A Cucumber Sandwich to Call Our Own

Cucumber sandwiches.  Remember that post from last summer?  The one which related our search for the perfect home to Ryan’s quest for the perfect cucumber sandwich?  Remember how frustrated I was, how absolutely worn out by the whole real-estate purchasing process?  Guess what, friends?

It’s finally over.

We bought a house.


Two weeks ago today, we signed the final batch of paperwork and bid a tearful goodbye to our amazingly patient real estate agent, and now forever friend, Suzanne.  We have moved.

For the first time ever, all six patterns of my dishes fit neatly into one cabinet in our kitchen.  All five sets of wine glasses have found cabinet space.  My big orange Paula Deen stock pot that used to live in the front hall closet, along with the nesting set of multi-gallon capacity Tupperware containers, is in a cabinet.  The crock pots and serving pieces and cake plate and the plethora of other “stuff” I haven’t been able to use since our wedding, have homes.  And soon, all of my shoes will have their own closet as well.  No more concussions caused by the avalanche of falling high heels!

Can you tell I’m excited?  Can you tell how incredibly relieved I am that the whole saga has finally reached a happy ending?   I’d be lying if I denied the fact that I wholeheartedly believe we’ve earned this.  It’s been a long, sometimes impossible road leading here- to this place we call home now, just miles from our first home.  We’ve shed sweat and tears, literally, to find the perfect home.  And that’s exactly what we’ve found: a home that has everything that we ever wished for in a home- even some of those items we had been willing to compromise on in the past.  The house is the size I was hoping to find, on the size lot we said was our hope.  It has the exact number of bedrooms and bathrooms I wished for, with one of the bedrooms already being set up as an office, which was what we would have planned to do with an extra space.  The basement has additional living space, AND Ryan’s “man cave” (the space where he can set up his RC workshop and not have to charge batteries on the kitchen counters where I’m trying to make dinner), and the main floor is open and spacious, with a ton of natural light.  Not only do we have an eat-in kitchen as I had hoped for, but we also have a dining room.  And guess what?  One of the first things we did when we signed those papers was to paint it plum purple.  I’m still searching for the perfect table to put in the dining room, but in the meantime, it’s the exact color I had pictured.

Coming from our little ranch rental, I sometimes feel almost lost here.  It feels strange for Ryan to not always hear me when I speak to him.  And I also feel terribly naughty painting dark and dramatic colors on our walls, even though I’ve had some of these colors picked out for several years.  When I remind myself that this house is ours, though, that feeling goes away, and I am learning to revel in my long-buried interior designer persona.  I get to call the shots now- with my husband’s help, of course.  Aside from being my personal painter/handyman, I think he’s also enjoying making design decisions with me.  We’ve purchased furniture together (and as we contemplated our options, I made mention of another decision we had made.  At that point, he gasped and said, “Now I see!  Ok, let’s go with this!”).  And he also made decisions on at least half of the paint colors we’ve chosen so far.

For her part, Clohe has adapted very well to her new house.  In the weeks leading up to the move, I had frequent “talks” with her about what was going to happen when we moved to the “new house.”  I would point it out when we drove past, I would tell her that’s where the boxes were going that I was packing and stacking all over the place, and I would explain it to her as she snuggled with me in bed or on the couch.  I explained to our dog how the move was going to affect her.  (After all, we are the kind of people who feel the compulsive need to explain our major life decisions to our golden retriever.)

The day after we signed the papers for the house, I packed up the car with boxes bound for the kitchen, and all of our cleaning supplies, and Clohe.  I packed her beds and all of her toys, and she was moved in first, to help her to get settled.  (After all, we are the kind of people who feel the compulsive need to explain our major life decisions to our golden retriever.)

She seemed to settle in right away.  Within the first day, she had learned her way around, found some good places to lie down, and knew the exact boundaries of our property without us having to show her.  After our first day of working to prepare the house for our move, we walked to my Auntie’s house across the street, and didn’t leash Clohe.  She walked between us the whole way until we reached my aunt’s property line.  At that point, Clohe took off running through the yard and straight to the garage door.

Last week, we took Clohe to our empty little ranch house to load the car with the last of our belongings.  We took her in the house to show her that our things were gone, and after a brief “run through and sniff,” she seemed satisfied that we wouldn’t be leaving her in the big house all by herself.  We went outside to load the car as Clohe made one final run around the property.  We could almost see her saying goodbye.    Finally, when we were ready to leave, I called to her and said, “Clohe, let’s go home,” expecting her to go to the door between the garage and the kitchen.  Instead, she went to the car and stood by the door until we came to get in with her.

I think explaining our major life decisions to our golden retriever has paid off.  And I think she likes our cucumber sandwich too.





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