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  • Sarah Reijonen

New home, new adventure

“You have to be displaced from what’s comfortable and routine, and then you get to see things with fresh eyes, with new eyes.” —Author Amy Tan via Katie Spotz book, Just Keep Rowing

Only two weeks ago Spank had a phone interview with the public utility district in Chelan, Washington. Two days later he was hired there as a lineman.

Surprise, we’re moving! Believe me, it was a shock to me, too.

Sure, we’ve been roaming nomads for the last 13 years, bouncing between jobs around Calfiornia and hopping from state to state and country to country, but this is no “normal” Spanky and Sarah move. This one has more permanence. I know what you’re doing right now—placing bets on how long it will last. With our reputation, I don’t blame you!

Why, you ask? First: Why not? More than that, Spank has been feeling a tugging and nudging from God to be closer to family. We want to be a more involved part of the “village” for the little ones in our life, especially my nephew; plus, as we’ve seen more so in the last couple of years, you just don’t know what’s going to happen in our world so we want to make the most of our time with some of our family members who are getting up there in age. All it takes is the sudden loss of a dear friend or family member to remind you of that.

“If you want to change the world, go home and love your family.” —Mother Teresa

On top of being closer to family, we were also just ready for a change. Spank and I like to keep things fresh and new—if you didn’t already get that about us. There is real joy and growth in getting outside of your comfort zone. It’s never easy by any means, and I resist it every time I do it, but the reward is always great.

The Wild Child LOVES his Uncle Spank. We will definitely enjoy having more time with him!

Spank and I also feel like this move will give us a better sense of balance. We will get to see our family and Washington friends on a more regular basis and get to play a bigger role in the Wild Child’s life, as we’ll only be an hour from my side of the family. With Spank working four 10-hour days a week, we’ll also get to do more during the week and have actual weekends (he was working 6 and 7 days a week in California!) For a while now, we’ve had our work season and our play season, but our work season has turned into a grind of ALL work and very little play. On the other hand, our play seasons have turned into so much play that we feel worn, haggard and end up saying, “We didn’t need to take THAT much time off” at the end of those seasons. What we need is balance—at least in this point in our life. We want more play in our daily routine and more structure in our playtime.

Despite my sadness in leaving what has become our home in Placerville, it excites me to be going someplace new. Even though Washington itself is not new to me or Spank, there is plenty to explore and discover in our new home area. Plus, I’m actually excited to be in one spot. I know you may think I’m a gypsy who doesn’t want any grass growing under her feet, but I also crave stability and routine. I crave really being able to dig in and be a part of community. While I definitely felt that after being in Placerville off and on for 10 years, I also knew there was always the chance we would have to go elsewhere. This made me hesitant to fully commit. I always thought it would be fun to get into coaching or get more involved in my church, but I didn’t do it because I knew I couldn’t give it 100 percent. I never knew when we might have to move. Taking off for months at a time to travel or go to Washington for the summer also made that difficult.

Of course, I’ll mourn our old lifestyle, but it’s not like we’re hanging up our travel hats completely! We will always be wanderers. It’s in our blood now. We might take shorter trips and less time off, but we have a whole new backyard to explore—the North Cascades and everything else Washington has to offer. I may have grown up in that state, but I didn’t see much of it as a kid. At this point, I’ve spent much more of my life exploring California; in fact, I feel like I’ve seen everything I’ve wanted to see there. We’ve ticked all the boxes there in the last 12 years—it’s time to move on!

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Feb 18, 2022

My dear Sarah, I know I'm not alone in that this is not surprising at all. Just another turn in your life journey...your growth path. I'm so glad that I'm a very small part of your adventure. Bacharach said " Balance is not a final goal, but an ongoing process" and I think you see that clearly.

Coincidentally (?) I was recently reading Chopra's article on Seeking Balance...finding your true north.

I can't imagine that you haven't read Miguel Ruiz's "The Four Agreements". One of my favorite books. I say that because, you seem to be the epidome of his message.

Blessings to you both in your newest adventure my dears. We love you both so very much. Love and…


Feb 17, 2022

Love your writing Sarah. You bring me into your story and life with vivid detail and raw emotion. I love the tension you seek between balancing 'play in daily routine and structure in playtime.' I pray this new season fulfills and exceeds your expectations. Blessings friends!

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