September 22, 2014 by fifi + hop
After our move-in – and then a move-out, due to our floors being re-done twice (long story) – we officially settled back into our new house again a few weeks ago. I love it. I love the space we now have – bedrooms far from the kitchen on the second floor, and toys far from everything, down in the basement. I’ve wanted a playroom for my kids since day one…6 years later we finally have it. Most importantly, I love all the green we are now surrounded by – our yard, our trees, the smell of fresh cut grass. I love listening to the sound of the crickets and other mysterious evening noises, leaves rustling in the wind, the airy rooms we now have with all our screened windows. I keep wondering to myself how I went this long with not having the outdoors an immediate part of our family life like this, even in an urban suburb like Larchmont. We’re in a more “naturey” part of town, close to the beloved Leatherstocking trail, which traverses the woods of southern Westchester for miles– so not as urban feeling as other parts of town.
I am in my element, writing this from my laptop outside on our deck as the kids play in the yard. The light is hitting the trees at just the right angle at just the right time of day, a pale yellow tint breaking through the leaves. I am about to pop open some wine. I am at peace and more relaxed than I’ve been in a while. So again I wonder why we didn’t move out sooner. Must be a testament to how much we loved Brooklyn and the incredible community it was. Beautiful in its own tranquil way, very different from frenzied Manhattan. Had we never moved to Brooklyn to begin with, and tried to raise our children in Manhattan, we probably would have moved out much sooner. Brooklyn was the bridge between the two very different lifestyles.
I also think our not moving sooner had to do with a fear of “Stepford” life, and assuming that the town I grew up in (a more competitive keeping-up-with-the-Joneses type of place) was how all NYC suburbs operated. I had a narrow, biased view of the burbs floating around in my head, but really not based on much, just my own childhood and some of the pressures I felt as a kid that I didn’t want my own kids to feel. But obviously there are many NYC burbs out there, all with their own flavor, and really it’s just about finding the one that suits you. More and more I find myself talking to people who said they decided on Larchmont as a place to move for the same reason – down to earth and not as competitive as some other towns, towns they grew up in too. I still go back to visit my hometown all the time and my best friends from there are still my best friends, but it’s just not for me.
Which brings me back to – had I not had this sort of generalized view of the burbs, would we have moved out sooner, to be in an environment which is ultimately more suited to how we like to live our lives? Who knows. I have no regrets about anything I suppose, but certainly glad to be in a house that brings me this much calm and comfort.