Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Getting settled.

Moving is hard work. Physically, of course, especially if it is a DIY/DIT move, but I find moves are also emotionally exhausting. It hate that feeling of displacement while you are between places without a home base anywhere. Traveling is different because you have a home out there somewhere, even if it is far away. But moving means being in-between homes and living in that liminal space when you have to say things like "our new apartment" and "your old place in Québec" and "my apartment in Montréal" because there are just too many home-like places floating around out there making things a little confusing.

We accomplished our bizarre (and, we hope, worst-ever) move between June 21st and July 11th.* We used the help of professional movers in Montréal to move out of the apartment there (3rd floor apartment with a couch that had to be sent over the balcony to get it out!), and we were so thankful for the help of many friends and family in Québec in moving and getting settled here. S's mom graciously welcomed us to her home so we would have a place to stay while we waited 11 extra days beyond our lease start date for our bathroom to be renovated, S's friend let us store our massive amount of stuff in his warehouse for those weeks when we were apartment-less, and friends and family helped with the prep and the actual move into our new apartment. It was hot on our Québec move-in day, and everyone worked so hard helping us.** Everyone was drenched in sweat after the REMARKABLE feat of moving all our stuff into the apartment (which is one flight up) in only an hour and a half. I have absolutely no idea how that happened so quickly. S and I had for real thought it might take all day. And I had worried I might end up in tears multiple times that day from the stress of it all, but it was all exceedingly better than expected. It went really, really well and I was especially moved by the generous community that helped us.(Haha, pun not intended but I am keeping it cause it makes me laugh!)

In the week or so since move-in day, we have been unpacking and cleaning and trying to figure out where things go and maneuvering around an overwhelming amount of boxes. And trying to buy the things we need to get settled, like curtains and curtain rods and other needed apartment-y things.*** We have been trying to buy stuff second hand, for the eco-friendly aspects, and also for the thrill of discovering something we can re-purpose to fit a need.**** It is going well and over the weekend we even found an unconventional solution to a coat closet. (Our almost 100 year-old apartment doesn't have an entry coat closet, and has very pitiful closets in general. Sadly.) And we found a vintage table we love.***** More to come on that later, after we get more unpacked and take some pictures.

Settling in to a new home is a slow process, at least for us. But thankfully, Booboo seems to be handling it quite well.

*Well, really like four separate moving days: 1) My Montréal stuff to warehouse in Québec; 2) S's Québec stuff to warehouse in Québec; 3) Loading almost all our joint stuff from the warehouse into the moving truck; 4) Moving all the stuff from the truck to the apartment; 4) Some upcoming day where we will get the last of the stuff from S's dad's. Maybe in a week or two?
**That was the week of the "canicule," or heat wave, here in Québec (and elsewhere). And some of our boxes were HEAVY, as many of my Chicago friends certainly know. I am still SUPER thankful for all that help with last year's move. Boy, we have amazing friends. And we should really try to stay put for a while. :)
***This is the first time I have been in an apartment that didn't have blinds left by the previous tenant. Now I am entering a new era of being a curtain-and-curtain-rod owner.
****And we love that it is WAY less expensive too.
****Not that we needed a table at all. But we were surprised by discovering it at the flea market while looking for other things on our list. And we couldn't leave it there. Some things are like that.


  1. I hate moving.

    Love Booboo. Glad you are finally in the new place.

    I kinda love unpacking.

  2. Oh goodness, I am moving in like 3 weeks and you have reminded me of all the things I hate about moving. *sigh*

  3. @Mrs. T and Jesselyn: Yep, moving stinks. :( But the settling in part in nice when it is all over. :) We are not all over though. :( I still need to de-clutter and figure out where to put a lot of stuff.

    Jesselyn: Don't know if you do this, but for this move, I put color coding tape on each box to designate what room it should go in. (Five different colors of electrical tape or something bought in a pack at a dollar store.) We didn't actually use it when moving in to put the boxes in the right corresponding rooms (though that would have been ideal), but it made it WAY easier to figure out things when unpacking. I also labeled the contents of each box pretty well, and that was so helpful in sorting through the chaos. It feels a bit like overkill when you are labeling and sticking on the color tape, but it was actually helpful. :)

    AND- since we tried to put a large portion of the boxes in one room, S. had the GENIUS idea of making aisles between the rows of stacks. We did not do this with the last move (which resulted in an impossible mountain of boxes in one room) and this aisle thing was FABULOUS and made it pretty easy to find specific boxes without much effort. At most moving a box or two off the top, not moving half a room of boxes to get to one box. Best idea ever and I am so glad S thought of it and told our friends to make aisles. :)

    Good luck with your move! I hope it goes smoothly!

  4. Mrs. T,

    Booboo has been enjoying the apartment more as things are getting more settled. :) We were a little worried because he seemed less relaxed then he has been the last six months, but he is seeming to relax more now and go back to his laid-back habits. :)