From Athens to Here

Whenever Kip and Angie Dominy pass the fourth hole at The Landing their first words are, "Remember when..." They were raising their kids at Reynolds just a few years ago, and the flood of memories is what brought the four of them back.

This is actually two Moving Stories. It's about one family - Kip and Angie Dominy and their children, Noah and Lily - moving to Reynolds, moving away, and upon realizing what they left behind, moving back. They returned a little more mature and happier than ever to be here. So, what happened? Five years ago, friends knew the Dominys for living the good life — maybe the best life — at The Landing. They’d play all day and watch red and gold sunsets over Lake Oconee.

“It was better than we could have imagined,” Angie says from the family’s living room along the 11th hole at Oconee. It’s a different house and a different neighborhood, but the same homey feeling they remember.

“We’re blessed to be back,” Kip says, “but I’m sure you’re wondering the same question we ask ourselves: Why did we ever leave?”

[Kip] We thought we needed bigger. That’s the simple answer. The kids were getting bigger, so we convinced ourselves that we had to move away to a bigger house with a bigger garage. We were gone for two years. Let’s just say sometimes you don’t realize what you have until you no longer have it.

This is where our family memories were made... and are being made again. Angie Dominy

[Angie] The first time we moved here was much different. It was 2015 and we were living in Athens. At the time, Noah was 9 and Lily was 7. Kip and I drove down here to see if it would be realistic to consider a second home. [Kip] On our way past Lake Oconee Academy, we stopped and took a spur-of-the-moment tour. Everything about the school was state-of-the-art. That’s when our thinking began to shift.

[Angie] We turned into Reynolds and everything reeled us in. The landscaping, the roads, the green space, even the street signs. We began to think this would be an amazing place to raise our kids. [Kip] Before that visit, we mostly knew about the golf courses. I played here as a member of Mercer University’s golf team, and never forgot it. Our team saw some of the best courses in the Southeast and The Landing was at the top of the list.

[Angie] As a mother, I had a few hesitations back then. In Athens we never had to worry about finding things to do for the kids. Everything was so convenient. As much as we knew what Reynolds might be, I also knew we’d have to find new friends, a new church, and activities for all of us. Once we moved, all those concerns disappeared. [Kip] For the first year or two, we were kind of in shock about living this kind of life. This was not something we’d planned. We just did it, and never regretted it.

[Kip] The peace of mind for me is always huge. When I’m at work in Athens, I know the kids have plenty to do, and they’re safe doing it. [Angie] They’ve never been bored. We used to walk to The Landing pool and play softball on the playground every day — I mean, every day. Whenever we’d go on vacation, we couldn’t wait to get back home.

[Kip] Say the word ‘Landing’ and something happens to us. The memories come flooding back. It wasn’t even that long ago. When I play golf there now, I’ll stop along the fourth hole and stare at our former home. It’s like pulling out a virtual photo album. [Angie] I think being away for two years has made those moments even more special, and it makes us appreciate the new ones we’re making — and where we’re making them.

[Angie] The kids are teenagers now. It’s a different life stage, but a good one. I love hearing Lily laughing with her friends around the house. When we lived at The Landing, she wanted to play softball. Now she’s all in on volleyball. Last night we peppered with the ball outside and then sat and talked about sports and life. It’s easy to do all of that here.

[Kip] It’s funny to see how Noah’s interests have changed. When he was younger, I tried everything to get both of them into golf, but they were lukewarm about it. A few days after we moved back to Reynolds, Angie called me at work and said, ‘The kids are out playing golf.’ I thought, ‘Is this really happening?’ In fact, right now Noah is hitting range balls at The Oconee or The Landing. [Angie] I think he’s at The National, actually.

[Kip] Isn’t that awesome? The facilities and the open spaces here feed all these different interests. Our kids are living proof as they grow up. [Angie] We miss the times we had at The Landing. But the moments we’re enjoying today will be great memories, too, and we wouldn’t trade them for anything. It makes me glad that we came home.

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