Regular life mixes with preparation for change. We have friends over, write commitments on the calendar, and pack boxes in anticipation of time away.
Yesterday, tired of not being able to unlock or start up our one remaining vehicle without cursing and burying a crock of cabbage in the back yard under a full moon, we took the car to the shop for the day. Turns out we needed new keys cut. Of course, it took twenty-four hours and several bike rides on Groom's part to get that sussed. In the meanwhile, we rented a U-haul for wheels, as the cost was cheaper than renting a car for a day. Plus, we needed a big vehicle to handle a run to the dump:
As junk stacked up, awaiting departure, Paco and his buddy worked on whittling and glueing magic wands.
Running back and forth to the house for glitter, strings, and scissors, I appreciated the explosion of blossoms in our back garden. The lilies and daisies--along with pork--are something I'll miss a great deal this next year.
Another thing you can do with a U-haul is bring home a heap of empty boxes from liquor and grocery stores.
Bit by bit, our basement is filling up with bags of bedding, tubs of clothes, and boxes of knicknacks.
We call our interior design scheme "Glad Chic."
This is all a bit daunting when we realize we're still just packing "around the edges" and won't touch the big, daily stuff for a few weeks yet. We may need to hire a perma-U-haul and park it out back, full to the brim, for a year.
Every week, we're taking a huge load to Goodwill. By the next week, a new stack has grown under the stairs--much of this, though, for some sort of yard sale (Paco's got his eyes on a few sets of Legos for the road...):
At least there is evidence that we're on our way towards denuding the house of all things personal:
...but mostly we're creating lots of stacks of "this to there" and "that to here"...
And, really, what does one do with the Pictionary?
Just walking away from the heaps, out into the sun, can save sanity--and remind us how much we'll miss the neighborhood. Moon sand proves perfect amusement for ages 1-10:
And ooblek ("slime" of corn starch and water) buys us more time away from stacks of "what to do withs"--
When ooblek fails, a more serious recipe is called for, this one by Ruth Levy Beranbaum (who gives the impression she will reach out with a slap if one fails to rotate the dough, folded side to the left, three times, just as prescribed):
Of course, once one has made it through the threat of a slap and the stress of a household half-packed, the rewards are immense.