In 2 days we have driven 1100 miles. We've driven through the beautiful (and my favorite) state of California, Arizona, New Mexico and now we're going through Texas on our way to San Antonio. We have seen some just gorgeous sites. And it has led me to the conclusion that we are so incredibly blessed to live in any part of this gorgeous county, proudly protected by the bravest and most courageous people in the world, regardless of what state you live in.
One of my closest friends is moving to Arizona. To be honest, I'm saddened with her leaving. I have really enjoyed watching our kids grow up together, I am going to miss our Chick Fil A playdates, and she has truly been there for me in my darkest hours and supported us and Matthew's team in any way she can. I wish her and her family nothing but the best, I hope that they find their roots and flourish because of it.
As I drove through Arizona, I saw how truly beautiful it was, in most pictures I've seen, it just looks so flat, so brown and so lifeless. And hot. Can't forget hot. Live and in person it is so much more. It is beautiful, it is alive, the rock formations, the moutains, the hills, the desert, the sun, the beauty and pride in the highways, all of it was so beautiful. I could see moving there, it really was nice. Same when we visit Alabama, it is so easy to get wrapped up in the lifestyle, so easy to want to replant there and spend the rest of your lives there.
We are very fortunate that we have our roots planted and love where we have them planted. I truly love where we live and feel we could live there the rest of our lives, growing old watching the community grow and change. I love the consistency we've created and the routine we have. It means so much to me that we're fortunate enough to be able give our children the lifestyles we have. I love that Kaitlyn has had the same doctor since she was 10 months old. I love that hte same doctor has delivered all of my babies. I love that we are 15 minutes in either direction from 2 sets of grandparents who dote on our little ones. I love that we are close to aunts, uncles and cousins that the girls get to grow up with a strong sense of family. I love that we have had some of the same friends for more than a decade, who we not only got to watch grow up with us, but who are now growing their families as we grow ours. I love that we are close to friends who feel so much like family that I cannot believe we aren't blood related and our kids get to grow up together. And I love that we live in a place where we are 2 hours from snow topped mountains, or the majestic Lake Tahoe in one direction and sunny, sand filled beaches 2 hours in the other direction. I feel incredibly fortunate that we can make a day trip of places that many people do not have easy access to; Lake Tahoe, San Francisco, Monterey, Santa Cruz and so forth. We are surrounded by beautiful mountains and sandy beaches. There are places to camp, to fish, to run, to swim and to enjoy nature. We have pretty mild weather and never have to worry about a natural disaster of any real magnitude causing any significant damage. In a day we could drive to Disneyland, San Diego, Hollywood or Las Vegas.
Despite the ridiculousness of many of the laws and regulations of California, or the poor economic state, I have to say, I love California. I love my life here. I feel very blessed to be where I am. And I feel like I belong here. Like this is where I'm meant to grow my family and deepen my roots. I wish that for everyone.