Have you ever packed up and moved across the country? Was it the best thing you've ever done or a total nightmare? If you have kids, how did they adjust to leaving their family and friends nearby? If you had to do it all over again, what would you do differently?
We've made the decision to move to Arizona next year. Yes, that's right...this summer-hating, sun-avoiding, lover of ice cold air conditioning has agreed to move to Arizona, to the Valley of the Sun. Have I lost my mind? Am I having an identity crisis? Perhaps...but here's the reasons (in no particular order) why we've decided to do this and why I've agreed (and, gasp, even encouraged this).
- MY HUSBAND IS S.A.D. He needs the sun like the rest of us need air and water. I dread the winter, because he hibernates. I feel like a single mom a lot, and that makes me sad. There's a saying that goes "when mama ain't happy, ain't nobody happy", but I think that applies to daddy as well, at least at our house. When daddy's happy, mommy's happy, and the kids are happy. It all rolls downhill.
- IT'S BEEN A LONG-TIME DREAM My husband has wanted to move out there for years. His dad and brother live there, and I know he would love to be closer to them and do more with them. I always used to tell him "THERE IS NO WAY I WILL EVER LIVE IN ARIZONA. EVER. THEY HAVE TOO MUCH SUN, TOO MUCH HEAT, AND THEY HAVE SCORPIONS!" You know how they say "Never say never"? Yeah...my life is fraught with examples on why that is good advice..."I'll never have kids" (I have 5)..."I'll never drive a minivan" yep...drove one for six years..."I'll never get married again" well, I did...and I'm glad I did!
- THEY DON'T DO DUMB STUPID TIME THERE Yes, that's right. I want to move to a dry, scorching, land of blazing sun and scorpions to escape the stupidity of "daylight savings time." I hate DST that much. I know I'll have to adjust to a new time zone, but I'm thinking waking up at six am in Arizona, when it's 8 am in Indiana, will instantly turn me into a morning person. Maybe not, but at least I won't have to suffer for months on end in the spring anymore.
- I CAME. I SAW. I FELL IN LOVE. I've been out there twice now...I know, I know...two times? Big deal! But, I just fell in love with the landscape...mountains and cacti and palm trees. Desert landscaping in the yards...no more mowing!! And who can resist a desert sunset? Not this girl.
- AIR CONDITIONING I told my husband that as long as I didn't have to leave the house during the day, and our car had good AC, I could handle it. Once that scorching sun dips down below the horizon I think I could handle the heat. My skin reacts to the sun much like a vampire's. And besides, it's that dry heat...
- THE OLDER KIDS ARE GROWN UP AND MOVED OUT We've wanted to move out of the area, at least, and out of state, for years now but stuck around because of the school system the older kids were in. The youngest of the oldest has finished school and moved out and since we homeschool our kids, school systems are not an issue for us. Which is good, because apparently, Arizona schools suck.
- DESERT STARGAZING, CANYON HIKING, AND OTHER SW NATURE THINGS My daughter longs to go out to the desert and gaze at the stars we can't see from where we are now. I share the same desire. She's also a rock hound and loves critters of all kinds. And what boy doesn't love sand? There is a lot of cool naturey things there that you just don't find in the midwest. Like Black Widow spiders and Palmetto bugs...those are almost deal breakers...
- WE DON'T WANT TO DIE WHERE WE ARE It's not like Indiana is that bad, but honestly, I'm just tired of living here. I was born in the county I live in, and aside from a couple years living in a neighboring county...just inside it...I've spent all of my 41 years living here. I'd love to experience something different before I die. And the desert is vastly different.
- WE'D BE CLOSER TO OUR MARINE My middle stepson has escaped the Midwest and loves living in California. I wouldn't want to live there, since they'll probably fall off into the ocean some day, but to each his own. We don't think he'll be back here, and we miss him. It will be nice to be closer to him, and to a Marine Mom I met online and have become good friends with. I know another Marine Mom from Ohio that said she'd join us out in Arizona, which would be way cool!
- THERE IS SO MUCH MORE TO DO THERE I checked out various city websites there and was blown away by all the activities they have there. Maybe it's just the town we live in, but there's just not much of anything to do here. No wonder teenagers get bored and break into cars. Just sayin'. There's also way more homeschool groups there, and they look like they're pretty active. There's a few around where we are, but I haven't found many that are very active. Well intentioned, sure...just lacking on follow through.
We've set a date of mid-June next year, but since we've got some youngin's wanting to get married the first of June, and another youngin wanting to get married in May...we might have to push it out further. If we do that, I'd say let's not be stupid and move in the middle of the summer. I hear it gets really, really hot out there. I'd say lets be moved out there by my birthday in November. That would be the best birthday present ever!
The top half of the flag represents the 13 original colonies of the United States and the western setting sun. The copper star in the center of the flag identifies Arizona as the largest copper producing state in the union.
The lower half of the flag is a field of blue, the same Liberty Blue found in the United States' Flag. The red found in the rays of the setting sun is also the same shade of red found in the United States' Flag. The Blue of the lower half of the flag and the yellow of the western setting sun are the Arizona State Colors. The red and yellow colors found in the rays are the colors flown by the Spanish Conquistadors led by Francisco Vasquez de Coronado in his unsuccessful search for the Seven Cities of Cibola in 1540.
The Arizona State Flag was adopted by the Arizona State Legislature on February 27, 1917. The blue, red, yellow and copper flag was adopted despite numerous dissenting votes and then Governor Campbell's refusal to sign the bill.