Embracing Our Next Chapter
We have called Baltimore City “home” for the past 8 years, living in an exposed-brick, industrial style row home in our favorite neighborhood, Locust Point.
We have had the majority of our “firsts” in this home, including our first date where I met Sam at his front door and we walked to a Mexican restaurant down the street. Our first fight when I stormed out in tears and walked through the aisles at Home Depot aimlessly until I came back to talk it out. Our first night with Oliver when we realized that we had NO CLUE how to take care of an 8-week old Chinese shar-pei.
There were many times throughout the past 8 years that we felt like we could happily live here forever, start a family in this home, and become the “cool, young city parents”. We have cherished, supported, and defended Baltimore beyond belief. Our experience in this incredible city is positive and full of love, and I know that Baltimore will always have a special place in our hearts.
As many of you know, Sam’s job unexpectedly took him to Virginia about 3 years ago. Since then, Sam has been living out of a hotel 5 days a week while I stayed in our home in Baltimore with Oliver. We had assumed it would be temporary, as the conversation of permanent placement in Virginia was always up in the air.
Over the past 3 years, Sam and I have remained patient, flexible, and gotten creative with how we spend time together. We have a consistent schedule of calling during my long, work commutes each way and at night before bed just to talk about our days like we normally would if he were home. Our time together on the weekends is precious, but unfortunately can’t always be spent the way we would like due to normal life and my work obligations.
This has been the first time in my 26 years that I have ever lived alone, and I’ll just say it has been an adjustment. There were many positives that came out of it like learning how to take care of myself and Oliver day-to-day, and the ability to work on my business without neglecting quality time with Sam. It has also been lonely, mundane, overwhelming, and depressing at times. Eating dinner alone on the couch gets old quickly, and falling asleep in an empty bed night after night isn’t exactly something I had imagined for our first year as newlyweds.
Needless to say, when we got word from Sam’s job a couple months back that he would be working in Virginia for at least another 5 years, we jumped at the opportunity to finally make a move. The day we found out, we began our search for a home online. The process of finding and buying a home is a whole, different conversation for another post. But, to sum it up, it was a rollercoaster of emotion.
I had never visited Virginia in my adult life and, although we had an idea of what area we wanted to move to, it’s difficult to try to plant roots for a future family and decide where we want to spend the next 5-10 years of our life when I’m not actually there in person.
After discovering what we had dubbed our “dream house” (it was a farm house on 7 acres of land and had a MAJOR Joanna Gaines vibe), we had planned our lives around it for 2 weeks leading up to Sam’s appointment with the realtor to visit. The level of disappointment when it didn’t turn out how we imagined was huge. Not only did it feel like we had wasted 2 more weeks apart, but the feeling of “are we ever going to find a place?” raced through my mind as I dreaded the thought of spending yet another year in two different cities.
Once I allowed that let-down to pass, we decided to take another approach that would allow us to move quicker and not rush into a huge purchase. We searched online for rentals instead, and one of the first places that came up somehow met all of our needs perfectly. After quite a bit of a frustrating back and forth, we finally made the 3 hour drive to Williamsburg to sign our lease.
Although we were only able to pass through the town quickly, I already fell in love with how cute and charming it really is. I told Sam on our way home that I was sad we couldn’t spend the weekend there to explore more because I didn’t want to leave.
More than anything, we are excited to regain all of the little moments in our life and relationship that we took for granted the first 5 years together. We can’t wait to make dinner together, watch our favorite shows, go on walks with Oliver, and wake up in the morning by each other’s side.
I told Sam this, and I mean it from the bottom of my heart: I would move absolutely anywhere just to be by his side. It doesn’t matter to me whether we are cramped in a crowded city or out in the country with no neighbors for miles. I believe that I can adjust to any setting and make a happy life for us as long as we are together.
I am thankful that my corporate job and company is allowing me the freedom to work from home, and to have a business of my own and freelance job that can thrive from anywhere.
Since I moved into Sam’s house originally, I am thankful for the chance to make this townhome ours. It is new, 2,500 square feet, and coming practically as a blank slate to us. So, we can’t wait to flex our creative muscles and decorate the place exactly how we want. We are taking very, very little from our home now and are excited to be starting fresh and have room to grow. You can expect a whole series on this moving and decorating process, and definitely a lot of behind the scenes videos on Instagram stories as we make this transition.
What I learned most about this whole season is that when I’m feeling stressed or out of control, I need to step back and simply trust the timing of my life. Everything leading up to this has worked out in perfect harmony; so much so that I wouldn't change a single thing. I love that we spent the young years of our relationship in the bustling city near friends and family, that I was forced to learn independence and how to strengthen our marriage from afar, and that we can start fresh and make a new town our home as newlyweds.
Now, if you made it to the end of this post, YOU are the real star here. Thank you for reading, thank you for caring, and we can’t wait to take you along on this next chapter of our life! Let’s find out what Williamsburg, Virginia is all about…
Photos by Jade Nikkole Photography
Do you have any tips for moving and/or decorating? Tag me in your favorite home decor page, or comment on my latest Instagram post and tell me!
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xo Anna Elizabeth