweep up the leaves to be burned.) 

(He quickly mastered the manual transmission of the 4-wheeler, logging plenty of time on our trails.) 

 (Deer sighting ...)

(Further evidence of animal activity on the back-40) 

With the leaves fallen, our property is now quite barren. In fact, the cows on the farm next door are visible from the hilltop and they watch our every move. They're probably judging us.

The path you choose is either a blessing or a lesson, but I've found each step is worth it.

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