So, after twenty years on Harvard Avenue, we are moving. This is not our first move – our new home will be the eighth house we have lived in since we were married in October of 1973 – but this move is different. For one thing, we have lived here twice as long as we have lived anywhere else. For another, it is the first move not associated with a job relocation. And it is the first move within the same city.
Actually, we are only moving 2 ½ miles away, so it’s not that big of a deal. So why did Lizzie burst into tears last night when she removed the house key from her keyring and put it on the table? And why did the other girls all start to sob in unison with her?
Because this move is a big deal. This is the house where we raised all of our children. Lizzie was just seven years old when we moved here from Arizona. Holly, it is true, was already at BYU in college, but this home has been her home base for twenty years, and living as she does in Cincinnati, its sale is leaving her feeling a little groundless. This home and this neighborhood shaped our children’s lives and our lives.
This old home is in the Bonneville Stake. When we moved into the home in 1994, our bishop was Robert Fowles, whom we had first known when he was in medical school in Boston. The Mackeys (as in Randall and Margaret and their amazing children) lived across the street from us; Margaret had lived in the same building as our first apartment – 170 End Avenue on the Upper West Side – many years earlier.
I served on the Bonneville Stake High Council for nearly six years. When I was called as stake president, twenty-five percent of the members of the Quorum of the Twelve lived in the the stake. I called Daryl Hoole (yes, that Daryl Hoole) as stake relief society president. Jeff Edwards, with whom I had hiked the Grand Canyon back in our Arizona days, served on the High Council. My predecessor as stake president was the legendary Theodore Marshall Jacobsen, my successor was none other that Oscar Walter McConkie III. I felt like the Iink between two giants. Our next door neighbors were Roger and Colleen Thompson. My counselors were Fred Babcock (right, the architect) and Rick Evans (the attorney). Two-thirds of the founding partners of Durham, Jones and Pinegar lived in our ward. The list goes on. The fact is, everyone in the Bonneville Stake is a luminary, whether you have heard of them or not.
Our children attended East High School – yes, the East High School of Troy and Gabriela. We watched them film portions of High School Musical 3. It was also the East High School that their grandmother attended, celebrating 100 Years of Excellence this year.
So this move is a big deal. This house shaped our lives. It made us who we are. And having become who we are, it is time to move on to a new adventure, make new memories, create new experiences, and keep growing. The best is yet to come!
PS: If you follow Justin Hackworth (@justinhackworth) on Instagram, he just posted a beautiful photograph of our Harvard Avenue home!