People continue to ask if we are settled in - to which I fervently
reply NO! most of the time (and still, NO! six months later.)
Yep. He's been sitting on my night stand for....oh... three or four months (don't worry that kleenex is from last night and not six months ago!), giving me his pensive little smirk every evening and every morning.
Or this fun couple who adorns Karl and my bedroom wall, hanging from a hook the previous owners left in the wall.
These are the things that puzzle me months later and that I can't motivate myself to do anything about. All my stuff is here, all my people are here BUT WHERE DOES IT ALL GO? It just (still!) doesn't feel like OUR house. Nothing (NOTHING) fits the right way on the wall and I still face the same inherent homeowning issues (Like the clothes still need to be laundered (and folded - always with the folding!) and the dishes still need to be cleaned.) We finally finished unpacking and purging (mostly purging - glad we paid for 6 additional months of a storage unit! ha!) so, thankfully, I now can safely say everything we own is in the house. So there is that.
Little Things that are Nice (We will start positive): All of my books are happy to be home. On a shelf. And not in a storage box. I have a pantry now so storing food in kitchen cabinets is no longer an issue. Our street has a lot of kids on it similar in age to my kids. This can only continue to be good as they grow, right? We are still loving walking Nate to school and looking forward to this for NK when she hits pre-k. (And someday they might walk together. Alone. Without me. This is the goal. Cue big smile and half-sob.)
Some Things that are not AS NICE (Read: THIS HOUSE IS MAKING ME QUESTION MY SANITY!): The day we moved in the fridge went out and had to be repaired. We have three toilets. Since we moved in EVERY SINGLE ONE has had to be repaired (like completely rebuilt, all of them), the pipe our downstairs laundry machine is attached to makes the crazy shaking noise that you can hear (no FEEL) upstairs (didn't catch that in an inspection, eh?), we have a pet groundhog (and by pet I mean JESUS MARY AND JOSEPH GET THAT THING AWAY FROM MY HOUSE) that wanders around our front yard, we found a dead rat in our underground storage area upon returning from Christmas in STL (Nothing like a gagging dead rat smell to make you feel at home, eh?!), and, just last week, a giant tree fell on our back fence during the ice storm. GOOD TIMES, right?! There is more! (Sorry... I can't stop now - I have to get it out!)
Let me tell you about THE BUGS, THE BUGS, THE BUGS. I am going to perhaps sound slightly dramatic here but I can't handle bugs (Someday I will entertain you all with stories of how Little Rockians of certain city neighborhoods call roaches "waterbugs" like they are not just ROACHES ON CRACK.) We had our old house sprayed once a quarter and found maybe one dead bug ever. Ummmmm... let's just say I can not say the same thing at this house. Bring on the poison. I have had our bug guy (Hi Mike!) out no less than 6 times in the last six months. Apparently a once-a-month spray is necessary and it STILL doesn't curb the ant issue in one of the upstairs bathrooms (WHERE ARE THEY COMING FROM?!?! IT IS FREEZING ANTS GO AWAY AND DIE.)
Also, (real first world problem here!) THE TRAFFIC!! Lord, the traffic! HA! Now all my St. Louis and city friends will laugh uproariously at this - if I wasn't so spoiled by the glorious lack of Little Rock traffic, I would make fun of myself. It somehow takes SO MUCH LONGER TO GET PLACES (Read: 15 minutes instead of 5 - ha!). We technically moved closer to the city and downtown and less than 5 minutes away from our old house so it FEELS like it should take the same amount of time to get around town. Not. So. Much!
(Also, our washing machine stopped working right before Christmas and is still not fixed - this appliance is something we owned prior to moving but STILL! Our home warranty company hates us and I hate the laundromat!)
I don't know if our expectations were just TOO HIGH and now the reality of owning this imperfect home (aren't they all?) continues to settle in. Bigger house, same/more problems. I just wanted this to be our Forever Home (well, maybe not forever but at least until the kids leave for college and excluding any move we might make.) and I'm just not feeling it. In my logical mind, I know the location, location, location was a lot of why we purchased this house but now the work that needs to be done feels like.... well... a lot. I constantly remind myself that it took us eight years to get our first house in order (and I still had lots of to-do lists there!) and to take my time and decorate slowly but surely. It will never truly be done, right? RIGHT?!
So, overall, with the New Year and heading into the January/February slip slide of emotions, I am vowing (RESOLUTING?!) to like this house.
You can help me paint.
Or hang pictures.
Or knock out a bathroom.
Or fold laundry.
Or, just, you know, let me feed you and then you can hold me and tell me everything will be okay.