My loyal readers have followed my life journey these past years. You all know how excited I was to move from Pennsylvania to Pawleys Island, SC, even though it meant leaving my childhood home in Jim Thorpe, PA.
Moving from that large brick historic home on West Broadway in the Pocono Mountains was a trauma. Moving into our smaller home near the beach was quite a change.
The big house in Pennsylvania was a big part of my life for 53 years. When we sold it and moved away, people wondered how I would cope. Surprisingly, it was easier than I thought it would be. I had thought of that house as my Mom and Dad's house. As wonderful as it was to grow up in, the house and its location became a burden as I aged.
The home here in Pawleys Island has been my refuge for almost 12 years. It is the first house that was truly mine and I took time to fix it the way I wanted. It's all on one floor (as opposed to the PA house, which had 4 stories); has three full bathrooms (which are a God-send when family arrives); it has a garage attached (allowing me to unload groceries and stay dry); plus it is located in a peaceful pine forest close to the ocean.
Now we are adding a third house to the mix. We recently bought a home in Ocala, Fl – in a 55-and-older community called "On Top of the World."
No, we haven't sold our Pawleys Island home yet. But, we have wanted to be closer to our family in Florida for years now and saw an excellent opportunity. The real estate market is a buyer's market in Florida right now. Hopefully, someday it will also become a seller's market in Pawleys Island and we can go back to owning only one house.
The old saying "Home is where the heart is" is true. My heart is with our daughter and her family; thus the reason for buying in Ocala, which is about 90 minutes from Jennifer's in Oviedo. From South Carolina, we have an 8-hour trip whenever we want to see those loved ones. We've been known to drive those 8 hours to attend a 3-minute piano recital.
This new Florida house is wonderful. It has two bedrooms and two full bathrooms, a lovely eat-in kitchen, a library/den with built-in bookshelves, a 2-car attached garage with a screened front, and a great location. The large live oaks that line the street in front make the whole development look peaceful. The bike paths, swimming pools, and activity schedule make us both anxious to live there. An extra-added plus is the fact that my sister and her husband own a home two blocks away. We sisters are looking forward to spending some quality time together.
Believe me when I tell you – this move (when it comes) will be much harder than the last one. Leaving the Pawleys Island house will be difficult. I had honestly thought that would be my "last" house. Now the rolling hills of Ocala will most likely be my last residence. But, the excitement of having new adventures in our future make the trauma a little less. Plus, being able to see the kids more often is a blessing.
So, 61 West Broadway gave way to 27 Carol Lane and now we add 8802A SW 92nd Street to the mix. Wherever we are, life is never boring!
IF YOU WOULD LIKE TO CONTACT DR. SMITH, SHE CAN BE REACHED AT HER EMAIL ADDRESS: JSMITH798@SC.RR.COM  OR IN CARE OF THIS NEWSPAPER.