2010 is well started, and I’ve just had my birthday. Our Etsy Blogger Carnival choices are to look back at 2009, or forward to 2010. I want to look forward, and picture my hopes and plans for this year.
In the fall of last year, my Mom’s home was burglarized. I’m convinced she came home while they were still at it, because of what they didn’t take—two of three drawers in the china cabinet were emptied, but not the third, and the valuables on top of Mama’s dresser were taken, but nothing from the drawers. It seemed that they heard the garage door opening and bolted out the front door while Mom was coming in the back.
My nephew is Mama’s (and our) insurance agent. I was sitting in Mama’s living room with her, discussing insurance forms and claims and the like when, with Ryan on the speaker phone, when he said, “So,Grandma. When are you going to move up to the (Hood River) Valley?” That would put Mom in the same town as her siblings and a whole flock of nieces and nephews and friends.
Mama answered with some acerbity, “When my kids and grandkids come down here and help me pack up, and sell my house, and find a new one, I’ll move!” Well, then.
We let that ride through the holidays, and then the first week of January I got a bit of a bee in my bonnet. I wonder what I could find if I just Googled “Hood River Real Estate”, I thought. No sooner thought than done, and scant minutes later I was on the phone with Mom, with three possibilities. Several days later we were in the Valley with a real estate agent, the next day we’d put an offer in on a place that seems to be perfect, the seller countered on Monday, and we’ve countered that offer, and now have an acceptance.
I think we’re all a bit stunned at the speed of it. And now my head is full of plans, and schedules, and trips, and packing. That is my plan for 2010, to get Mama moved to her new place, and settled. Easy. Not.
Mom currently lives in a BIG house. It has five bedrooms, four and a half baths, a big family room, living room, separate dining room, office, and five car garage. She’s 84, and you’d think she’d be rattling around like a marble in a Red Flyer wagon, but no, she’s all over that place, and while she might not do an awful lot in the daylight basement, with its two bedrooms and baths and family room, let me tell you, she fully inhabits the rest of the house! And it is stuffed to the brim with the accumulation of twenty-five years in one place, much of it while Dad and Mom ran the place as a bed and breakfast.
Mama’s head is now full of check lists—what she’ll take, who gets what that she’s giving away, what goes into a moving/garage sale, what gets sent to the Goodwill, what repairs my DH will need to make before selling, what remodeling projects will take place in her new home. We spend hours on the phone every day, discussing everything.
My other plans for 2010:
"^"Add several new shows to my line-up. My least favorite thing is doing new shows. They make me tense, as I’m always worried I’ll get lost, or will forget to fill out some form or other, or do something stupid, so I like to have shows I can do every year, and be comfortable with.
"^" Work with my oldest daughter to come up with new ways to use the Coffee Pot People. Melody is full of ideas, more than I can keep up with, and I can’t think of anything but to try them out!
"^" My DH wants to add a sixth house to our property. Thankfully, I don’t think that will involve me much.
"^" But he also wants to buy another property we’ve found, and move to it! Picture me crawling under the table screeching “NO! NO! NO!!!” I’d probably like the new place. It looks from the outside like a 1970’s split level, and is nice and big, but I love this house. However, the property is a real fixer-upper, and we’d probably do better to rent out this house and live in the new one. eeek. We’ve stuffed this house almost as much as Mom and Dad did theirs.
"^" Last, I want to get organized. Of course, I say that every year. What would I resolve to do, if I ever managed that one? I ask you.
Today is my birthday. It’s been a wonderful, quietly productive day, and I’ve felt less stressed than I have in some weeks. Last night, I went to the pub sing. There were probably thirty raucous singers lining both sides of a very long table littered with beer glasses, pitchers of beer and water and plates of French fries. I didn’t tell anyone my birthday was coming up, but I’d been there only a few minutes when one of the guys turned to me and said, “Isn’t it your birthday?”
“You know that?!? It isn’t until tomorrow,” I was surprised, and laughing a little, “so you can’t sing to me!”
“Oh, I’m not so sure about that.”
Sure enough, late in the evening, along about 11:30, John said, “We need a dirge. We need a DIRGE!” and began to sing that birthday song that goes to the tune of Volga Boatmen—“Happy birthday, happy birthday, now that you’re the age you are, your demise cannot be far!” and other such edifying verses. As that one was ending, they segued into “Happy birthday, happy birthday, we love you” (can’t remember what the tune is from, but it’s a waltz). And when they were through with that, Hugo stood and sang, “Whyiiiiiieeee…” which got everyone’s attention, and immediately they were all singing, “Why was she born so beautiful? Why was she born at all? She’s nobody use to anyone! She’s nobody use at all!” It was lovely wonderful, and I will not soon forget it.