Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Those Last 3 Months (and 2 FOs)

Why the long radio silence? Here goes...as quickly as I can.

Shortly after the year started, I found out that the woman who owns the house we were renting in ABQ wanted to put it on the market. Couldn't blame her as I was coming to a similar conclusion about the house I was renting out in Minneapolis. But where and when to go?

Perhaps it was because my 46th birthday was nearing, kicking me into what I hope is the second half of my life—hey, I come from some hearty Scandinavian-Irish stock with many a 90+ birthday celebrated, so it's not irrationally optimistic. Perhaps it was because when I started looking around at the piles of crap lovely stuff that had followed us across the country on our Westward moves, I started to feel like a Hoarders intervention could be on the horizon. And perhaps—no, most definitely—because the past few years had redefined intense.

And so the Great Downsizing Dream was born. A small, cozy place with less space and objects to clean. Pre-baked landscaping with the beauty that I, frankly, lack the patience or skill for. Maintenance and repairs in someone else's hands, and checkbook. A downsized, yet upsized, life.

In other words, step off the moving sidewalk before you're catapulted face first.

A lovely apartment was found. The first of dozens of Goodwill trips were made. A spring break moving "vacation" was planned. (The kid would eventually forgive me—the new place had a pool!) I was a woman determined and in control; I would live in 1/2 the space with 1/3 the stuff. With God as my witness, life would be clutter-free!

And then work got crazy in a way that I can't describe, mostly because I've so thoroughly blocked it. The planned-for vacation time got cut short. The remaining charitable trips were replaced with a frantic call for a junk van. Seriously. Here's the photographic evidence.

Fast forward 2 months to today, with work back to it's "normal" pace and the apartment finally losing that warehouse veneer. My knitting needles are once again in action. There's the dish towel that started this post to christen the new kitchen. And a scarf that, while blocked back at the house and worn several times in February, didn't get photographed until it was unpacked in April.

More later...I've still got some unpacking to do. And a house in Minneapolis to sell.

Friday, May 13, 2011

Puppy-Sized Update

Why don't I just carry the theme forward and begin this post with: How can it be May already? That's certainly a lot easier than explaining where the past three months have gone. And since it's Friday, that's really all I have the bandwith for.

Violet turned one a few weeks back and Izzy fretted long and hard, determined to make it "her best birthday EVER." I tried to take the pressure off by interjecting that, honestly, the bar was low. First birthday.

Kid was havin' none of it. She wrapped and rewrapped the chewtoy several times. It'd be fun to watch Violet tear through wrapping paper. Then again, a gift bag is so much...more. At least the cake was an easy decision — a "pupcake" from our local cupcake emporium, complete with a mini bone on top.

Here's how the celebration played out from Violet's point of view.

Hey, whatever this is about, swear it wasn't me.
Maybe they didn't find that chewed sock under the bed...
Is that what I think it is?

Toy, what toy? There's tissue paper to play with!

More than anything, isn't it comforting that first birthdays are all the same?