ONWARD AND UPWARD: MOVING TO MINNESOTA

Doing the Home + School: Simplified series has definitely made this easier to keep this quiet here on the blog, but it’s gotten harder and harder and the time has come to spill the beans.  We are moving to the frozen tundra Minneapolis, Minnesota.  This has been an extremely hard decision that has been a long time coming.  We’ve gone back and fourth a thousand times whether we should pack up and move closer to family or stay here in North Carolina.  Since we moved here three years ago we’ve had our fair share of struggles, but 2014 has been different.  We’ve had an amazing year, but maybe life needed to be a little more unclouded to be able to make a big decision like this.  We took the greatness of 2014, bundled it up, and decided to stop while we were ahead.

Minneapolis, despite the winning the award for worst winters ever, is so dear to me.  Yes, a city is dear to me.  It’s about five hours from where I’m from and we used to visit there often when I was growing up.  Something about this city always made me tick, always intrigued me.  The vibe, the artistry, the food, the shopping, the unmatchable Midwest hospitality–I loved it, still love it.  When I crossed the threshold to high school, I didn’t have a lot of trouble deciding Minneapolis was where I was going–and that remained the plan until my little life-changer happened directly after my senior year and we decided to stay closer by our parents for moral support we needed.

Three and a half years ago, we decided to go on an adventure.  Starting a family super young and skipping over the spontaneous early-twenties will do that to a person.  We wanted to live somewhere completely different, learn a new language, eat different food, experience something we’d never experienced before–and if it sounds like we wanted to move to Hong Kong, we didn’t–but moving across the country is basically the same thing.  We craved adventure and Lord, did we get it.  There are things–many, many things–we would have never seen in a million years.  We’ve knocked off dozens of bucket list items that we didn’t even know should be part of our bucket list till we got here.  We’ve experienced incredible things and met incredible people.  My heart is in the most awkward of bittersweet places, I find myself crying into my hands and busting into a kitchen dance party with my kids within the same hour.  It’s very confusing for them, I am sure.    

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Bittersweet feels almost too cliché and common of a word to use because I feel so much more that just…bittersweet. 



Asheville will keep my beautiful friends, the Biltmore, the mysterious, foggy mountains that I’ve gotten so used to encompassing us, the quirky weirdness the city holds, goats–lots of goats, food that has continued to blow my mind year after year, and the community this commune has provided for us for so long.  This and so much more makes my heart heavy and hurt to the point that I have to sit down and let the heaviness pass…but on the sweet side of that word,

Minneapolis is waiting for us.  I look so forward to it’s familiarity, it’s just-the-right-distance from my mom and dad (love you guys!), amazing…and I mean amazing shopping and restaurants, museums to explore, a ridiculous amount of lakes, junking–and not just junking–the most incredible junking you can imagine,  friends–we already have friends!, new adventures, longevity. 

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Our house is currently a wreck, we have a list of things we want to revisit filling our time (when we’re not packing), I’m being covered by friends as Jarrod starts his new job in MN today and I’m covered in bubble wrap.  Instead of packing, I spend too much time online shopping for new winter gear for the kids–because moving to Minnesota in the winter is so well thought out, right?  We will do this together–pack up our house, tuck away these memories, kiss everyone goodbye–in the next 11 days and look back on these last years with pleasure and gratitude.  Change is never easy–but for us, this change is going to be good.

There’s much more to be written about this move, some out loud and some to myself, but either way there is much to say–many lessons learned the hard way, much growth has taken place in myself and in our marriage.  I would never trade these years we’ve had in Western NC.  These three years have been trying and life-changing and extraordinary and scary and beautiful.  I would never change a thing though–except maybe the mice, now that was just uncalled for.  I’ll be back with more to say, I am sure, but for now–back to boxes.

16 Comments

  1. Minneapolis is my hometown — a suburb, actually. I haven't lived there in over 20 years…my adventure away has lasted longer than yours. Congrats on being brave! And say hello to the city for me.

  2. I want to come visit you!!! Maybe once Christian is just a little older…I would love to get to spend some time together, and mn is much closer than nc. Miss you, Cousin!

  3. You. Yes you will be close. And I can be there in a hop, skip and jump. And you make me happy. I can sing, "say, say little playmate, come out and play with me" and you will actually be able to hear me now.

  4. P.S. YES! The Junking!!! I've lived in MN pretty much my whole life and I know a lot of amazing junking places. I'd love to go junking with you anytime. 🙂

  5. So so thrilled for you! I know all of the emotions of a cross country move – I've done it twice now – it's good and hard. Praying for you! Xo!!

  6. This is such exciting news for you, Alicia. I love Minneapolis (we lived there for 5 years.) And close to family … the best.

    Happy packing and smooth transitions.

    Fondly,
    Glenda

  7. YAY!!! I'm so excited for you, Alicia! And so happy you'll be much closer to us Aberdonians… we miss you! Prayers for you throughout this process!

  8. Oh the junking!!! and the people!!! and the gorgeous farms! and sweet AMY!!! so many things to miss. and only FIVE hours from family!!! that's the perfect distance. so much to look forward to. i'll never forget commiserating over realtor.com in the dead of the winter. you needed to see for yourself and now you know what the most important things are to you. i'll miss knowing you're only 6 hours away, but this is gonna be good. you got this! love to you friend.

  9. Congratulations on the new adventure. It is never 'easy' but it is usually worth the change. We are on our 4th move and I am sure not our last. I am glad to have met you this year and you inspire me to be a better parent and person every time I read your blog. The Guazzo family will miss you all.

  10. Change is always bittersweet for me. The adventure is exciting, but it will always be hard to leave things behind. I can't wait to hear more about your move to the midwest!!! You are closer to me… 😉 lol

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