Loft living. Kristen and I have always talked about the prospect of living in a loft at some point in our lives. Concrete floors; exposed brick; 15 foot ceilings; and massive windows with spectacular light. Romantic. Inspiring. Spacious. A few years ago, we walked through the open studios at SOWA in South Boston. We dreamed of living in a loft one day...of being surrounded by other artists who fed our creativity and sparked further inspiration within us. And last August, this dream became a reality. After searching high and low for a home to spend our final year in MA, we stumbled upon an incredible opportunity to move into Western Avenue Lofts in Lowell. If you live in the MA area, I encourage you to check out Western Avenue Studios in the adjacent building. There, you will find over 200 artist studios, a cooperative gallery, a music rehearsal space, recording studio, and open studios the first Saturday of every month. Some of our dearest friends are making incredible art that you should be aware of and support:
Our mill building was built right around the turn of the 20th century and is a space for artists to live and work. In many ways, the space is like a blank canvas with limitless options of how it can evolve. And for us, it was a journey of building, repurposing, throwing out, selling, reclaiming, and repositioning our most treasured possessions until it felt like home. What you see is the end result of this long process.
If you're still reading, I want to put this before you: often times, our lives can seem somewhat picturesque to the outsider. We hear it from folks here and there...and to be honest, it's true that not all is at is appears. With the way that social media
is these days, I fear that some might surmise that we live an ideal life filled with palatial, estate weddings, mountain bed and breakfasts, successful music tours, a dog that never has to go out at 4:15 AM, and 17 hour road trips without pulling the car over to fight it out.
Honestly, this has been the hardest year of our lives. We've experienced great happiness and deep joy in many, many things. In many respects, we've had more to celebrate than ever before. But we've also found ourselves fighting for something we treasure more than any possession...our marriage. Over the past 372 days of living and working in the same space...of releasing an album...of shooting more than 20 weddings...of owning a business together...traveling to over 15 states and transitioning out of a job and preparing to move to another part of the country, we've walked through some dark, dark valleys...sometimes together; and sometimes apart.
But through it all, I really can say that we've learned what it means to love one another and to keep fighting for someone if you truly, truly love them. And I'm fully certain that I love my Kristen more than I ever have before. Love is fragile and yet it's stronger than death; it's complicated like that. But we've set one another as a seal upon our hearts and our arms. And we've entered into the 7th year of our marriage with more resolve than ever before to keep fighting for one another and the covenant love that we share. With every wedding we shoot, we're reminded that we're in this until the end.
"A tree I'll grow to let you know my love is older than my soul."
So long Massachusetts. You have been a wonderful gift to us. And we will miss you.
Sunday we leave for our new adventure in South Carolina. Be blessed.