7 weeks ago, Mike suggested looking at a house in Wales.
We live in Bristol but fancied the idea of living somewhere we could open our doors to look at mountains and our 2 boys could be free and feral. The house was beautiful, large with acres of land for horses, camping and climbing and planting... the mountains were more blue, more black, more intense than we could have hoped but my heart was still with Bristol.
We spent the day walking in the Brecon Beacons and LOVED it but still, our little pocket of Bristol had more soul than I could bear to leave unless there was a very good reason.
6 weeks ago exasperated at my lack of decision making abilities, Mike suggested we put the house on the market and travel the world with the boys. 'Now you're talking' I thought, but you can't be serious?
Yesterday we sold the house. Our beautiful terraced house nestled in a street that is so strong with community spirit you can almost taste it. The neighbours are the warmest and most generous I have ever known; for 12 years I have been lucky to be involved with community events and relished the friendships that came with it. We love living here, close to the hubbub of Gloucester Road and the beautifully quaint local school. I love my job in Homelessness and Mike has a successful career as a Manager in the Council. I have been heavily involved in voluntary work with the Refugee camps in Northern France and coupled with the usual parenting, family and friends, life is full and good; we are lucky. Despite this, we felt that we wanted to show the boys more- to open their eyes and teach them that people are all the same the whole world over- and how lucky we are to have passports and money that allow us to go wherever we like.
After spending the last few weeks repainting, cleaning, sanding and scrubbing we finally had an Open Day which reached 22 viewings. The estate agent rang last night to say that we had received an offer for the house which far exceeded our expectations. We budgeted that we have an amount to put aside so we can save some cash for somewhere to live when we return- but also a healthy budget to travel the world with. Wow, it's happening.
The first thing i did after my phone call with the agent was to break the news to my parents. They provide us with an abundance of support and completely dote on the boys- Mum said she preferred the Wales idea.... but they congratulated us and tried to sound excited. After telling my parents, I went across the road for a cup of tea with my friend to have a good cry about the fact that it was all changing. Change is good but bloody hell, it's also quite hard... I am comforting myself that not all valuable things come easily. You can do anything but you can't do EVERYTHING right? You can go but you can't stay too? You can have your cake etc...?
After an evening of celebrating the endless possibilities of our trip, Mike went into his job today and told them that he will be going in October for 12 months. I did the same, as well as telling the teachers at school that the boys will leave in Autumn; our house is sold and we are good to go, sort of. Just nobody mention the jabs.