{Abby from Little Red Buttons} Away from Home


Today we welcome Abby for {The Story Behind The Photo}. Abby is an American ex-pat living in England with her husband and son. Both Kats are daily readers of her blog Little Red Buttons where Abby writes about her loves. Thank you Abby for joining us to share the story behind your photo x

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I was born and raised in the United States of America, but on the 1st of December, I will have lived in the United Kingdom for 8 long years. We’ve recently made the decision to migrate back to the US, and when we tell people of our plans, the first question they always ask is, ‘Why?’.

I usually respond with a bit of a shrug and a noncommittal, ‘Oh, you know. It’s time . . .’.

But really, the answer is much more complicated.

I love living in England, and I really love the small life we’ve cobbled together here.

And yet we’ve made the decision to leave it all behind, and that decision has everything to do with the two small girls pictured above.

This picture was taken in the summer of 1982, and I know this to be true, not because of our outfits, or hairstyles, or how tall we are, but because my mother has dutifully written names and dates on the backside of every picture that has ever passed through her hands.

This picture was taken at a cabin my grandfather built, on a lake called Blue, in the middle of Washington State.

I am the short one in yellow, happy as can be clutching a dead fish, and my older sister stands behind me, radiating pride in her Hang Ten t-shirt.

When I look at this picture I can smell the lake. And Coppertone suntan lotion. And gasoline from passing boats. I can hear my dad and grandfather discussing the depth of the Mariners bullpen, and my grandmother asking us to please close the screen door before we let all the flies in. I can see my cousins playing croquet and darts on the lawn, the vintage aqua and turquoise Formica table and chairs that my mom grew up with, and the exact shade of red the cabin was painted every few years without fail.

And I miss it.

Even though all that remains are my memories and photographs like this one.

Because, by family consensus, the cabin was sold. My grandmother passed away in 2008, my grandfather this January, and my sister and I, and all of our cousins, have grown up.

And I’ve missed it all.

While I’ve been busy living my life over here, time has not stood still back home. Which has meant that I’ve missed countless birthdays, weddings, and births. I couldn’t tell you what my nephews favorite toy is and my son has only met his American grandparents a handful of times.

And I’m really tired of it.

So I suppose it’s true when I tell people that it’s time.

But the reason?


I guess it’s not that complicated after all.


  • Kat G
    September 12, 2012

    amazing post. and you can imagine how deep it resonates.

  • September 12, 2012

    So beautifullly said Abby. Looking forward to hearing about all your new adventures back ‘home.’ xoxox

  • September 13, 2012

    Thanks so much girls! xxx

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