We got the keys. We packed (about half the house) into boxes. We (I) stressed, cried, yelled, laughed, and generally lost our (my) minds.
Last night was our first night in our new home...I don't know about Nathan, but I slept like a baby. Granted, that could have something to do with starting at 7 am and going non-stop until about 11 pm.
The whole process leading up to moving day was incredibly stressful for me, made more so by the Women's Retreat I went to last weekend. Oh, and the fact that, for said retreat, I had volunteered to head up making homemade welcome gifts, teach a craft class, AND sing in the worship band. Before you start doubting my sanity, I signed up for these things before I had any clue we would be buying a house in the same month! And each of those things individually brought me incredible joy. Unfortunately, all those things together made me want to crawl under a rock and not come out for a few months. Honestly, if I had to give up one thing, it probably would be the welcome gifts aspect...but at the same time, I feel like God uniquely gifted me to be able to fill that position. Ah well, I have a year to ruminate on that.
Women's Retreat itself was one big blessing bundled up in 50+ women and three days. First, let me say that the whole idea of a women's retreat use to make my very skin crawl...three days stuck in one place with a passel load of hormonal women...eek! But last year, the women of my church proved that thought process wrong. And this year, they thoroughly debunked it, delighting and astounding me at every turn. I've never felt more loved, or less judged. And my cabin mates were awesome...it was like a great sleep over both nights. I look forward to deepening the relationships started or continued last weekend.
All that to say that I didn't get nearly as much packing/sorting/organizing done in the month leading up to the move as I would have liked. In fact, I'd say a pretty decent chunk of the house wasn't packed when moving day came around. (Sigh.) I fail.
At 9 am yesterday, 11 of our friends and family descended upon our house. For some reason, we decided it would be a GREAT idea to have the Comcast guy show up at the new house only an hour before everyone was set to arrive, so I ended up hanging out in the new house with an incredibly creepy tech (he kept clearing his throat like he was about to hock a loogie and was kind of twitchy) while Nathan got the crew started on the house. Within about 45 minutes, Nathan came to switch places with me and I got back to find an almost full uHaul and a mostly empty rental. The only rooms with things left in them were our bedroom and the garage. WOW! I was thoroughly astounded.
We managed to get the entire house moved in less than four hours. I was able get the rental all cleaned up, and was heading back to the house before 5 pm, at which point I got the boys up from their super long nap (they were exhausted) and got them fed while Nathan puttered around the house a little bit. Finally, it was bedtime for the boys and the real work could begin in earnest. Somehow, we managed to get the living room, second bathroom, the boys' bedroom and our bedroom unpacked and in working order. Just don't open the doors to the guest room or garage, ok? I worked until about 11 pm, at which point I finally got a shower - bliss - and curled up in bed to watch a movie and rest my aching feet.
So how does that relate to my post title? While the whole moving process yesterday was pretty incredible, what will stick with me for years to come is the way that the love of our church family effected our neighbors. We've had kind of a rocky relationship with these neighbors from the beginning...one month everything is hunky dory, the next month they're mad at us for some reason or another. We've always tried to be kind and fair to them, but the mom, I must admit, is a bit of a handful and takes offense very very very easily.
But yesterday, after seeing how our adopted family rallied around us, swept in, and worked so well together while showing us such incredible love, she told Nathan that she thinks they're going to start coming to Creekside (our church). They've been going to a church in Wilsonville, but have been lacking anything resembling the kind of community she saw acted out right in front of her. They'd been considering coming to our church for a while now - there are four family that to go our church on our block alone - but according to her, yesterday pretty much sealed the deal.
Our pastor is constantly telling us that our lives need to live out the love of Jesus, so that we are witnessing not through our words, but through our actions. I know this is not a new concept...St. Francis of Assisi has been quoted as saying, "Preach the Gospel always, and when necessary use words." There's some debate over whether he actually is the one who said that, but I still like the sentiment.
I guess it kind of took me by surprise that the actions of our family, both blood and church, had such a huge impact on our neighbors...the love and care of these people have just become such an integral part of our lives that I sometimes forget that it's a rare thing. I'm so thankful that we have these people in our lives, and that they care enough about us to devote hours of work and sweat to making our move easier.
I promise I'll post photos of the new place soon...you know, once the amount of boxes diminishes a bit. Half our garage is currently taken up by a pile of items going into a garage sale next weekend...yay for getting rid of stuff!!!
The boys are adjusting pretty well to moving, all things considered. They are LOVING having their room on the same floor as everything else, so they can actually play in there throughout the day. They're currently closed in there, happily playing with their massive amounts of toys, and completely oblivious to the rest of the world...such a nice change from their desire to always be watching tv. They had a little bit of a rough patch yesterday evening when they woke up from their nap in a new room, but they were perfectly fine this morning. Unfortunately, they decided 6:30 am would be the great time to wake up. Hopefully that doesn't become a daily occurrence.
Ok, I think I'm going to go laze on the couch until it's time to get ready for church. Hope your weekend was as wonderful and productive as ours was!