Monday, February 13, 2017

My Ode to Portsmouth, New Hampshire

It's hard to believe we're fast approaching the 6 month mark of when we left Portsmouth, but this past weekend when we were back in the area visiting friends in the beauty of the snow I had a bit of nostalgia for our 2 years experience there.

If you had told me at the beginning of 2014 that we'd be moving to New Hampshire later that year I would've laughed. Boston, maybe, but Portsmouth? Never! I approached the move with trepidation, but now looking at how things have turned out on the back end I'm grateful for our time there. 

Our 1st family picture announcing our move to New Hampshire
I've written a bit about our experiences there from interesting commentary to what it's like raising kids in New Hampshire, but taking a step back, here are 5 reasons why I'm glad we were able to take what ultimately felt like a sabbatical in Portsmouth, NH:

Natural Beauty - for the duration of our 2 years I was in constant amazement of our gorgeous surroundings; I would often say to Uka that it felt like we were on constant vacation. Coming off 7 years in NYC-metro it really felt like a burden lifted off my chest breathing in the fresh air and experiencing the peace being surrounded by nature. We especially loved being able to get the beach in under 15 minutes and even during our 1st winter experience there in 2014, Portsmouth was still gorgeous under all that dern snow 

Camaraderie - we made lifelong friends in Portsmouth who we miss dearly and we were so touched when so many came to visit us in December when we had our housewarming party

Arts, Culture & Food - while New Hampshire was the most homogeneous place I've ever lived, I was amazed at the offering of outstanding events and restaurants

We were frequent visitors to the Portsmouth Public Library - I miss it so much!
I was honored to speak the Digital Portsmouth series sponsored by the Alpha Loft and the Music Hall Loft
I would make the trek back just for the pork bun at Anju!
We loved having visitors during our time in NH including my BFF Julie - we saw Misty Copeland's documentary at the NH Film Festival
At Prescott Park - we experienced many outstanding performances here

Popovers on the Square: wear stretchy pants!

Politics - if there was any time to live in New Hampshire it was during a presidential election season; being able to witness it up close with my children was a unique experience

We along with friends stood together at the BLM/anti-violence vigil in Market Square

Nia was so patient waiting to see Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders appear together for the 1st time - the line was EPIC!

Family Time - Mr. Lovebird had been traveling 2 out of every 5 weeks up to Northern New England when we lived in Jersey City and our move put an end to that

Fun with the selfie stick at the First Day Hike
Exploring the annual Tall Ships event
Stealing a kiss at Acadia National Park
I am so thankful for our 2 years in Portsmouth and the beautiful transition it turned out to be as we moved back to a major city. Thank you to everyone who welcomed us and made our time there so special.