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Unpacking boxes in new house

We’ve been living in the new house since the 17th, three weeks ago. I’m down to  half a dozen boxes to unpack. The upstairs room was a disaster. We’d had our moving crew friends put boxes up there willy nilly. It was great to have the help, and we couldn’t have done it without them, but the organization was terrible.

I remember getting so tired on move in day that I said: “Put it anywhere, I don’t care anymore.”

Yesterday I hung all the paintings on the walls and stored the empty painting boxes in the attic. And by the way, if you are using a 30 year old stud finder as I was, toss it out and get a new one. They work much better now. It was fun hanging all the paintings. And not just mine, I have paintings from friends, teachers, and family members from two centuries ago, not to mention a few frames with photos of Sue and I in the early days.

Pictures on the wall say a lot about the occupants of the house, and while Sue says my overly hung walls look cluttered, I think they look like home.

I’ve also done a lot of organization in our two outbuildings, which replaced our garage. I’ve got a heated one, and a none heated one, so there was plenty of room once I got organized.

So last night I finally cleared off the ping pong table and challenged Sue to a game. We haven’t played since July when she hurt her shoulder. We love our ping pong battles, but her shoulder was hurting from a recent PT visit…so she turned me down.

Among the biggest challenges since moving in was removing the carpet and refinishing the oak floors. That took about two full days of work for the living room, hall and one bedroom. Key was renting a drum floor sander from home depot. That thing beat the heck out of my little belt sander. I did a pass with 36 grit and a pass with 120 grit. I hand sanded in between and after with 150 grit screen, which looks like mosquito netting, then varnished.

After the floors, I had to deal with a frozen 2 inch plumbing drain. I did some extensive youtube research before getting out my butane torch. I heated that huge frozen fitting up for about an hour, while melting wax into the seam before it finally broke loose. When it did move, I had been tapping the 24 inch pipe wrench with a hammer, and the first movement was almost imaginary. I stopped and thought: “Did that just move, or was that just my imagination?”. But ever so slowly, one millimeter at a time, it began to creak around. I could feel the rust and wax grinding together as the male pipe began turning in the  female elbow bend. Holy cow, I thought that was just a rumor about heating plumbing fittings. It really works!

Almost as hard as the plumbing and floors was simply planning where to put what. This house has the same 3 bedrooms as our old one, but one is upstairs, plus we have outbuildings instead of a garage. I’m fortunate to have 2 large metal shelving units from a big box store. Those things hold a room full of stuff, are super strong…like a thousand pounds per shelf, and easily survived the move, including disassembly and reassembly.

Now that I’m mostly moved in, I’m down to putting out the smaller, less urgent fires like billing and address changes. Somewhere I caught a cold that turned into laryngitis. it’s hard to be a teacher when you can’t talk.

 

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