One of the saddest things I had to leave behind was our beloved fig tree. You can’t take plants across the country, and the tree wouldn’t have survived the trip. But we found a good home for her and know she’s in good care.
Today we brought home a new baby fig! It will take ten years before this one is as big as our last. So grow big and strong, little baby Figaro, and welcome to your new home!
Today we visited one of Portland’s famous farmers markets. It was by far the biggest market I’ve ever seen! The produce and flowers were so fresh and colorful, and every few feet a musician played beautiful music. We picked up some supplies for dinner including purple cauliflower, pear cider, and cheddar cheese. Later in the day we stopped by a butcher and purchased some pork that came from a local farm where the pigs are fed hazelnuts. Colin is the talented cook, and we plan on eating dinner on the roof garden while watching the sunset.
On August 9th my family of four, including fiancé and two cats, packed up our faithful toyota and began a new adventure. The decision did not come easily. I love everything New York has to offer: the museums, restaurants, parks, diversity, public transportation. But the rent got too damn high! I won’t tell you how much we were paying in the end, but it was much greater than a mortgage in most states. Plus our priorities in life have changed and living in a big city wasn’t fulfilling us anymore. Maybe it’s because I hit 30, maybe it’s because I am beginning a new chapter with a great guy, or maybe I just got sick of the crowds, but sometime last winter we came to the conclusion that it was time to move on. So on a sunny Saturday morning we said our last goodbye and headed West.
We saw so much of America! I don’t consider myself very patriotic, but driving across the country really made me appreciate it. America has so many different climates! We saw mountains, deserts, farmland, cities, coasts, forests. My favorite stop was somewhere in eastern Washington on a random side street. Everywhere you looked were these gold fields. Miles and miles of gold. It was spectacular!
Before we left NYC we trained our cats on leashes so that they could stretch their legs when we took breaks at rest stops. We made sure to get their shots updated, and purchased harnesses that contained contact info in case one of them freaked out and ran away. To make the trip a little more bearable, Colin and I took turns driving for two hours while the other person did work. This turned out to be pretty successful because we were both able to stay in contact with our jobs and got a lot done.
It took six days of driving to make it to Portland. Overall it was a fine experience with only one crisis when Finley got her nails stuck in a hotel carpet and had to go to the ER to get some bandages and antibiotics. She was totally unfazed by the whole ordeal and the vets were surprised at how friendly she was considering she’s a cat and cats hate vets.
We decided to relocate to Portland because this city reminds us a lot of our neighborhood in Brooklyn, but much cleaner and with lots of trees. You can drive an hour and you’ll be in a forest, by the ocean, in snow, or near the desert. In the future, we will have the opportunity to purchase property and I will finally have the garden I’ve been dreaming about. The food here is great, the culture is inspiring, and the people are really friendly.
So now we are here and are exploring our new home. We are renting a beautiful apartment in the heart of the city, and our neighbors have all been really friendly. I’m still not used to this, but everyone here seems to know our names and are very excited to meet us. The weather has been amazing and tomorrow we plan on enjoying some nature! I’m feeling really good about our decision to leave and know it was the right thing to do.
It’s about a month overdue, but I have a few moments and want to share some of my favorite memories from our trip to England.
This is my favorite picture of Colin during our time in Bath. This was right before we took a boat ride along the river.
And this is my favorite picture of me outside of the Royal Crescent.
This is my favorite picture of the view from Warwick Hall, the estate in Cumbria where we stayed for a few wonderful days.
This is my favorite picture of a leaping sheep that Colin took during our walk by Vindolanda.
This is me looking at the ruins of an ancient Roman fort at Vindolanda.
This is my favorite picture of Colin climbing over a stone fence on our walk to Hadrian’s Wall.This is the picture I took of Hadrian’s Wall.
This is my favorite picture that Colin took of nature during our walk in the Lake Districts.
This is Colin climbing a fell as I wait above.
This is the view from the top of the fell.
See you later NYC, I’m going to England!
Family (at Maccaren Park)
Macaroons in the park (at Williamsburg/McCarren Park Farmer’s Market)
Wearing a vintage dress from the 1960s plus red lipstick calls for a #selfie
This is a picture of Colin and myself as we crossed the finish line at the North Face Endurance Challenge. This past weekend we covered 6.2 miles of mud and flooded streams up Bear Mountain and it was very challenging and very fun!
This was my first trail race and it was completely different from what I’m used to. I’ve covered miles upon miles of city streets, bridges, parks, but I have never run up a mountain. You can’t really think about pacing and breathing when you are running in such tough terrain. I was more concerned about rocks and branches and water and not falling, even though I did eventually wipe out.
We did the race with some good friends and it was a really wonderful event. It was organized, the other runners were polite on the course, and the weather was perfect. All in all a really good run even though my pace was the slowest it’s ever been!
I hope to do many trail races in the future however this will be my last race for some time as I’m taking a break from training and “competing” for at least a year. In the meantime I plan on doing short runs and weights at a slower, enjoyable pace and will be using my workouts to de-stress and feel good.
In an attempt to be more positive in life I’m sharing a picture of my new shoes.
A few weeks ago my older sister visited and, with my little sister, treated ourselves to a day of shopping and I got these blue shoes. Even though it was pouring rain it was really nice to be together. I’m not embarrassed to say that my sisters are my best friends. I try to talk to them both a couple times a week, and one day I hope we will all live in the same city.
We didn’t always get along. It took moving away and growing up for us to find common ground. But now we really enjoy each others company and it’s always very fun when we’re all together.
Now that we’re older and bigger life changes are taking place, it’s even more important to have them in my life and I’m very thankful for them.
So I wear these new blue shoes in honor of happy thoughts and sisters!