Celebrating and Settling in


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The other day, I noticed that the light hitting the forest behind our house was looking remarkably beautiful, and I ran for my camera and zoom lens. About that time, Jonny came and grabbed me, saying, “Come on, you’ve got to see this.” He was talking about the same light, of course. We got in the car and drove down the road, just wanting to see all that we could. There was even a double rainbow in the sky. It was pretty amazing. I thought about how grateful I am that our landscape hasn’t changed much with this move.

A friend asked today how we’re doing as far as the move goes. I told her that it feels a little like we’ve been on vacation (though not the relaxing kind) and I’m ready to go home now. Only, we are at home, it just doesn’t feel that way yet. And I really don’t want to go back to living in our other house, I just want to feel at home, you know? That won’t happen overnight, and I know better than to expect it to. We are hanging pictures here and there, and making plans for what we would like to do to make this house better reflect us as a family. Making a place your own takes time.

To answer a question that many of you have, yes, we have room here for our animals! What we don’t have yet is fencing. Fencing will be the chief work of this week and next.

Last week, we celebrated Beatrix’s eighth birthday, our first family celebration in the new house. We came up with a crazy (maybe not so crazy, actually) last minute cake idea: two pans of brownies with a layer of ice cream between, topped with whipped cream and chocolate sauce. Total stomachache, but so good! Reminded me of the Shoney’s hot fudge cake that we oftentimes got on birthday dinners out when I was a kid.

Beatrix was pretty specific about what she wanted for her birthday: mainly this dress, this doll, and this bonnet. To make up for the lack of a homemade birthday dress or sweater (still knitting the first sleeve!) I also bought her and Mabel matching dresses. The lack of enthusiasm when Bea opened that gift was hilarious. I admitted to Jonny that maybe the matching dresses were really a gift for me.

We dipped leaves gathered in our new backyard in beeswax (Beatrix is wearing her original orange Sunday Sweater in that post!), ate more ice cream, and had a wonderful time celebrating. Another week, and it will be Advent, the perfect time of year to keep doing the work of settling in, making this house our home.


  1. I’m just catching up on my blog reading and I remembered that Bea’s birthday was right around the same time as my Julia’s – she turned eight on the 26th. This post made me laugh a little because Julia also has that dress (she got it for Christmas last year) & since I cut her hair a couple weeks ago they also have the same haircut. It looks like Bea had a lovely birthday (in a new home!!!) & I’m so glad. xo

  2. I seriously could not love this post more…….

  3. Happy birthday Bea!

  4. The matching dresses are gorgeous! I’d love a link to them….just the sort of thing Monnie wears. You are lucky she didn’t ask you to make her the princess dress. It goes absolutely perfectly with her Birthday Crown, too.

    Sounds like the best birthday cake ever!

  5. I love everything about this post: the cake, the gifts, Bea’s face, and the ADORABLENESS of your children. ๐Ÿ™‚

  6. I think I want to be 8 again!

  7. We love those JC Toys dolls,too. I got one for our granddaughter’s 2nd birthday in June and all she could say was ‘Baby, Baby’ after she opened it. Baby has been her constant companion ever since.

    Having moved five times with kids still at home myself, think you will really be surprised at how soon you will feel at home. One day you just realize that you love where you are and it is comfortable.

  8. Congratulations on your move!
    I’m not certain, but I think Larkspur has a bouquet of “Sweet Everlasting” in her hand. That’s nice thing to have on the property. http://www.ibiblio.org/carrborocitizen/flora/2009/11/an-engaging-herb-rabbit-tobacco/

  9. There is SO much I love about this post. B’s baby (oh that devotion to it already!), that wrapping paper (so beautiful), the matching dresses (be still my heart), Mabel’s smiling face (!!) and that bonnet.

  10. I know what you’re feeling. Do you know the poem “It Takes a Heap ‘O Living To Make a House a Home”?
    May make you cry to read it right now, but it’s a good one. One of my favorites.

  11. Gorgeous rainbow pics! I sympathize deeply with you settling in. I hope you are making progress every day.

  12. A very Happy Birthday to Bea! WOW, 8 years old-how can that be? You are almost ready for college!
    Ginny, your pictures are beautiful! So glad you are hanging pictures in your new home…means you are ready to make it your home! Can’t wait to hear how many bedrooms and who got what room, plus the square footage. Again and again I love reading your blog, puts a smile on my face.

  13. We moved to a different house in 2012. The first night we slept in it, we said we felt like we were sleeping in a hotel! ๐Ÿ™‚ I think partly because our old house did not have a forced air furnace and the new house did.

    It’s definitely home now! It does take settling and becoming and time!

  14. Ginny, a few years ago we left the home we’d lived in for over thirty years and moved into our new house. For quite awhile I felt as though I was walking into someone else’s home when I walked in the door. However, in time it has become home – us – the place we love to be. I hope it will be that way for you soon.

  15. Happy Birthday, Beatrix! Such a beautiful look of joy as she looks at the new doll! So glad the animal family has room at the new place. Ugh, fencing – the job that never ends…. I have been bugging my poor husband for months to help me with new fencing to expand the buck pen – it’s not a one person job!

  16. It takes time… what you are articulating makes a lot of sense!!! with time, it will become home… I am going to light a candle for you … by icons of the Mother of God, St. Katherine, St. Seraphim of Sarov (he loves animals!), St. Nicholas… I am glad for all the gifts Bea got and it’s OK that one was for you too as Mom… ๐Ÿ™‚ God bless and comfort you in this time of transition!!!

  17. Oh, yes. I hear you on settling into the new house. I’m still not at home yet after 2.5 months. Eventually. Too much work to do on the house to feel settled in. The wrapping paper is beautiful! Reminds me of the small floral designs on Liberty fabric.

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