Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Adventures in moving part II

Our house went on the market today.

If you know of a nice family that wants to move to our house, then send them our way.

Until someone buys the home, you can see the house here:

I also shamelessly stole some of the pictures from that link, shown below.

Here it is, our house for the last eight years.

Our lovely kitchen, with the hickory cabinets.

Dining room.

Living room.

Garden path.

There are more pictures on the website, but the pictures are small. It's a lovely home, and will be lovelier still when all our stuff is gone. If you had any reason to move here, any reason at all, I am sure you would love to buy our home. And you would definitely be welcome to offer more than the list price. No problem.

Meanwhile, we get to keep our house clean and tidy for the next three months while we try to sell it.


So much to do.

Thursday, April 23, 2015

Adventures in moving, part 1 of a gazillion

Because classes have ended, and because I was working all weekend at a conference, I took the day off today to do some cleaning and preparing for our move. 

How does one really prepare to move? You can clean, and you can sort, but can you really finish all that must be done? All the cleaning? All the sorting? Eventually your time is up and you just have to move. Ready or not! Here I come!

We're going to be ready.

Ha ha.

We are planning to put our house on the market next week. And we have called moving companies to give us cost estimates next week. That means we need everything clean, and we need to decide once and for all what stuff will stay and what will go. And where it will go. And when. And how? How in the world can it possibly go?

I started my day in the basement, in the yellow room, with the storage shelves. There was one shelf, I knew, with all the white picture frames. I don't want the white picture frames anymore. I would take out the photos, and box the picture frames for donation. And that job would be finished in less than an hour.

Only under the picture frames were several folders. And in the folders were three years of Jonathan's artwork and reports and pictures from preschool. And so I spent my first hour looking through photos, and thinking about how small Jonathan was. And how funny his artwork looked. And how life used to be back when he was two (there were instructions on potty training!) and we lived in Texas and his teacher was Miss Janie.

I eventually pulled myself away from the preschool folders, and did some yard work and other chores that needed to be done.

But later in the day I found myself sorting picture books. Over many years, our family has gathered many, many picture books. And these days, no one reads those picture books. It is time to donate them to a family who will love them as we loved them. Only as I started looking through the picture books, I remembered those evenings reading to Jonathan, or having him read to me. Here were the books he used to pick out over and over again. Many of them I had memorized at one point. And the pictures! The pictures were little slices of memories. That time won't come back again!

I couldn't donate them, Reader. I pulled out a few just for myself. And then a few more. Ok. I pulled aside a good third of them to read to myself when I am feeling nostalgic. Hello-Goodbye Window and Madeleine and Kitten's First Full Moon.

And then the toys. No one plays with those toys anymore. But each one of them has a memory. The jungle set we bought in England for Christmas. The stroller and shopping cart that were often roped together to make a train or subway. Remember how Jonathan used to run around the living room pulling them? And the wooden sword and shield from the castle in Wales.

Really, how do people get rid of stuff? We don't use it. We won't use it. We don't need it. But it represents happiness. It does. All those memories lie on the floor in the basement, and on the shelves, and they sit there year after year, waiting. Just waiting until the day I pull the stuff down again, to try to sort it, to dump it, to give it away! And then it jumps on me and attacks me! Nostalgia! How did those days get so far away? How did the world change so drastically?

I don't want those days back. I don't.

But the stuff! I want the stuff. The stuff is Jonathan, age three. Or age four. Or Miss Janie. If I give the stuff away, maybe I'll lose all those memories. I don't want it. I don't need it. I won't use it. But I'll cry if you make me give it away!

Boo hoo.