Friday, June 01, 2012

I can't wait for...

When we moved out here, it was not uncommon to hear me say to Jake, "instead of focusing on what you miss, focus on what we have".

As many of you have also experienced, moving so many thousands of miles from home is not only cause for homesickness for friends and family, but for the landscape, familiar foods, weather, buildings, pace of life, wildlife, etc. It's amazing the things you take for granted until you move away from them.

I was fortunate that I could get back to Ontario at least once a year, so I never had to say goodbye forever. But there are some things that are harder to let go of. There is an undeniable tug of longing for certain aspects of our home that were impossible to ignore. Though we tried to focus on all that we loved in Alberta (and I assure you- there was so much that I'll post that list in a future post), the memory of our favourites was never far from our minds.

Now the closer we get to our return, the more our excitement is bubbling. Now a common phrase heard in our home is "I can't wait for...". And here are some of the things that top our list:

- family
- the Knox Pumpkin Farm
- all of our friends
- lakes!!!!
- fresh picked strawberries
- cottages and trailers
- the Beaches and the Boardwalk in Toronto
- the "homey" feeling of our church and the sound of its choir
- the Cobourg Beach on Lake Ontario
- cheese factories
- family
- Archibald's hard cider
- Lone Star & the Mongolian Grill
- some moisture in the air
- easy access to ties to our past and familiar places
- an air-conditioned home
- friends
- long country roads and rolling hills
- a huge arts community in Toronto
- visits to my Nan & Pop's graves
- family
- tons to do for kids in the city
- the Bowmanville Zoo
- all the Bowmanville downtown festivals (Maple & Apple)
- the Sugar Bush
- friends
- easier access to the National Archives in Ottawa and the places I want to visit for my geneology research
- skunks and raccoons (so says Jake)
- cardinals and red-winged blackbirds
- family
- maple trees. red foliage. - the country's most beautiful autumn foliage
- Toronto Maple Leafs (yup, I really said it)
- snowplows!
- Pizza Nova
- did we mention friends and family?
- fireworks
- the Bowmanville Santa Claus Parade
- Kawartha Dairy Ice Cream
- elephants
- more ties to French and easy access to Quebec and the French culture
- apple orchards
- chip trucks
- longer business hours
- friends and family

None of this is a knock to Alberta and neither is it a declaration that Alberta does not have any of these things. But these are some of the things we have really missed or have not had access to. And I promise that my list of the things I am NOT looking forward to is just as long, such as the traffic, the smog, the humidity, the aggressive drivers, the HST!, the huge population, Mayor Rob Ford, etc. etc.

I can't wait.

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