Country Road, Take Me Home 

There’s just something about a long drive through the country that is soothing to my soul. Last week I drove to Seward, NE to meet a teammate from one of the small businesses I am currently ending my time with. June 2nd was actually my last day with this particular business and it was so bittersweet. 

(The main downtown of Seward was adorable, complete with cobblestone streets.)

(I have a slight obsession with spiral staircases too…)

I’ve always had a love for long roads dotted with farms and fields. I grew up in a small town an hour north of Seattle. Lots of dairy farms, logging companies and the most adorable little Main Street.  If any of you remember the horrific mudslide of 2014 in Oso, WA, that was just right outside my small hometown of Arlington. Whenever I come home to visit, I love the drive into town from the freeway. It just makes my heart happy and full. The river, mountains and trees are where I am most at home. 

(Out on one of my favorite drives during my last visit home in March.)
When I was younger I couldn’t wait to get out of that town, but now my soul craves the small town vibe and gorgeous natural scenery. When I was in college and people would ask where I was from I would get one of three responses: ‘You mean Arlington, Virginia?’, ‘Oh Arlington, Texas?’ and my favorite…’That hick town?!’ And these responses were coming from actual Washingtonians. I guess I can’t blame them, during our many moves for my husband’s job, I’ve found most people outside of Washington can only name one city: Seattle. 

My other love for the country comes from the childhood visits we would take with my mom to visit family in Miami, TX. This is a small town in the Panhandle of Texas that was around the size of about 650 people when we were visiting 30-some years ago and where my grandma was born and grew up. We would go every two years, and I am sure this is where my love of horses and horseback riding developed.

(This is me in 8th grade, seems like so long ago!) 

 My grandma’s family has a large ranch there and I was enamored with the barns, cattle guards and actual cowboys we would see. I loved the long dirt roads, the tiny cafe in town and getting to check out the by then abandoned building that my great grandparents had run their butcher shop in. 

(My great aunt out driving at the Ranch.)

There was just a special connection to the people and the land. Some day I will inherit a portion of acreage on that ranch and my heart knows it is something that will stay in our family forever, passed down from generation to generation. 

(Cousins – photos probably taken about 20 years apart. The three girls in the car are the three blondes in the bottom picture!)

So this drive to Seward rekindled my love of the country. I drove leisurely, stopping to take photos (I didn’t have my camera just my iPhone, but I couldn’t resist) and to soak it all in. I noticed a content feeling in my chest and the absence of my usually always present anxiety – a VERY rare way of feeling for me.  You know that quote ‘Do what makes your soul happy’? I used to think that pertained to only jobs, and I was very narrow-minded in my understanding of it. You should do even the smallest things that make your soul happy! Take a drive, roll your windows down, sing your heart out, take photos if you love that! It was such a simple way to feel good and overcome my nagging anxiety for that short time. What small things make YOUR soul happy? 

Take a drive and explore places close to where you live, you might be pleasantly surprised by what you find! 

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