Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Pericope: Picking Up Where We Left Off

When my thankful journal was unpacked the other day, I opened it up on the unfamiliar kitchen counter and saw these last things written at our old house.  I remember writing "re-offer"---  the couple offered, backed out and re-offered and now they have our home.  Yes, it's a hard thankfulness, but I can be truly thankful and be sad.  This was one of the last things packed but three weeks went by and I wrote nothing.  Now living life and sleeping in a place I'd never laid eyes on a month ago,  I'm feeling a bit more grateful.

I could write a book on our last few weeks.  Only I would read it-- my own mother wouldn't.  It would be page after page of me whining, wondering how I had accumulated so much stuff... again, wishing my family didn't need three meals a day, thinking how 42 feels a lot different when you are working like a maniac all day, how much I love ibuprofen, questioning my every book purchase over the last six years {took up half the truck}, thinking that maybe my love of dishes needs to lose its luster in the years to come, pondering what it would be like to live in a tree house with a mattress and one extra pair of clothes........ Maybe the most monumental change was deciding I was finished making decisions for a while.  Everything I touched while packing and even unpacking, a decision had to be made... keep to use now "UP" meaning "unpack", keep to use in 10 months "DUP" meaning "do not unpack", keep to store in attic of rental, keep to store in very old, questionable weather proof storage shed at the rental, keep for sentimental reasons, give away, throw away... and after a while the last seemed to be the best option for everything.  Here is one of the last things sitting on my kitchen counter.  Yes, the bottle of 500.  And that's my first thing I am thankful for if you were wondering if I had forgotten my point.

Of the last things I packed..... We had our S'more and Caramel Apple Party the Wednesday night before Thanksgiving to say goodbye to our neighbors.  Driven by my sweet tooth, I always plan to have caramel left over to do the apples at least once or twice more over the next few days so Em's parents were in town so I thought, we'll certainly do that.  Thanksgiving came and went.... and by Monday things just needed to be put in boxes.  So there's the crock pot full of hardened caramel on the kitchen counter, complete with wooden spoon sticking out of it and in the box it went, along with my camera bag, random desk-like things, ibuprofen, hand towels, oh, and my 50 cup coffee maker.  I just found it Saturday, spoon still in the caramel.  

Mmmmm.... want some? Right by the old dust buster.

The Friday after Thanksgiving is our day to decorate for Christmas so before we stacked the rental house with boxes, we put up lights, a tree and few decorations.  I can say now, I don't know if we would have gotten that done......sweetly......had we not done it that day.  

And who makes FOUR orthodontist appointments during their pack, move and unpack weeks?  It was one of those things Julia had been asking to do and in my mode of "finish EVERYthing", I took her.  We were 3 for 4 and everyone at Dr. Kelley's office was gracious about my brain lapse.

We moved boxes ourselves {plus a LOT of help} and had professional movers move our furniture-- the heavy stuff, but there is NOTHING like people you will see again seeing how much JUNK you have.  Mortifying.   House things look very strange on your lawn or driveway.   It's like the back of the cross stitch or needlepoint.... or your garage/attic or your laundry room or the master bath room-- people just aren't supposed to look there.  Seeing this truck in the drive was reality coming into focus after days of having my head in closets, attics, cabinets and boxes.  {My niece sending me pictures of her shelling in St. Augustine didn't help.}

Someone likened Brighton to a Golden Retriever the other day and this is concrete evidence.  I can't remember the exact day Jeff found this note on the bed but it was right when we were in the thick of it. At the time, we were popping Motrin and moving the note out the way in order to lie down... incredulous and somewhat endeared at the same time.  Love that kid.

And then there's the day you just need one of these.  An Oreo Blizzard with pecans and cappuccino syrup.   I could move/lift at least 20 more boxes after this cup of yummiliciousness.

The porch doesn't look so bad in this picture but let me tell you, it was like a bad eviction for several days.  I hated it for our neighbors but we didn't know what to do with so much of it!  At that point, we were wondering where our toothbrushes would go.  I took this picture because of the familiar site of a book in a random place.  Julia, after locating a book, had been in the swing at some point reading.  I think it was one of her ways for a little visit with normalcy.  Seeing this was good for me too.

One of the coolest things that happened during all of this was that we got to meet as "Watermark Fort Worth" for the first time.  January will be two years that we've been waiting on what the Lord would do about a new church in Fort Worth.  We are beyond happy that Watermark Dallas is now adding the Watermark Fort Worth campus.  

Hmmmm............Thank You for a washer and dryer. I texted my cousin and sister in law and said I was pretending to be on vacation at the beach since this is what's in the house on St. George.  Not feeling it.

First play date in the old house-- I remember this day like it was yesterday.  We weren't settled at all but these girls had so much fun.

Just last week, these two {a different friend} came hobbling in from the back yard begging for a quarter.  They aren't as glamorous but they are STILL playing dress up.  Our dress up box just keeps getting bigger....and more scrappy.

 Call it what you want-- cheap, stubborn-- but we didn't want to rent a storage facility so all of our furniture needed to find a spot in the rental house which is half the size of our house we just left.  After thinning out through the move process, here is the one chair that just won't fit.  Not even greased with Vaseline.  It's one of the first pieces of furniture we purchased 20 years ago-- oh, those jewel tones.  It's spent a lot of time over the years in Brighton's room and looked great with his western boy colors.  But now it's just a chair without a home.  And when I say there is NO room, I mean it, unless we set it in the middle of the kitchen.

Jeff hung our dining chandelier because it's the best place to store it in the meantime.  It's too big for the room, but it's familiar and I've already fed 10 under it.  It just feels right.  Thank you, Jeff.  And thank you even more for not making me go back once we left.

Jeff went back three, maybe four more times once we left.  It's the worst-- going back for all that didn't make it into the truck---the random things that just seem to be a part of the house because we were so used to seeing them in certain places.  One of the last loads he got from home had the kid's hearth time Bibles and devotionals in it, another stash of picture books, my Grandmother Julia's silver plate I had intended to use Thanksgiving and a huge picture on the wall.  After we'd been gone for 5 days, they still found my Ikea food storage containers in the kitchen cabinets.

As I've said, it's hard to leave home.  It's so familiar that you can't even see what needs to go. Over the last two weeks, a couple of us have admitted awakening once, thinking we were in our old house.  I think we'll get used to our stuff in this new house and soon it will be our home.  We'll get used to having to use BOTH hands to open the old lock on the front door and turning sideways to get between the couch and piano.  We'll figure out how to navigate 3 adults and 2 kids in two small bathrooms.  We'll get used to the kids walking through our bedroom to get to their bedroom.  We'll enjoy the small sitting areas, vacuuming half the house without unplugging, our little school area, the large front porch and swing, the incredibly friendly neighbors, and how much warmer a house with 8 foot ceilings is.  Thank You.

We ate lunch on the swing the other day.  It squeaks as all great swings do.  Brighton didn't like it.  It was "annoying".  Julia was quiet....thinking before she spoke.

"I like that sound.  It sounds to me like it's saying 'Everything is going to be okay.'."

I'm glad she thinks so and I believe she's right.  

And I say "Thank You".

1 comment:

Emily said...

You said it in an earlier post and I have FELT it so many times since, it is the FAMILY that makes the HOME, not the HOUSE. Love the bungalow! And you're energy and perseverance during the move was an inspiration. Truly.