Wednesday 15 November 2017

One year in our new home!

Today we've lived in our new home for exactly one year! To mark the occasion, I am going to take you on a nostalgic look back. Ready? Let's do this!

Fun fact: At the beginning of last year we had no idea that we would be living in a new place in a new town by the end of it. 
In May we had no clue, as evidenced by this post where I escaped into an elaborate daydream to escape my dreary reality. 
In June we still were blissfully unaware of the upcoming radical change in our life, because otherwise I would have never embarked upon this tedious kitchen renovation project.
But then, July rolled around, and with it a cryptic blog post. Don't you just hate those? So do I, which is why I revealed what was going on only 4 days later. 
In August we kicked our selling and buying adventure into high gear, and I documented it all

As anyone who has bought a house can attest, the process doesn't go by without some dramaconfusion, and near-fatal mistakes
But we survived, and on November 15, 2016, we officially moved into our new home!

So, what has happened since then?
A lot.

Our actual move took two weeks, and was as emotional and exhausting as you might expect. One week into moving, winter came roaring in like a lion, with a ton of snow, temperatures dropping down to -20͒C, and a large flock of bewildered birds needing to be kept warm. We didn't have all the shelters we needed, so we had to improvise, transforming our basement into an emergency refuge for all the animals who couldn't survive in the cold. They made it, but the basement hasn't been the same since.
We also didn't have a proper fence around our property, which meant we had to constantly keep an eye on the dogs or put them on a leash, which broke my heart. I like them to roam wild and free, but they roamed onto various neighbours' properties, which they (understandably) objected to.

But it looked beautiful, and despite the hardships, we really enjoyed our first real Canadian winter. 

I wanted to finish the year at my old job, which meant commuting back and forth several times. I tried out two different AirBnB's (with hilarious results), and had a touching and heartwarming farewell with my co-workers. It was a very special season in my life, and I felt loved and appreciated.  

Then January rolled around, and with it - unemployment. Yikes! For the first time in my life, I was willingly without a job. But that was okay (if panic-inducing), because I had a plan: Finally write the book that was inside of me, begging to come out. 
So I sat down and wrote. I wrote every day, some days only a paragraph or two, others an entire chapter. But I did it. I was actually writing! Even though I had no idea what I was doing! It was thrilling, exasperating, and tedious. But oh my god, how I loved it
I also started a newsletter in January, sharing stories and tips on how to stop apologizing for being you and start living out loud. You should totally sign up, it's awesome! 😉

I also discovered a new hobby: Cross-country skiing. I love it, even though it doesn't love me back. But I'm determined to keep at it!

In February, my unemployment ended. Hurrah! I was hired at the local hospital, which was an extremely lucky break. But not everything was sunshine and roses, and I went through a rough patch of missing my old chums.  

The cold and snow started to disappear in April, and we could finally start on our outside projects. That's when our time here started to get really amazing: We hired a crew of guys to build aviaries, stables and chicken coops, and to fence the property for us. What we didn't anticipate was that we would also become good friends with them! We have spent many happy hours sitting on hay bales, around a fire, or on the tailgates of our trucks, swapping stories, drinking and laughing.

After the long and cold winter, we had a hot and dry summer, and I loved every minute of it.

We had more house guests in the last year than in the previous five years combined, and to my surprise, I actually enjoy having guests now! I'm much more relaxed than I used to be, and don't worry as much about having an impeccably clean house, or how they might like my cooking. In the end, those details aren't important; what's important is the time you spend with friends and family. It took me a long time to figure that out, but by golly, I think I got it now!

Rich went a bit crazy on the animal-front (what else is new), and bought a herd of miniature zebu cattle, three new horses (one of which was given to us for free, and another one was traded for 38 rabbits 😂), and we were given a new dog.

One year in, and we feel completely at home here. Life is simpler, less stressful, and much more fun than it was in our old place. We both can breathe easier here, and we adore the people in our new town. They are honest, down-to-earth, and genuinely nice people, and we are so happy and grateful that we get to call this place home.

When we moved a year ago, there were some people warning us that we were making a mistake. What if I didn't get a job?
What if we didn't like it?
What if we couldn't stand the cold winters, or the hot summers?
What if we'd lose all our friends, and would be lonely?
What if we got sick, and didn't find a doctor, or the doctors and hospitals here weren't as good as the ones in the Lower Mainland?
(These are all real comments, btw. I got every single one of them.)

Was I worried? Yes, I was.
Was I scared? Yes, I was.
Did those comments get to me? Yes, they did.

But I was more excited than worried, and more hopeful than scared, and that was enough. Fear of the unknown is the most natural thing in the world. Giving in to the fear is not.
Every single one of us has extensive experience with fear. Remember school? From the first day of preschool, to having to face your enemies, to navigating the complicated hierarchy of high school, we've all faced some tough shit. And we got through it.
And it didn't stop with school: We've moved out of our parents' house, started new jobs, weathered relationship dramas, had confrontations with other people, survived breakups. Some of you gave birth!
All of that is scary stuff. But we've done it. We have faced fear, and gotten through it. And we can do it again.

Next time you face a scary decision, remember: You are a pro at overcoming fear. You have done it before (many times), and you can do it again!

I promise you: It's worth it.

xoxo Miriam



  1. It has been quite a year! I'm so glad you guys are settled and so happy there.

    1. Thanks Emily! We definitely had some not so great times as well, but overall it's been a gteat year and this is the place of our dreams 💚

  2. What a year! So exciting and wonderful to follow along. I can hardly believe how fast time has passed!! Your place is really just a tiny little piece of heaven, isn't it? Love to you! xoxo

    Oh, and I love the new blog design!!


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