this is the house i grew up in. this is where i was born and raised. this is where i had an ideal childhood, with amazing parents. they've sold it and are moving out to live very close to me in just a few days.
it is a bittersweet moment in my life. i feel nostalgic to see that house go. to have it not be home anymore. but i'm so excited to have my parents close by. to be able to see them every day if i want to. to have my kids grow up having their grandma and grandpa very close by. [nana and papa are close by & we love that! two sets of grandparents? even better!]
my mom and i were just texting [talk about a modern day miracle - marleeny girl on an iphone!] about how this is one of their last few nights. my parents are exhausted from packing. for months, we've facetimed and they've asked if i want certain things; old toys mainly, some furniture. i've wanted to say yes to everything, but when my 1200 square foot house is pretty maxed out with 4 people in it, i've had to refrain. [don't worry, i've taken some things...] i can't wait til they're here and i can help them unpack and get settled.
i grew up in this home where saturday mornings were cartoons, a fancy breakfast and then cleaning house. i grew up in this house cuddling my mom almost every morning until i started seminary. i grew up in this house sharing a room with my sisters. [i share with heather for most of my childhood, then a few years with holly] i grew up in this house being afraid of the basement. i grew up in this house with the most amazing, magical christmases you could imagine. i grew up in this house taking baths with my sister and being afraid of bats out side of windows. i grew up in this house having neighborhood wars with the neighborhood kids. i grew up in this house having family home evening - or S.A.M. as we called it. i grew up in this house where i was afraid of the step down living room when it was dark and i'd talk my dad into going upstairs with me when it was time to get ready for bed. i grew up in this house having my sister tell me stories to get me to go to sleep and sleeping sitting up when i was sick. i grew up in this house dusting, vacuuming and cleaning the bathrooms & re-doing it when i cut corners and my dad wasn't satisfied. i grew up in this house learning what "lengthen your stride" and "decide to decide" meant. i grew up in this house with an incredibly cheerful mom teaching seminary at a very early hour - wanting to hurt her for being too happy and loud when i was tired. i grew up in this house having family dinners where we talked about things and often i got told to not talk about bodily functions so much. i grew up in this house with parents who loved to high five each other, even when i was highly embarrassed, in fact - i'm pretty sure it was done to highly embarrass me. i grew up in this house where my mom made amazing cinnamon rolls. and gingerbread houses. and many other things. i grew up in this house lining up in the kitchen to kiss my dad when he got home.
life was good on firestone drive. i'm so glad i had the childhood that i did, i was so blessed. i'm thankful for my parents - they're amazing people. i know they'll be missed. but they will be enjoyed out here, i promise. i think utah might finally start to feel like home to me now. so in the next few days, as i fight tears knowing that i will never go in that house again, i'll remember all of the wonderful things and smile. and then head over to my parents' new house and hug them. life will still be good, just on a different street.
this isn't my goodbye forever, chicago.