Decisions Decisions

We are all faced with decisions everyday. Most aren't earth shattering but some feel that way. Especially when you're faced with the line of people those decisions effect. Making this move back to Ontario has felt that way for me. I am in this constant back and forth of grieving my old life in Saskatchewan to the excitement of my future here. I think and hope that's normal. There has been quite a few people asking me how and why we came to this decision, so I hope to lay it all out for you guys today. I wish it could be as simple as one big reason like a job opportunity or a family member in need, because that would be much more simple to explain. Most of these things we thought would improve our quality of life. We also knew that were potentially going to have to make some sacrifices as well. So here it goes...

1. OPTIONS

We love options! From where to go for date nights, to weekend day trips with the girls. All the extracurricular activities as the kids get older. Schools, grocery stores, fitness, churches, classes, community opportunity. Being in a bigger centre gives you more selection of all these things and more if you decide to do a one to two hour drive. Now we have the option to do a one hour road trip if we wish, instead of having to do that trip once a week. We love being exposed to different cultures and experiences. Being so close to Ottawa really has opened up a lot of doors for us.

2. DRIVING NOT NECESSARY

Something both Rob and I enjoy is being walking distance to as many things as possible. I love hitting up parks, library and farmers markets all within walking distance. Maybe it's because both Rob and I grew up on hobby farms and envied all the townies. We recently purchased an income property in town which we are super excited about! It has helped us save by only needing one vehicle for the family and having a tenant to offset the mortgage. We will see how we are at being landlords. We are excited for this new learning curve. 

3. RE-LIVE CHILDHOOD

I may be a little biased but I think my childhood was pretty awesome. I am always looking for my girls and Rob to get to do all the things I got to do and experience growing up. It brings me such joy going through it all again with them. I am excited for them to skate on the canal only to get a beaver tail and pick apples at the apple orchard with a wagon ride and for us to see all the museums and festivals. There is so much going on all the time. The city never sleeps.

4. SKATEBOARDING

Rob's major hobby has not been touched, other then the one boys summer weekend trip, in the last two years. He loves it and I would hate to watch him give up something he has a passion for. He has always had a ease with reaching out to people in the skateboard community. He used to work at Regina's indoor skatepark part-time before it was torn down. I would love for him to find that love and passion for it again even if it's seasonal. It helps that it's a great workout too!

5. DONT WANT TO GIVE UP EVERYTHING

One thing we realized when deciding where we wanted to move is how much we loved being close to Rob's parents. It was nice for the girls to see them regularly and have somewhere close to go for holidays without a ton of travel. We both grew up with grandparents living close to us and that was something we really wanted to have for our kids. It sucks we couldn't have both of our parents close but we definitely knew we love and want that family support in our lives. 

So there you have it! We love a bigger centre and everything that comes with it. We feel like this move has given us more room to grow and figure things out. I think if we hadn't done it, it would still be at the back of our minds, what if? Some may think these reasons aren't of high weight and maybe they are right, maybe they aren't. But we are rolling the dice and we will see where that leads us. Thank you everyone for all the love and support we have received. We are excited to be back in Ontario! Pictures are from the week my in-laws came down to visit us and my sister made a surprise visit that week as well with flowers for the girls. 

Are We There Yet? - Road Trip Part Two

Nipigon, Ontario is a cute little town just outside of Thunder Bay. It has a Tim Hortons, Bargain Store, and even a small Canadian Tire. Unfortunately, we were located just before you get into the heart of little Nipigon. Just far enough to make us feel uneasy walking with the kids along the highway. So our only option was the Husky gas station directly across the road from the motel for all our necessities. With no vehicle our options were limited to this one joint. Attached to the gas station was the repair shop our truck got towed to the night before. Rob went to check in with the repair shop and hand over our keys while the girls and I went to the attached restaurant to order some breakfast. It was apparent that we would be spending the day, if not two days, there for sure. Letting the girls stack the creamers and reorganize the sugars, I looked around the restaurant, taking in my new home for the next while. I like to try and guess what the relationship is between people, what their purpose of eating at the Husky gas station might be. Is it travel or work? Maybe a local to the area? Positive or negative conversation? Anything to keep my mind busy and off the stress of figuring out how we are going to keep moving forward. Rob joined us then only to report that they are making room for the truck in the shop and will give us a call once they have a diagnosis. More waiting... The restaurant's breakfast was surprisingly good. The waitress was amazing with the girls. I love when people take the time to interact with the kids. Sometimes even a minute interacting with the waitress or making smiles at the stranger a couple tables down can really take some of the heat off us parents to keep them seated and happy. 

We headed back to the motel to book another night and do some exploring of the woods behind the motel to waste some time. Letting the kids blow off some steam, collecting rocks and twigs. Wasn't even noon before Rob was itching to get to the repair shop and check if they have had a chance to look at the truck yet. So he headed there by himself to pick up some lunch and check in. The girls and I stayed back, watched tv and coloured. We had no reception in our motel room due to it being kind of in a walk out basement. Rob got back with Chester Fried Chicken that literally dripped grease and the bad news, they still hadn't had a chance to look at the truck yet. They said they would call Rob in a couple hours. No one had a big appetite for the chicken so we all decided to go for a nap. Rob was on the phone most of nap time with the repair shop and our families. The repair shop finally got back to us and the damage was fixable but they could not get one part in till the Monday which was when Rob was supposed to start his new job. We started pricing out our options to go by bus, train, plane or rent a truck. Deciding that we would worry about getting the truck another day. Renting a truck ended up being the cheapest option because we had no choice but to bring his tools and our computer with us which was all in the trailer. The closest place to rent a truck was back in Thunder Bay. When we went for supper we purchased Greyhound bus tickets for all of us for the morning (because there was no way I was going to stay a minute longer at that motel then I had to). One more night and we would be back on the road once more.

Morning rolled around and we packed up everything in the camper and asked the owner if the trailer was okay there till we got back (not that we had much of a choice) and headed to the Husky for our last meal there. We got on the Greyhound without a hitch and the rental company came to pick us up at the bus stop in Thunder Bay, which was awesome. We got some lunch for the road and headed to pick up the trailer. By the time we got back to Nipigon it was already 2PM and we still had 6 hours of drive time. Little did I know at the time it was going to be way more then that. Rob has always been paranoid over fuel levels in the vehicle and I am quite the opposite. We were at half a tank and Rob was wanting to pull over to get gas. Every time we stop though the girls want out and it is such a big run around so even if we could put it off till a quarter tank that would be ideal. So we keep going and going. We went through Longlac and decide we will stop in the next town for sure. We were both starting to sweat a little as we had no service and could not predict what was ahead of us at all. BAM! A camper tire blew... why!? We pull over to change it out with the spare hoping to get to the next town. A guy pulled over to help Rob with the tire which was amazing and then he informed us there was no way we were going to make it to the next town with the amount of gas we had left. He said we would be lucky if we could even make it back the we came with the trailer docked. "Didn't you see the sign, No Gas Station For The Next 200km. ...?" No! If it wasn't already bad enough that we are behind a day we now have to back track and hope no one steals the trailer with all our stuff and loose a couple more hours. That is the last time I question Rob on fueling up.  We got a new tire for the camper, (the spare was in ROUGH shape!) fuel and a bite to eat. Finally back on the road and no one stole our camper or broke into it. Rob quickly took the bad spare off and put the new one on, hooked backed up and we were on our way, yay! We finally finished the day in Kapuskasing and hit up the Super 8 almost getting put on the 4th floor with the elevator being broke down. Luckily Rob caught that and we got switched to the second floor. Bringing luggage up four flights of stairs is not what you want to be doing at midnight with two tired kids.

One more day of driving and we made it in one piece only to catch the flu one after another. Rob ended up missing his first day of work anyways due to him hugging the toilet all day. Both my mom and I got it at the same time so we got to barf our guts out in front of the kids. Unfortunately everyone got it. Now we are just trying to get a normal routine going and we are so happy those first couple weeks are over! Thanks to everyone who helped us out along the way. It seems in a crisis you can see how generous and good some people are and how everyone went the extra mile to help get us here in one piece. Also a BIG shout out to Rob's grandparents who flew to Thunder Bay and drove Rob's truck back for us on Easter weekend to boot. We have seriously been blessed with the best family. Sorry for such a lengthy post, short and sweet next time... maybe.

We Are Moving!!!

So, if you have been wondering why I have been MIA these last few weeks on social media, the blog, and pretty much every form of communication, is because we are moving! This is a move I have been wanting to do for a very long time. There has always been an obstacle or opportunity that has prevented us from committing to it before. I know some are confused by why we are doing this move in the first place. I hate when this comes up because I don't expect everyone to understand our choices and in no way do I frown upon what is working for someone else. We have just come to realize that small town, rural Saskatchewan is not a great fit for us and our growing family. So, if you are not in the know, we are moving back to my hometown in eastern Ontario! Rob and I are over the moon excited for what lies ahead for us!

As of right now Rob's last day of work here in Saskatchewan is March 31st and at this point that is pretty much the only thing set in stone. Leave it up to us to leave everything to the last minute. Our house was listed just this last week. We have moved in with Rob's parents for the last two weeks to finish packing our day to day stuff. It is crazy to think we only made this decision at the beginning of the month and now here we are, up to our ears in boxes. These last few weeks have been high stress just trying to figure out how we are going to make this happen. Finding the right realtor, selling odds & ends, donations, finishing home projects and packing have taken up pretty much all our time. You know you have sold a lot of stuff online when Rob is recognized at all his job sights as the guy selling stuff on Facebook, haha! It is amazing what we have managed to accumulate in these past two years. Doesn't help that we added another kid (our Maevie) to the mix. So, if you don't hear from me in awhile it is most likely because the computer is packed and we are headed East!

I just wanted to say a BIG thank-you to Rob's parents for helping with all of the projects, watching our kids and letting us stay with them for a little bit. We couldn't have made this all happen, this quickly, without you guys. To our countless friends who have been there to support us in numerous ways you know who you are. And lastly thank-you to my parents for letting us stay with them till we getting our living arrangements all settled. Thank-you!!! We love you all so dearly!

When I have a chance I would love to share all the things I am going to miss here in Saskatchewan and also the reasons why we chose to do this move to Ontario (Let me know what you think about these for blog topics). Everyone's thoughts and prayers that this move goes smoothly for us are so much appreciated! I will do my best to keep everyone in the loop! xo