Monday, July 16, 2007

Saying Goodbye

We have called Ann Arbor home for the past 9 years. It has been a wonderful place to live. There is one teensy-tiny drawback to living in a college town, though, and that is saying goodbye. I don't think I can even count how many friends we have lost when they finished their time at the University and moved on. Even friends who were not here for school, friends we thought would never leave, are gone now. Today I am watching Maddy, Lauren and Lizzie as their mom and dad pack all their possessions into a moving truck, clean their condo, and get ready to drive to Nashville. Eli will miss being chased on the playground by Maddy, and Adam will miss being in the same kindergarten and primary classes with Lauren. Here are Maddy & Lauren with their mom at a recent barbeque in their honor:


Just a few weeks ago we lost Willa & Wyatt, who have gone to make a new home with their family in Kansas City. Willa helped Maddy chase Eli on the playground, and whenever she played at our house, she got the boys playing house, or school, or store instead of their usual Pokemon or Harry Potter games. Wyatt was our one friend who wanted to play as much as we did, so he was always ready to come over at a moment's notice. Here is Wyatt with Eli and Adam during his goodbye sleepover in the tent in our back yard:


Another wonderful friend that we are losing this summer is Brand. Brand, Adam, Wyatt and Jake were the four musketeers in preschool two years ago. He is moving with his family to Japan. Here he is with Adam and Jake at Jenny's Farm Stand in Dexter last fall:


This Friday we will be attending a goodbye party for Adam's friend Vinicius, who is moving back to Brazil with his family. Vinicius was in the same kindergarten class as Adam, Jake, and Lauren, and he played soccer with the boys as well. Here he is with Adam and Jake at Plymouth Orchard during a school field trip last fall:


The major loss that started out the summer was saying goodbye to our beloved Aunt Leslie, who finished graduate school, packed up her room in our basement, and moved back to her home in Utah. Here she is, wrapped up by Eli, on the day of her departure:


Our one solace is that sometimes we get to see our friends again. Eli's friend from kindergarten, Aidan, moved to Maine last year. Luckily, his grandparents still live in Michigan, so we got to see him in February when he came out for a visit. Here he is in our living room enjoying Pokemon cards with Eli and Adam:

Another way of seeing old friends is to visit them in their new homes. The friends we get to see most often are those that live near our parents. Last summer we got to see Dan & Christine and Pete & Nicole while we were in Utah. Here is a picture of Dan & Christine on the front step of their beautiful home in Draper:


We also got to see all four of the families from Ann Arbor that have settled in Boise, where my parents live. Here is a picture of our friends McCall and Olivia (and a random neighbor) at their home in Boise last August:

Later on the same day, we had an Ann Arbor reunion picnic at Municipal Park with the other families that live in Boise. Shown here are Brigette & Don with Sage and Micah, Gwen & Rich with Olivia and Lola, Potato Girl with Eli, Adam and Esther, and Rachel with Emily and David:


Because my hard drive crashed last year, I don't have pictures of many other friends who we've visited over the years. We've driven to Dallas to see Jordan & Andrea, to Cincinnati to see Matt & Suzanne, to Atlanta to see Jason & Carolyn. We've visited Tami & Dave and Erin & Mark in Utah, and Lybi & James in Arizona. If you look through the links to other blogs on the far right of this page, you will find many friends that used to live in Ann Arbor. If you are reading this, and you are our friend from Ann Arbor, please get yourself a blog and send me a link to it so I can keep track of you. Maybe some day we can have a big reunion here in Ann Arbor. Until then, we blog.

9 comments:

Carly said...

Loved seeing all these fun memory photos! Thanks for sharing them. We miss Ann Arbor, most especially for the friendships we made.

The Cherry Family said...

Andrea, this is what I faced all growing up. I seriously consider it a huge blessing that about the time one friend moved out, another one would move in. But saying good-bye is still not fun!

Potato Girl said...

When I was growing up, we were the ones that moved away. In some ways, that seems easier than being the one left behind.

Byron said...

I'm just dying thinking that you guys are the one's next on the list. Totally rude. As Jack said, "Why does he want that dumb job anyway?"....

LL said...

I guess the upside is that everywhere you go, there is someone you know. :-)

Carolyn Hansen said...

I loved the trip down memory lane and we too share your heartache. We miss all of those friendships too! Unfortunately, we now live in another college town and are going through the same thing over and over again.

aussiegirl said...

Ughh. Don't even get me started on goodbyes. This is our 9th year in AA too and if I have to say goodbye to one more friend, I'm going to be SO sad. I was always the one leaving growing up and I have to say that it's super hard being the one left behind. You'd better stay in AA, or I'll just pack up and come with you!

Rebecca said...

Now we're going to be in your shoes: Durham, NC, is just another AA when it comes to comings and goings....and the craziness of figuring out who's actually here to do what in the summertimes! I still remember the trauma of being left behind by my best friend years ago.... It's definitely easier to leave than to stay!

Abbigail said...

YEAH!!!!! Awesome to see the old Ann Arbor crew in Boise. I ran into Rachel a while back in AA. It was the best.

I ditto Becky's comments. I am so sick of making friends and having them all move away. then being so busy when we are visiting with family that we don't even get to see them. Looking good!