Thursday, March 24, 2011

Greener Pastures...

Recently our little family accepted a job in Los Olivos, Ca. (just outside Santa Barbara). We will be working and living at the Dunn School. The picture on the front page there is seriously what it looks like ALL THE TIME. The beautiful Santa Ynez Valley and mountains surround us there as well as farms in every direction.

Many of you know that the city life has never really cut it for me. I have this dream of my children growing up on a farm surrounded by a back to basics life and one that includes the birth and death of animals, the change of seasons, and a calmer, more relaxed churn your own butter kind of life. As much as my son loves living next to the busiest fire station in Long Beach, I want more for him than car rides to the local nature spot. I want nature out our front door. I want to be able to be able to leave the front door unlocked and even let my child out of it without fear for his life.

Dunn and Los Olivos has so much of what we are looking for. There are no big boxes in the entire town, there is only one main street that when you drive down it instead of walk, people stop to see who that is. Wildflowers bloom in the spring and cover the hillsides. Does this picture not seriously remind you of the opening scene to Little House on the Prairie? The school has an organic gardens, pigs, and soon a chicken coop with fresh eggs for the taking. The schools dining hall (3 meals a day are included) throws nothing away. It is all composted, given to the pigs, or recycled. Elijah is welcome anywhere on the entire 50 plus acres. There is a pool, tennis courts, a gym, art studios, music teachers, and about two hundred over qualified teenage babysitters.
Oh and did I mention the chickens are coming? I have been assured of this and will build the coop myself if I have to.

Dunn has a strong community and one I am excited to be a part of.

By living at a boarding school, we can see daddy for lunch every day. We can give him a kiss in his office whenever we want. He no longer will spend two hours of his day in the car away from us polluting our precious Earth (even though he does have a hybrid), and we will be getting rid of one car (gets a bit closer to my goal of a minimalist life and zero impact living). There is a Waldorf school in Santa Barbara if we go that route either for my work or Elijah's education, and we will be closer to my child's grandparents who also live in Santa Barbara. And even if we were to drive every day to Santa Barbara, what a difference that would be. When we are in the car here, we are passing an advertisement every 10 seconds at least, buildings, and other cars, but driving in Los Olivos, the only things to look out the window at are rolling hills, cows, Lake Cachuma, and vineyards.

But here is the hard part.
We have a life here. Even my son of a mere 20 months has strong friendships to say the least. He has a second "mama", "brothers" and "sisters" and people who would die for him. I have a community, one that began with my school or even before with my job as a nanny and has continued with life long friendships that nurture me like no other. My second career of providing parent education is beginning to flourish. Even the midwives and doctors I love are here.

We have to start over. :(

Doing so will be the hardest thing I have ever, EVER done. So many faces have been flooding my head since making this decision. Tears are frequently just at the brim.
Knowing that Santa Barbara is only a 2 hour drive gives me hope that I will not loose all those precious, precious faces.

So with that I say, we are off for some new adventures and a new daily life taking with us the experiences and people who have made us who we are today. Always know you are in our hearts and souls forever. Yes, YOU!


  1. I wish you the best on this new chapter in your life.... I admire it and envy it as well.

    I definitely have not doubt though, that the connections that you have made here will stay with you. I have only known you for a short period but your warmth and personality can not be forgotten.

    I can not wait to read all that you go about doing up there through your blog. I would definitely enjoy living vicariously through your experience there. ;)

  2. Hello Tracy. Congratulations on motherhood; I recently became a father. It is an incredible adventure. I hope you enjoy your time in the open spaces around Los Olivos. There is a lot of great outdoors to enjoy in Santa Barbara County!

  3. I knew it would happen. I had a feeling as soon as you told me it was a possibility. This sounds JUST awesome! And the way you are you will keep your old friends AND make new ones. I am so excited for your family. I WISHED so sincerely to live in that area! YAY!

  4. How Wonderful for you and your family, Tracy. Though this change may be difficult at first, it will inevitably prove to be an adventure filled with so many new opportunities that will allow you to continue to grow in the direction you and your family want<3 Congratulations, and all of our best wishes to you!!! BLESS