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It’s a Lot Like Love

This is me linking up, as one of my favorite things to do, with Finish The Sentence Friday. This week's topic is

Every day we break more ground. When I read the posts I wrote when we were about to move here, or after we did, it was like a whole different wonderland. Unfamiliar and achy. Ever-shifting and full of first trimester exhaustion and nausea. I can’t even find that place anymore. The atmosphere has shifted and come around to me – it’s grown around me, and I around it. Tonight, Cassidy returns from a week in Belize. I fell more in love with our neighborhood while he was gone. We all have our things. He gardens and I write. He builds costumes and I take pictures. I work at home and I’m always there for the kids. He goes to the town dump and takes care of the chickens. We meet, oddly, in the middle(ish) and it works(ish).

This is me linking up, as one of my favorite things to do, with Finish The Sentence Friday. This week's topic is

Sometimes I’m screaming inside, and outside. I just want peace and sleep and silence. And other times I want to be nowhere but in the middle of my family, in the middle of the woods. That is our neighborhood. It’s trees and peepers. Loud woodpeckers, occasional bears, and super loud chickens. A few nearby humans, willing to lend a hand. It’s pretty much perfect. When you’re an introverted extrovert or extroverted introvert, this oasis in the middle of a tiny but bustling city?

This is my neighborhood perfection. It’s a lot of this:

(I want to send this photo to anyone who ever thought I had brown eyes)

And it’s also like this:

This is me linking up, as one of my favorite things to do, with Finish The Sentence Friday. This week's topic is

In honor of Finish the Sentence Friday, here’s a post I wrote right after we had moved here, six years ago:

“Did you ever leave someone, not because you fell out of love with them or they did anything wrong, but because someone different and irresistible showed up? I have experienced this a couple of times in my petty youth. It’s always a little weird.

– Since you never fell out of love, or at least you didn’t instantly, it comes back to haunt you sometimes. You may find yourself driving past their house or hearing a familiar song and feeling pangs of sadness. Every so often, you’ll think of them and the good times and you’ll wince. You’ll feel pain at strange times.

– When holidays or birthdays come around, at least for a full year, you’ll think about that last holiday or birthday with them.

– Sometimes you still have to get used to your newer lover; your newer model. There will be traits to adjust to that you didn’t have in your previous lover. There will be upgrades in some departments and downgrades in others. In some ways, it won’t feel like “home” the way your old relationship did. At least not at first.


Now think about everything I just said, and substitute two homes in place of two lovers. That’s how I feel lately. I have to pass our old place constantly since it was a darn convenient location. I find myself slowing down the car and looking longingly at the windows. Sometimes I think, “Well, hey. If I lived here I’d be home already.” Then I snap out of it and drive to my cozy new home. Honestly. I don’t want to sound whiny and ungrateful and like I’m not happy with our fortune.

I’m just still getting used to my new home. Of course this is to be expected.

There are unfamiliar places and smells. Creaks and radiator blasts. It’s not the right time of year to fully explore the things I want to explore. The yard. The feeling of the sun high in the sky. Sitting in an Adirondack chair on the deck. And then, unexpectedly, we got two days of warm, sunny bliss. What luck!

We set out to explore. To feel. We explored our new relationship. And found little surprises, some left intentionally and some left unintentionally. I thought more about my new “love.” I thought about my new love’s exes. And just like when you’re in a new relationship and critical of the lover who was there before you, you pore over the disrepair and neglect you find. You shake your head and wonder how someone could have let a precious diamond slip through their fingers. Who were they? How they could not delight in all there is to delight i? Did they check out early? Find something new and irresistible?

Yeah. It’s like that. Your loss is my gain. In love and houses, baby.”

This is me linking up, as one of my favorite things to do, with Finish The Sentence Friday. This week's topic is

**Just a small note that we broke new ground, literally, on Wednesday. Our chicken, Fred (or George) passed away and it was sad. Cassidy was away but my father-in-law took the helm. We buried the chicken on our property and all said nice things about her. It was excruciating with the kids, but they taught me a thing or two about grief and loss and love too.

This is me linking up, as one of my favorite things to do, with Finish The Sentence Friday. This week’s topic is “My favorite thing about my neighborhood is…” And there’s still time to write yours. Come link up with your spin: HERE.

What would you say?

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  1. Aw, so sorry about your chicken. But I do agree that kids really do sometimes say things that leave you almost breathless as to where they come up things, as well as their own inner strength. That said, I still sometimes can’t believe how long I have lived in my own town or that it is indeed longer than any other place I lived in, including my childhood town. I honestly have trouble putting all that into words though and will have to leave that on for another day I suppose.

  2. I love my neighborhood. It is friendly and pretty but not too stuffy. We work together on things (like getting a new street sign or trying to get the electric company’s attention…) I love watching the foot traffic on my street and knowing that I’m not alone here, even when I’m the only one in the house.

  3. I’m guessing you are pretty busy, Tamara. I live in a great 150 acre neighborhood! Explored almost every inch of it on my horse before every home except three were built. Got lost in it riding one night when the sun went down and there was no moon. You couldn’t see your hand in front of your face, The horse just stopped, and I could barely see he had a large tree in front of him. I picked a direction and we rode straight till I came to a road and then I knew where I was. It’s been especially beautiful this year. Just this week I found a large crop of blackberries growing in my field. With some rain we’ll have a picking party 🙂

  4. I love your house. I know I’ve said that before. Particularly the winter views. It looks like it should have peppermints, gum-balls and gumdrops and sprinkles on the roof like a gingerbread house. Sorry about Fred (or George).

  5. Isn’t it great when you love your neighborhood? I agree that it can be tough sometimes to be doing things apart, but I love that we have so much to talk about. Beautiful photo of you and I am reading that book too!

  6. OMG I’m so sorry about your chicken. Digging ground to bury a loved one always sucks. And, like Kenya said, I have said it before but I’ll say it again, I adore your house. It makes me jealous for wide open spaces and land and running room. Plus, it’s totally beautiful, so there’s that.

  7. This is a lovely finish the sentence (my favorite posts). Old houses, old lovers, there are always some good memories but usually good reasons why you left them behind. Embracing our neighborhood is an act of gratitude. Have a great weekend, Tamara!

  8. Great pictures of your ever smiling face Tamara! Looking back now I’m very grateful to say that I’ve had a roof over my head my entire life. Your snow capped picturesque home made me think of this. I fondly remember my neighborhood in the early years of my residence. Many years ago Bradley Gardens was a quaint and cozy summer resort town. I moved there with my family in 1967 when the neighborhood was small and simple. I’m still living in the same yellow ranch house on Sycamore Avenue. Since then Bridgewater has developed into a large, densely populated city and township. My street has seen its share of changes over the years, yet somehow has remained the same in large part. That’s a good thing!

  9. Thank you for posting this and inviting us into your neighborhood. What a lovely home! Sorry to hear about the passing of Fred (or George).
    Atmospheres do shift and change a little, although there is still something very familiar that lingers because it is a part of us.

  10. I can definitely related to this! I felt really sad leaving the first home I lived in when Eve was born. (It was also in such a convenient place and I still drive by it periodically.) I missed the neighborhood and the overpriced grocery store around the corner and the ringing of the church bells every 15 minutes. But now I’m so settled into our condo, which we’ve now lived in for almost as long as we did as the previous place. It’s home, and now when I drive by the old place it feels like a distant memory.

  11. Oh no, I’m sorry about the chicken. How sad!

    My neighborhood is pretty awesome. I mean, people bicker on the Facebook page, but if someone needs help, everyone bands together, which is nice.

    Granted, this is like my 10th neighborhood since I moved around a bunch as a kid, then I married a military man and we move around every few years. But I think we’re finally settled. Unless the military is mean and makes us move again.

  12. Oh no you lost chickens! That is super sad. I have got to do better on building up my neighborhood community. Maybe I need to do a brownie run 🙂

  13. Thank you so much for this post. I found it lovely and amusing! It made me think about the house I was born in…the house my dad built with his two hands. He sold it after my parents divorced. He kept most of the property and built a new house just up the hill. We watched as the new owners cut down the wrong bushes and did everything wrong. I always planned that one day I’d buy it back. Then the next owners renovated it beyond recognition. And once night at a party the owner asked me what I thought of the renos…I was a bit tipsy. I told him I was relieved—because I’d always figured I’d have to try to buy it some day. But not anymore because he’d ruined it. I meant to say it more gently than it came out…but. Also? I meant what I said!!

  14. I’m sorry about your chicken:(. Your home is gorgeous and I love the analogy of lost loves and exes…it really hit home on both fronts. I recently passed by our former home and I was so mad at the new owners, who have really let the property go. I hurt for my old house.

  15. Rest in peace George (or Fred). When I’m in the neighborhood, I drive by our first home. But the home I’m more attached to is the one I grew up in. One day I want to knock and the door and ask if I can look around.

  16. Hi Tamara, your neighbourhood sounds like my dream neighbourhood. Where we live is nice, I’m happy here, it’s uncluttered (not the house, the area). I like the idea of an introverted extrovert or an extroverted introvert, a contradiction of terms maybe, but they work. I don’t think we ever get over places we’ve lived, they are part of us.


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