Every story needs a prologue. An explanation or introduction.
Why Santa Ynez?
This is a question we have received multiple times since announcing our move. To some, it seems quite extreme. One day we are living in Orange County, the next we are moving to Santa Ynez.
Santa Ynez was our “how amazing would it be to live there” place. You know those places you chat about moving to over a glass of wine on a Friday night when your wanderlust for adventure kicks in? Some say Europe. For others, it is a tropical island. For us, Santa Ynez was our place.
We began visiting the valley a number of years ago and as each year passed, the frequency of our visits and love for the area grew. Soon it was “someday we will move here” or “maybe we can buy some land and retire there” or “once the kids move out, we should relocate”. It was our long term plan. Once the hustle of raising a family and working was over, Loren and I would end up in Santa Ynez.
And then the conversation began to change. We would visit and imagine how amazing it would be to raise our children, who have only called Orange County home, in an environment like Santa Ynez, right now. Small town, small schools, and perhaps, a little slower pace. Now, let me say right now, we absolutely love Orange County and see nothing wrong with it. It has been a wonderful place to raise our children. I don’t want anyone thinking we feel otherwise. We simply feel that children grow in new ways when experiencing different places, environments and ways of living. Change is so good and I think we were craving something different for our entire family. We started praying about it and actually almost pulled the trigger two years ago but nothing seemed to work out. We both started to think that perhaps God was saying Santa Ynez just wasn’t for us.
And yet, here we are. The reality is, we wouldn’t be doing this if my husband wasn’t let go from his job. Isn’t that funny? We talk about dreams, and someday chasing them, but sometimes the life we set up for ourselves actually keeps us from living those dreams. We began to see that this situation wasn’t something negative but a part of a plan put in place by God to help us get to our dream. So to what many would view as a handful of lemons was actually our lemonade, and we jumped right into the pitcher.
So that is why Santa Ynez. A prayer that we perhaps thought would stay unanswered but in fact, He taught us that He is listening, we just need some patience. So the first lesson of this journey has already been learned and we are not even there yet; “Ask and it shall be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be open to you” – Matthew 7:7