I went for a little jog this morning sans-iPod. Just letting thoughts run around in there, unblocked by Husband's eclectic music tastes. (The jogging iPod is his Shuffle, with seriously strange combinations thereon. Such as Johnny Cash singing "Brightly Beams Our Father's Mercy" and a 10-minute extendo-techno-dance-version of The Thompson Twins "Hold Me Now" - which I love in its normal, four-minute originality.)
And what was I thinking, in all these three miles of music-free-ness?
Not much. I thought about the people who live in our neighborhood, and the pleasure it is to be able to count on so many of them for whatever. I thought about having lived here for almost 8 years. That's Eight Years, people. When I was a wee Army Brat, we moved many, many times. When I was slightly less wee, we lived in one place (Batesville, Indiana - no, you probably haven't) for eight and a half years. I think still that that is a very long time. Husband and I moved here to this house when we'd been married seven years. In those seven years, we unpacked our kitchen into eleven different houses/apartments. Yep. Eleven. So it really feels like we've been here a long, long time.
Sometimes I think we need to get out of here. Mostly not, though. For its faults (like a mediocre school district and a 6-month winter) this is a nice place to live. We have mountains outside every window. Birds live here. People are friendly, and understand about things like having kids and staying home with them. There is family close by (but not close enough to expect anything weird like babysitting favors). There's a little diversity here. Some ethnic, some religious.
So we'll stay. Because Kid 1 starts High School in 5 weeks. And Husband's job is one canyon-drive away*. And all the kids have nice friends. And Kid 2 has a job (at age 11) that she can ride her bike to a couple days a week. And Kids 3 and 4 were born here, and they know it's home.
And over all, it's good to be home.
*See how I didn't mention that he got a speeding ticket in that canyon this month? Because that might seem like nagging, not to mention ironic?