On Zain – Pajamas (These organic pj’s are our favorite! The two piece sets are so cute and soft. hHe’s wearing 6-12 months for reference, ha!)
Also, Can you even handle the faces this kid makes?
Guys, I’m really excited for something a little new around here today! I’m joining in on my girlfriends Kelly and Emily’s motherhood series and couldn’t be happier. I have looked up to these girls and their mastering of being bosses at work and mom’s at home for so long! If you are not familiar, Kelly and her husband Mitch (have you seen his posts? They are amazing!) have an adorable daughter Emma who just turned 1 a few months ago! Emily and her husband Doug have two sweet girls, Gracie who is 2 and Josephine who is Zain’s age. Their girls are seriously adorable and it’s amazing that Gracie looks so much like Emily and Jo is a baby Doug! Both Kelly and Emily have provided so much support for me during these past five months no matter what time of day or night I have called or text them. It’s honestly meant the world to me and has really taught me how raising a child really does take a village. Following along with their series thus far has been really insightful so I was over the moon to join in today and I think there is so much we can learn from each other and you all.
So, on to today’s topic which is very fitting since it’s something that Trevor and I have been discussing at length lately. If you had asked me this question 5 years ago, my immediate answer would be ‘In Louisville, specifically Cherokee Park, with lots of space’
As much as I still love that idea and the city of Louisville, Chicago living has become the norm for us. Despite Trevor growing up in a very small town (I mean small!) and me in Louisville, we have spent the past 7 years in Chicago and much of our relationship and marriage. We have a solid group of friends here we love and adore, endless options for Zain and now a job that Trevor genuinely loves. (More on my job next week so stay tuned!)
However, with every great opportunity and perk Chicago offers comes a downside. The cost of living (although nothing compared to NYC and San Fran) is significantly higher than our other option of Louisville, the crime although isolated still does keep me up at night and the dreaded traffic. I read somewhere that every hour of your commute takes away years of your life and I fully believe that now.
While we considered all of these things before, Zain’s arrival has forced us to revisit the topic again. Trying to figure out what is best for him and our family is still a riddle we haven’t solved and I would be lying if I said it didn’t give me a sense of anxiety. There is this constant feeling that we aren’t quite ‘settled’ and therefore don’t plan that far into the future. We haven’t purchased a home yet and although we look all the time, something is always holding us back. At first it was ‘Wait till Trevor starts work and let’s make sure he doesn’t hate his job’ then when he loved his job it was ‘Maybe we’ll move back to Louisville so let’s wait a bit’ and now we’re back to ‘We could never move, let’s find a place’
See where the anxiety is coming from?
While city living wasn’t initially were Trevor or I ever saw ourselves raising a family, it’s quickly become a reality. I mean, we’re already living that life and it’s wonderful. I know as he gets older and we potentially have more children (if that’s an option and right for our family) things will become more challenging. The city offers little space, can be a pain to maneuver and is so costly! Our biggest concern right now is schools. Living in Chicago and sending our children to private school is out of the question so finding a home we love in a desirable neighborhood with a good zoned school is the ultimate goal. If we can comfortably make that happen I think we’re sold. Question is, is that possible? I think, yes. It will just take us time and patience to find.
Most people now ask me when we’re moving to the suburbs. I think part of that is because we have a child but the other is that my brother lives up north. Although we love where he lives and so many of our other friends, we quickly realized the Chicago suburbs are not for us. As beautiful and spacious as they are, it’s not what we love about Chicago. if we ended up desiring more space and that slower pace of life we would rather move home to Louisville. Most suburbs aren’t a quick commute to the city and would ultimately put us even farther away from our family in Kentucky.
I still tell my mom all the time, ‘I could move back to Louisville’ and she, like most of my friends really question that statement. As much as I can picture life back home with Trevor and Zain, I’m not sure it would fulfill us like Chicago does. However, anyone that has children will tell you how crucial it is to live close to family. It’s so nice to have my brother and sister in law in the suburbs but with Chicago traffic a trip to the burbs takes an hour each way so it’s not exactly an easy stop. My mom currently comes and stays with us for about a week each month and didn’t leave for almost two months after Zain was born. We legitimately couldn’t have and still can’t survive without her and having her closer would make a world of difference. Not only to help out when we’re in a pinch but because it’s so wonderful to watch her relationship grow with Zain. Moving back to Louisville not only puts up down the street from my parents but so much closer to Trevor’s. A three hour drive is much for feasible for them than seven and I want Zain to see his grandparents as much as possible, not to mention his other cousins!
See our dilemma? We honestly go back and forth all the time. I realize this seems like one big stream of consciousness but that’s exactly how I feel anytime I think about it. For now, we are happy as can be in the city and if that happens to be our forever I’m excited about it and if it isn’t, I’m okay with that too. I’m trying to take each day as it comes and give Zain every ounce of love I can. I know wherever we raise him the most important thing is having people around us that love and care for him and we are lucky enough to say we have that in both places!
At the end of the day, what factor made the decision for you all?