That’s what the sign said as we first entered Colorado 11 years ago this month. The military had uprooted us once again. We’d already moved five times in the nine years since getting married in 1992. Our boys were just five and seven years old, having just finished kindergarten and the second grade, and they were already pros at this moving thing. Me? I lived in the same house from the day I came home from the hospital until a month before I turned 18 and joined the Air Force. I’d only been out of the state of Michigan twice until then—once to Wisconsin with my dad (he was a semi truck driver) and once to Canada with the high school choir for a competition.

By the time we moved here though, I was also a pro. The military life isn’t for everyone. Moving isn’t an easy thing, even if you are a pro at it. In the days before Internet and Facebook, it was difficult to stay in touch with all the friends you’d made everywhere you were stationed because you had to use, gasp “snail mail”! But here we were, newly arrived to Colorado, and ready for a new adventure. With only four years left until my husband hit his 20 year mark with the Air Force, we knew this would probably be our last military move. It took us three hours to drive through Denver! It was six years before I went there again because I didn’t want anything to do with that traffic! I’m a country girl, so I’m not terribly fond of big cities. Yet we moved to Colorado Springs. The biggest city I’d ever lived in. (I grew up in a town of less than 500—no that’s not a typo)

We finally made it to the Springs and Peterson Air Force Base and got checked into a TLF (Temporary Living Facility, which is a fancy name for a hotel room for all you non-military!). We spent a few weeks there while looking for a house to rent until we knew the area well enough to decide where to buy. Now, 11 years and three houses later, we call Colorado “home”. Our boys don’t remember living anywhere else. Shoot, they don’t even remember living in the rental in the Springs. They’ve grown up here, and I’m happy they’ve had the opportunity to grow up in a place they love. I do have one question, though.  Why do they call it “Colorful Colorado” when most of the open fields are brown??? :p