we opened our door a year ago.
the visible was clear.
we were swapping suburbia for city living.
established church was a thing of the past. we were starting from scratch.
comforts of a plush green backyard now hard concrete.
two cars now one.
noise was constant and people everywhere.
foggy and cold air.
endless view of ocean waters and buildings for miles.

in a city that finds any reason to celebrate, we celebrate one.
one year as Californians.
one year as San Franciscans.
one year in city public school.
one year of transiting through the city.
one year of constant unknowns.
one year of begging God to do the impossible.

we asked the boys and ourselves:

What was a fun first in the city?
living close to a Major League Baseball park
walking to the grocery store, bank, post office, library
trading in chain restaurants for local restaurants

What was a sad first in the city?
not having our friends nearby
waking up at 645 am to get ready for school
missing a backyard and not being able to let them run freely outside

What was a funny/embarrassing first in the city?
having the van towed
Sam dressed as Buzz Lightyear walking downtown for Toy Story 3
seeing naked men riding bicycles along the Embarcadero

our church grows.
our friendships deepen.
onto second grade and entering kindergarten.
small groups multiply.
boys know the route of the N, T, J, K, and M trains.
they know cross streets and what countries their friends are from.
the city doesn't seem quite as overwhelming anymore.
all this is a result of pressing through. learning. eyes open.

My hope for our family is that every year will seem like year one in some ways.
May we keep believing God for the impossible.
May we never grow stagnant or numb to the ways of the world,
rather breathing a freshness, a kindness among the broken and beautiful here.

As we chug up the hills of our city [sometimes feeling like it'a a 90 degree climb], one of us always says, "Get your hands up!"
When we have a win, a moment of thanks, a sigh that we have made it through, we throw our hands up.
now on to year two with an attitude of year one.