Throughout my thirty years I have been very privileged to have experienced living in many states across our great nation. My Dad was in the Navy, so we moved every two years when he was re-stationed until he retired from the Service and we returned home. We lived in Arizona and Washington State and saw most of the country during our road trips to our new destinations. Upon returning home to Boston, where I was born, we settled down and re-established our Bostonian roots.
When I began dating my husband he was a successful and well-known chef on the Boston food scene, having worked downtown Boston for thirteen years. Shortly after we became engaged he was recruited by one of the top grossing restaurants in the country on the Las Vegas Strip. The offer was too good to turn down and was guaranteed to open doors for him in his career. So off to Vegas we went.
Our time in Vegas was great. We lived in a beautiful suburb about twenty miles south of the Strip in an impressive master planned community. We had a beautiful house and were lucky enough to make dear friends who happened to be fellow East Coasters and had a son nearly the same age as ours. To this day, those two friends are two of our closest friends that we will consider lifelong best friends. My husband excelled at work; learning, growing, and developing his talents daily while working under both a James Beard and Michelin Star Rated Chef.
Our son adjusted seamlessly; making friends, playing soccer and little league, and enjoying school. Much to my surprise, I even adjusted well (I had expected to take the move hard, being from a fairly big, close-knit family). I made Mommy friends, taught part-time, volunteered at my son’s school and with his little league team.
Around the fifteen month point of living away from home we started discussing purchasing a home in the neighborhood we were renting in. We loved the neighborhood, our son’s school was great, we were all happy, and Vegas was certainly the place to be for my husband’s career to grow and flourish. Soon discussions progressed to looking at homes with realtors and talking to mortgage brokers. All seemed to be going well. In the back of my mind though, something always held me back. I could never quite commit.
I came to realize that as much as I enjoyed all that Vegas had to offer us; the natural beauty, the hiking, the beautiful house, the immaculately planned neighborhoods and parks, it simply wasn’t home. We had no roots there and my heart was, and had always been in Boston. I realized I wanted my son to grow up knowing what it meant to be from Boston. I wanted him to feel the nostalgia that almost every Bostonian feels when they hear “Sweet Caroline.” I wanted him to hate the Yankees just because it’s the right thing to do. I wanted him to look forward to Marathon Monday every year, and I wanted him to live, eat, sleep, and breath all things Patriots. More importantly, I wanted him to have access to the best healthcare and education in the world and unfortunately, Nevada could offer neither of these.
After a visit from my family my mind was made up; I wanted to go home and I wanted to go right then and there. As fate would have it, just as I started expressing my feelings to my husband a casino in Connecticut started aggressively recruiting him. They were looking for a chef to come in and take over their fine dining venue; including redoing their entire menu, concept, and design. It was as if it were meant to be. After a lot of thought and consideration, we decided to go for it. This was another opportunity too good to pass up for my husband’s career and Connecticut is just a short drive to my parent’s house in Massachusetts.
When I knew we’d be living in Connecticut and not Massachusetts I assumed I’d spend as much of my free time in Massachusetts as I could; as much time “at home” as possible. Much to my surprise as soon as we arrived here in Connecticut I immediately felt at home. We landed in a beach side town, walking distance from the beach and tons of great little shops and restaurants with a wonderful sense of community. Our neighbors include incredibly creative people including poets, artists, and even an esteemed horticulturist. Living here has awoken my soul, inspired me beyond my wildest dreams; its as if I was always meant to be here. I started writing and exploring my own creativity. I’ve been published and have recently been in talks with a publishing house. I feel alive living here. I know I am home here.
While Boston will always be a part of me and hold a special place in my heart, Connecticut is where our family has begun and will continue to plant roots. I’m so excited to see the roots we’ve planted grow and flourish as the seasons pass and change.