One week since move in day. I'm still in my new house (no surprise) and I'm even more in love with the place although I am also far more familiar with its peccadillos. Well, we all have peccadillos. I have mine, as I enter my 60th year on this planet, and this house, which is 90 this year, has its as well. Let us celebrate peccadillos. Much as we may like shiny new things, it is our eccentricities which make us what we are.
Move in day went swimmingly. All the boxes were color-coded, although the furniture was not. This was a good thing, as I am still trying to get the tape residue off a chrome table that the movers stuck tape on when I moved here from New York 5 years ago. At the same time, some things ended up not where I originally intended. This too is good and bad. As to the color coded chart, (and yes, every box had matching color coded tape), I own up to being a nerd, an organized nerd who likes color. Ignore the "Thanksgivings/Petitions", I borrowed the white board from the church. At the same time, both thanksgivings and petitions are oddly pertinent to the process of moving, so perhaps it was a serendipitous choice after all.
I am not unpacked; I am however partially unpacked. The living room and dining room are more or less set, furniture wise, although there are boxes of decorative "objects" (pretend to affect a snooty French pronunciation here) still to be unpacked. The master bedroom is more set, in that both large and small items are in place, but within the drawers anarchy may be brewing.
The kitchen is more than half unpacked, but has also been re-arranged twice. I am about to embark on the third rearrangement of the kitchen. Whether this is necessary, or it is a way to avoid scrubbing the stove and oven (which is desperately in need of scrubbing) is yet to be determined. I am having friends for dinner tonight, and whether I cook on a newly cleaned stove, bite my lips and cook anyway, or order out, is yet to be revealed.
There have been joys and frustrations and an untold number of trips to Home Depot and Bed Bath and Beyond. Among the joys is my evolving spice rack. A friend sent a house-warming gift consisting of a set of 5 spice blends and a copy of The Spice Companion from La Boite NY. As it happened the box of spices and their nifty little magnetic boxes arrived just as I was wondering what to do about spice storage. In the previous house the spices were in a shallow drawer, which was not my favorite choice as I tend to like spices in easy sight. In this house I have fewer drawers, but one empty piece of wall. I went in for a long-overdue haircut shortly after the spice collection arrived and saw these photos of downtown Knoxville. An idea was born.
The lower photo will move up and the spice modules will continue to grow around the photos. I ordered empty spice sets from Food 52, which I filled with the remnants of my intentionally dwindling spice collection, and the collection will continue to grow as needed, eventually occupying much of this wall. Apparently I like spice and color. Also apparent is that I am inclined to spend too much time fretting about the details and not enough time getting the boxes opened. It will all happen in its own good time, and I shall continue to putter, more so than in my last move, as there is no one hurrying me along.
(A view of dining room joy. the tiny square hanging in the window may prove to be the new curtain fabric, not that you can tell anything in this photo.)
Admittedly there have also been moments when I have wondered what the heck I am doing and if I am even cut out for this. Friday I returned home tired and hungry after running around, fulfilling goodness knows what errands. It was late, around about 8 PM. I had just come from Home Depot and I wanted dinner. I knew I had some nice ground lamb in the fridge, and an eggplant, and I wanted nothing more than to grill a lamb burger and make some kind of spicy eggplant puree to accompany said burger. It seemed so easy.
Then I realized that the grill was on the deck, conveniently positioned next to the gas outlet, but was not connected. Why had I not noticed that? I couldn't get the cap off the gas line in order to hook up the grill. It appeared to be rusted in place. In my limited experience with gas lines (we did not have one in NY) the connections had plastic caps, but not this one. As I mentioned it was late and I was tired and hungry. I didn't feel like rustling through the box of tools George left me, and which I have still managed to avoid organizing. I wasn't sure I even had the right kind of wrench, and I definitely did not want to go back to Home Depot. I ended up making a lamb and eggplant saute, which was perfectly good although not what I wanted. Worst of all, tired and frustrated as I was, I simply doubted myself and the wisdom of my choices. How could I manage a house if I couldn't even connect a grill to the gas line?
As it happens the grill is still not connected. I either: 1) Don't have the right kind of wrenches to do the job (possible); 2) Don't know what I am doing (more than likely); 3) Have the right idea but don't have the strength to move the rusted cover (also a strong possibility), 4) Am fully capable and have the right tools but am afraid of the gas line (you have that right); or 5) Am generally in over my head. I'm opting for the latter, but I still have resources. I can work a drill or a table saw, even though I may prefer not to, but I really don't want to figure out the gas connection. Luckily I can afford to call for help.
Of course that means that if I can't count on using the grill, I have to clean the stove.