And I’m still processing, acclimating, feeling a bit (hugely) overwhelmed. I am still feeling scattered enough that I don’t really know what day it is, so forget about stringing coherent thoughts together.
But. We did it. We are homeowners. Thursday was a whirlwind, from our (several) trips to the bank to get certified checks, to the 85,000 times we signed our names. The closing was a little strange – I don’t know what I expected, ominous music as we signed 30 years of our lives away? – but even when it was over I still felt the same. But then we drove to our! house! where we babysat the cable guy and the cleaning service (expensive, but SO worth the peace of mind knowing we had a very short time frame to get the place ready before we were officially moving in). As Dan argued with the cable company to get our new internet working, I wandered our gigantic new place, starting to feel really super overwhelmed by all of the details, and noticing things like how none of the doorknobs are the same color, and they didn’t do such a great job painting in here and why is the carpet in the basement a different color than the carpet on the stairs (srsly, gray next to beige. Why not just use the same color??) and why does our new trash-company-issued garbage can smell like cat poop? (SO GROSS.)
It all finally, really hit me as I took in all of those details. Texts were coming in from friends – my favorite being Cynthia’s “you own a mutha effin home!!!!” – and I called my parents. It was just suddenly SO BIG and SO OURS.
But Dan got them to fix the internet. And we went out and bought subs and realized that despite being in rural Miscellaneous Western Jersey, there’s actually a lot very close to our place (a real camera shop, even!). We went back home and sat in our empty living room on our new wood floors and ate dinner as we drank the champagne the previous owners left for us. And it felt like the Exciting Beginning we have been hoping for.
Saturday was moving day, and I can’t tell you how lucky we are to have a vertitable army of siblings to help us. At one point, with both sets of parents, we had 12 people carrying our shit. It was crazy, and made the day go by so quickly. Sure, we may have learned the hard way that our couch won’t fit down the basement stairs when it got STUCK in the stairwell. The perfect home for the bookshelves of the world is a half an inch too small (because although we thought to account for the thermostat, light switch, and outlet, we neglected to account for the baseboard on the neighboring wall, ARGH). But we got everything in and having our families there to see (and gush over) our house was so, so cool. At one point, most of us were hanging around in the kitchen, drinking beers, eating pizza, and chatting, and it was exactly what I always pictured, exactly what I love best about other people’s homes that are the home-iest.
On Sunday, the day our lease ended, we woke up early and drove back down to our apartment to clean it from top to bottom. It was so sunny and bright there, and Dan and I kept talking about how the light was such a huge selling point when we signed the lease two years ago. It was hard work, but we managed to finish, load the car, pick up subs (again) and be on the couch in our new living room only ten minutes after football had started.
Boxes as coffee tables/footrests? Sure. Also, our wedding quilt was the one blanket that we packed last/unpacked first, which felt extra special. Also, Dan’s new beard, now sticking around thanks to a fantasy football side bet last week. (I won.)
We have SO much work ahead of us unpacking and settling in, and I’m trying not to feel overwhelmed by that, too. Dan has a plan to tackle ten boxes each evening when we get home, which sounds like a lot but felt really good when we did it yesterday. And truly, I knowwwww you’re dying for more pictures, and if I had any idea which box my camera cable was in, I swear I’d post them. Very soon, I promise.
So I didn’t really think I had anything more than a few bullet points in me, but I guess I have a little more to say. It’s an exciting and overwhelming and completely exhausting time now, and I can’t wait to be done with the boxes and on to the imagining our new space for real.
This is arguably my favorite view in our new house – looking from the master bedroom toward the other two bedrooms on the second floor. That window looks out onto the oak tree out front, and from the second floor it’s just a window full of greenness.