Here continues the adventure of our downsizing move, in which I find a rental listing while I am out of town, my husband looks it over, and three days later it’s ours. The new house has 63% of the square footage of our current house.
Monday: Hubby picks me up at airport. I throw my suitcase in the back seat and change from a sweater to the sleeveless top he brought me, since it was 32 F when I left that morning and it’s 82 F now. Two minutes later, we pull up in front of our new house. Two neighbors are waiting for us. (We’re early). We get the tour and wind up hanging around for over an hour, meeting everyone on the block and eating mandarins off the tree in OUR NEW BACK YARD! The most recent addition to the neighborhood (besides us) has lived there a mere 18 years. It transpires that two of the neighbors have banded together and bought our house cooperatively, perhaps so they can collectively vet tenants. We learn that we were the first of 84+ callers.
I’m in love with the house! It seems smaller in person, but also cuter. I like the exterior color better. Most of the storage didn’t really make it into the photos, something very interesting to note the next time I trust my husband to pick out a house for us. Extra cabinets – always a happy surprise! We go home with a sack of mandarins and grapefruits, chattering about what furniture will go where.
At home, more boxes are taped up and ready to pack. He’s working hard on his office. He’s packed his books in the same order they were on the shelves, so unpacking them will be the work of minutes. We’ve planned to bring over the bookshelves and garage shelving first, so we can unpack directly onto them in their permanent locations. The house is so small that there really isn’t a viable staging area in any room that would accommodate a stack of boxes, not unless we decide to forego furniture.
Tuesday: Unpack from my trip, do two loads of laundry, put fresh sheets on the bed, hang fresh towels, vacuum the bedroom. Do perimeter check, looking in each room of the house and identifying items that will not be moving to the new house. Call the vet to schedule dog’s booster shots and arrange boarding for parrot for the weekend. Pack for tomorrow, refilling all the little bottles in my shower kit. Talk more about furniture placement at the new place.
Wednesday: Leave at 8 AM. Stop by pet resort. Twelve hour road trip, including search for a notary public during our lunch stop. Go to grocery store at 9 PM to pick up items for Thanksgiving dinner. Check into hotel, unpack, set up dog crate, cook dinner in paper cups in the room microwave, scorch a potato and fill room with smell of burning. Share broken fork from my suitcase.
Thursday: Thanksgiving. Hubby works for a couple hours before we head over. I work on an online class I’m taking. Family time. Back to hotel, where I take the midterm of my online class. Write, illustrate, and format Friday’s blog post.
Friday: Both of us working in the morning. Work on Week 6 of my class. Family time.
Saturday: Up early, pack, check out of hotel. Another twelve hour road trip. Spend much of the time talking about the new house and our plans for the New Year. Get home and unpack. Finish Week 6 of my class. Carry empty boxes out to car and establish that 6 will fit in the back seat and 5 in the trunk. Plan is to do two 11-box loads per day.
Sunday: Take dog to vet for his booster shots. Pick up bird. Go out for breakfast and talk about the move. Come home and give dog a bath and trim his nails. Run vacuum and mop (robotically, thank goodness). Husband packs boxes to free up garage shelving for first load. I do Week 7 and 8 of my online class and make a pot of soup, just in time to receive very sad family news.
This week we’ll get the keys and find out whether the remodel is complete. Last we saw it, kitchen cabinet doors were being installed on what were formerly open shelves. The doors were hung but the handles had not been attached, and the floor still had a layer of paper taped down. A faucet was being replaced. There were some light fixtures being rewired and there was some construction going on in the garage. We were told that someone would be brought in to clean up after the construction debris was removed. A lot can happen in a week, but we’re also prepared for the possibility that they may need more time.
Our plan is to continue to anti-pack (more on this topic on Tuesday) and box up only what we absolutely know we want to bring to the new house. So far I have finished off a jar of sauerkraut, a bottle of ginger juice, and a pound of split peas from the pantry. My husband has put one item in the donation bag and set aside several other things for recycling and eBay. We have some furniture and other large items to advertise. We still need to reserve a moving van. We have 20 small boxes and two large boxes, plus a few others of various sizes that may or may not be used, since they are not as modular as the newly purchased ones. Last time we moved, we had 100 boxes; some were larger, but we’ve gotten rid of a lot in the last two years, and hopefully we will not exceed this amount. If we reuse the new boxes by unpacking as we go and refilling them, that means five trips.
Tune in next week for the latest installment of our adventures in downsizing.
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I've been working with chronic disorganization, squalor, and hoarding for over 20 years. I'm also a marathon runner who was diagnosed with fibromyalgia and thyroid disease 17 years ago.