Final countdown

By Mir
June 23, 2007

You know what would be a great idea, when you’re trying to pack up your remarkably clown-car-like house which is—despite appearing to be nearly empty, now—crammed full of stuff everywhere that needs to be packed and you only have like two days left to get it all done?

Why, have a party, of course!


Not here, though. Of course not. Not unless you want everyone to split up the last case of Diet Coke with Lime and eat spaghetti sauce. (I stocked up during a sale. So sue me.) No, ideally you then go have a party over an hour away, taking you away from the house that needs to be packed. That would be superb.

We are brilliant.

So! Today we had a barbecue down at Otto’s brother’s house. Nearly Nickless and his lovely wife offered up their house (not to mention their BJ’s Warehouse membership and spare freezer) to have a going-away soirée for us. When we all planned this (back whenever we planned it; not that I remember, because right now I am too tired to remember much beyond my own name, which I think might be Fred) it seemed like a splendid idea to have this party two days before the movers came.

Last night when I was FREAKING OUT over everything that’s yet to be done, I have to say that it seemed like the stupidest idea in the world. This morning, as we all got up before 7 (to make another dump run before heading over to prepare for the party), it still didn’t seem like a very good idea.

And tomorrow when the kids head off with their dad and Otto and I finish up (or throw away the rest of my crap), it may not seem like a very good idea, then, either, but today was actually quite marvelous.

Even though we probably SHOULD’ve been here, packing, it was nice to spend the day eating food and chasing children and talking to people. I’ve now met a whole passel of Otto’s friends whom I’ve been hearing about for years, as well as getting to spend some time with those I’ve met before but don’t see very often. There were babies to sniff and people to hug and stories to hear. And my friends came and met Otto’s family and other folks and most importantly, there was a whole lotta food. Er, I mean, most importantly, it was a good substitute for the wedding reception we forgot to have.

Minus the part where everyone has to wear uncomfortable clothes!

Chickadee had a great day, which I didn’t expect. She played well with the other kids and followed directions and was a joy to be around. I think this may be one of the signs of the apocalypse.

Poor Monkey had a pretty good day, excepting the part where one of his new cousins (who is younger and a bit shorter, but who probably outweighs him) tromped on him by accident and gave him a pretty good shiner. Then later he claimed that someone opened a door into his OTHER eye, but another kid told us that really, he just walked into the door. Which is entirely possible. Despite this, he was generally cheerful and zooming around at warp speed.

So when he conked out in the car on the way home, it wasn’t that surprising. I couldn’t resist taking a few pictures of him slumped in his booster seat with his mouth wide open, though. The surprising part was that we were never really able to wake him up; first I brought him in and sat him on the couch, and came back to find him snoozing again. Then I sent him upstairs to get into his jammies, and later found him in bed, fully-clothed, snoring.

I guess it’s been an exhausting few days for him, too.

We left him to snooze and Chickadee helped us open the cards and gifts we got today (we told people not to bring anything, but people do not always listen, and also people sometimes give us things like Target gift cards and then I am glad that they ignored us). After I got her to bed, I dragged Monkey to the bathroom and managed to get him stripped down and ready for bed. I think he slept through the whole thing.

Now the kids are both asleep and the house still needs packing, but we’re too tired to move, so it’ll have to wait until tomorrow.

And tomorrow, anything I can’t shove into a box before bedtime is going out with the trash. Except the kids. Maybe.


  1. jenn

    Relax, Fred, it’ll get done. Later you’ll wander around your empty house, a little choked up and a lot amazed and wondering how the hades you got it all done. I promise.

    First comment, first time ever! Wheeeeeeeeee!

  2. shannon

    when you get down to georgia this will all seem funny and not so horrible. pinky swear!

  3. Cera

    I hear you!!! We’ve moved 6 times in 2 years! It SUCKS!

  4. Barb Cooper

    Moving is just amazingly stressful, no matter how much planning and packing you do. And Mir? You’ve had, like, um, well, ALL of the major stressors in life this year. Well, okay, I’ve been drinking wine and I can’t remember what all of the stressors are but marriage and moving are, like, the top two.

    I have a visual of you guys pulling up at the new house and walking in and having that feeling like when you know something is just RIGHT and where you feel like you are coming home to the house you will live and love in, where your kids will graduate from high school and where you will seriously do one million loads of pool towels. (Don’t ask me how I know this but guess whose washer is going even as I speak?)

    Tomorrow will be here soon enough. Get some sleep.



    I only really remember one big move in my life, and it happened 4 years ago. We used a big U-Haul to move across town from a house we’d lived in for 17 years. It took THREE.TRIPS!!! It’s very stressful – and we didn’t even have to have everything out by a certain time (it was just easier with the U-Haul). Moving day looms ahead for you, I know. But you’ll get it all done (or you won’t) and it will all be okay. A day like you had today is much more precious and memorable than packing at home. Glad you enjoyed!

  6. Melissa

    I hope you handed out party favors of diet coke and spaghetti sauce and maybe a stray toaster or two, even if the party was at someone else’s house.

  7. becky

    sometimes, the best refresher is to take some time off when you don’t have time.

    the final countdown begins, fred. or was that barney?

  8. Nicole/wksocmom

    It’s called optimism, if we plan a party, we’ll get it all done. We planned a vacation of all things a few days before our first open house. I swear after we stored 1/3 of the house months ahead of time, then made two moving truck trips, then one more to remove the washer and dryer we accidentally moved into the new apt (whoops!) I still fill up car every time we drive by and we were arranging a new carpet to be put in on the road trip. Ugh, my husband suggested we burn everything next time, which I totally would have done except for his stupid books and records he’s way to attached to.

  9. MomCat

    Tons of get-it-all-done karma headed your way, Fred. Good luck!

  10. Randi

    Awww – so when are you fully leaving the house and heading to the new one?

  11. Terri

    Good luck! I know it doesn’t seem like it now, but it’s easier to move long distances than just across town. Since we’ve been married, we’ve moved 8 times, and I swear the worst ones were when we just moved across town. We were schlepping stuff back and forth for weeks. At least when there’s a moving van and a firm deadline, you force yourself to get it all done, somehow. Even if it means inviting everyone you know over and throwing stuff at them. Of course, that may work better with poor barely-out-of-college kids working at Disney than actual grownups … :)

    My husband is pestering to get a bigger house, but I’m dreading the process and have told him that when it happens, even if the new house is 2 blocks away, I want a moving truck so we can do it in one load.

    Look at it this way — there is no better way to declutter than move!

  12. Single Ma

    Hey Fred, don’t worry, it’ll all get done. Just keep reminding yourself of the ‘casino’ in your new back yard. Oh and don’t forget images of toasters, I mean poker chips, floating around in the pond. Ahh…dreamy motivation. LOL

  13. David

    Dear Fred, I’ve heard it said that there’s a fine line between genius and insanity. Nevertheless, I think the going away party was a most splendid idea, and much needed — a stress-breaker and short breather right before you all shove off for the New World. Kudos to Nearly Nickless and his wife for their kindness in hosting such a party. I’ve got a hunch this’ll become one of those fond family memories in years to come, Monkey-shiners and all.

  14. Cele

    What David said Fred.

  15. Dawn

    I moved 7 times in 15 years while I was married (to Uncle Travellin’ Matt, apparently). The one and only time I was beautifully organized, the move got postponed by a day by a blizzard. Then we got a much smaller truck than we needed because the movers were overbooked trying to make up for lost time.

    My point? And I do have one, is that moving is going to be stressful no matter what. Even being prepared doesn’t help.

    But you’re almost moved in with Otto! How cool is that?

  16. Brigitte

    One blessing . . . it’s still June! You (and the rest of your family) have got at least two months to unpack, merge your stuff, etc. before the next school year starts – better than moving in mid-August, Aloysius – I mean, Fred – I mean, Mir.

  17. Rachel May

    Aww, Fred! (channeling Ethel Mertz)… Wish I could be there to help!

    I think the party was a great idea — otherwise, you’d just bury yourself in all the crap to do and never take time to spend with people before you actually leave… don’t ask how I know. :P

    Happy moving vibes heading your way!

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