I married my husband 22 days before my 19th birthday, and we moved into a crappy apartment right across from campus. The location was great, and we got a good deal because of my husband’s golf scholarship, but that’s where the positives about that place end. When I say crappy I mean roach problem, hideously gross carpet, and malfunctioning appliances.
Did we care? Not one bit. We were newlyweds starting a new life together. We couldn’t afford a kitchen table, so we unpacked a moving box and turned it over, then set up some fold-out lawn chairs we got as a wedding present for our dining room set.
We didn’t have extra money to spare on home decor, so the birthday bouquet of flowers my husband bought for me were strategically placed in an empty canister of protein powder.
After a year we transferred back to Provo to finish school. While there we moved around to at least three different apartments, and finally settled into a condo of our own.
That’s where we adopted our first child, Snoop.
He was a Valentines gift and the best present ever! That is where we learned how to take care of a creature aside from ourselves, and boy did we baby him.
Not long after buying our own place (at the worst possible time), we decided to move out of state to someplace warmer. We settled on Austin where I found a job. After a stint in a couple apartments/ rooms for rent, we found a townhome that would be perfect for us and our pup Snoop. This was also where we had our daughter, and where to this day, I have some of the best memories.
There were only two bedrooms, but it was practically downtown, and the neighborhood had a beautiful little trail and field across the way that I went and took pictures with Lil’ J nearly every day. Pictures pictures pictures. I took A LOT when we lived there.
Leaving that apartment was one of the most difficult moves we’ve had to make. We became parents in that home. My daughter learned how to crawl and walk inside those walls. I dove into blogging while we lived there, learned photography, and my husband finished school and found his career. These were huge accomplishments for our little family.
We welcomed our son after our next move, into a duplex further out from the city. But shortly after he was born we decided we were finally ready to plant roots in Texas. We built a house and moved one last time to where we are today, making it our own day by day.
Every day I drive downtown to work I think about all of the places we’ve lived since moving to Austin, the memories we’ve made around town as a couple, as a family, and with our friends. Then I think of how far we’ve come since we first got married.
My kids won’t grow up knowing the struggle from the beginning of our marriage, but it won’t be something we hide. It took a lot of planning, hard work, and faith to get where we are today, but I embrace every bit of the journey to get here.
Each time we’ve moved to our next place, we’ve not just boxed up pictures, toys, books and clothes. We boxed up memories, stories and special moments. It’s stuff, but it’s also our life. It’s everything we own—valuables full of meaning—and it requires us to Handle With Care.
We’ve all been there at some point. And with each move we can only hope to treasure those memories and make new ones even brighter than the last.
More than seven moves! Each time we pack our things and hope nothing breaks. But we also leave behind a special part of our lives. I have a real vase now, and the moving box we once used as a kitchen table is long gone. But the cherished memory of it will stay with me forever.
Do you have any special memories of any of your homes or moves? Share in the comments and on social media using the hashtag #handlewithcare.
This post was written as part of the Allstate Influencer Program and sponsored by Allstate. All opinions are mine. As the nation’s largest publicly held insurance company, Allstate is dedicated not only to protecting what matters most–but to guiding people to live the Good Life, every day.