ENTERPRISE — Moving back to Enterprise a year and a half ago has been “just like moving home,” Taylor Miller said. “It’s kind of a homecoming for me.”
She grew up in Lostine and spent eight years going to college in Corvallis and then spent time in Beaverton. But she came back.
“I wanted to raise my kids here,” she said. “There’s no better place to grow up.”
Her husband, Chris Miller, works from home while they raise their 5-year-old twins — a boy and a girl. She’s both a veterinarian and a mental health counselor.
“I’m juggling two different careers right now,” she said.
Miller shared her thoughts on living in Wallowa County recently.
What’s your favorite thing about Wallowa County?
I know everyone says this, but the community really is why I’m here, why I want my kids to grow up here, I want them to learn about what it means to be a neighbor, what it means to be a community member. I want them to feel like they’re a part of the place, not just a resident. Also, there’s the natural beauty and the fact that we have seasons. Living over on the west side for all those years, I got really tired of all the green. I love the snow here. I know in a couple of years it might wear off, but for now I like the snow.
What challenges do you believe Wallowa County faces?
I feel like there’s not a lot of margin for error here in the careers people have — the businesses and farming, there’s a thin line between success and disaster. Anything that happens that affects the ability to survive, to have a life here can hit really fast and really hard.
How has the COVID-19 pandemic affected you?
All I can do is compare it to what my life would’ve been like if I’d stayed in Beaverton in a two-bedroom condo with no yard and two 5-year-olds. So the fact that I’m here and I have a yard and we have this entire outdoor world to play in, I can’t be anything but thankful.
Do you plan to get the vaccine against COVID-19 or are you hesitant as some people are?
I got my second injection this morning and I feel safe and healthy.
What have you learned from living in Wallowa County?
I would say that half of everything that’s good about me I learned because I’ve lived here.
What’s your advice for people who are thinking about moving here?
You move here because you want to be here and to thrive here. You have to integrate and be a part of the community. You can’t live here and not — well, you can, but it won’t work. If you’re going to live here, you’ve got to know your neighbors, get involved, read the paper, be part of the community.
—By Bill Bradshaw,
Wallowa County Chieftain