My name is Lauren Himmelreich, welcome to My Suburban Country Life. I hope you’ll visit often and leave your thoughts and comments, as well as any interesting tips or stories you’d like to share.
When my family and I decided to move from our picturesque, rural country setting to the busy city of Calgary three years ago, I was determined not to leave my country life style and everything I had learned, behind. You see, my husband and I were both raised in Calgary, so we were city people who loved living near down town and enjoyed being within walking distance to work and everything else. We had never considered living anywhere in the country, until we were asked to house sit for some friends of ours who lived near Kananaskis. That’s what did it. We REALLY enjoyed how peaceful and clean and beautiful it was out there. We began day dreaming and making plans right away, to find a place like that of our own.
One day, when I was looking through the rural real estate news, I found a teeny, tiny little add that described what sounded like the perfect place for us. We drove out to see it the next day. Unfortunately, we had no idea where we were going and got a bit lost. To be fair to my husband, it was very dark, there were no signs, and we had never been to that part of the world before. The next time we went out, we got some better directions, it was day and we were already more familiar with our surroundings. I remember when we pulled up to the property, there was snow everywhere! The entire five acres was covered in this beautiful, pure white snow, sparkling and dazzling in the sun, surrounded by huge, tall evergreens that reached up to the perfect, pure blue sky! The contrast of all the colours was spectacular! It took our breath away! We walked out into the snow which was about hip deep on me, and we couldn’t stop smiling. If it was this beautiful in the dead of winter, how great would it be the rest of the year?
So we bought it in January, and began setting down our roots. It was a steep learning curve, I remember I didn’t know the difference between a useful plant and a weed. They all looked the same to me. I soon made some amazing friends in the area though, who inspired me and taught me all kinds of things that before moving there, I had never given a second thought to. Little did I know how passionate I would become about all these new things I was learning, and what an important part of my life they would become. I guess you could say that living in the country became my journey of self discovery and self awareness. It’s the place where I came to know my real self.
When we moved back to the city after living in the country for 16 1/2 years, and having six kids, everything felt so different. People were different, the environment was different, the schools were different, nothing was what we had grown accustomed to. It was very, very hard, to get used to so many changes. I felt too, that if there were any positive things to like about living in the city, that I would somehow be betraying the lifestyle I had so deeply fallen in love with, so when people asked me how I was enjoying living back in the city again, I would usually just smile and say, “It’s nice, it’s good that my husband doesn’t have to commute so far into work anymore, so it’s all good.”
Some people would ask me how city life compares to country life, and what is so different, and what did I miss so much about it? How could I possibly answer that? It’s just one of those experiences that you have to have yourself in order to understand. Anyone who’s ever lived in the country for long enough knows exactly what I’m talking about, right? Still don’t know how to answer all those questions, but hopefully through my blog, I can express some of the thoughts and feelings I have about country living, and why it’s made such an incredible impact on my life, and the way I think and the things I do. Like I said before, I’m determined to bring my country living experiences into my new suburban life. And why not? Life is what you make it, there’s no reason why I can’t lovingly tend and cultivate a little patch of earth in my back yard the same way I loved and tended the many acres I left behind. I feel like there’s always a way to beautify, improve, learn, and live abundantly, no matter what our circumstances may be. A very wise friend once said to me, “It doesn’t matter where you live, it matters how you live.” Grow where you’re planted!