All of the little things are falling into place. Boxes unpacked, furniture set up and cupboards stocked. Mom is onto her favorite part, moving her treasures from table to table, creating that perfectly perfect vignette. She's happy to be fully in her apartment- adoring the view, the light that bounces from river to rooms, the changing parade of barges, tugs and boats.
One of these days we'll take time out to sit on her balcony and read the paper over coffee, plan the next steps. Part Two is daunting: doctors, helpers, friends, community. I am so ready to drop into a chair and just watch the river meander along. No time to waste, October's honey-colored days are changing to frisky tempests with rain and wind tearing at the trees. I always forget there's a time limit on this seasonal daydream. Rushing through, it's too easy to think it will wait.
Even if something is left undone, everyone must take time to sit still and watch the leaves turn.
Day Four. It's still full-time getting Mom settled. We have been steadily unpacking and finding homes in new places for her lovely things. My friends, Lynne and Suzanne spent an afternoon unpacking a bunch of huge boxes. Suzanne returned yesterday with homemade butternut squash soup and cornbread croutons for lunch. So delicious, that plus her cheerful visit kept me going another 5 hours after. Last night Jane stopped by with a darling welcome gift and hugs for Mom. Every time I think I've hit a wall of exhaustion, someone pops up to remind me that it will all be in place soon.
Today Maggie will manage the round-up. It's time to shape the rooms, make the furniture belong and start living in the space. Like her dad, she is the most organized and energized manager. We need that now, and it will be fun- she'll make us laugh and dance to her iPod. One of these days, I'll actually agree to let Mom really move in and sleep there. (I have yet to reactivate her panic-button system. The operator told me to just push the button a few times to test it. What if the call goes right to the volunteer fire and ambulance- as it is supposed to? I keep picturing all those folks jumping up from their desks and running to the firehouse while I chat away with a woman in California about the system set-up.)
But enough about all that. I've also been thinking about my neglected blog and craft life. For you, dear readers, I am offering this little (and I mean little) inspiration. Made from a short length of beautiful tatted lace and a piece of wool felt, this bookmark is easy to make. Cut the lace to size, carefully stitch it onto the larger piece of felt and then pink the edges. I finished the back with a pretty vintage chintz to match and stitched a flower (or a button) to the top on front. Quick, scrappy, and amazingly gratifying as a small project, it makes a sweet thank you gift when tucked into a good book for a friend.
Wish I had one for each of you. Thanks so much for all the kind words and notes. We're almost there! xoC
Mom's moving truck arrived yesterday with something like 81 items. Andy and I spent the day with the movers negotiating the elevator and the boxes and cartons and crates and pads. 7 hours of unloading for a one bedroom apartment! Mom directed the flow from her chair and kept saying - o, that goes in the bedroom. No surprise that after the first hour that room looked like the inside of the moving trailer so we started building towers in the living room. Thankfully, Andy is brilliant and organized- everything had a category and corner before we left late last night. The many, many boxes marked home decor kind of worry me though. Like mother, like daughter.
That's where I'm headed today (and tomorrow and every day for awhile). Called my sweet, generous girlfriends who have been waiting for their moment. We're off to attempt a Snow White reassembly. (Already unpacked a case of wine.) I know it will be beautiful when we finish. Mom is in love with the adventure, the apartment and the spectacular view of the Hudson.
Fingers crossed. Baby steps after this first giant leap.
What fun to read your comments and suggestions. Thanks so much for sharing your inspiration! Looks like Wentworth is the popular choice, however, I will wait to formally name him until the buyer lets me know her preferred choice- which could be Fraley or Pierce.
He's going to Etsy this afternoon around 4 pm EST along with a few other Halloween friends. Each will be shipped the same day or day after purchase/payment because we are suddenly running out of October days. That happened way too fast, didn't it?
I found some time for the wool basket this morning. Not completely sure what the plan will be for this little guy, but he needs a name. Thought I would let you in on the fun- it's my favorite part. Three choices seemed like good options.
It's been 25 years since my mom and I lived in the same town. I left St. Louis with Andy and our 2 little girls to move to Chicago. Mom went to California with her husband.
There was alot in between, distance, years, stuff. We both missed out. These last few years have been especially hard for her with the death of her husband, her son (my brother) and my father. Every day became one long endurance test, too often ending in despair. I could hear it on the phone, see it when I visited. But when she came to visit us, the adventure put some of the "old Mom" back in place.
So when she was here in September, we spent most of the visit looking around at apartments near me. And we found one. 10 minutes away in an older pre-war building on the river, in a vintage Mayberry small town, with a senior center a block away, and lots of men her age to flirt with. Seriously. Mom is always happier when there is someone to charm. She's funny and smart and opinionated. Feisty and independent as a teenager- minus the car.
Today begins her move. Tomorrow I pick her up at the airport and next week sometime the truck will be here with her things. We have lots of support from my own family and friends who already have offered to help. It's a great life here in NY and all of us are excited to have Mom come and join in. She's excited too. I'm not kidding myself though - it isn't going to be easy. I wonder if I could do what she is doing now- at 79, pick up, move off to another part of the country, without a car, without a clue about where I was landing, just hoping my kids would see me through.
I noticed in yesterday's post that I used the word hope about 10 times. I went back and edited, but couldn't help thinking that it probably wasn't an accident. Hope is the first word on our lips these days for all things. Just have to look ahead with hope over fear knowing that this is our best chance at change for the better. Hear that, Mom? Pack your party shoes.
Th' longest lane will have a turning. ~Elizabeth Gaskell, 1848