Being a military family has its share of challenges. One of them was that we had to move every two to three years, no matter what. Most of the time we were able to sell our homes, God just always seemed to work it out.
But when we moved away from Maine the market was soft. And we loved our house – it was solidly built, on a wonderful lot and close to an amazing town with phenomenal schools. But it just wasn’t a good time to sell.
So instead we found a renter and, for the most part, went on with life.
Fast forward seven years and our renter ready to move on. We were ready to sell the house and move on, too.
Which gave us a great incentive to head north: do a little home improvement, get the house ready to sell and visit our old stomping grounds.
The trip is almost 22 hours by car so only a few brave souls were willing (or nominated) to go… Asher, my sweet sister, Clementine and I.
Because Clementine does not like to be away from me for long, we knew that if I went, she’d have to go.
Since we’d already taken her halfway around the world to bring her baby sister home, we knew a little drive from Alabama to Maine would be a snap. And, for the most part, we were right.
The trip was easy. The work? Not easy at all.
But the three of us persevered and polished and scrubbed and hammered and shined until our hands were calloused and our backs ached while sweet Clementine amused herself with a backpack full of toys and an iPad.
Then it was time to head home.
But first, a stop at the Hamilton House.
A place we’d loved to visit during our years there.
A place we’d wandered and pondered big and little things.
Like the possibilities as we waited for news of our Poppy’s referral.
And marked milestones.
Like the day before my biggest baby left for college.
So, on the way out of town, a stop there wasn’t optional. It was required.
I pulled out my camera to photograph her for the first time since we’d arrived, 11 long days before.
And I followed my Clementine around the same house, through the same garden, and under the same trees as I’d followed by bigger babies years before.
And it made the leaving just a little harder.
And just a little easier.
So long, Maine. It’s been sweet.
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