Updated: Oct 23, 2021
Back in 2013, when we moved to the South, I remember that day very clearly because it was Memorial Day weekend. It was extremely hot and humid, like nothing I have ever experienced in my life. I did not like anything about this new location. I did not like the neighborhood, town, grocery store and the slow movement of people. It was truly the Low Country, with everything being low and slow. The most important disappointment was the house but more correctly, the cottage in which we would be living. It was old and ridiculously small. That weekend, we moved from a 6000+ sq. foot house to 850 sq. foot cottage. I remember saying to my husband, “There is no way we can have children in this space.” Leaving our former home and my first American friends was not easy. I don't consider myself to be an adventurous person and moving to the South was definitely an adventure.
Take a look at pictures from our last day before our trip. So many friends came to say good-bye and to wish us well with the next chapter of our lives.
After living in the South for a little bit, I started to realize that the Low Country wasn’t so bad. I discovered that it was the weather that caused people to move slowly. With the beach being accessible year-round, the constant blooming of flowers, people relax, smile and live like they are on vacation. Starting a new job also gave me the opportunity to make friends. It was then that this new place began to feel like home. Our church family of St James Orthodox Church made a huge difference too. They welcomed us and we have been so truly thankful for their fellowship.
My husband, who is a contractor, began to make changes to the house. He changed out the old electric panel, the plumbing, replaced the AC system, added a new patio, a new roof, new windows and cut down old unhealthy trees. Pretty much everything was renovated except the adding of square footage!
It wasn't until after having our first son Thomas, that we decided to increase the square footage of our cottage.
First and most importantly for me, the size and efficiency of the kitchen was addressed. I designed the kitchen and David built it. It became a small but very versatile space being easy to maneuver with everything in the right spot. This was accomplished by adding only an extra 200 sq. feet. This the current kitchen that you see me in when I am making videos for you.
Next, we built a guest house, so our family and guests could stay on our property when visiting.
After all those renovations, our second son Johnny was born, and we were once again in need of additional space. I thought it’s not possible for us to live in this current space, but somehow, we managed.
We projected the new renovations to begin promptly but had to wait. This renovation was put on hold for quite awhile and then 2020 happened. What has been interesting about 2020 for us is that I began this blog and since construction work was allowed, we finally began our latest renovation. Personally, I think this past year has been exceptionally difficult, but our family chose to make the most of it. Finally, after almost 7 years of waiting, it was the year of the pandemic that forced my husband to start on the last renovation of our home.
With love, Inna