It is officially summer in Colorado. We have a mini garden started with some veggies and berries, we’ve taken our first trip to buy delicious things from the farmer’s market, and this afternoon Chris and I rode bikes (together!) to pick the girls up from their summer program. After a gray Seattle-like May, we are reveling in sunshine and sweet summer joys like this oh-so-big girl’s first bicycle:
She never did master peddling on a tricycle, but within 5 minutes of owning a bike, Nora had peddling down. Five and a half years later, I still cannot get over the amazing-ness of kids’ brains and how they grow. Riding a bike. Reading. Tying her own shoes. Everyone thinks their children are geniuses, and I’m no exception.
As Nora’s first year of kindergarten and Zara’s first year of preschool came to a close, we celebrated other, bigger transitions as well. The biggest one? At the end of April, we sold our house in Gillette. Our realtors sent me a text saying that we were “officially homeless in Gillette” and it was one of the best texts I have ever received. I may never delete it! Not long after, in May, we payed off the last of my student loans, which means that, thanks to Chris’ dad’s generosity in helping us pay his loans off just two months prior, we are utterly and completely debt free.
I’ll admit, it was a long and winding road to get here. There were a lot of sacrifices, plenty of hard work, and more than our fair share of stressful moments. Last month, I worked 204 hours – averaging 51 hours per week. Luckily, most of it didn’t feel like work since I very much love what I do, but all those hours at the computer did require an adjustment in life at home. We ended up hiring a babysitter to help with Zara so I could have 4 full workdays each week, and Chris picked up a lot of parenting and household duties at night and on weekends. Then, after all that hard work, there was more than a little agony as we watched our hard-earned money disappear out the door (we had to bring money to closing on our house + the student loans), but nothing is more relieving than knowing we are 100% free and unencumbered.
May was a tough month, but June came with the promise of lighter loads, a better routine, and a wide open future under sunny skies. Rarely do we have the opportunity to see our hard work pay off quite as quickly as Chris and I did last month, and for that I am thankful.