City or country? Both had its perks and we had a few late night quibbles trying to decide what would be best for us, our dogs, and the new one on the way. The conveniences of city life drew us in with its comforting ways. As a 1 car household, the luxury of the city bus at a door step is reassuring, and easy access to box stores full of electronics and superstores full of food would be hard to let go. House prices were high, yards were small, but it would be so easy. And then we started to discuss how we wanted our child to be brought up. Will they have a cell phone by age 7? Will they demand a tv in their bedroom by age 6? Is having our child play outside and being covered in mud important to us? Over the years our patience for dangerous drivers, filled-to-the-brim parking lots and long lines of oblivious robot-like people made us lean towards the simple life one could undoubtedly find in the countryside.
This life would give our child the benefit of capturing some of the lost arts of childhood. Perhaps they would learn to to have an imagination, love to play, and burn calories catching frogs. We’d be giving up a lot. We’d have to sacrifice conveniences, learn to plan ahead, and get up early to shovel our car out of snowdrifts. But the houses were cheaper, yards were huge, and the people, well…. they would be “quality over quantity”. We began the house hunt, we argued over tiny houses, city access, missing shingles and whose in-laws we would be living closer to. Both of our families added in their 2 cents, which compounded our rising frustration in finding the perfect dwelling. “Too far”, “too small”, “price is too high” ,“do you want to have to deal with (insert inconvenient item here)” were comments we had to bear, and we had to think about, mull over, and decide on. There were many houses we liked, many where we could see ourselves living, but none of them screamed “pick me”.
Then one day on an already argument-filled house hunting excursion, we stumbled upon an open house, down a gravel road in the country. It was around the corner from a tiny little house we were heading to see. But we followed the open house signs and there we sat in our truck at the end of the driveway… once again arguing if we should bother going through. I mean, there must have been a good reason it didn’t pop up on my house search, it was probably out of our league. But we couldn’t deny it was beautiful, and the yard was huge. We had extra time to kill, so in we went, up the wooden stairs on the porch and into… the house of our dreams. As we walked through that house, from room to room, we fell hard for it, and we stumbled further with each room we explored, and we finally looked at each other and knew, this house was saying… “for the love of God, PICK ME!!!”