Tuesday, April 18, 2023

It's Been Awhile ...

Here is it is, already the end of April 2023. Where has time gone since my last post?

Let's see. After Stephen passed, my son Erik and his fiance Stephanie, moved to Tucson from Boston and into my house. They kept me company and it allowed them time to establish a foothold in Tucson. They obtained jobs, made friends and bought a car. When they moved out into their own two-bedroom apartment, I donated several pieces of furniture to the effort -- including my sofa, the bed and side tables from the guest room, some chairs, bookshelves, pictures, books ...

With a half-empty house, I had two options: buy or sell.

Since I wasn't sure which, I started packing things into boxes. I would either unpack later and buy furniture or I would sell the house and be half way out of it. My sisters were encouraging me to relocate to Bloomington to be near them. Unconsciously, I was making a decision. Though I may not have actually known that until the weekend Erik and Stephanie came for dinner and discovered I'd sold the Christmas Tree! Ouch, the shock of it.

The packing and selling on Facebook Marketplace picked up speed and the house-hunting in Illinois began in earnest. Though I still hedged my bets. I could still unpack and refurnish the house ... or not.

I went back to Illinois for a wedding and spent the weekend with my youngest sister, Sam. We came across a by-owner listing and called to preview it. I was interested, but said no and returned to Tucson. But, that two-bedroom condo with patio and palladian windows kept popping up in my brain. Finally, I called the owner and offered to buy it. He accepted and handed me the keys before we ever signed anything. "We're more trusting out here in the Midwest," he said.

It took longer for the lawyers to do the paperwork than it took for us to agree. And my Tucson house sold over the weekend.

That was a year and a half ago.

Today I play canasta at the ARC (old folks center), mah jongg with three different groups, help with estate sales and wine tastings, write code snippets for word and web, and enjoy cocktail hours and lunches with my sisters and friends. There are also the antique shopping trips, visits to Chicago, and entertaining occasional guests. And I've joined the Symphony Guild and the DAR. You could say I am busy doing fun things.

Over the years, the girls have bought/sold and traded things with each other, from furniture to tea cups. Now I am in the loop. Part of the fun was re-furnishing my condo. I only brought a few pieces of furniture -- what would fit into a pod.

Counting up what I bought from Sam: one sofa, an ottoman, three carpets, four dining chairs, two Hickory chairs, one easy chair. Then there's the rug from RugsUSA, the round table and open book shelf from marketplace, a sofa from sister Jan, lamps from Target, two modern blue leather sling chairs from Growing Grounds, two TVs from Best Buy and an Alexa dot on Amazon. Rule of thumb dictates that no matter how much you get rid of when you move, it is quickly replaced with more "stuff".

And I am settled enough to enjoy cold winter evenings in front of my gas fireplace or breezy summer evenings on my patio drinking wine with neighbors. If I am home long enough to enjoy. Whoops, off to play cards ...