Monday, October 10, 2011

Yours, Mine, and Ours

I've had a couple of weeks to settle in with Antonio now, in the house we share with the three cats.  While I was in Europe, he did a lot of unpacking, and we have now finished with all the unpacking, done a lot of organizing and decorating, and are putting on the final touches of "home," though having been a homeowner before, I don't know if one ever truly finishes all the "final" touches -- it seems like little "honeydews" and projects are perpetually popping up before the last task has been completed.  Nevertheless, I strive to be an optimist, so I'll focus on what's been accomplished on the home front (which is quite a bit).

I had literally moved my stuff from Austin to the house in San Antonio, dumped it off, and said, "Going to Europe - see you in a couple weeks!"  I had no idea what my boyfriend would do -- or not do -- with everything while I was gone.  He did great on his own, unpacking as much as he could (there were some things even I wasn't sure what I wanted done with) and hanging pictures here and there.  (Oh, and he got me a golf bag as a "welcome home" gift, but that's a little off topic and I'm really just bragging about how sweet he is by bringing it up...)  Anyway, among the things Antonio hung up were a painting Brian's grandma had painted and given to us as a wedding gift -- that hangs on the mantle above the fireplace, as it has in every place we've lived since we wed.  There is a framed Van Gogh print Brian bought in Europe on a college trip -- a piece we never found a place for, that we never had hung up before while Brian was alive.  Now, it sits atop a bookshelf in the living room.  Also in the living room, above the entryway door is a sign reading "Home is Where Your Story Begins!"  That used to hang in the hallway, along the stairs, in my old house, flanked by photos of Brian and me.  Then, in the apartment in Austin, it was displayed above the door to the balcony.  Now, it is again in a "home," the place my new story -- our story -- begins.

It's interesting to fill a house with stuff that is "yours, mine, and ours."  It's even more interesting when there is stuff that was Brian's, or that was "ours" together -- things like matching dishes, glassware, towels and bedding that we received as wedding gifts.  There are framed photos of our wedding on display in the bedroom (a choice we made together in advance of the move), and other little things -- a jacket of Brian's that I've always kept hanging up in the coat closet for some reason, even at this house.  I was a little worried that Antonio would feel weird about all this, but my fears have all been for naught.  We had discussed in advance where I'd put pictures of Brian, and how many would be displayed. In fact, he's even been excited about some of the things I brought to the equation as a result of being married to Brian -- the keg fridge and a kick-ass coffee maker chief among them.

All in all, the "yours, mine, and ours" approach has worked out perfectly well for us, and we have a beautiful home that makes a lovely setting for our story to begin.