The big news, the exciting adventure that I hinted about last year? This is it. We put our house on the market. It sold in less than 24 hours, and we're moving to the country!
I've had lots of thoughts swirling in my head about this post. Mainly because this is our family's scrapbook so I want to record everything, and also because friends and family who live out of state read this and I want to fill in all the details (because sometimes my parents don't relay all of the correct info). Ha!
About a year ago, Todd and I both started to feel like a busy suburban neighborhood wasn't working for our family. Between trips back to Missouri and long talks about our childhood, we knew we wanted Crosbi to have a childhood very similar to the ones we had. We were also starting to feel the walls closing in a bit. We would be in Missouri, and I would sneak out on my parents' back deck and it was like the weight of the world fell from my shoulders. I breathed deeply. I listened to the wind blowing and birds chirping. And the silence. Ahhh, the silence. Those feelings and sounds are part of my DNA. Which means they are also part of Crosbi's.
The struggle was that to afford the land we wanted, we would have to move out of our county. We live in a very affluent county with access to the best schools in not only the state, but the country. But the decision was actually quite simple. Crosbi's future isn't determined by the school she goes to. Just like it wasn't for me or Todd.
Anyone who knows me knows that I grew up in rural Missouri. I'm the daughter of a small jewelry repair shop owner and a truck driver. Money was never going to be my ticket to a bright future. When I was ten years old, I remember holding an Alan Jackson cassette in my hand and thinking, "I want to work for his record label one day." I turned the cassette over and saw that he was with Sony Nashville and I decided then and there that I would be an employee of Sony Music.
The laughs followed. The sarcastic "good luck with that" was a phrase I heard often. I didn't know anyone from Ozark who ended up working for a record label. People from Ozark tend to stay in Ozark.
But God, who planted the dream in my heart, would see it to fruition. I not only have been (and still am!) an employee of Sony, I even got to work on an Alan Jackson (hymns) record. God is good. I didn't go to a fancy high school. But I had a dream and I had the drive. No school district can give that to my daughter.
The other thing that became really important to us was that Crosbi have ample opportunity during her school years. One of my favorite bloggers, Laura Tremaine of Hollywood Housewife took the words out my mouth with this post about growing up in rural Oklahoma (she has worked in film/TV and is now married to a famous Hollywood producer):
"I was really into choir when I was in high school. One of the benefits of being in a small town is that even with my mediocre talent, I was able to participate in all kinds of activities that would have been impossible in a larger, more competitive school. With zero training, I was on my school's pom squad and part of a very active show choir, and these are my favorite memories of the teenage years."
I mean, she's practically describing my life. I was on the pom squad, the marching band, and student council. Any group or activity I wanted to join had space for me and I never once took lessons or had special training outside of school. Same for Todd. He was captain of our football team, homecoming king, played baseball, basketball, and was named "Mr. P.E." I don't say all of this to brag. We are nothing but two average kids from the Ozarks, but attending a small school opened so many doors for us and we both look back at high school as some of the best memories of our lives. We wouldn't trade our experiences for anything. We only hope Crosbi's memories will be the same.
So there you have it. We're moving to the country. We close on our house in just a few short weeks and we'll begin building sometime in April with hopes to be moved in by fall. We're already dreaming of tree houses, tire swings, a fire pit, and the big garden we'll plant next spring. The school district might not be the "best" to some, but it's the best for us and the dreams we have for our family. Plus, lower taxes!
Everything has fallen into place so quickly and carefully that we are confident in our decision and we're giddy about the future.
I hope to post a lot about this new journey in the coming months. I hope you'll join me and follow along!
Until then, I'll be singing...I'm from the country and I like it that way...