Forever*Cottage~an announcement....

I have written and re-written this post a thousand times in my head during the last couple weeks.  And as I finally sit down this evening to actually write it, with a glass of wine at my side, I still don't have a clever, or more interesting way of saying what I have to say.....

How about I begin with some history?

I began blogging almost three year ago - hard to believe really.  I began this blog after our family moved to Minnesota {for the second time} after having lived in West Chester, Pennsylvania for just 18 months.  I was lonely, exhausted and not too happy to be in the midwest once again.  You see, I had relunctantly left our "home" state of Oregon less than two years before and having lived in Minnesota once before, I swore I would never come back.  Nothing against Minnesota, I just strongly dislike winter, period.  Plus, just when Pennsylvania had begun to feel like "home", we relocated once again, and back to "START" we went {"do not pass "GO", do not collect $200}.  I was tired of smiling and introducing myself to the moms at school, teachers, neighbors - explaining why we moved, where we came from etc.....Blogging was a great reclusive activity and I definitely felt like I was part of a community {albeit an online community} of peeps like me.

I named my blog "Forever*Cottage" because like so many of you have - I desired a "forever" home - one that held our family memories and would feel familiar to my children when they were grown.  I did not have that growing up and always really wanted that for my children.

Notice the {*} in the title????

I added the asterick {*} to the title because given our family's history, I knew that there was always the chance that our cottage would not be our forever home.

Well guess what friends?

In the coming year, our family will be relocating back to our adopted home state of Oregon {actually my daughter's home state as both were born there}!  It is a bittersweet event.  Bitter because we have created a life here in Minnesota, we live in a Norman Rockwell-esque neighborhood, near a beautiful lake and have made some really special friends.  Sweet because we return to a place that holds our hearts, where my parents and other family live and great friends wait to welcome us "home"!

I won't lie, for as much as I am looking forward to returning to Oregon, I am not looking forward to getting from "point A to point B" so to speak - it is the hardest part.  I need to find my mojo - have you seen it?  I seem to have misplaced it...

It's going to be a wild ride - selling our cottage, finding a new one, choosing a school for the girls......and everything else! 

This will be the SEVENTH corporate move I have navigated in our 20 year marriage - {gulp!}.  This time I intend to share it ALL on this blog - the good, the bad, the ugly and then the really, really ugly.  It is the most personal sharing I have done on this blog and I will admit it is a bit scary.

What can you expect?  More pictures of our current cottage - ready "FOR SALE", pictures of potential new cottages in Portland, Oregon, the expected angst of selling a home in the current market conditions and trying to get a good deal on a new one.  I will share the Minnesota good-bye's and all the hello's that await on the other side.

I really envision this blog to record our 2011 family journey in a way I have neglected to all the other times.  Because, for the first time, I realize {and appreciate} just how much moving and creating homes and wonderful, meaningful lives all around our country define our family.  And that's not such a bad thing.  By the way, my girls are *happy* and looking forward to returning to Oregon - even my 12 year old! 

First up - THREE showings of our cottage this weekend - and we have not even listed it yet! 
38 comments on "Forever*Cottage~an announcement...."
  1. Very exciting news. I'm sure once it's all said and done that you will be happy with the change and will quickly make your new home your "forever home".

    Good luck!

  2. Good luck, can't wait to see your future posts about your journey.


  3. wow! i wish you luck on your adventure! it will work out just fine! let us know how you are doing! and i hope you find your mojo!

  4. Jill - I'm a born & bred Minnesotan (52 years now) and I STILL hate winter! If not for that, I would think of MN as paradise :) My sis lives in Seattle; when I visit her we also visit Portland, and I could live there in a heartbeat...but would never leave the kids & grandbabies. SO I will just have to live vicariously through your posts. Can't wait to follow you on your journey Westward!

  5. What a way to kick off the Year...My family and I are moving, for different reasons though...wishing you success and happiness in 2011.


  6. I felt the emotion in your post.

    Please go buy the new "Home" magazine issue. It is devoted to staging your home for sale it it's a great issue. I just picked it up at the market tonight.

  7. I will be along for the ride with you all the way from Australia. I can understand how you must feel but when you are an old lady you will sit back and think what an intersting life you've led with many varied and happy memories. Mel xx

  8. I was born and raised in northern MN. I moved when I turned 19 and have never lived there again.

    We have moved (not as much as you)from WI,CA,TX, and are currently in WA. We love it here!

    We sold during a horrible time...hopefully, everything is at least a little improved for you.
    Good luck...I look forward to reading all about your move.

  9. Can I tell you how thrilled I am that you will be closer!!! I know moving is an emotional rollercoaster but when all is said and done, it will be fabulous.

  10. Congratulations! I look forward to reading all about your move and seeing your cottage in Portland. We moved here 5 years ago and have been pleasantly surprised by how wonderful Portland is!

    Good Luck!

  11. Starting the year off with a big bang. It will be a bumpy road but like you said you are going where your hearts are. Your heart always leads you home, and maybe this will be you *FINAL* cottage! Cant wait to see what is next for you and your family!

  12. Whohoo! What fun to have you back! :) Very exciting news Jill!

  13. Welcome Back to Oregon this is my home state and I hear you we have moved from here to Montana and back and it isn't fun at all.

    You can still get a good deal here on homes for sure.Best of Luck!

    I will be interested as to where you land.~Cheers Kim

  14. I am very happy
    for you ~
    sad for me ~
    glad for Oregon ~
    not so for Minnesota...
    You will be missed.
    Looking forward to
    reading your journey.
    Warm hugs,
    xx Suzanne

  15. Best of luck with your move. Maybe this will be the last move and your new cottage really will be forever! So glad the girls are excited about the move. Looking forward to following your adventure!

  16. Jill- I got all teary eyed reading this post. I couldn't be more happy for you guys and sad for us at the same time. We have enjoyed being able to see you more in the recent years, I guess this just means we will have to take a trio to Oregon. Oh and I can't believe you have been married for 20 years! That sure made me feel OLD, it seems like I was such a little girl when you got married! Good luck witht he showings this weekend. Love you guys! Kelly

  17. all i have to say is i'm going to miss my summer trip up to see you this year.
    damn you.
    {even though you will love leaving freakin MN}

  18. My sister who lives in MN told me about your move. We are selling our house in Portland this spring. It's in the Grant Park neighborhood of NE Portland. If you would like info let me know.

  19. Hopefully this will finally be your FOREVER cottage in Portland. I am so excited to read all about your move and the new digs!!

  20. Wishing you a wonderful new adventure in 2011 and hopefully finding your *Forever* Cottage!

  21. Good Luck Jill in finding a new forever cottage, I always say that his not where you live but who you share it with, so where ever that home is no that your forever home is with your family!! Happy 2011, I will be reading along on your journey!

  22. Cant wait to go cottage shopping with you! My guest apartment is vacant...for now...so its yours when you are in town!

  23. So looking forward to welcoming you back! You have been missed and your Radishes have not been the same without you! You will come through this transition just fine and find much happiness on the other side! See you soon JB!

  24. Jill,
    I think my Daughter Suzanne has probably told you the story of our family moves. My Husband and I moved our children many times, (our Son as a senior) and we finally landed in the Northwest after 23 moves! Corporate and military moves. Each move had sad and happy overtones, but in the end we decided to "bloom where we were planted" and it made all the difference. Hope to meet you one day when Suzanne comes home to visit.

  25. I know you will be busy with the house on the market and all but wishing you and your family the best move ever! Keep us posted on your progress in Blogland.

  26. Congrats on your new adventure for 2011. Oh and does that mean you will be giving up those tickets in June to the concert? :)

  27. good luck Jill, I know that you will be happy. I hope that the sale and the new house and the move and all of that will be timed just perfect for you.

  28. My heart is feeled with happiness for our family and a tinge of sadness as I know what you are going through. One year from now, imagine the happiness! I will have 3 of my favorite girls 3 hrs. away! I love you and you will do well . . .

  29. Jill,
    Wow! Such big news.I understand the bittersweet part. I have moved so much in my life and really love doing it, love the adventure of it. However, if I had to leave my current Village there would be some heartbreak there. Best of luck to you and I will enjoy going on this journey with you.

  30. Wishing you all good things on this next leg in the journey of life. So glad to read your girls are happy - makes a big difference in how you feel about decisions which are not always in our control. Here's hoping you find your forever cottage in Oregon.

  31. 2011 will be a very exciting year for you! I can understand why this would be bittersweet. PLEASE keep us posted on everything , with LOTS of pictures!
    Have a pretty day!

  32. It could be worse. My father was an officer in the Army and by the time we made it here to Va Beach, I was 6 and my parents had just celebrated their 16th wedding annivarsery and it was their 23rd move! He retired here and it has been home to me for the past 35 years. I wish you all the best and look forward to your post!

  33. Dear Jill -
    I just found your blog and as I read I find that you are moving back to Oregon. I am in the Portland area so your new home is very near and dear to my heart! I will pray that things go smoothly for you and your family as you sell your home, find a new one here and make the adjustments that come with a move. And I'll be back to watch the process as you share it.

  34. proud of you for getting more personal. that's a really good thing i think!

  35. Oh Jill Love some VERY BIG news indeed....I can see why you're finding it 'bittersweet'....!!

    I WISH my Mitsubishi van & I were closer 'cause I'd LOVE to give you a hand....!!

    I look forward to reading about how you cope & fresh 'beginagains'....!!

    Tamarah :o)

  36. How exciting for you and your family! I hope the move goes as smoothly as possible. I can so relate to your story. My "home" is West Chester, PA! We began our journey 10 years ago...first to the mid-west (Indiana) and now New England (Massachusetts). I would love to be "home" again and I understand the range of feelings you are having...the dreaded home selling process, cleaning out, packing, the fun of the new home search, getting close to family, wondering how to fit in again....and so on.....I can't wait to follow you home...good luck!!! I will be reading :)

  37. I just came across your blog! Interesting to read all about your family moves. I live in West Chester, in fact all of my life. How nice to go back to Oregon. I have a sister in Eugene. Just love Oregon!

    Come visit my blog at chestercountycottagegirl.blogspot.com

    Best of luck to you!


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