Hey y’all! It’s been a LOOOONG time since I posted last. I’m sure none of my four readers even noticed, but I’m feeling guilty because this blog is something I started – and according to my Midwestern roots ‘Dangit, you finish what you start!’
I’ve gotten a lot of advice regarding this blog. And to be honest, I take ALL of it seriously. The most pertinent: ‘You need to be less despondent in your blogging.’ And, to the person who told me that – THANK YOU!! I was trying to be ‘authentic’ with my thoughts and musings, but I fully admit that you caught me on a bad day with that. Sometimes, being a full-time Mom, Wife and Professional gets to be more than overwhelming – and my reality on those days probably seems despondent. So, here we go. With my True Daily Reality.
Towards the beginning of last summer, the fam and I made a Serious Change. It was the culmination of a Five Year Plan. See, back when our Oldest Minion was starting public school, we decided that we would move before he entered middle school. And the need for that was made more apparent when, during Oldest Minion’s preschool days, our neighborhood started to disintegrate due to the developers’ decisions. At that time, he was able to come to school with me (since I taught in the same district.) But over time, our neighborhood didn’t quite develop in the way we originally thought. HOWEVER, I will say that, when I quit teaching 2+ years ago and we moved the minions to our neighborhood school – it was AWESOME!! Our little neighborhood elementary school was PERFECT for our minions. Small, community-focused, amazing teachers… The pluses went on and on. Our kids made wonderful friends in the neighborhood! If we could have kept our minions as permanent elementary-school kiddoes it would have been ideal. But….
The middle school we were zoned to was less. Than. Ideal. Sad to say, because the friends we (and The Minions) made over the last couple of years are wonderful people. So it was a hard choice. But, with a Teacher-Spouse and Former-Teacher-Turned-Corporate-Wife – we couldn’t afford the Amazing Private School that would have been my first choice for Oldest Minion’s middle school. So we started talking and ultimately returned to our Five-Year-Marriage Plan. Which was – wait for it… that our Someday Children would attend school in and/or near our hometowns. Which are Carrollton and Richardson, Texas, respectively. So we revisted the Five Year Plan – and spent a year planning The Move To Dallas,.
We knew upfront that Oldest Minion would probably hate the idea at first, since he had finally made good neighborhood friends. And he did. I heard more than once that we were ‘Ruining. His. Life.’ BUT, we had to pull it out as parents and remember how important the closeness of Family was to both of us as kids. Which, admittedly, our Minions had no clue about since they’d basically grown up on an island, except for major holidays. So we pushed on. And pushed. Renovations over Labor Day? Necessary. Floors torn up? Fact of Life. Painting the whole house? Non-negotiable. Packing important stuff? Had. To. Happen. See where I’m going with this? My Minions had to deal with a torn-up house and most of their Special Belongings going into boxes last January. Reality? It sucked. For them, mostly. But for me too. And The Spouse. Special things like our wedding pics had to go into storage – in the interest of Staging the House.
So we did it. Eventually put the house On the Market. Open House over Spring Break for the Minions. But you know what? We got TWO full-price offers on the house within seven days. And one of those offers had (as a contingency) letting us leaseback our house for three months until school was over. YES!!! Done!!
Pluses: MONTHS of work and packing resulted in only DAYS of staging the house. And, for those of you with kids, only having to fully stage your house for a few DAYS is golden. We also solicited recommendations for realtors from people we knew well. Luckily, one of those reccs was for a realtor who was in the TOP 15 in Houston at the time. SO, we sold the house that we built, that my Minions had come home to as newborns – in the blink of an eye.
Am I sentimental? YES. I remember where the CHAIR was sitting the first time my Spouse fed Oldest Minion from a bottle. I remember where the Pack-n-Play was set up in the family room when I had to corral Oldest Minion during the Spouse’s school trip. I remember where Youngest Minion’s crib was the day that we got up to find TWO boys in the crib. I couldn’t leave this house easily. It was Our First Home. And terribly hard to leave.
But… the help that my Father-in-Law provided during our search for a house was beyond amazing. His advice on practical things like home layout and proximity to schools was invaluable. He tactfully reminded us that our ‘dream house’ might have been a bit too far north from our jobs – and as a result we ended up in the PERFECT HOUSE for us… Honestly, now that I know the area better, I shudder to think that The Spouse and I could potentially have BOTH spend 20 more minutes (each!!) commuting… that would have sucked. Our New Home has become just that – a New Home. Yes, our furniture is in totally different places now. Decorating? I’m sure I have no idea. But… seeing The Minions with family? Joking on 4th of July? Giving their Pawpaw crap on Labor Day? Riding rides at the State Fair? Carefully cuddling their Brand New Cousin Tucker on Thanksgiving? PRICELESS!! That’s the MEANING OF FAMILY that we’ve wanted to instill in our Minions since Day 1.
Both Minions have friends ringing the bell DAILY to come out and play. Or have sleepovers. THIS IS/HAS BEEN my dream for my family. For that, and ESPECIALLY FOR MY IN-LAWS – I am forever grateful!!
Case in point – the last three days. WEDNESDAY: Christmas Eve snacks/presents at my In-Laws’ (20 minutes from our home). THURSDAY: Christmas Day at my sis-in-law’s home (30 minutes from our home). FRIDAY: The Spouse’s birthday (15 minutes from our home – 10 family members came for dinner!)