Wednesday, January 19, 2011

This is it!

The apartment was cleaned out on Saturday and I'm now officially back to being an Ohio resident! What a whirlwind weekend it was, and really into this week as well. Friday night, my wonderful mom, dad, sister, and my youngest brother all drive from Ohio to DC to help pack me up and shove everything in a 14 ft. UHAUL truck Saturday morning. I'm soooooo thankful for them and Sam because without their help, I'd still be in DC loading boxes! Ha! We arrived back to Ohio late Saturday night, then got up Sunday and it was an afternoon of unloading 3/4 my belongings into a storage garage and the remainder of everything at my grandparent's house, where I will be staying for the next 3 weeks until my apartment is ready. Oh yes, we get to do this all over again the beginning of February!

Saturday was such a bittersweet day for me.... ecstatic to be going home and embarking on new adventures, but very sad to leave behind my great friends who became my pseudo family for the past year. One of my neighbors brought blueberry muffins Saturday morning complete with a stick of butter for them since she knew my refrigerator would be empty, while another neighbor made hot cocoa and coffee and cranberry muffins, and still another neighbor helped load the truck...all this on a chilly Saturday morning! Every time I turned around, someone else was there to say goodbye and offer to help. With all the bad people in this world that we hear about on the news every day, there sure are a lot of genuinely good people.

So, I'm back in Ohio now getting settled into my new job and enjoying life surrounded by family and friends....the only person missing is Sam but he will move in 2 weekends :) I'm holding back on exploring any place that looks interesting until Sam list is growing long of things to do, but I'll give you a hint of what's to come ~ cement corn and a floor made of trampolines. Check out my new blog: if you want to keep following my adventures :)

Adios DC!

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Drowning in Boxes!

Operation "Move Out" is officially underway! I started packing boxes on the weekend and just went to Home Depot last night to pick up a few more. How does one person acquire so much stuff in just 16 months?!? I'll tell you how....I have the BEST family and friends who have showered me with cards, postcards, and care packages ever since I moved! I'm such a sentimental mush that I have kept everything (no joke, at least 98%) of what people have sent because I love reading them over again throughout the years. More than anything, the things people write reflect the feelings I had at that time, and those feelings tend to get washed over as time goes on. Sounds funny, but I'm sure some of you know exactly what I'm talking about....everyone has a time in their life when the world becomes so overwhelming and we think there's just no way we will get through it, but we do. Years later, we think back and tend to say that it wasn't so bad and we can't imagine what all the fuss was about. Well, I want to remember that moment for exactly what it was, and having letters and cards that people wrote to me really helps me do that; their words of encouragement or even the sheer volume of correspondences during that particular time validate that time in my life. Even now, I'm thinking about my time in DC and all that comes to mind is what an exciting adventure this has been and I've really loved living here ~ I forget that 1 month into it I was ready to pack up and move back, and that 5 months into it I REALLY was ready to pack up! I tend to gloss over the hard parts, which may be okay for some people to do, but for me, it's the hard part of any situation that keeps me encouraged for harder situations to come in life. And let's face it, as we get stronger, life gets harder!

So, I have 2 photo boxes packed to the brim with cards and letters from my loved ones, 1 large box of sentimental stuff from the kids at the Hogar (I never go anywhere without their smiling faces and beautiful artwork masterpieces!), a couple new pieces of furniture acquired in DC, 1 very large wooden painting from Eastern Market, a wooden art easel with a stool and lots of paints and canvases to go with it, some new kitchen appliances, a washer and dryer....and everything I originally moved here with! Ha! Yeah, this is why dad had to upgrade from a UHaul trailer (perfectly fine 16 months ago) to a 14 foot UHaul truck! :-)

Saturday, January 8, 2011

The Library of Congress

I'm ashamed to say it took me a year and a half to visit the Library of Congress, but today, that's exactly what I did. The last thing to check off my DC list before I head to the Midwest next week. It was truly breathtaking walking amid marble staircases and pillars, colorful mosaic paintings, ornately painted ceilings, and artifacts that shaped our nation's history. There's an entire section that holds some of the actual books from Thomas Jefferson's personal library! Unfortunately, the best parts of the Library were in "no photography" zones, so I couldn't take a picture of Jefferson's books nor the rotunda where congressional research takes place, but I still could marvel and snap away photos of the decor. I definitely recommend seeing the Library of Congress for anyone traveling to DC. What a nice little escape into quietness from the noisy city and tourist-crowded monuments outside!

Sunday, January 2, 2011

Is it really 2011???

It's hard to believe it's 2011 already....seems like 2010 just started, but what a ride it has been! I was going to do a recap of my life in 2010, but since I've been in DC the entire time, it's already chronicled on my blog :) Ha! So, I think I'll use this entry to talk about 2011 and what I hope to accomplish. For starters, I only have 2 weeks left living in DC. Yep, I'm headed back to the good ol' midwest! I decided it's time to end my run in DC and move back closer to family. A year and a half in DC is just the right amount of time ~ enough to explore and enjoy the excitement of a new place but not so long that I take for granted living amid the grand monuments and historical significance of it. So, in just 2 weeks, my time in DC will end and I'll begin a new chapter of my life in Ohio ~ new job, new apartment, and new adventures. Even though I've lived there 25 years, I realized living outside the state that there are still so many things in Ohio I have yet to see; things that people who don't live in Ohio think of when they hear Ohio ~ Rock & Roll Hall of Fame, Football Hall of Fame, Wright Brothers museum, Put n' Bay on Lake Erie, President Warren Harding memorial, Underground Railroad museum, the Geauga County Maple Festival, etc. Have I been to any of those??? Nope! Plenty to explore in Ohio and the surrounding states.

Aside from moving back to Ohio, I have a few other goals for 2011. For starters, I want to play more golf than what I did in 2010...which means, I want to graduate from the driving range and hit an actual course! :-) Maybe since I'll be living closer to dad and grandpa that will actually happen. I also want to travel someplace I've never been....Napa Valley, CA is on my list, along with Boston, MA, so perhaps I'll go to one of those places.

Anyways, happy new years to everyone and may 2011 hold everything you want it to!