Monday, March 25, 2013

Stellar First Week (and by "stellar" I mean in that way that could only happen to me)!

Happy Snowy Monday, everyone!

Is it snowing where you are?  If you're in the upper part of the US, either it is or it just has, apparently.  It's snowing here and, for once, I'm not entirely thrilled about it.

Don't get me wrong, I still love snow, but I had made my peace with the fact that we just were not going to have a lovely, halting snowstorm this Winter.  I had accepted it and had moved on, ready to welcome Spring with her warm (but not too warm) sunshine, green grass, flowers and breezes through windows.  I even dug out my springtime decor and made a mental note to pack away the flannels next week.

And now it's snowing.  That tree stands just outside the library window.  It it covered with pretty, little, pink buds.  Just yesterday I was sighing with anticipation, imagining how beautiful it's going to look in a few weeks.  I hope this weather doesn't ruin it.


Anyway, the desperate need for a mammoth laundry endeavor has made itself known today and, here in The Vicarage, the laundry room is right next to the library where we have the computer so I can easily blog or troll Pinterest or harass various sisters on Facebook while waiting for the machines to cycle.

And so I will tell you about our first full week in The Vicarage.  In short, it has been generally wonderful with a smattering of annoyance and, yes, even embarrassment.  Things are going so well and we are enjoying living here so much we've taken to calling this place The Magic House.  Not very imaginative, I know, but I've found it's hard to be imaginative when you are exhausted and sore.  For, despite its wonders and blessings, this week has felt a bit like a sentence to a week's hard labor.  I don't think I have ever worked so hard in my life, both mentally and physically.

I don't know what their problem is, they've hardly done anything!  On a side note, I had always thought I would hate having a carpet this color.  I always imagined it would always look filthy, no matter how clean it was.  Perversely, I have found the opposite to be true.  This is the only carpeted room in The Vicarage and it always (so far, in just a week's time) looks cleaner than any of the hardwood or tile floors elsewhere.  I guess it helps having a carpet that is the exact same color as the copious amounts of hair your dog sheds when she's blowing coat.

And there's my decorating tip of the year: buy carpets to match your pets.  And then never walk around in socks.  TRUST ME.

But, like I said, this week has been good.  As you can see from the photo above, of Redheaded Snippet's pretty (and not at all blinding as I had feared) aqua room still burdened with boxes, we're still unpacking.  We're still having those moments of, "Where's the dustpan/alarm clock/salad spinner/dish towels?"  We're still using paper plates and plastic cups occasionally.  And I'm still arranging and rearranging my kitchen for maximum efficiency.

Ta-Da!  My shocking green bathroom!  Trust me, this photo by no means does justice to how startling this color is.  The first time anyone sees it (including each one of us), the first reaction is, simply, "Whoa."  But then everyone seems to like it.  At least we all do and perhaps everyone else is just lying to us.  Calvin calls it Wake-Up Green.  I've got great plans for toile window treatments and black hand towels and blahdiblahdiblah.

But I've promised you highlights.  And highlights you shall have.

First: I can safely tell you, now that the problem has been resolved, that Calvin has had trouble falling asleep in a room by himself for quite a while now.  He was embarrassed to have such an issue, being the big boy that he is, but he doesn't come by it strangely.  Both my mother and I have battled insomnia and fear of falling asleep for years.  We just kept praying for him and with him and assuring him God would help him find a way to cope with it.

From the first night in The Magic House, Calvin has slept in his own room.  He hasn't always slept well or long, but he's been in his own room without complaining.  And we didn't even have to coax him to do it.  I'm sure it is largely attributed to the fact that we decided to allow Nutmeg to sleep in his room.  But I don't care.  He feels so grown up and mature and I, for one, completely agree with him!

Second, we've been enjoying the proximity to the church that living in The Vicarage allows.  We were somewhat apprehensive about that and I'm sure that, at some point down the road, it will be a nuisance at times.  But, for now, it's been delightful.  We have several friends in our church and it's been nice to have them stop in here and there when they've had to be at the church anyway.  And we're very much enjoying spending more time with our new "neighbors," our friends, the youth pastor and his wife, who live on the property on the other side of the church building.

Third, lastly, and humorously, the thing we will probably remember most vividly about this first week is Nutmeg's Palm Sunday shenanigans.  She has had a bit of a harder time adjusting to the move.  Which is understandable, I suppose.  In her bewilderment, she has become a lot more attached to The Vicar.  In her eyes, the sun has always risen and set on him but, lately, she's been anxious whenever he's not around.

She has always done this weird thing whenever anyone in the family leaves the house by any means other than a car.  If any one of us (well, maybe not me, as I don't think she's particularly attached to me personally and I rarely do what I'm about to describe) goes for a walk or bike ride, she goes berserk.  If The Vicar or the kids leave in a car, she's fine.  But if they walk away, she whines and cries at the windows, or at the fence if she's outside, until they come back.

(Stay with me here, this has a point) Now, being that The Vicarage is literally, though barely, attached to the church building, on Sunday we simply walk out the door and walk to church.  Yesterday, The Vicar departed first for the early service and Nutmeg commenced her usual "HE WALKED AWAY WHERE IS HE GOING I DON'T UNDERSTAND" histrionics.  I asked Calvin to take her out on the leash in hopes of lessening our risk of an out-of-control "potty" accident and went back to getting ready for church.

It wasn't until the last song of the late service was about to begin that Calvin leaned over and whispered to me that Nutmeg had gotten away from him during walkies.  I rolled my eyes.  And then he added that she had pooped on the sidewalk!  Right in front of the church entrance!  Right before the start of the most crowded service!  On Palm Sunday!  AND HE HAD NOT CLEANED IT UP!

So then, of course, our fellow congregants, in addition to having to step over a pile of dog doo when they were entering church, were treated, when they exited the church, to the sight of the new Music Pastor's son bent over in front of the entrance with napkins and a ziptop bag, gingerly picking up aforementioned doo.  Not the spectacle they expected to witness in front of the church on Palm Sunday, I can tell you!  I bet they can't wait to see what we scare up for Easter! My sister, Dharma, is betting it's a mangled ground hog in a puddle of vomit.  Happy Easter!

Thus ends our First Week.  And hopefully things will calm down enough so that we can focus on Holy Week.  I confess, I've been shamefully distracted and keep forgetting about Lent.  I think this is where Lenten observances become more difficult when you're doing it on your own and not corporately (our church does not observe Lent formally--to my disappointment).  But, I keep reminding myself of my mother's saying: "God is always more interested in the motives of your heart than in your actions."  And I find that especially comforting and humbling during Lent.

A blessed Holy Week to you all!

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