How We Moved from a Seattle Suburb to Small Town Idaho
We sit in a comfortable silence as we drive east. I’ve lost track of how many times we have driven this route. Over to Seattle and back again.
Our first journey east was 11 years ago this last December.
My father in law had surgery and wasn’t recovering.
We drove over to Spokane 4 or 5 times that month.
My father in law passed away a few days after Christmas.
One of the trips over we started looking around the area. Thought hmmm we could live here.
We had always prayed for 5 acres in the woods, we just hadn’t specified where.
Never, in our wildest dreams, did we think that prayer would be fulfilled, nor did we think it would be in North Idaho.
We were able to purchase the 5 acres my father in law had been living on. It had a single wide mobile home on it. Did you know I grew up in Bellevue? Ladies from Bellevue didn’t live in OLD single wide mobile homes. No offense if you do, we just didn’t.
The Principal got a job before we got here. The tax return was more than enough to pay moving expenses.
Doors were opened and God gently pushed us through them.
It was a short 5 weeks after my father in law passed away and we were moving to Idaho.
This city girl’s world was forever changed.
I went from a suburb of Seattle to a town with a population of 400. The nearest Costco, at the time, was an hour away.
I remember the day we moved.
We were leaving the only area The Principal and I had ever known.
Leaving both of our mothers.
I was lucky enough to be driving alone in a caravan of 4-5 trucks and cars of various family that was helping us move.
I called my mom as we were leaving the last suburb on I-90. The place we used to go on Sunday drives when I was little.
No turning back now.
It wasn’t like I was never going to see my mom again.
I cried. Not a tear or two, but the ugly, incoherent cry.
My mother, an Air Force wife, always said you can’t move back to where you came from because it will never be the way it was. Moving felt so final.
So here we were. All of our worldly belongings.
Our four children, who were 3,5,10, and 12 at the time.
Taking them away from all they had known.
When we got to our new home the heater was out.
It was February 4th in North Idaho and there wasn’t any heat.
The next day everybody left.
We returned he U-Haul and that was it.
We were alone. Just The Principal and I to depend on each other in a place where we didn’t know a soul.
My first year was my adjustment year. I won’t say it was amazing. More like a what the hell have we done year. I hated Idaho. I hated the weather. I hated the drive to ev.ery.where. I hated the the only people we knew were 6 hours away.
The country was too quiet. Too dark. Too lonely.
Eleven years later and we are anxious to get home, after a mere 48 hours, to Idaho.
Seattle will always be in my blood. I always enjoy visiting for a day or two.
But Idaho is home now. It’s where my people are.
Where our kids were raised.
Mom moved over September 11, 2004 and lived with us until she passed away September 19, 2011.
It took ten years before we got animals. Goats and chickens. We raised pigs this year too.
We’ve adapted to the slower pace of life. The simple life.
You may just be able to take the city out if the girl.
What a journey! Thankful you are finally feeling at home there in Idaho. I’ve been pretty spoiled to live in California ll of my life. Blessings!
It has been a journey and we have grown as a couple….That said, the first few trips back to Seattle I cried coming back to Idaho.
I smiled as I read your desire about 5acres in the woods. We have that. In the big city I grew up in. I love my little five acres! I can’t imagine being somewhere else. Well, maybe Tennessee (we’re in NC)
I really enjoyed reading this. I lived in NC my whole life, but not in the “city”. I lived in the country there and the city and the coastline. Moving to Maine, I had the same big ugly cry somewhere around NY on the drive to Maine. The “what am I thinking and why am I doing this again” cry. Then I vowed to move back to NC in a year. That was it, it was how I made the rest of the drive to Maine. It was how I survived that first winter in Maine. And then, somehow, summer came, and I couldn’t bring myself to go back to NC yet. Before I knew it, the Lord had brought into my life my husband, and then a new church family, and now I miss NC every winter, but when I go down to visit for a few weeks, I find myself itching to get back to Maine. For me it will be 8 years this July since I’ve moved. Crazy how the Lord takes us places we never thought we would ever go, and then, turns them into home.
LOVE how He works and ALWAYS knows what’s best!
Love this! We moved 6 hours away from my home 2 years ago, but it has been good overall. We are still praying for that 5 acres and homesteading…getting there slowly. Right now it’s looking like it could be a possibility within the next few years.