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I'm Home!

Here I sit at a cardtable in an empty gameroom, typing my first blog from Texas.

I made it!  I'm alive!  Barely.

Truthfully, I don't remember nearly as much as I should about the past few days, and probably more than I want to about some parts of those past few days.  We pulled a few days of staying up until 5 a.m. to pack, catching a quick nap, and getting back up at 7 a.m. to keep going.  The whole packing/movers thing feels like a bad dream.

And of course, after the movers left, I had one last evening of furious sorting and stuffing to get our plane bags ready.  Since we'd bought four tickets, I decided to take the maximum baggage allowance with us and save a few bucks on the movers (yes, I'm that cheap).  So we ended up taking eight - yes, EIGHT - trunks or duffel bags on the plane, as well as all our carry-ons.  The checked bags weren't such a big deal; we wrangled a couple friends into caravaning us to the airport and did curbside check-in, so we barely saw our bags at all.

The security check, though, was a different story.  While I had the diaper bag, Cora's car seat/stroller, my backpack, and the cat in a bag, Brian had Maddie's car seat strapped to his back and was pulling our rolling carry-on filled with things too important to trust the movers with (legal documents, jewelry) while also carrying the large soft-side bag that is Maddie's airplane entertainment bag and corraling the Madster herself.

Carrying this load by itself isn't too bad - we're weighed down but can manage.  But when we have to go through security and remove the (sleeping up untl then) baby from her car seat, fold the car seat stroller, remove all shoes and personal items, open and set up a laptop for airport security to test, persuade a sobbing two-year-old to take off her shoes ("No!  Don't make me take my shoes off!"), and literally let the cat out of the bag, and even my prodigious multi-tasking is tested.  I had to walk through security barefoot with a screaming baby on one hip and a crazed cat on the other.  And lucky me, I was singled out for additional security screening, so I had even more fun adventures while still holding both ("Ma'am!  Do NOT put down your objects until your screening is complete!" as if my kid's a ticking bomb to anyone but me).  But we survived and made it onto the plane, and watching the other passengers' faces as our baby-toddler-mom-dad-cat parade bumped its way down the aisle was worth the price of the tickets.

So we're here and exhausted and have spent the weekend getting somewhat ready for life in our new house.  We're still in the midst of kitchen construction, but all the painting and such was finished up yesterday, so now we simply wait for our moving truck to arrive on Wednesday.  Truthfully, I think these couple of days are the eye of the storm:  I sort of love inhabiting an almost-empty house, feeling the spareness and spaciousness of your life.  Your day-to-day life is put on hold - no laundry, no bill-paying, no household managment - and you simply take a few moments to breathe and look around.  For a few brief days, you can imagine the rooms any way you want them to be, and they're lovely in your head and not strewn with old newspapers and littered with toys and grocery receipts.  As much as it'll be nice to get our stuff, I'm somehow managing to suffer along with our mere eight trunks of toys and clothes.

I know, too, that when those movers show up it'll be another month of boxes and missing items and crowded rooms and frustration; I can't tell you how depressing it was to be working frantically to get everything packed, spending a decent chunk of change on boxes, all the while knowing I'd be undoing it all in a mere few days' time.  But that's the way it goes, and Stage 2 is almost upon us.

Maddie, by the way, has handled everything remarkably well and while she mentions New York and missing it, she is loving her new house and all the new things to explore.  Cora's ready to  crawl back in the womb again and I'm having a hard time even getting a five-minute break, but she's also sick with a cold so I'm gritting my teeth and hanging on.

There's lots more to tell - the culture shock as we are truly hit with the fact that we ain't in New York any more, the whilrwind of love that hit us over the weekend as family descended and helped out, the nervousness and loneliness on Maddie's part as we check out new playgrounds and seek out new friends - but frankly I'm beat. 

So I'll simply say that we're here, and after the past year of joblessness and uncertainties, it's good to be home.


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