Valentine’s Day this year was wonderful and romantic, but also full of reflection. Not so much serious thought, just astonishment at where life can take you when you least expect it, and how much fun even some of the most difficult times can be when you are with the one you love most in life.
This time last year, Zak and I were in the middle of making a decision that could change our lives drastically. I’m talking 3300-miles-in-a-different-direction drastically… He had an amazing job opportunity, but it was in the Pacific Northwest. When you’ve lived in Indiana all your life, not more than 2 hours away from most of your family, that’s a BIG change to consider. Maybe it’s not really, and maybe I was a big baby about it, but it was a big change to us at the time. We went back and forth, back and forth – weighing options, making pros/cons lists, talking with family and friends, talking with each other, making more pros/cons lists, etc. There was a part of me that wanted to stay in Indiana, close to my home and everything I’ve ever known. On the other hand, an even bigger part of me was excited for the opportunity in front of my husband, and excited about all the happy adventures that could be waiting for us in the Pacific Northwest.
It takes a brave person to leave what they’ve known all their lives to seek out something new. Lucky for me, I didn’t have to do it alone – I have an amazing partner in this life who shares life’s adventures with me – both the good, the bad and the scary. And really, that’s how we tend to view our life together, as one big adventure – or we try to at least! (there’s a hilarious story and a sort-of inappropriate motto behind it as well, but that’s for another day, hahahaha…) So, we took a chance and started the next in our string of adventures together.
I’m SO glad we did! Don’t get me wrong, there were (and are) struggles along the way – selling our first home, buying another from 3300 miles away, homesickness, new jobs, new home creaks and groans, and did I mention homesickness? And of course, we still have typical married couple fights (and some not so typical, hahaha). But going through this move with each other has really strengthened our relationship and given us the perspective to better know (or guess? hahaha) what we want out of life together.
Last year, to let Zak know that I was seriously in agreement about our decision, I made him this frame for Valentine’s Day. I wanted him to know that home isn’t just where we are from, or where we’ve lived the longest – its wherever we are together. He is my home ♥
I saw an example of the hearts and phrase on Etsy a while back. That one was all matted and pretty – and pretty expensive, too! I knew I could do something similar myself. The frame came from Target (maybe $8?) and I cut the hearts from a map I got at the bookstore for $3. There are all kinds of maps online that you can print, too. I just printed the phrase on my computer. Really, you could tailor the phrase to whatever your situation. Maybe multiple hearts for all your favorite places together? Or for a student leaving for college, perhaps a heart for their hometown and a heart for their college home?
It was kind of plain with just the hearts and phrase, so I added the fortunes as a border.
I don’t know why, but we love fortune cookie fortunes (we even gave custom fortune cookies as the favor at our wedding) and I save our favorites in a little box in the closet. I knew they would come in handy sometime – finally, my sentimentality pays off! So many of the fortunes were PERFECT for our situation :) Instead of fortunes, you could do stickers, or maybe a paper or washi tape border?
Haha, I told you – adventures are kind of a thing for us…
Anyway, I hope everyone had a wonderful Valentine’s Day! ♥