Growing up in our small town was so special. You don’t realize that when you’re 17 and so eager to move out and off to college. We were “bored” and “didn’t have anything to do.”
But we did.
We were always with our friends usually until the wee hours of the morning. For me, my best friend lived around the corner. So, I would sneak out the back window, creep down the alley, cross the street and a minute later we would be watching the latest Britney Spears music video, trying to learn the choreography.
There was always some kind of community event taking place. You know, the kind that happen every year. Same time, same place. Festivals, parades, sporting events; our town thrives on tradition.
It’s a town where everyone knows everyone. We could walk down to the local Drug Mart for a gallon of milk and see friends, teachers, neighbors, you name it.
It wasn’t until years later when I was driving back to Cleveland after a short visit that my heart really started to ache.
I missed those familiar faces, friendly hello’s, and the history behind every corner in that town. I missed home.
I never imagined I would marry someone from my hometown or even someone I graduated with from high school.
But I did and I wouldn’t have it any other way.
It’s comforting to have someone who gets it. Someone who grew up with his best friend just around the corner, someone who loved all of the same traditions as I did, and someone who missed the exact same things just as much as I do.
That’s why, when we started our own family, the decision was easy. We want our daughter to have the same experiences we had; lifelong childhood friends, a loving community, and tradition.
Don’t get us wrong, we absolutely love Cleveland and all of the memories we’ve created here. We fell in love here, started our life here and brought home our first born here. Cleveland will forever hold a treasured piece of our hearts.
But it’s time.
Time to move on, time to start our new journey back in the 330!
We love you Cleveland, but New Philadelphia is now and will forever be home.
Oh! Remember that childhood best friend whose house I used to sneak out to… we bought that house. Keeping it in the “family.” Because in this town your childhood friends are family. 💜