Friday, January 23, 2015

A hunting I will go

Town hunting.  House hunting.  School hunting.  Camp hunting.  Pool hunting.  It overwhelms me so easily.  There is soooooooo much information out there.  Truly, I can only take really small bites.  I found a new website for evaluating schools.  I had been using Great Schools, but this one is  The good news is the school district I've been looking at is top ranked.  It really seems to be spectacular.  And that's good, right?  Or is it?  The pressure.  Oh my.  I'm not sure if the internet is my friend or not.  I suppose I just need to keep in mind that my children are resilient and flexible and smart and funny and they are going to be just find no matter where we land.  Right? 

Monday, January 19, 2015

The Great Clothes Migration

The Great Clothes Migration took place today.  I say that like it's one main event.  It's not.  It's a torturous, and never ending slow trickle that sometimes springs a leak.  How does this relate to the move?  Well, normally when my twins outgrow something, it gets put into the 'consign' pile...wherever that may be.  Consignment sales come around twice a year...Spring and Fall.  And I've been doing them since the girls were little.  And if things don't sell one year, they get put into the pile and I try again. Until I get tired of looking at the same outgrown clothes over and over.  But there is always a pile of outgrown clothes somewhere in my house.  But this year, it's all got to go.  And I mean all of it!  So, once I do the Spring sale, anything Spring that we outgrow is G-O- N-E.  I swear.  It's really going to happen.  And all of the Fall's going too, because I'm not taking it with me.  And it really is cathartic to get rid of all of that stuff.  HOWEVER, there are about 5 huge tubs of clothes that Rena has outgrown, but the twins haven't grown into.  Those are coming with us.  Sheesh.  It's never ending.  Oh, and I didn't even mention the entire drawer full of dance wear and gymnastics wear....and swimsuits!  I feel like I'm drowning in clothes.  But, for the first time, it really does all have to go.  That is one of the upsides of moving...clearing out all of the clutter without guilt.  It might even get this pack-rat girl to change her ways.....nahhh.

Thursday, January 15, 2015

The packing continues

When I took down Christmas this year, I packed it for the move.  Not a big deal, really.  Just lots of bubble wrap.  And now I'm moving on to the next 'non-essential' (antiquated) professional file.  I taught Kindergarten for 15 years....that seems somewhat unbelievable to me now.  15 years is a long time.  And along those years, I tutored children in K-5th grades.  I have a LOT of stuff.  Just my activity books for Kindergarten filled a copy paper box.  And as I loaded those books into that box, wonderful, warm memories flooded me of all the children I taught over those years.  The sweet innocence of Kindergarten...elementary school...St. Timothy's.  What a wonderful place for my career to have taken me.  The students...the teachers...the parents... I cannot even begin to tell you how much I miss the little school where I taught.  There is a true ache in my heart...a mourning having left there.  (I left to become a stay at home mom.  And I don't regret that choice, ever.)

The reason all of these things have been unpacked in the first place is because I was always wanting to supplement what my children were learning in public school.  I wanted for them those warm lovely memories.  One of my regrets is not being able to send my children to that school.  But despite raiding my professional file over the last 6 years, I rarely used any of it with my children.  They are so smart.  And they are a good way.  And I have been fortunate that their teachers work so hard to find ways to challenge them intellectually.

But as I was packing up all of these things for the move, it just magnified the fact that we are moving...all the time.  My children are outgrowing elementary school, that place in time where they are most protected.  That place where, if done right, is magical and full of possibility.  That constant need for me that is, at once, both draining and fulfilling.  Moving.  Growing.  New adventures.  The possibilities are endless.

So, I will continue to fill the boxes with the lovely spirits of the past.  I will store them safely away.  And I will try to remember that there are empty boxes out there just waiting to be filled.

Sunday, January 11, 2015

It's gettin' real now, y'all.  We met with the realtor that will be selling our house today.  It was a good meeting.  The good news is we might actually be able to hope to get a little more out of it than we paid.  The bad news is it's not nearly enough to get us into a house we want in MD.  Lord, the stress.  It's going to kill me.  At the very least, it's making me bitchy.

So I can already start to feel the pressure building.  There so much to do....and for the most part, no one but me to do it.  And here we are in the second half of the school year for the girls.  They play basketball, they are getting ready to be in a play, they want to play softball.  So much to do all of the time.  And that doesn't even add any of my stuff I might want/need to do.  I have tennis starting back soon.  My last season to play with a team I've been playing with for about 7 years now.  boo.  I'm working on the Bingo committee for our school...actually, I think I'm the chair person.  I'm room mother for Rena's class.  I've got to fly to MD and look for places to live.  Arghhhhhh.  Too much to think about.

So, I need to break it down into small manageable bites...I just need to chew faster.

Friday, January 09, 2015

This is kind of what I feel like right now.  Only I still look like my middle-aged, out of shape self.

Wednesday, January 07, 2015

Starting over

A sweet friend messaged me about this blog today.  Even though I frequently put myself 'out there', I'm always surprised and somewhat taken aback when I find out someone is paying attention.  Her comment got me thinking. 

I want to document this move for several reasons and one of them is so that maybe someone else like me can read it and think, 'oh, I feel the same way!'  From my conversation today I told my friend this - "Making new friends, real friends, as an adult is not easy. And I feel like I'm at a time in my life where certain things should be on auto pilot."  And I do feel that way.  There is some underlying resentment about having to move.  Of course, right now, it's outweighed by the promise of what the future holds.  But that is the way it should be, isn't it.  The promise of the future should be exciting and overshadow irrational fears and stagnant behaviors.  

Because I've already moved against my will once, I was able to learn some things about myself.  I was able to let go of preconceived notions others had of me.  I didn't have to 'live up' to the person I had always been and people expected me to be.  It gave me time to give some thought to who I really was and wanted to be.  I don't think those people are so very different, but I was able to explore that without any pressure.  I also learned that I can do this.  This move isn't nearly as scary as the first one.  I remember talking to one of my lifelong friends after I had been in Georgia for awhile.  I was still very homesick for Raleigh.  And we were talking about some friend I had made here.  And she said, "Ok, you've proved you can make new friends.  Can you come home now?"  But the answer, sadly, is no.  I can't.  I have to keep moving forward into a new direction.  I will make friends.  I'll learn my way around.  And now I'll leave a little part of me in Georgia as well as N.C.  Look out Maryland, I'm on my way. 

Monday, January 05, 2015

Well I've managed to get all of my Christmas decorations packed and ready for the move.  At least I hope that's all of them.  Good googly moogly, I have a lot of boxes just for that one season.  And for the moment, I'm storing them in my dining room.  Hubby and I aren't exactly on the same page when it comes to the logistics of it all.  But for my own peace of mind, I need to start getting things packed.  Compartmentalized.  Don't think I don't know what I'm doing.  Next on the 'hit list' is my professional file.  I was teaching before everything went virtual, so I have lots of books and stuff.  And since my girls are just about to outgrow any material I might be able to use to supplement their learning, it's time for it to get boxed up.  And some of it, shockingly, is going to get tossed.  Tossed, I tell ya.  Will I ever use it to teach again?  Time will tell I suppose.  But for right now, I'm not willing to toss hundreds of dollars worth of resources.

My brother keeps pressuring me to rent a big dumpster and hide it from the HOA in my backyard.  He assures me it would be therapeutic.  He's not wrong.  But it's not gonna happen.  I'll keep systematically and methodically plowing through all my crap.  Trash comes once a week.  And for me, for right now, that's plenty.

Other than that, the only 'moving' event that has been on my mind today are the minor home repairs.  Those little things you let go while you are living in a place, but now that we are going to be selling, those things need to be addressed.  I think my one take away from this is that you need to make those repairs to the home you are living in.  Now I'll be paying for something for someone else to enjoy.  Same goes with furniture and decorations.  We've been in this house 9 years and we've never bought furniture or decorations.  It's never been 'finished'.  There are many reasons for that...3 small kids, big dogs, cats, no money, always something else to spend it on, a fear of decoration commitment on my part.  But now I think it's time.  And it's one of the things I'm looking forward to when we move.  I WILL be furnishing our next house.  I might have to hire help, but by God, I'm going to do it.  It is well past time!

That's it.  School starts back for the girls tomorrow, so once again I might have the opportunities to hear the voices in my own head.  I'm sure they will be discussing 'the move'.

Saturday, January 03, 2015

It's a date!

So, I misinformed yesterday.  I didn't do nothing for the move yesterday.  Last night, I pulled up the school calendars for Howard County and Anne Arundel county.  And  Queen Anne's county.  (Kent Island!!!)  That way I could sync them with Forsyth's schedule to see when would be a good time to head north and check out schools.

We went up to MD this fall and Rena and I got to go into a middle school.  Mostly because I'm not afraid of rejection.  In this era of paranoia, I still went and rang the bell of the Middle School.  "Um, we are thinking of moving here and I just had a couple of vague questions I thought I could come into strange school at the end of the day and ask.  With my soon-to-be Middle Schooler in tow."  Buzzzzzzz.  What was I hoping to accomplish?  I'm not firm on the details.  A glimpse into the future, I guess.  Do your middle schoolers carry guns, knives, drugs, STD's?  Or are they smart, driven, awkward, innocents?  I suppose seeing one of them trip over her own feet walking to her mother's car answered at least one of those questions for me!  And Rena fell in LOVE with that school in the 10 minutes we were there.  Thank God.  And the office staff was nice to me.

It's hard enough to think about changing schools.   But to think about entering Middle School!  Whoa!  I didn't even need to have a for sale sign in my yard for that one to be a biggie.  We'll navigate it together, I guess.

And of course, I google-mapped, realtor.commed, and zillowed.  This time, Kent Island.  Which I hadn't really thought of before.  My brother lives in this really cool neighborhood in NC, quietly tucked away next to a million dollar neighborhood.  His family and friends meet up on 'the island' on Sundays, among other days.  Hang out.  Enjoy the Salt Life.  Where they are is a well kept secret.  I'm not telling.  And it's one of my favorite places in the world to be.  It has salt water, a current, and a sandy beach.  Except for a boat and a cooler of beer, you don't need anything else.  Part of me is seeking 'that'.  Maybe on Kent Island.

The search continues.

Friday, January 02, 2015

Bumps in the night

January 2, 2015

I've done NOTHING today.  Well, I've talked about moving.  To a couple of people.  And I dreamed about houses.  And in the middle of the night, when I couldn't go back to sleep, I tried to work out all the logistics of the move.  It's all consuming.  And I think maybe a little exhausting.  I have found the perfect house. 

It's here:,-76.8763742,3a,75y,180h,90t/data=!3m4!1e1!3m2!1s0K1pCt_wA200x0Vm8vJOfA!2e0 

But it's not for sale.  And I have no idea what the inside looks like.  Or what the price might be.  But THAT is the house.

Aside from that, again I have tried to narrow the field for an area to live.  But instead, I just get led in new directions.  Oh, Kent Island?!  I hadn't thought of that!  It's kind of like playing Whack-A-Mole!

So what keeps me up at night?  A laundry list of things.  Mostly schools.  Are they good, but not too much pressure.  Will they be big enough?  small enough? Will I get to know the teachers there like I've gotten to know the teachers here?  What kind of extracurricular activities do they have.  Will the girls be interested in that kind of thing.  What will I do with the cats?  The dog?  The girls!  Do they have a gifted program?  Do I want my girls in the gifted program.  Do they offer reciprocity for teaching certificates?  Do I want to go back to teaching?  And there goes the next tangent. 

Tomorrow.  I will try again tomorrow.

Thursday, January 01, 2015

The Year of the Move

January 1, 2015

This year holds many big events for me.  We are moving.  I am turning 50 and all of my children will be in the double digits.  So much change.  And that's only the stuff I know so far.

I am not a mover...or a shaker.  But really, the moving part...not so much.  Let me just give you a little history.  I was born in the house that I would live in until I graduated from high school.  I would briefly move back into that house after college.  I lived in the same apartment in college for 4 years.  I lived in my first house for 11 years and only moved because I had to.  I've been in this house for 9.  I'm only moving because I have to.  I was not blessed/cursed with wanderlust.

My husband took a new job this past summer in Maryland.  He was born there.  He is working for a company that his grandfather started.  He is excited about his new job.

Me?  I have so many emotions going through me at any given time, I can't even begin to sort them out.  I did make the decision early on that I would not be moving myself of the girls until the end of the school year.  My oldest is finishing 5th grade at a little school I have come to love...a story for another day...and my twins are in 3rd grade.  So I have had a lot of time to think about and prepare for this move.  I'm still not sure if that's a good thing or a bad thing.  I will say, I can only focus on it for short periods of time.  It's like looking into the sun.

I'm not unhappy about moving to Maryland.  I'm actually looking forward to much of it.  It took me a very long time to like where I live now, and even so, I hate my house.  And for a girl that didn't move around a lot, a house is a very important thing.  So far, I've pretty much only been focusing on the positive.  Maryland is going to be a pretty cool place to live, I think.  It's going to be drastically different from what my girls have grown up with so far, but not so different from where I spent my childhood.  I expect it's going to be busier...more formal....I'm not quite sure how to describe it just yet.  I'm excited to be looking for a new house, one that I can actually put some thought into.  The last time we moved I had 2 breast feeding babies and 3 in diapers.  I wasn't really able to think about much else.  But this time, I've got notebooks full of information...schools, parks, homes, rec centers.  Really, I just want someone to take me by the hand and say, here.  Here is the dream home you have been looking for.  Here are you new friends.  And here are the wonderful children that are going to influence your children only in a positive way.  Ha!  Well, a girl can dream.

The reality of it is I've had way too much time to think about this move.  I'm hoping that will be a good thing.  I've had time to over think and correct.  But, it is constantly on my mind.  I'm either thinking about what kind of house and where, which school, what sports teams, do they have good dance classes, will I find another tennis team, middle school!  or I'm thinking about all the packing and decluttering I need to do, or I'm thinking about the logistics of moving 3 girls, 2 cats and 1 dog 4 states away.  It really feels like mid summer when it's hot, humid and you know there's a chance of afternoon thunderstorms.  Every. Day.

So, it's finally the year of the move and it's time to start mobilizing.  I've had all the thinking time, now it's doing time.  Today, I started putting away Christmas decorations.  All organized and solidly packed for moving.  It is the first step.  My plan is to pack up all of the non essentials first.  We'll have to see how long that takes.  But, it is finally a little more real.  We are moving.  Leaving this community of people I have come to love and respect.  Friends I didn't even know existed 9 years ago.  And start all over.  Fuck.  Seriously, I don't want to start all over.  But it is what it is.  And it's a good move for my girls.  I hope.  I pray.  I worry.

So, you are welcome to come  on this crazy journey with me.  It'll be real.  And honest.  And I'm sure at times, brutal.  I'll be open to any advice about transition.  It's mostly new to me.