Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Movin' On Up

I've been in a transitional phase of my life for over a year now.  Well, pretty much a year and a half -- since Brian died -- but especially since last May, when I started moving around from place to place.  On top of that, I've had enough friends and family members move that it seems I'm always surrounded in a state of flux.  Here are the moves that I've been involved in recently:

May 2010:
My studio apt. last summer
  1. I move to Austin to begin a three month lease
  2. A housesitter moves into my house in Iowa for the summer
  3. A friend/co-worker also moves into my house in Iowa
  4. I help my husband's aunt and uncle in Texas move from Austin to their retirement home in the hill country near Austin
  5. A friend from Des Moines moves into my studio apt. in Austin with me
 July 2010:
  1. I help my friend/Austin roommate move into a different place in Austin with her fiance, who had just been able to move to Austin from Des Moines
  2. I decide I will move to Austin permanently (okay, this isn't really a "move," but it was a decision to move again!)
August 2010:
  1. I move back to Iowa, my sublease being up.
  2. My housesitter in Iowa moves out.
September 2010:
  1. A new cat, a kitten I discovered alongside a running trail, moves into my house.
  2. My friend and co-worker moves out of my Iowa house after he is able to find someone to rent his house in eastern Iowa and can afford to get a place of his own
  3. I help my friends Hart & Schweers (roommates) move to a new place in Des Moines
October 2010:
  1. I put my house in Iowa on the market, after months of cleaning, painting, organizing, donating, staining, landscaping, and the like.
November 2010:
  1. I take a trip to Austin to pick out a new apartment and sign a lease that begins in December (my apartment locator and I went on to play skeeball together and he is now one of my closest friends)
December 2010:

  1. I move the "big stuff" to Austin with my dad (who had to move my sister from Minnesota to Iowa in the same day as we started the Iowa to Texas move!), leaving the old living room furniture and some other things for use when I will be back in Iowa over the holidays
    Getting ready to move to Austin!
    On the plane w/ Picaboo & Ellie
  2. I fly 2 cats from Iowa to Austin on a private plane, free of charge   (a fun story, to be sure!)
  3. I drive another load or two of stuff from Iowa to Austin in the course of the holiday season, and pick out some new living room furniture for my apartment
  4. My friend Kristen (who also played skeeball with me) moves in to my apartment temporarily to house- and cat-sit while I'm in Iowa for holidays and a wedding
January 2011:
    Mittons & I driving to Austin
  1. The couch I'd been sleeping on in Iowa over the holiday/wedding season is moved out and to a new home, with a friend's brother in Iowa City
  2. I fill up my SUV one last time and Mittons and I drive to Austin, completing our move
  3. My living room furniture is "moved in" by the furniture store delivery guys
February 2011: 

April 2011: 
  1. "Antonio" starts seriously house-hunting for a house in San Antonio
June 2011:
  1. Antonio signs a contract to buy a house
  2. We pack up as much of his apartment as we can before we set out for our first family vacation together
  3. My friend Amy "moves in" to my apartment temporarily to house- and cat- sit while I go to Bonnaroo
July 2011:
"Antonio's" new house
  1. Antonio does the majority of his move while I am in the Dominican Republic with my family
  2. We finish the move by cleaning out his apartment, handing in the keys, and bringing the cleaning supplies over the house upon my return
  3. We continue to unpack and organize at the house
  4. Amy moves into my apartment again to look after things while I'm on vacation and helping Antonio with his move

Having moved so frequently, and in such a manner, I really relied on friends and family to help me out -- not just with the physical moving of things, but also with things like: going through things/purging stuff: packing; organizing; unpacking; cleaning; painting; picking up moving trucks; letting me come over while I had open houses; disassembling and reassembling furniture; house-sitting; pet-sitting;, arranging for me to hop on a private jet with my cats; airport pick-ups; packing "snack packs" for my numerous road trips; deciding just how many pairs of shoes I'd need in a three month time span; providing a couch and a home-cooked meal in the midst of my transience; etc.  I could not have made it through all of the above-mentioned transitions without incredible help and support of my friends and family.  I think you find out who your true friends are when it's moving time.  I could never adequately repay those who've helped me, though I will continue to try.  One thing I can do, though, is pay it forward.  Whenever I hear of anyone who needs help moving, I always volunteer.  I'm a good person to have coming moving day, too -- I know a thing or two about how the process operates, and how to make things run as smoothly as possible, I'm calm under pressure, and I'm a heck of a lot stronger than I look.  Oh, and I try to remember to bring beer!

As for when I'll move again....well, I have five months left on my lease, so it looks like I have a little bit of time before my next move.  While I don't relish the idea of going through all that again, I know I can handle it.  Besides, I have several friends who are moving before then, so I'll get plenty of practice (and perhaps I'll rack up some favors owed)!

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