I hope 2012 treated you well.
I know life has its ups and downs; no life is perfect.
But overall, I hope you were able to enjoy it.
To really take it all in.
I hope you were able to do a few new things.
To learn something new.
To spend time with those you love.
And let go of some of the “stuff” that was weighing you down.
Earlier in the year I ran across a quote that became my motto for 2012.
~If It Doesn’t Nurture Your Soul, Get Rid Of It~
And this wasn’t a New Year’s resolution that fell by the wayside as usual. I actually lived it. I got rid of old fears that held me back. I tried new things. I took an inventory of my life.
I did a little “spring cleaning”.
Interesting things happen when you open the windows and air out your life.
It makes room for new adventures, new friends, and a fresh outlook.
It’s like God says, “Finally! Let’s go on that adventure I’ve been waiting to take you on!”
I’ve labeled 2012 “the year of change” for us. It was a busy year, especially the latter part.
In June my husband was offered a job 2,734 miles away from our home town and both of our families. I had never been farther east than Colorado.
It was a massive leap of faith for us. Something totally out of our box of “normal”. But it just felt right. So we didn’t hold back and we didn’t even test the water, we just jumped in. My husband flew back twice to look at houses while I searched from home on the internet. I looked at 900 houses and Tony physically looked at under 20 over two weekends and finally settled on one he thought we would both love.
Our house finally sold, we packed up our 25 foot camping trailer for a long road trip, and headed east to start a new chapter in our lives.
We drove clear across the country with two dogs and a cat. Every morning was a new adventure and it was so much fun to have that time together!
It took us about 6 days to get to New Hampshire with hotel stays and a little camping over Thanksgiving. Once we were there we camped 1 hour from our new home and waited for the sale to close. Closing day, December 7th, was the first time I had even seen the inside of the house in person. Sounds crazy, I know. But I had a perfect peace about it.
I loved everything about it, just like I knew I would. The semi that held all of our belongings was delayed several days. So we improvised and brought the trailer bed into the living room in front of the fireplace. The delivery delay gave us time to do some painting and cleaning. These are the before photos. Luckily, only a few rooms needed to be painted.
Laundry room/guest bath. Dark, dusty, plum then – warm brushed sage now.
Oddly enough, the tile in this house is almost exactly the same tile we had just installed in our old house.
This is the den and is now my office.
Sometime soon I’ll show you the views from some of our windows. Gorgeous! It’s a treat to wake up to them every morning.
This is part of the master bedroom. It was painted that same dark, dusty, plum and is now a warm gold.
My favorite corner of the master bathroom…of course! This room is also now a warm gold.
Guest bedroom…Eeeek! After two coats of primer and two coats of paint, this room is now a beautiful brushed sage color with a bird theme.
Guest bathroom. After sitting in the enormous tub in the master bathroom, this tub felt tiny.
Guest bedroom 2/exercise room/craft room.
Tony’s office. He chose this room because it has a funky light that makes a blue circle on the carpet.
We also have a full, unfinished basement that’s has all kinds of crazy machinery that runs this house. I’ll have to show you pictures of that when we’re finished unpacking.
Our household items were finally delivered almost exactly a week after we were told they were going to get here. We unpacked the kitchen first (of course…duh!) and I made us a proper meal. We were both happy to have a “real” home-made meal after living in the trailer for so many days. Once the roast was in the oven the house was filled with home smells.
Our new house, was now officially our new home.
My mom and our son were due to arrive 7 days after the semi was unloaded. We worked quickly and were able to get the majority of the house unpacked – and even decorated for Christmas!
For a few days, we had a mess in every single room of the house.
Within a few days it all started to come together and we were finally feeling like we were getting somewhere. We even managed to finish Christmas shopping, wrapping presents, and I even did a little baking. Nothing like multitasking!
We drove to Boston on the 22nd to pick up my mom and Brandon. We had the best visit while they were here. We stayed a night in Boston before taking them to the house, visited towns near our home while they were here, and ate, and ate, and ate!
I paid Brandon $20 to try a fresh oyster. He was neither here nor there about it, but I was so happy he tried it!
I was stunned by the extensive gluten-free menu at Legal Harborside in Boston. Stunned! They have a huge gluten-free menu with tons of choices. I settled on fish and chips because I have not been able to have fish and chips in a restaurant in 5 years! We also had an amazing appetizer (that I forgot to take pictures of) tray full of crab legs, oysters on the half, clams on the half, and shrimp cocktail. It’s now my new favorite restaurant and it’s only about an hour and a half from our house.
We squeezed in some sightseeing before heading home and of course…had more seafood.
The USS Constitution.
We stopped in Faneuil Hall for a little mid-morning snack. These are clams on the half. They were big and meaty and so good! I was the only one that liked them, the others stuck to oysters on the half.
Christmas Eve we had a seafood feast. Boiling the lobsters was traumatic for Brandon and I…I’m not usually squeamish about those types of things, but I think I’ll have to get a neighbor to do it for me next time! It was quite comical to watch us, I’m sure. He held them while I flicked the rubber bands off with his pocket knife. He was afraid they were going to grab him and I think I may have been jumping and screaming, but it was so freaky I don’t quite remember. He threw them in the water and after that, I couldn’t bring myself to even eat them. Ha!
Ugh. Poor things.
The mussels, shrimp, and crab legs were a lot less stressful and I enjoyed plenty.
My mom received a gold star for shelling a perfect piece of lobster meat.
Despite the three-hour time difference, everyone was up Christmas morning and ready to eat breakfast and open gifts. I made cinnamon rolls, scrambled eggs, and bacon. The cinnamon rolls were delicious but the eggs were fried in the same pan I steamed the mussels and shrimp the night before and the eggs ended up tasting just like mussels. Ick!
After gifts I prepared the “ham” for baking. Why is ham in ” ” , you may ask? Well…it wasn’t really a traditional ham. In the midst of unpacking, Christmas shopping, and decorating the house, we were also without internet. I had one day at Starbuck’s in a town 20 minutes from our house to pay bills, order things for the house, write down recipes off of my blog that I wanted to cook, and order the ham for Christmas. In my haste, not only did I not notice that the bone in ham that I ordered was 20 something pounds, I also did not notice that it was a raw, uncured, ham which now I know is actually a huge pork roast.
Lesson learned. It was delicious though. We had it for dinner, for sandwiches, and now the majority of it is sliced and frozen in the freezer. If you have any recipe ideas, please send them!
Christmas Day was spent relaxing, watching movies, and snacking, of course!
Mom and dad weren’t the only ones happy to have Brandon home for a visit.
We did some local sightseeing and even had a bit of snow.
The eight days they were here went so quickly! It was difficult to say goodbye.
Luckily, one of our neighbors invited us to their New Year’s Eve gathering. We were so tired that we almost didn’t accept the offer. We were so glad we did! Not only did it take my mind off of my mom and Brandon leaving, we had such a good time visiting with our new neighbors. And the food…wow, fantastic!
There are a lot of great things that stand out in New Hampshire, but the number one thing we’ve noticed is that people are incredibly friendly. So welcoming and warm and genuine. Genuinely kind. And not just our neighbors. Everyone we’ve met along the way. The grocery store, restaurants, shopping, the Direct TV guy and even our oil guy for crying out loud. And the intense “in your face” attitude you hear about the east coast? Not true for New Hampshire.
Our hosts made HUGE rib eyes and crab legs and even bought me gluten-free dinner rolls. So thoughtful!
We drank wine and gabbed, found out we have a lot in common, and rang in the New Year with a glass of champagne.
The perfect ending to 2012 and the perfect beginning to our new life adventure.
Happy New Year and may blessings overflow in your life for 2013!