Our last six weeks in St. Louis are a blur. We swung hammers and waived brushes (and other implements of repair and creation). We packed boxes and cleaned (and cleaned and cleaned and cleaned).
We said goodbye to a few of our friends, but, in the madness of packing up, fixing the house and leaving, we did not say goodbye properly to everyone.
I am truly sorry, because our friends made St. Louis home for us. Without you, the Lou would have been just another city to pause in on our journey. Without you, I would not have survived Kyle's time in architecture school. I would have no fond memories of Sunday afternoons gabbing and laughing with the girls over good food. We would have had no Saturday evenings spent playing speed scrabble and laughing, no shared adventures and no reconnecting with found friends. We would have had no moments to lighten and liven the work day.
We are trying to get Olive back into her routine here, but she is resisting. Change is hard, and she fights sleep with both hands (literally and even when she's being rocked and cuddled). Eventually, she gives in, she relaxes, and we put her quietly in her crib with Pink Bear to snuggle. She whispers him secrets and finally finds dreamland. (No, we don't know why Pink Bear is a boy. He just is.)
It is trying.
But, when I think about it, I am having trouble sleeping too. My mind races through the lists and lists of things that need to be done to the house in St. Louis and that will need to be done once we've closed on our house here.
It is both a blessing and a curse to be here - where I cannot help with the St. Louis house and where I cannot yet work on the new house. It forces me to be still (as still as I can be while caring for Olive and running errands around town!). Hopefully, my mind will follow suit soon.
Kyle and his dad arrive this weekend. I am very much looking forward to Kyle joining us here.
So. In early August, we are scheduled to close on a house in Houston. It was built in 1962-ish and has had one owner. I kind of have a Mad Men addiction, and the house totally makes me think of Don and Betty Draper (but not their disfunctions). There are many 'vintage' fixtures and it has been well cared-for but not re-done. And - big plus here - there is not a single drop of silver metallic paint. (I really think we have exterminated enough silver metallic paint for a lifetime.)
If you are interested, take a gander at this album. They aren't great photos, but you'll get the idea.
Our time in the 'Lou is quickly coming to an end ... and Kyle and I are frantic to finish all of those last minute details before we leave our house (hopefully to a lovely family we came across this week!!) and continue our time of chaos in Houston ...
That doesn't sound right. But things are (and, we know, will continue to be) a bit chaotic.
Our house is (almost) packed and (almost) clean and (almost) empty. The movers came Wednesday and most of our household goods drove away. Now we have a card table, an air mattress and a pack-n-play. (And a few other odds and ends - largely cleaning and house project supplies.)
I leave (with Olive) Monday morning for Houston. We are flying, for many reasons, but largely because Olive's current car-ride-tolerance is about 3 hours ... and the drive to Houston is a TAD longer than that.
Kyle and his Dad will drive down the things we need to exist for the next several weeks (plus a bit more, I'm an over-packer and come by it honestly) as well as some of our fragile things. He has work stuff to wrap up, and house chores to finish up so they'll come later in the week. (Getting some of our messier chores done while Olive is crawling around is very difficult!)
We will stay with my Mom and Tim for a few weeks, take a vacation to New Mexico for a week and THEN close on our new house and move in. We are hoping and praying that things will continue to go as smoothly as can be expected and that the final house details come through without too many hitches. (Has anyone ever closed on a house without hitches?!?)
That is our brief-ish schedule, but how are we?
Olive is largely well. Her last day of day care in St. Louis was yesterday. (We LOVED our day care. Childgarden was a WONDERFUL place for her!!!) So we will see how she does when she is out of that routine for a few days. We can tell that the move is wearing on her (not surprising, it is wearing on us!!) as she is having trouble getting to sleep and she is becoming quite clingy.
Kyle and I are hanging in.
We are tired.
We are a bit stressed.
Moving is stressful. Moving long distance is stressful. Renting our home and getting it ready to be rented is stressful. Finding and buying a house is stressful. Starting new jobs and finding new routines is stressful.
BUT those things are also very exciting as well. I am VERY much looking forward to getting dressed and ready for work in an office again very soon (although I've done a bit of work lately from my kitchen table, the mental preparation - for me - of getting ready for and going to work is key).
We are focusing on the little details of our everyday life - like Olive's smile and laughter in the morning - that make us happy and eyeing a more settled September! (Trying to enjoy the now while also looking to the promise of the future. Not a bad life lesson.)