Monday, August 6, 2012

Vision Board

Those who know me already know that my current dream is to move to Asheville, NC.  My friend and I visited Asheville for the first time last year.  We were there for only a couple of days but I felt an intense draw to it.  Driving back home after that trip, I could not get it out of my head.  I had a strong feeling that I was supposed to be there and a strong feeling that it would be a good thing for my family too.  I told my husband, Jay, my feelings when I returned home and he was open to checking the city out (bless him for being willing).  He said he saw a spark in me when I returned and I think that is why he was so open minded.  To me, Asheville represents inspiration, art, culture, music, nature, and endless opportunities to become well rounded individuals for my children.  It's a place where I can thrive on inspiration and may open opportunities I never expected.  It's a place where my children can still do the normal things they do in our current city but where there will be new opportunities they can't find here.

I started researching schools first.  We have three young boys and their education was going to be the deal breaker if it did not look promising.  As I researched though, I learned that the school systems are great and offer a lot of different programs.  Once we knew that, Jay and I scheduled a weekend trip to Asheville so he could check out this place too.  Long story short - Jay fell in love too.  We entered into planning mode - told our kids the plan, our families, and started researching the area more and working with a realtor.  We took our boys to Asheville in the spring and they fell in love as well.  We wanted our boys to finish out the 2011/2012 school year in our current town but were hoping to sell our house and move in the summer of 2012. 

Unfortunately, the housing market had other plans.  We learned that we were more upside down on our current house than we initially thought.  That was a bit of set back for us because it pushed our plans back possibly a year or more.  I was really disappointed but, we are responsible homeowners and we are content where we are right now so we keep looking ahead.

In order to stay focused on our dream, a friend suggested I make a vision board.   I had never heard of this so I googled 'Vision Boards' and found so many inspiring ideas.  They can be anything from a scrapbook, to wall art, journaling, online inspiration, etc.  I decided to create a vision board within one of my Pinterest boards.  It was a perfect way for me to pin things that inspire me and keep me moving forward.  I look through the items I have pinned and, when I'm feeling low, I seek out additional items to encourage me to keep going.  As a result, my vision board items are probably the most repinned items out of all of my Pinterest boards.  You can see it HERE

Another great way I stay inspired is to go through the photos that Asheville inspired me to take with each visit. 

On my first hike in Asheville.  This was taken in August 2011.

In the River Arts District, there was an abandoned building near the railroad tracks where people were taking photos.  Within the open building, this old dirty couch sat in the middle of water and trash.  Someone had written 'Christ's compassion' on the couch.  The special part about this photo is that heart-shaped light.  There was no window or any special effects.  At the moment I saw this couch, the sunlight shown on it and made that heart.  I snapped the photo.  Is that a sign or what?

A street performer in downtown Asheville.  His sign says it all and is probably my biggest source of encouragement on my vision board.  Dude was in heels, on a balance board, juggling knives.  It's a challenge...a tease...motivation to keep looking ahead...

Jay.  My husband, biggest fan, supporter, and willing to pose for a photo in front of a blank canvas, sitting in a dirty chair in a studio building.  I'm so thankful that we are in this together.

The top.  Our dream.  This was a hike that Jay and I took together.  It was a tough hike for me because of some health challenges I have but I was determined to get to the top.  I made it -- I may have been sick for a few days after but I made it and it was worth it.

One day when I was back at home, in our routine, working, and I was feeling discouraged.  I work from home and had my door shut, just working away.  Suddenly a folded piece of paper slid under my door.  Jay wrote a note of encouragement and, wrapped in the note, was a small rock.  He had taken it from this exact mountain and kept it for the perfect moment to give it to me.  He said that if I could climb that mountain, I can easily keep going to achieve our dreams.  Man, I love that guy.

I will probably have other posts and photos and things inspired by Asheville in blog posts.  It will help keep  me going and motivated.  I highly recommend a vision board for whatever dreams or goals you have - big, small, or in between.  It's a great way to keep your eyes on the prize.

Dream on, dreamers...

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