When I first moved to Arkansas I knew nobody outside of Nate’s family who lives here. Not a soul. I knew what Little Rock looked like in one small radial area where everyone I knew lived, but otherwise had little understanding of the area. I didn’t know the small towns, the cute shops, the gorgeous landscape, the history and proud heritage.
In the almost two years that we’ve lived here I’ve come to know some truly incredible people with outstanding stories and hearts big enough to love us well through this change. I’ve discovered that the entire state of Arkansas is amazing, a hidden gem in our great country. And this discovery – of a new place and new people that all felt like home immediately – has been one of my biggest inspirations and motivations over the past 20 months.
Last week I went to Moss Mountain Farm and spent the middle of the day with some truly exceptional men and women. We toured P. Allen Smith‘s stunning home and gardens, which I’ve done before but I doubt could ever get old. I could probably spend a month there and still leave some of the fabulous stones unturned, which is good because I’ll be back visiting again next month!
This particular event was really timely and completely relevant (as they always are) for me right now as it was teaching us about the Arkansas 529 College Savings Plan. Nate and I both had outstanding college experiences and education, and our hope is that we can share that same gift that our parents gave us with our children. It’s not to say that there won’t be a price – saving money rather than spending it in the now isn’t quite as exciting, but it’s something we know will be worth every penny. I can’t stress enough the difference that having an account for your kid(s) can make, but you can certainly find out a TON of info on the Arkansas 529 site. Not in Arkansas? No problem! Most states have their own 529 program, and thanks to the almighty Google you can probably find out a TON just by searching your state’s name and 529.
The biggest takeaway for me, besides house and garden envy of course, is that education is always happening. LIFE is an education, and it’s never going to be easy. But if I can do something in the now to ensure a future for my kiddos I’ll do it in a heartbeat!
So. The photos above. How stunning is Moss Mountain, amen? I’m so proud of my little garden but it just doesn’t compare. I could eat for years off of the goodness Allen has growing out there! And like I said, inspired beyond belief. I know when I create our REAL garden (like an in-the-ground garden) I’ll be basing it off of notes taken during these sweet little summer trips spent out there!