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12 Things I’ve learned After a Year in Nova Scotia

One year ago today, we landed in the Halifax airport a little bleary-eyed from our overnight flight and full of curiosity about what the future would hold for us. We wandered up and down the Halifax waterfront, taking in all the sights and breathing in that lovely salt air. We’ve been here a year now, and while it hasn’t been always easy, it has been so very worth it. To celebrate, I came up with twelve things that I’ve learned over the past year, in no particular order.

shoes, converse, memories

1. The seasons here are perfect, just long enough to fully embrace but not too long that one tires of them.

2. Autumn is my favourite season and Nova Scotia is my favourite place to experience it. (Quebec being a very close second)

3. Seafood is not a staple of a Nova Scotia diet. Fresh seafood abounds but from my questioning of where to buy it, it doesn’t show up that often on dinner plans. We love haddock and try to have it once a week. I have yet to cook lobster and mussels, they intimidate me but by this time next year, I want to have cooked them.

4. Going to the library is always a good idea when moving to a new place, our local librarians are fantastic and made me feel at home within the first month of settling in.

apples, produce, nova scotia

5. The Annapolis Valley is one of the most fertile regions in Canada. I love walking to the farm market and selecting produce from whatever is in season and knowing that 70% of our diet has been raised and produced within 100 miles of our home.

6. Peggy’s Cove is more breathtaking then any pictures show. It’s one of my most favourite places in the world and is where my dream home is. Or one of them at least.

Peggy's Cove

7. I love the water more then I ever did before. So do my girls. So does my man. You would have to drag us away from it.


8. People will let you down, hurt you, and challenge you but they will also delight you, love on you, and seek friendships with you.

9. Moving across the country, making a lifestyle switch and choosing to pursue a big dream is both the hardest thing we’ve ever done and also the best decision we have ever made.

10. It takes time to find your groove, your places and your people. Embrace the process.

11.  All those pithy quotes about life and dreams are true- its hard, it seems impossible but it is worth it and doing what you love is the only way to live.

montreal, travel, family, road trip

12. Slow down. Live in this moment, and do one thing each day that makes you happy.

What have you learned over this past year? Have you made a big move or lifestyle change?

{ 17 comments… add one }
  • Aimee Wimbush-Bourque August 29, 2013, 9:43 am

    So beautiful, B. And I agree about Peggy’s Cove.

    I wish I could pop over and walk you through a few seafood dishes. Once you try, you’ll see how simple it can be. Good seafood needs nothing more than a dollop of butter, sprinkle of salt and maybe some lemon or herbs to finish it off. Give it a try. 🙂

  • Heide August 29, 2013, 6:39 pm

    I, too, love living in this bountiful farming area! Every trip to the farm market is like a treasure hunt this time of year :). And yes, I love all the seasons, too, except for March and April (what season is that anyway ;-)?). The other thing I love about having moved to a completely foreign place is that there is always something new and exciting for me to discover, even after 7 years. Always a place I haven’t seen yet, a food I haven’t tasted yet, a family outing we’ve never done before. Hope you guys are enjoying this last bit of summer!!! Heide

    • Breanne :: This Vintage Moment August 30, 2013, 11:10 am

      It is so lovely, Heide, and the discovery of new places and people is part of the beauty. Hope you are well, I think of you often and your thoughtfulness when we moved in. Enjoy this season! XX

  • ramblingtart August 29, 2013, 10:21 pm

    I am endlessly proud of you guys for being so brave to do this. 🙂 What have I learned this year? Pain lessens over time. There’s always hope if we keep trying. There is something good in every day, even the worst ones. Kindred spirits don’t have to be next door to enrich your life every day. Creative pursuits are essential to my happiness. Fresh air is wondrous medicine. Going for a walk is always a good idea. Failure is not bad. Real love is worth fighting for. Things always look better and more manageable after a good sleep. Australian period murder mysteries are just as good as British. Reaching out to love some one is THE most courageous thing you can do, especially when you don’t feel lovable. XO

    • Breanne :: This Vintage Moment August 30, 2013, 11:11 am

      13. Have a brave companion who will answer teary emails, send hugs and smiles, and never cease to make each day better by herself. I am SO glad you are in my life. And I love, love what you have learned even through all the hard and messy bits. XO

  • Jenn @ A Simple Haven August 30, 2013, 7:01 am

    Love this list! And your photos are beautiful.

    I’ve so enjoyed following your transition over the last year; it’s encouraged me in my own :).

  • Sherrie Landers Graham August 30, 2013, 6:58 pm

    I’m delighted to have found your blog a few weeks ago – if you’re ever in Yarmouth, let’s cook up some lobsters! My dad’s a lobster fisherman, and I’ve been cooking them since I was old enough to chase them across the kitchen floor. (It seems to be a favourite activity of fishermen: set lobsters loose after babies. Hilarity ensues.) I’m glad to be following along!

    • Breanne :: This Vintage Moment August 31, 2013, 9:54 am

      Sounds like a great idea!! And the whole lobster and baby thing cracks me, I would probably laugh before rescuing the baby. ;-P

  • Joy Bouter August 31, 2013, 5:26 pm

    I love life in the this Valley and glad you do too! Your posts over this summer have inspired me to visit the beach more often! Thanks for that because we’ve really enjoyed it!

  • Sarah November 2, 2013, 2:52 pm

    Somehow I have been linked to this post twice now. It has caught my attention because my daughter has been accepted at Acadia University and I wonder about life in Nova Scotia.

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