i’ve been keeping a big secret…

by | Apr 4, 2022 | a slice of life | 129 comments

For the past few weeks, it has been a little bit hard for me to know what to write here on the blog because there have been big things happening in our real life and we decided to keep it off of my blog and social media until the time was right.  Of course, our family and friends have known, but I wanted to let my blog friends, many of who have been with me for over a decade, know our news…

We sold our house and we’re moving back to the east coast this summer!

dining room makeover | miss mustard seed

The decision was bitter-sweet because we love where we live.  We love Rochester, Minnesota, we love our church and community, Jeff loves his job and we love our house.  So, why are we moving when we are very happy where we are?  Typically a move is caused by a nudge that says it’s time to move on.  Something is completed or there is a desire for change.  In this case, we’re not being nudged, but rather pulled.

For the past year or so, Jeff and I have wondered how long we would live in Minnesota, which is a 17-20 hour drive to our closest family.  We felt like we would eventually move closer to them, but the timing had to be right.  Of course, we were considering where our boys were in school, the age and health of our parents, and other factors related to work.  We felt like we could stay here until our boys graduate high school or we might feel prompted to make a move sooner.  We just didn’t know, so we waited.

In January, Jeff and I both had the sense that this was the summer to move.  We have only seen our parents once in the past year and that’s just not enough.  We want to be available to help them when they need it and we want the boys to create great memories with their grandparents.  We prayed about it and sought counsel before we made the decision in early March that we would get our house ready to sell and move this summer.  We listed our house a couple of weeks ago on a Friday, had a busy weekend of showings, and signed a contract on a Monday.  With the inspection behind us, the house is officially under contract and is sporting a sold sign.

remax results sold sign | rochester mn | miss mustard seed

And now the real craziness begins!

The beach trip was at a terrible and perfect time.  Between getting out of the house for showings, packing for the beach, getting normal work done, and keeping the house spotless for the inspection, we were totally exhausted.  Soaking up the sand and surf, quietly reading books, collecting shells (that I now have to move), putting together puzzles, and playing games were exactly what we needed.  But, it was also not what we needed because there is a mountain of work to be done.  Packing, selling things, arranging a move and storage.  It’s a lot!

So, I bet you’re wondering where we’re moving.  Well, we don’t know, yet!  We are looking in a general geographic area, but we don’t know specifically.  We trust that will become clear in the next few weeks.

Our moves are always nailbiters.  (You can read the amazing story about our move to Minnesota HERE.)  Twice before, we sold our home while Jeff applied for jobs and just trusted that the timing would work out.  When leaving a position as a pastoral staff member at a church, it’s not like leaving a job where you’d quietly conduct a job search and then give two weeks’ notice.  The church is Jeff’s job, but it’s also a ministry, and the staff and members are our friends and church family.  It is so important to us that we “finish well.”  So they were and are a part of the process and we’re thankful for their prayers and counsel.  We’re taking a big step of faith and it’s comforting to do it with friends and family supporting us.

While the destination isn’t clear, we know it’s the right move at the right time.  We’re taking a step of certainty into an uncertain future.  But, I suppose the future is always uncertain.  I am eager to know where we’ll land, though, so I can start looking for our next house.  I am hoping with all hopes that I can find a great old house or at least one with good bones that needs some cosmetic work.  We absolutely love our current home, but I am really ready to gut a kitchen!

shelf styling | miss mustard seed

So, this is what all of my tidying and refreshing and simplifying has been about.  I have been taking pictures along the way, so I will back up a bit in future posts and share more of the process of preparing our home to sell.  This is also why I never finished the family room makeover.  (And also why I replaced the deer head with a pond yacht!)  I wish I could’ve finished that makeover, but it seemed wiser to not go all in and paint the wet bar, trim, and doors blue!  My house was already pretty style specific, as you know!  Other than the basement, I do feel an overall sense of completion in this home and I’m ready for a new challenge.

fireplace makeover | miss mustard seed

We’re going to lighten the load quite a bit for our move, so I’ll be getting ready for a yard sale, will sell some things to a local consignment shop and on Facebook Marketplace/Craigslist, and I’ll be selling some shippable antiques online.  I’ll share more details once I start getting things packed and organized.

I have to say, it’s a huge relief to share this news here on the blog and to be able to talk openly about what I’m working on and why I’m working on it.  I also know many of you pray for our family and it’s nice to know people will be praying specifically for our next church, community, and home.  I will definitely share more as everything unfolds.

For now, I need to make lists and get the bubble wrap ready…


  1. Linda

    Best things out where we live now is family is within 21/2 hours of all our kids. We love it after years of military and missionary moves. Know your parents will be thrilled!!!

    • Alexis

      That’s such exciting news! Just getting around to reading about you update!

      Come on over to Long Island, our church even has a position we’re hiring for for Jeff! Located in the picturesque town of Oyster Bay!

      Praying you will finish well and find a new place to call home soon!

  2. Jean C.

    We live across the street from 3 of our 10 grandchildren, and we love it.

  3. Kristin Becks

    I’m late to this post, but nevertheless, this is exciting news! My husband and I and our three kids moved from Pittsburgh, PA to Charleston, SC five years ago in order to be closer to family. I think people thought we were a little crazy to move just because it was for family. It wasn’t a job transfer. In fact my husband, who is a private guitar instructor, had to rebuild his studant base from zero moving here (he retained a handful of students from Pittsburgh) But the Lord met our needs even though we didnt have some rock solid plan! And as much as I still miss Pittsburgh and our friends and church family there, I am glad we are closer to family. Our parents won’t be with us forever and what a blessing it can be to have our children know their them. I know I was grateful to know mine as long as I did. All the best to you in the moving process. Can’t wait to hear where you settle!

  4. Linda

    I just saw your post about the big move and wish you all the best Marian! It will be so nice moving back East, closer to your family, which will allow your children to spend more time with them. I enjoyed following along on your PA to MN move and seeing all the changes that you did to this home and will look forward to seeing what you accomplish in the new one! Prayers to you and your family.


Marian Parsons - Miss Mustard Seed

I’m Marian, aka Miss Mustard Seed, a wife, mother, paint enthusiast, lover of all things home and an entrepreneur, author, artist, designer, freelance writer & photographer.  READ MORE to learn more about me, my blog and my business…

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