Most of the boxes are unpacked now. Those that aren’t have been stacked up in storage, to be forgotten until we move again someday. There’s not as much to store as I’d anticipated. Turns out, I don’t want to hang on to all that stuff, the cute clothes that no longer fit and the iron candelabra that made me feel like I lived in a European castle. If we don’t have room for it, I don’t want it.
I came back from the Bay Area bone tired, yet hesitant in my new space. No oven yet, which made dinner preparation interesting. No shelving in the pantry, the remnants of my spice rack still nesting in a cardboard box. My shoes remained in another box in the closet, my wedding dress taking up 50% of the space in said closet (that would have to change soon, as space is at a premium in this place). Everywhere I turned I saw reminders of all that had to be done, not just for our house, but for the rental unit up front. Mike left for a business trip, and I rolled up my sleeves.
I got right to work doing long-neglected laundry and prepping for a yard sale. I sifted and sorted, ruthless in my paring-down process. I kept only heirlooms and items I’d used in the past year. At six a.m. on Saturday, I hauled it all out of our new garage onto our new driveway, and sat limply in my camp chair with a quart of coffee at my elbow. I had wrangled out the heavy dining table and eighty pound coffee table myself, dripping sweat by the time I finished. I sold my gray sheath dress for a dollar, unworn earrings for three dollars, my VCR for ten with a VHS copy of Peter Pan thrown in for free. Neighbors came out to introduce themselves, to welcome me to the neighborhood. One neighbor brought a carton of cherry tomatoes from her garden, and another bought our old picnic basket and spatula set.
This is a neighborhood where the residents petition the city for one hour parking and form a neighborhood watch, poking in each other’s gardens and business. A departure from my prior neighborhood, which bustled with urban noise and lively children at all hours. So far living here has been peaceful. Different.
Throughout Mike’s absence I worked like a carpenter ant during the day and collapsed on the sofa at night, drinking in the dark silence. The windows opened wide to catch the evening breeze, I had a complete view of our front yard, where an Ent-like tree guards our tiny new house. It feels like nothing will ever harm us here in this cocoon of greenery.
There is still a lot to do, but it’s slowly starting to feel like I belong here. No, Mimi still won’t come out from under the bed except to eat and to sleep on top of the coverlet with us at night, but she’ll warm up to the place. Moving is hard on everyone.
I feel the emotional weight if your move. That’s a great double edged sword word isn’t it?
When mini adjusts, her mom will too
Lance recently posted…100 Word Song – Wish I Could Fly Like Superman
Ah yes, a double-edged sword.
Glad you feel so at home already. That’s awesome.
I REALLY want to see your Ent-like tree now…
and what a great way to meet your neighbours 🙂 Hope you get some shelves in your pantry soon, and a cooker!
Considerer recently posted…Ten Things of Thankful #60
I’ll put up pictures of the tree, eventually. It’s a sight to behold.
I just love that you had a yard sale AFTER you moved. Classic! I swore I’d never move again after our five-years-ago-now move. The one thing I see as a boon is the paring down and weeding out of STUFF.
I hope the cat comes out soon!
Kristin recently posted…The Most Easily Preventable Form of Gun Violence
Yeah, there was no time to do it before we moved, because we were showing the house and had to keep it nice. It was so hard.
I’m happy to know your neighbors are friendly.
Me too, that was such a relief!
I have such a love/hate relationship with moving! It’s been eight years since our last move and I get the itch to do it again, until I look around at all the stuff. So much stuff. You have to post a picture of that tree…I would so love to see it!
Sandy Ramsey recently posted…So Long Summer, Time To Go Back To School
So. Much. Stuff. Fortunately, I had done a big purge five years earlier, so it wasn’t quite as daunting as it could have been.
It’s good you’re getting rid of all the stuff you don’t need. I had moved so many boxes that hadn’t been unpacked from the previous move, and it took me ten years to deal with them. Your new neighborhood sounds great.
Marcy recently posted…Abandon All Subtlety
I know. For peace of mind, it had to be done.
I admire your ability to get rid of stuff before the move and the yard sale afterwards, great idea! I had plans to spend this week home with the kids going through their old toys in preparation for a yard sale but we visited friends instead. Now I wish I’d followed your good example.
Ellen recently posted…All Together Now
Well, it wasn’t a fun way to spend the weekend. It felt good afterward, but oh…so not fun.
Moving and selling and paring down is hard. Glad you’re starting to settle in.
Michelle Longo recently posted…Science Fun at Liberty Science Center
It is, but you’ve been an inspiration to me. 😉
Great post! My family is moving from England to Texas in (gulp) less than a month. I’m so in denial….
Jill recently posted…$h!t not to say to multi-racial families
Wow, that’s quite a culture shock! Good luck!
that cynking feeling
Even if you aren’t completely settled, I’m happy that you are moved. That time before a move is so tense with stuff half-packed.
that cynking feeling recently posted…ringing phones, wringing hands
It is. It is.
Congratulations, you have a neighbour who brought a carton of cherry tomatoes. Here in China, I haven’t found such a neighbourhood in last three years and there is no hope in future too. I am thinking to move Australia or NZ, not married yet; hopefully it will be easier than yours. I am learning to get rid of unnecessary things. They just bring unnecessary memories. Have fun at new place!
Abdul recently posted…Road Is Long…
Thank you. Good neighbors are hard to find, especially in LA…
Love Happy Notes
I’d like to live an edited life, but when faced with trimming down the accumulation, I feel bamboozled. And moving is exhausting: we’ll be doing it soon too. Congratulations on finding the energy to share your post! Hope your gorgeous kitty settles in soon.
Love Happy Notes recently posted…Let your Light Shine!
It’s not easy. Moving to such a small space has helped.
Oh, moving is hard! I moved 8 times in the last 10 years and it hasn’t been fun. The only upside is we get to de clutter our home each time. But it all piles up again when we are well settled. Vicious cycle, if you ask me. You seem quite the strong woman 🙂
Shailaja V recently posted…Luminous- #FiveSentenceFiction
Wow, that’s intense! Though yes, that’s one thing I appreciate about moving, is the chance to de-clutter.
I recently moved from the middle of my state to the west side (west siiiide! sorry, it’s a reflex). I admire your ability to host a yard sale after a move! I just wanted to set fire to everything and start over.
Mollie Claire recently posted…It’ll all work out
Haha! I know all about that reflex! It was tempting to just set fire to it all, or at the very least dump it at the Goodwill, but we needed the cash to help with the gardening costs, lol.
Patricia Rivera (@patrilablogger)
Ah, you took me back to moving, which we unfortunately do way more than I like. You’ve also inspired me to do a garage sale and sell all our stuff (though I would love to buy your candelabra!) Glad you’re in a nicer neighborhood and great essay.
Patricia Rivera (@patrilablogger) recently posted…Birthing
I miss the candelabra! I’m already regretting getting rid of it.
Sounds like a good move for you, but poor kitty, hopefully she’ll feel as comfortable as you in a few weeks.
She’s coming out of her shell a little…
Reading this makes me miss you. Is that weird? Perhaps there is simply something to be said for sitting on a hotel room bed next to somebody, and to looking for them in a conference, that binds.
Also, I’m completely impressed that you did a moving/garage sale after your move. Each time I’ve moved, I’ve been so disappointed in myself for giving away things that I wish I’d brought with me – because moving is such a pain in the butt.
Here’s to settling, and moving, and moving on and up, and all of it. Here’s really, to you.
Kristi Campbell recently posted…It Is With This Body
Not weird, actually very sweet and makes me miss you too.
I don’t know what I was thinking, holding a yard sale after moving, after BlogHer. I guess we just needed the cash and desperate times, right?
aw what a beautiful kitty! I give you tons of credit for doing the sale alone. The early morning sale vultures around here scare me a ‘lil.
Jen Brunett recently posted…Gargleblaster: Last Flight
Samantha Brinn Merel
Moving is so, so hard; not just the actual moving of boxes, but the more existential, “I live here now and not there” kind of hard. I totally get it. But I am here to tell you that soon, and without you ever realizing it, the new place starts to feel like home.
Samantha Brinn Merel recently posted…These Are My People
My husband and I swore we’d stay at our current apartment for 3-5 years. We’ve been here just a little under 2.5 and we’re itching to get out of here despite the fact moving sucks goats. I’m still in school so we’ll see how things go.
I hope your precious Mimi comes out soon. She’s a beauty. I might be biased though since I love cats have three of my own.
Kim recently posted…Stand By. Changes in Progress.
Today is a day I’m looking at couple new blogs. At time I thought of moving so I can get rid of my stuff. To much stuff is over whelming.
Stop in some time for coffee
peppylady (Dora) recently posted…Liked Is It Over Or Under Valued.
Poor Mimi. 🙁
Jennie Goutet recently posted…Why do you read A Lady in France?