Saturday, August 30, 2014

In Search of Our Home part I : Dardanelle, where we began.

Finding a home is hard. Not a house, you can find a house anywhere. Home is referred to as many things but for Jon and I, home is where we see ourselves spending the rest of our lives. Although separation is hard it can't limit us to spend our entire lives in one place.  Some find their home without ever looking. They are born and raised in a place and that is where, by choice, they stay. I understand completely especially when you live in a place as beautiful as Arkansas. It would have been so easy for Jon and I to stay. Stay in Arkansas, have babies and live in down the road from my parents on Cloverleaf. As comfortable as that ideas sounds,  as much as we loved Arkansas we just couldn't.
  A free spirit, that is a great way to refer to Jon and I. We need more, not material more, just more. We want to see new things. We want to experience life in new places where it is him and I.only.  We enjoy jumping off that cliff into the unknown and just not knowing. It's easy for us to live against the grain.We have our love, and our constant sh*t talking, and that is truly all we need.(besides family of course!) With that being said. Our time together in Arkansas was filled with absolutely unforgettable memories and it all started at Dardanelle Pizza Hut! Uhh ya, I know, friggin' Pizza Hut. Both of us worked at Pizza Hut, opening on the weekends. I remember, we talked everyday at work, but when he was actually trying to ask me out he completely froze up, Straight deer in headlights..... Finally I just looked at him said, " Look Jon, Here is my number give me a call if you want to together." Hah yeah I got lucky.. He called about ten minutes later... he's been thanking his lucky stars for making that super smart move since then.(at least that's what I tell him) After many nights of front porch sitting, and endless hours of me fascinating him with stories of what it's like growing up in the South, he asked me on an official date. He asked if I would accompany him to see Dane Cook in Little Rock that Friday. I immediately got upset because he knew good and well that the schedule was already posted and I had to close. Then he really surprised me, he had the entire date already set up! Jon already had someone covering my shift, the manager had approved everything, and he had our tickets purchased in advance!! What a win!!And I have been thanking my lucky stars since then.
There is only one person that can call herself Mrs. Jonathan Roath,
 I know how lucky I am to be that person.
Over a year of dating under our belt, when we decided to make a big decision. We decided it was time to move into our first place TOGETHER and that we did. It was beautiful.. and thus it began, our want to embark on an adventure in which we would find our true home.
We are blessed with wonderful memories in such a lovely home.

I am not going to lie, separation is hard, especially when dates of returns are indefinite. It's a hard way of life, and it is hard to become familiar with. I will forever cherish the memories Jon and I made with family in the Arkansas house. From beer nights and dinner parties to babysitting nieces and spending holidays, the Arkansas house will always be a favorite!
This house was filled with so much life at all times, Arkansas will always have a small piece of my heart.
Two things we cherished the most about the AR house:
1) walking distance from family and friends.(exaggeration but still)
Petit Jean Camping!
Because Jon chose to go to college in Missouri he had been separated from his family for awhile. When his family moved to AR he chose to relocate to be near them. Within a few months of getting back into family mode, his mother had to pack up and move back to California. Because we had just met, he chose to stay. I am grateful he chose to stay :) Our time in AR was filled with him getting to know my family. He once told me these were the times when he knew he had found his place in life and his partner.....Family get together's and camping trips were some of Jon's best memories in Arkansas.
Right there in the big middle of all my
 grandparents! He loves family, just another
amazing part of who he is.
Having the nieces right down the road was
such a fun time in our lives!

So nice being near friends and indulging
in good food!

Having Cali family visit was so fun!

 Jon hanging with Syd&Mika

Miss these people so much!

Leaving Family is hard, definitely the most difficult part of relocating. You grow accustomed to a way of life. Without knowing it, our beliefs and traditions are shaped by the culture in which we live. I can see now that I have a lot of Southern instilled in my traditions and I am very thankful for that, so is Jon. Growing up with a big family, where holidays were all day fiesta's! Sharing a room with my sisters, uncles and cousins across the field on Crescent Drive, and both sets of grandparents not even 3 miles away on Highway 22. It is a phase that provides comfort when reminiscing with Jonathan, but that's just it, it was a phase of our lives. It was a phase that we will hold a special place in both our hearts because it is where our story began.

Our Arkansas Home. These were my favorite kind of days.
The days where you cozy up on the couch with a good book.
Jon and I live for days like this.
We have a lot of memories on this road. Nebo Rd. Jon and I lived the very end,
right at the base of Nebo, and my parents were maybe a mile away. it was beautiful.
Fun memories down this road.

2) We miss Seasons! Arkansas seasons were the best!  (fall :) We had the best views from our house. Our entire yard was engulfed by fall, the trees, the leaves, the mountain, the dirt roads, our yard,a constant plethora of fall colors everywhere. We loved it!

Enjoying the fall with
my love!
The best mornings were spent on the front porch, drinking our coffee in the chill crisp air, watching the fog roll over Mt.Nebo

I. Will. Never. Forget.
View from our front window. Look at those

Front yard, I love fall!

View from shower window. Yeah, we had a huge
window that looked in those beautiful trees.
I would take hour long showers!

Our time in this house was spent falling in love. We are so blessed to have such wonderful memories!

When everything in time and under Heaven finally falls asleep. Wrapped in blankets white, all creation, shivers underneath. And still I notice you when branches crack and in my breath on frosted glass. Even now in death you open doors for life to enter.

Winter in the Arkansas house was surreal. It was almost so cozy it was as if you were in a dream. 
It was so easy to make this home cozy.
Wintertime was the best!

Christmas in AR

We would wake up to super cold, foggy days, sometimes even snowy days and immediately brew coffee and start a fire. Sometimes we would bundle up on the front porch, have coffee, and do what we do best ;) Jonathan and I love California but we know it is not our home. As long as my parents are there, AR will be home. Jon loves snow, driving in it not so much. We have had our share of snowy ditch days(and nights) but it's just more funny stories to add to the book. 
Snowstorms were so much fun!
We were trapped for 4 days!
First Christmas in the house together!

We often wrote messages to each other.

We had such an amazing house on Cloverleaf. It was beautiful truly. I had
the garage converted into my art room, we had awesome neighbors, a mountain
at our fingertips, and family right down the road. We woke up every morning to take 
long hot showers in our beautiful bathroom that overlooked Nebo.
 We would watch movies and stay inside all day, cook super good food and occasionally head out to play in the snow. This was a time that shaped our relationship. We grew to become best friends. Two people, from two different worlds, who met miraculously at Dardanelle Pizza Hut created a world together. Just the two of us, in the middle of nowhere. The home we created and the memories we made in Arkansas are shared only between us, they are so sacred to me.

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