Note: This post was written by Tim right about the time we put our house on the market, hence the references to still living in our house.
The dichotomy of change is intriguing. Things are always changing… yet things also remain the same. At least that’s how it feels.
We moved to Beaver County, PA in 2010 looking for more permanent residence. We chose the area based on location, (low) taxes, (low) traffic, and character. We got much more than we bargained for.
We returned from our wedding in Jamaica to this house. Our daughter, Calla, came home from the hospital to this house.
We’ve put countless hours and lots of blood, sweat, and tears into this house. We’ve renovated virtually every room to match our taste. We built a massive shed and outfitted the detached garage to be a dream workshop.
There’s a private deck, a calming koi pond, and a hot tub out back.
The master bedroom is roomy, airy and beautiful.
Calla’s nursery is whimsy, functional, and fun.
Everything is pretty much how we want it.
And now it’s time to leave.
The Big Picture
Sometimes it takes the big life events to put things in perspective.
About 1 year ago our beautiful daughter was born. She’s brought a vibrancy and richness to our lives that is immutable. As they say, life will never be the same.
The evening hours after work that Hannah, Calla and I have together are undoubtedly the best part of the day. Playing, eating, going for walks, and just hanging out together makes for a great time and memorable experiences. The day’s worries and stress are forgotten.
We used to spend this time working on the house. Or maybe one or both of us would stay late at work. Things that really don’t matter at the end of the day.
As time goes on, undetected traits can become more apparent. One insurmountable negative of living in a semi-rural/industrial area (at least for us) is pollution. We get daily reminders of this. And it seems to be getting worse.
Think of those early warm spring days when you can finally open your windows and let in the fresh air. Maybe go for a walk in your neighborhood, or maybe sit out back and relax. None of these things are enjoyable when your neighborhood seems to be enveloped in a pocket of industrial pollution.
Oh – also add in the fact that many people around here burn their trash instead of walking it to the curb or taking it to a recycling center (including plastic, treated wood, old car parts, and furniture). It’s hard to complain to these people as they sit around these fires with the families.
In a handful of years, that aspect will be taken to a new level when the Shell ethane cracker (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pennsylvania_Shell_ethylene_cracker_plant) is brought online. Our house is less than 5 miles downwind of the plant.
Sorry, I’ll step off of my soap box and take off my ventilator.
Despite the fact that we love our house, it’s become clear to us that our current location does not agree with our values and desired state of being.
No doubt – we’ve made some great friends and memories in Beaver County. We’ll undoubtedly compare future homes to this one with a twinkle in our eyes. It’ll always be our first. We were so young when we moved in!
Regardless, it’s time to call it quits. It’s not you, Beaver County, it’s us. No hard feelings.
Oh, and the concept of only having a few precious hours each day together? That also is under review and ripe for change. It’s time to simplify, condense, and focus on the best parts of life.