It's strange to think that we've been here in Seattle for an entire year already. I was looking back over some old posts the other day and the ones from when we first moved here seemed so long ago, but at the same time it feels like the year has passed by very quickly.
When we first moved here I was very discouraged by the difficulty of finding housing (this has got to be one of the worst tasks ever) and the drastic change from Indiana. I'd put down far more roots in Indiana than I ever imagined I would or than I had anywhere else we'd lived. I'd made some awesome friends, some of whom I got to work with in the local schools. I enjoyed the work I was doing, the book group I attended, and had even grown to appreciate the general area for the most part. Moving here, I no longer had a job, had to once again find new friends, basically didn't have much to do with my life, and had to get acclimated to living in a city after getting very used to less traffic, lower costs and other things that come with a more rural area. Ryan, being a student, didn't have the time to get as attached as I did, so I don't think the move was quite as difficult for him.
I still miss my friends (and job) from Indiana, but now that we've been here for a whole year I can say it's a good fit for us and I'm glad we're here. I love the neighborhood we live in. Evidence of this being that for the first time since we've been married I was able to return to my hometown without feeling sad that I wasn't living there. I love my hometown; it's beautiful and generally awesome and I enjoyed walking down Main Street again. But when it came time to leave I was equally happy to return to our neighborhood.
In the past year we've made some good friends and acquaintances here. It's nice to have a house with a yard (even if we are just renting still). We have easy access to the city and all that comes with that, but I often forget that we technically live in the city ourselves. We've spent some of the last year discovering the area, which is always fun. Ryan enjoys his work, Gareth loves his school, and I'm enjoying having more time to play my instrument again, rather than just teach. One definite bonus to Ryan not being in school anymore is that we have more time on the weekends to spend as a family. I feel comfortable and able to be myself here and have come to love living here and the prospect of sticking around this area for the foreseeable future.
This next year will be a busy one - adding another member to our family and Gareth starting Kindergarten being among the biggest events that I can think of (and maybe me starting back to school myself?). One thing I'd like to do better at is getting out of the house, hiking, and exploring. We tend to very easily get caught up in the minutiae of our day-to-day life and not take the time to check out our area, something I regretted from our time in Virginia and Indiana. So I'm determined that this next year we'll get out hiking a lot more in the many surrounding parks and take the time to check out some places like Theo Chocolate, The Museum of Communications, and maybe even get out to some further away places such as Leavenworth, as well as checking out more of the local restaurants and maybe attending a couple of plays or concerts. There's so much to do and see around here that it would be unfortunate if we didn't take advantage of it all. Hopefully we'll follow through on such plans and you'll get to read about more outings this next year!