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Five Things Moving Has Helped Me Learn About Myself.

(We’re about to get deep up in here.)

One.

Look, guys. It turns out that I don’t really enjoy wine if it’s consumed from anything other than a wine glass.

know.

It was a shock to me, too. You might have seen on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram that I remembered to set aside the bare essentials last Friday so the movers wouldn’t pack them with the general household goods I won’t be seeing for at least another few days:

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But what I didn’t remember — or, more accurately, what I didn’t care to do — was set aside an actual wine glass.

photo 1

I tried drinking it straight from a mini bottle I’d had stashed away, but it just felt… wrong.

So wrong.

So I didn’t even attempt it with the coffee cup I kept unpacked or the frozen beer mug I discovered in the freezer. I just knew it wouldn’t feel right.

Two.

Apparently, Justin and I are hoarders of condiments. And also, we have zero respect for expiration dates. We must have emptied no less than 37 partially used bottles of accoutrements from our refrigerator, at least 27 of which were expired — oils and dressings and everything in-between. This was beyond ketchup and mustard and Dijon, dear readers. This was an ethnic explosion of sauces — barbecue, chili, cocktail, and fish. Oyster and Hoisin and Tabasco and verde. And this isn’t even counting the cabinets full of oils — (sesame and grapeseed and olive and macadamia, just to name a few), vinegars (balsamic and red wine and champagne and pomegranate), and spices. Oh, remember my spices?

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We have a bottle of Salsa Lizano left from my time in Costa Rica. It expired in 2012. We still use it because it still tastes good.

How’s that for logic?

This morning I threw out a bag of frozen vegetables that expired in 2011.

No, I’m not proud.

But the real winner? This bottle of appletini mix. Date of death? 2007.

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This expired six years ago.

Yet I still had a hard time dumping it out. Why is that?

I think I have a true aversion to wasting food. Or anything food related. It just doesn’t sit right with me. But apparently expired things do.

Three.

There are certain extenuating circumstances in which I’m still afraid of the dark. Like stumbling around in the unknown corridors of a new house. Or sleeping by myself on an air mattress in the house that we’re leaving — the house that once seemed warm and familiar but now sits mostly empty and is filled with strange echoes. I scared myself awake more than once last night, while Justin was in Virginia closing on the new (old) place. After six years, I thought I knew every sound. But last night was different. Last night I thought it might be mad at us for leaving.

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And I thought I was mad at us for leaving, too.

Four.

It turns out I’m more sentimental than I initially thought.

I know inanimate objects don’t have feelings. I know this. But still. Last night, my house just felt… sad. I’m pretty sure it knows we’re not having Thanksgiving dinner here. And while I keep trying to tell it that we found a great buyer who’s going to love and take care of it as much as we did, I don’t think it’s convinced. It kept reminding me about the work we’ve put in — the walls we painted and re-painted, the flooring we laid, the popcorn we scraped. This is where we brought the puppies home for the first time, where I burned my first quiche, and the first place I’ve owned.

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When we bought it, I thought it was just property. I didn’t think we’d be here long enough to call it home.

I never thought I’d be anywhere long enough to call it home.

But it turns out what I call it doesn’t make a difference.

Home is home.

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This one’s been mine, and I’m going to miss it.

Five.

I’ve become spoiled, comfortable, and a little bit materialistic. Somehow, somewhat surprisingly and quite inexplicably, moving has turned into an actual process. It used to be that I could shove all of my worldly possessions inside the Tracker, hit the road, and have everything unloaded within an hour of arriving at my new place. The act of moving was really only as involved as the mileage it put on my vehicle, and the rest was left to pure adventure.

From there it morphed into the task of actually renting a truck and bribing friends with 24-packs of Natural Light and maybe gathering a few actual boxes and using underwear as packing material for the real glassware I’d somehow managed to acquire. Worry was introduced. Questions about whether I’d have to switch cell phone plans or could forgive our friend for breaking the leg off of our coffee table while he jammed it into the truck began creeping into my once carefree, tortoise-like transition from place to place.

But now? Now moving involves coordination with the buyers of one property and the sellers of another. It requires a Power of Attorney and actual attorneys and negotiations involving hundreds of thousands of dollars. Somehow, more stress is introduced while helplessly watching strangers pack our things — things that I actually care about — like treasures from travels and art from friends.

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They carefully wrap our ready-to-assemble furniture in moving blankets and brown paper — my life is reduced to a chunky mass of unidentifiable padding in the back of an inordinately large truck.

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And I have to wonder, how did we get so much stuff?

The answer comes while rubbing my neck — my back is sore from typing, sitting on the floor, computer propped on its own box and butt padded with the pillow of a dog bed, and I know. I’ve gotten comfortable. I’ve gotten stagnant. I’ve gotten… domesticated.

It’s time to move.

It’s time to change.

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Katie

Thank you for reading Domestiphobia! Knowing you stopped by totally makes my day. If you'd rather just have my posts delivered right to your inbox, just subscribe here. It's free, guys, and super easy. I'm also on Facebook, Twitter, and if you want to connect!

Comments

JMcP
Reply

I love reading your blog – I really do! I feel like I can relate to almost everything you talk about. Thanks for your great posts and I look forward to hearing about your move. Safe travels!

Katie
Reply

That makes me so happy to hear! Thanks so much for the comment. Totally make my day! :)

Matthew
Reply

Good luck with the move! (It’s been forever since I’ve spoken with either of you since I wouldn’t even know you were moving already without the blog)…

Can’t wait to come out and visit in VA!

Katie
Reply

I KNOW! I’m pretty sure you guys should come to VA – not LA. ;)

Katie LeFebvre
Reply

Thank you for sharing the memories of your house and how sentimental you really are :) You have such a way with words. I can’t wait see the new house and hear about your new adventures. I think my brother isn’t too far from where you are moving. Good luck to you and Justin on the move! Happy Thanksgiving!

Katie
Reply

Thanks, Katie!! If you’re brother’s going to be close, then you definitely have to come visit. Happy thanksgiving to you, too!

shelly @ohshellsbells
Reply

I moved in with my boyfriend recently and was cleaning out his (our?) pantry and found several boxes of jell-o that had expired in 2007. EXPIRED. God only knows how old that stuff is. And he complained when I tried to throw it out. As if he was suddenly going to make jell-o now, after 5 years of holding on to it.

glad you foudn the time to blog, I know this is a really busy time for you! good luck with everything!

Katie
Reply

I’ve been guilty of the expired jell-o, too. So shameful. Don’t let his hoarding habits rub off on you!! :)

lynn
Reply

Haha, using underwear as packing material. I STILL do that!
At work this summer I found a canister of bear spray that expired in 2001. I wouldn’t want to be the test case on that one!

Katie
Reply

It just works really well! That, and socks. And yeah – definitely don’t take chances with the bear spray. Ha!

Colleen Brynn
Reply

Oh heavens, not domesticated!
I love that #1 is wine, and drinking it out of the proper glass. You should have one of my inmates cups. Ha. But seriously, I’ve only ever had hard alcohol out of that thing, so I don’t know if it would work. I’m a sceptic. So probably not.
And that shot of the puppies! I die.
Good luck with your move. I know that new set of walls will feel like home in no time. x

Katie
Reply

You know, the inmate cup might just be fun enough to make up for the fact that the wine doesn’t taste right. Thanks for the nice words about the house – I hope so! I’m ready to be done with this limbo and just get there already. :)

Stacy
Reply

Katie!!! Good luck on your next adventure!!! Ridiculous as this sounds, your move makes you seem further away…but it’s time! Loved this so much!!! I miss you, my friend.

Katie
Reply

Probably because I will be further away. ;) I miss you too, dear friend! Where have you been? And when are you coming to visit??

Stacy
Reply

That is a VERY good point, mapologist! I’ve been working way too much, but in Chicago this weekend drinking bourbon with my sister. What did you all do for Thanksgiving?

Katie
Reply

Some friends had us over for an incredible dinner, then we drove to VA on Friday!

Stephanie
Reply

Good luck with your new home, and don’t worry – it’ll be home too before you know it. Once you get your spices sorted, it’ll be like you always lived there. :) I know it’s a total cliche, but what makes a home a home is the people in it. And having art on the walls. Blank walls are a little depressing and transient-feeling. The rest of it though? Window dressing.

Also, you are very hard on yourself: comfortable does not equal stagnant. It’s a nice thing. Whether you’re comfortable on the move or comfortable in one place, it’s still comfort and you should enjoy it where you get it.

Katie
Reply

I HAVE NOWHERE TO PUT THE SPICES!!!

My life as I know it is over. The box sits unopened on my kitchen floor. I feel lost. ;)

I guess it felt stagnant because we’d been there SO long. Much longer than originally anticipated. Like… lasting butt prints in the sofa long. And that’s too long. But yes – comfort is important. We agreed to work incredibly hard on this house instead of dawdling like the last to get it comfortable sooner. That way we’re not just finishing right when it’s time to move again!

Stephanie
Reply

Oh, also, of course empty houses are creepy! Way too many horror movies have been made for them ever not to be creepy.

Andi
Reply

Ack, I know there is something like this in my future. I am in my first home, been here for 6 years, itching for a change, but I have never lived anywhere so long and I am afraid of what it means!

Katie
Reply

Exactly! It was weird feeling so settled, but honestly, it’s surprising how quickly this new place is feeling like home. And it’s just another adventure! :)

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