Friday, March 15, 2013

Release Just Around the Corner

I'm tired of dealing with the move. I've spent EVERYDAY during the entire month of February intensely getting ready to move. We moved two weeks ago and I've had a great degree of success getting things we use everyday into the right spot. What I'm left with now is a heap of boxes of stuff that ranks low on the usefulness list...stuff perhaps that can be disposed of(?) but I'm just tired.

How to move forward?

In crying out to the Lord and being honest about where I'm at, He impressed upon me "15 Days". That would mean if I applied myself diligently until April 1st, I'd truly be DONE going through my stuff and would be out of the other end of the tunnel...and truly FREE.

I want this and I will do it, Lord. By April 1st, I'll be released, and freed into new purpose.

UPDATE: Though it is April 5th, I am really close to seeing the light at the end of the tunnel. There's not too much left to unpack or sort. Things are really coming together, though I keep moving things around which makes the settled become UNsettled!

Thursday, March 14, 2013

Unpacking and New Rooms to Tidy

OK, so it has been SO EXCITING to actually pack and clean out the previous house, wow! That house is really tidy now because it is empty!

And thus begins a new chapter...a new house to tidy! And this new house doesn't have a garage! We've tucked a few things in the attic, like suitcases, the card table and chairs and the Christmas decorations. We'll continue with our daily pick-up once we're unpacked and out of all the boxes and I think that just might mean I'm ready for a NEW BLOG, because there won't be much to talk about anymore as I've grown SO MUCH since I started this blog!

Here's a few photos of the new house and the mess I need to tidy up! When the unpacking is done, I should be living in a TIDY HOUSE once and for all because of all the purging we've done!

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Moving Countdown in Retrospect

Sweet Christi with Dan & Sarah

I had a Facebook conversation with three friends during my packing time over the past 30 days. Everyday I documented my countdown so I could look back on my process-amazing! As I read this I can totally SEE the process I went through in packing and purging and moving, fascinating! Christi (pictured above) is mother to seven wonderful children and it took much sacrifice on her (and her family's) part to come help me for FOUR days throughout my packing process. I couldn't have done it without her help and direction!

Here's a few entries from my month-long packing process:

January 30, 2013
Day 2 of 30:
We went down [to the new house] and measured the rooms today. The kids were really good and did the measuring as I taught them yesterday. It was a teamwork thing!

We got to see the "micro barn" in the middle of the (muddy) property. And there's a shed. After looking at the room dimensions, it is clear that we can totally make this work. We called our landlords and told them we are moving and the new landlord is going to call them and get a recommendation. So hopefully tomorrow, we'll get the official word and hopefully the official word is "yes"!

We've been praying for open or closed doors, and every door has been open! Hoping this last door is open, too!

I'm exhausted. I've been really feeling "stressed" since we looked on Saturday. Maybe because it is such a big change. We are so excited about the new lifestyle...being outside more. It is a fresh start in many ways for us.

February 2, 2013
Day 5 of 30:
We are [already] one-sixth of the way through this packing and purging time. Thank you Christi (SOOOOOO MUCH) for spending the day with me in the cold garage. What a BLESSING it was to have you help me let go of so much! I'm really encouraged and actually feel SO GOOD getting rid of lots of things that have been holding me back. ...I'm actually looking forward to getting back in the garage today because I want to KEEP GOING, it feels so good! John was really happy about how we packed up the jungle gym pieces, too!
-go to the dump
-pack Dan's room
-pick up some boxes
So much to do! Onward!

February 5, 2013
Day 8 of 30 (Tuesday):
Another excellent day of packing! Helped Daniel in his room and then we nearly finished Sarah's room! SHE IS PACKED! Including posters off the walls!

I'm really proud of both of them. This is big thing for Daniel, he's never really sorted through his stuff before (I've always done it). He has been really, really good at making decisions and pressing through, sorting for longer time periods than I thought him able.

[We need to decide on moving day]. Need to get someone to come edge and mow the front yard. Sold the railroad ties, pick up on Saturday. The old closet shelving was picked up this weekend, and Christi and I packed our jungle gym pieces so we can put it together when we arrive at the new place...this all feels SO GOOD! I sat down to rest my feet this afternoon and felt tears welling up. I'm just starting to realize how FREE I'm becoming with each day that passes. THANK YOU LORD!!!!!! It makes me just want to get rid of even more stuff!

February 8, 2013
Day 10 of 30 (Thursday):
Great is your faithfulness Lord! I'm singing praises because the Lord sent me an ANGEL! My very own personal angel, from Webster's 1828:
"2. A spirit, or a spiritual intelligent being employed by God to communicate his will to man. Hence angels are ministers of God, and ministring spirits. Heb. 1." Christi blessed my life SO much! I could not have gotten through all we did in three lifetimes! IT WAS TIME, thanks to her support I was able to go through boxes that I haven't looked at in years and evaluate what to keep. We had another 8ish bags for the dump, a porch FULL of stuff for giveaway and an entire side of shelving full of EMPTY boxes and the other side of stuff ready to go with us. John and I will go through some of his boxes, then deal with the furniture/shelving and what will go with us. It is a little sobering to realize how much stuff has been hanging around for so long. I'm so grateful to the Lord for this move, it would have been extremely draining and taken me a really long time to get through everything...and here, thanks to Christi, it is now done after two long days. THANK YOU SO MUCH DAVE AND CHRISTI for your sacrifice to help us! We are SO on our way to being ready for moving day!!!!

February 9, 2013
Day 11 of 30 (Friday):
Today was just HARD. The kids had been alone [inside] all day yesterday with me in the garage. Dan really falls apart with no routine and there's a fine line between having a routine but yet making enough time to pack. The goal of course is to be ready for the moving van, but just as important is the process of the move and loving and caring for each family member. We're all quite stressed and that seems to expend more energy, I'm just super fatigued emotionally and physically. Dan and I worked together in his room which proves to be tedious but we are making headway. I'm so proud of him, he's really able to do more than he ever has before.
We brought home Costco pizza which will serve for a couple meals this weekend, reducing the time needed to cook. Tomorrow we have a long list including the dump again (yay)! Today we just did Dan's room, listed a couple things on Craigslist, got colored paper together to label boxes and I think that's it. Can't get over the garage being nearly done, so cool!

February 13, 2013
Day 16 of 30 (Wednesday):
Both John and I woke a little late today. Despite that, with the kids, I was able to get my footing and have breakfast and get our necessary chores done by mid-day. I felt hopeful and eager to do things on my list today. Around noon, [I went up to my room and] could have easily gone through a box...but I laid down on the bed instead. And fell asleep. For a long time. I've been staying up later to try to accomplish more and I think I just crashed today. Here it is after 5pm and I'm trying to redeem something of the day. I'm hungry and need to fix dinner. I'm struggling with realizing that I needed the rest and feeling like the day was wasted toward moving. I want to:
-order my giveaway pickup (done)
-list an item on Craigslist
-pack the sewing table
-fix dinner
-go to bed at 9pm
So that's what I'm going to do with the remaining hours, God willing.

February 17, 2013
Day 20 of 30 (Sunday):
HOORAY! We are now 2/3 of the way to moving day. I'm still a little in a fog that we are actually moving! At the beginning it seemed real, but since we haven't been in the new house for awhile, it seems like an "idea". It can't be just an idea because there are boxes everywhere!

Today was awesome! John finished packing his books in the bedroom and continues (now) to work on his stuff in the playroom. Someone picked up Daniel's dresser today, which was a huge load off our minds because it is broken and so very heavy and we didn't want to take it. The guy was really happy about it and can fix it. We confirmed where all the furniture is going and we're both on the same page with some areas I wasn't too sure about. This is SO GREAT! We have our final list of things to get rid of and I know what needs to be packed. I've done just about every single thing on Christi's last list. I also made a "two week" daily list and even a list for the trips we'll take in the mini-van, we even discussed cats and how and when we'll transport them. I feel in-control! I've planned out our meals for the next two weeks and I might not have to go to the grocery store in this area again! Just got home and I feel energized! We've been blessed by Dave and Roy P and Ben Y offering to help on Saturday for the Uhaul. I think my brother-in-law, Matt, might come, too. Still lots of packing to do, but I feel full speed ahead as we enter these last few days!

February 19, 2013
Day 22 of 30 (Tuesday):
Whoah. I'm so grateful the Lord sent Christi to help me, to help pack my house, to help take me to the next step, to encourage me and love me. Thank you so much Christi for the sacrifice NINE people have been making to send you to me for FOUR DAYS. I honestly would not have been able to accomplish this without you, friend!

Today was good. I'm so glad we started in the garage weeks ago because that was the hardest room...the playroom, which we did today, was the next hardest-but SO MUCH EASIER than the garage! Sarah and Christi mowed through a ton of Sarah's stuff, Christi would say, "keep or giveaway" and Sarah's response, "keep" or "giveaway". Daniel took initiative to finish the final part of cleaning his part of the playroom on his own! I'm SO proud of my kids, they have done a wonderful job dealing with the stresses of everything changing and putting their lives into boxes. The kitties are beginning to show stress. Each time they come down from the cat tree, the floor looks different, their paths have to change to avoid boxes and things aren't there that used to be and vice versa. Both kitties were curled up on Dan's bed near his feet when I went to say goodnight, that's never happened before. Oreo has been flopped in the middle of major intersections, I think he's looking for some lovin'.

When Christi arrived today, I could not see the light at the end of the tunnel. But now I can! We are going to make it. The playroom is 99% finished. Christi left me a several page list going through each room and itemizing what I need to do to complete the packing. What a GODSEND. I've learned SO much from her, she's taught me how to move. I didn't know that I didn't know! I don't feel stunned or deer in the headlights, I have my list and that will help me focus each day. This is doable with what is remaining. Thankfully, my mother-in-law is coming next Wednesday to pack the kitchen and Jeri is coming next Thursday the day before the move. I'm PSYCHED!

Today we collected what seemed like tons of recycle and tons of garbage and tons of giveaway. Got rid of the LAST of the soap stuff and am SO thankful the Lord had me cleaning and tidying over the past 18 months because this really could have been a lot worse!

February 22, 2013
Day 25 of 30 (Friday):
I'm pooped. Worked with each child finishing their rooms. ...I went through the lists Christi left. Oh my, Christi, thank you SO much. It is like a little directive and really helped me focus! I went through each sheet and picked the things I thought would be good for today. I crossed off the things I'm going to do later (like remove all the wall stuff, we're doing that on Saturday after the movers and putting in the van, I don't want to pack that stuff). That left me with several things for next week (like the living room, which is really close!) and this is what I did today:
-finished Dan's room
-finished Sarah's room (triple yay!)
-packed the linen closet, oh dear, where is all this going to go, no linen closet at the new place, maybe the laundry room cupboards
-wrapped the glass cups in the living room wall candle art thing
-got all the library books together, packed the cds and books on the library shelf, dismantled the shelf and loaded in minivan
-set aside pillowcases, sheets, towels for our first night (next Friday!)
-packed all the pantry food

Need to do before bed:
-measure for three replacement blinds to buy tomorrow at Home Depot
-pack up the bathrooms

I can feel the "pull" that happens at the end, where it feels like I keep packing stuff, but there's still more and more stuff! That's ok, I'll stick to my lists.

I'm totally excited for tomorrow! We meet at noon to the walk-through and get the keys! Oh my goodness, WE'RE MOVING! We packed the minivan last night with all the games and hanging clothes and several other items, which we can leave at the house tomorrow! Have a couple errands to run and then home. It will be a full and productive day. Then Sunday will be full with Rich's memorial service and Monday I have a list ready and waiting to start when my feet hit the floor. Really quite tired, John brought home Costco pizza as planned, we'll maybe watch one Mythbusters and head for bed. The dishwasher guy couldn't fix the dishwasher.

February 25, 2013
Day 28 of 30 (Monday):
I didn't get as much done as I had planned. Packed up the bathrooms, but the master is still a bit strewn about. I can't believe how many little dental flosses and new toothbrushes were tucked everywhere! I'm just so excited to be downsizing...I tossed a bunch of stuff, went through all the medicines so they can all get in one place (our bathroom) and have great plans for streamlining.

John and I spent a lot of time this evening planning...oh, how that helps! I have a good solid list tomorrow of what to do and my goal is to get it all done! Still so much to do!

February 26, 2013
Day 29 of 30 (Tuesday):
I knew I hadn't counted [my days] correctly, but it was too difficult to change it.

I got way more done today than I thought. When I looked at my sheet today, I checked off a lot! That's GOOD! There's still much to do. Wednesday is kitchen packing day. My mother-in-law is coming to help me. I have plenty of boxes and she's bringing more packing paper. I have today's dishes to wash in the morning and clean up the kitchen a bit.

Oh to actually be moved and in a sea of boxes, I'm eager to get there! Thursday Jeri is coming, but that's a whole day away. I just keep plugging away and filling one more box. I get giddy thinking about getting rid of more stuff when we get down there! Thinking how grateful I am for friends coming on Saturday to help with the second load.

I did a lot of changing of emails and getting our auto payments changed to the new address and various things like that today along with packing. Big day tomorrow packing up the kitchen.

February 27, 2013
Day 30 of 30 (Wednesday):
Ha hahhah, 30/30 should be the big day, but alas, I can't count! The prong in my vacuum cord BROKE! Besides that, today was spectacular in my opinion! WOW, I've never had a move like this. The Lord has filled me with such peace!

Karen came over and we got busy in the kitchen. She brought several (awesome) plastic totes and she wrapped up all the breakables, glass and dishes. And she did a beautiful job, tucking each item into her totes. Then we loaded all the totes and boxes I did into our cars along with two dining chairs and a host of other things. Then we headed down south! I wasn't expecting to get a trip in, but it worked out marvelously. We are running out of room for boxes and getting all this stuff OUT was perfect. We ate her picnic lunch she made for us down at the new place and UNPACKED all those boxes! WHOHOOO! My kitchen is nearly all set up down there! We ran the dishwasher down there when we left.

Daniel helped immensely with carrying the heavy boxes, I was so grateful and proud of him for helping. The KIDS PLAYED OUTSIDE!!!!!!!!!!!!!! 

John picked up a Craigslist lawnmower tonight and we did various jobs on the list before flopping into bed, which is what I'm going to do right now! We have tonight and then tomorrow night is our last night here! Jeri is coming tomorrow and having her here will help me focus on these dangling jobs right before the movers come.

March 5, 2013
Day 36 of 30 (Tuesday):
AH! We made it! Movers came on Friday and that went smoothly. John worked and we moved. He was THRILLED to finish up his day and come sleep at the new place! Saturday we rented a UHaul and thanks to Christi, got the bigger one which we FILLED! Roy and Dave loaded firewood all day long and then stacked it when we got to the new place. Jeri worked really hard weeding my
overgrown raised bed and dumped bags of dirt in, making it look really nice. Saturday was a late night.

Sunday we went back to the house. Christi blessed us with the gift of a cleaning lady so I didn't have to go back to do all the dirty work. (THANK YOU SO MUCH!) It looked REALLY nice! Finally got everything out and drove home late. I dug up only a few plants of mine to plant at the new place (the peony, a strawberry, 'Ice Carnival' daylily, and a pink hydrangea). Sunday was a super late night and we couldn't find our clean undies!

Monday we worked on getting the washer and dryer going. John had to replace the plug on the dryer because the outlet had a different configuration. What a gorgeous sunny day it was! I went back north to meet a guy to give him the free air conditioner that we left in the garage and drop off the keys. My old landlord was cute, she said, "have a good life"! I visited with a friend whom I will miss very much and picked up John's prescription and ran a couple errands, getting home before dark.

Tuesday the Comcast dude came and we finally have our internet again! Yay! I've been unpacking, doing laundry, planting those few plants, poking around outside and did I mention unpacking some boxes!? The dining room is set up after going through a lot of kitchen boxes and I'm still thinking about where I really want things to go in the kitchen, that seems to be a process.

The kids have been outside a lot. The cats are adjusting, though they are still sequestered in half the house (so they don't climb on the leaning box towers and get squished!) The only thing I don't like is that the kids are at the opposite end of the house from our bedroom, we're not used to that! Thank you Lord for all you are doing!!
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