Moving Day…..maybe.

Eight years ago this week, we moved into our lovely house. Today Larry and a friend are on scaffolding and ladders with electric sanders prepping the outside of the house for its long-overdue paint job. House jobs are really never finished.
We love the sense of history of our 150ish year old house and are glad to caretake it so that it lasts for another century or two.
This is an eight year old blog about moving in.

July 13, 2009
I’ve been wondering lately what life would be like for visitors without hot water. After my last frantic post, we got an amazing email from the couple whose river house we stayed in during our first 6 months in Bear River. They offered to let us stay in their wonderful house on the river while our company is here! As much as I had hoped that our house would be ready, the thought of moving back to our original Bear River home seemed kind of fitting and too tempting an offer to turn down!

Under the willow tree life is easy.

I mentioned before that sanding floors was the hardest job that Larry faced with our house, but maybe I spoke too soon. Actually, the award for ‘trickiest job’ might go to ‘installing a kitchen’. Those of you who do this for a living are smiling right now because you know that it takes lots of higher math and algebra skills, combined with carpentry and various substrates knowledge. Also, the plumber and the electrician have to coordinate their parts in the drama so that  the kitchen winds up combining a great deal of technological know-how. It is not only the heart of the home, but also the brain. One of the snags we hit was a counter that doesn’t quite pass that higher-math test and is cut at a different equation than the cupboards on which it sits.
Fitting the counter.

Larry and Peter have had to squeeze into awkward positions putting together the kitchen.

Also, we can’t actually put anything into the cupboards because in our zeal to cut costs and to give the kitchen our special touch, we ordered it with just raw wood. We need to coat it with a coloured stain that we’ll be mixing up one of these days, but we’ve been too busy!
So in other words, the kitchen isn’t ready yet.


I love how the bathroom is shaping up….especially the shadows on the wall, but it still needs a door.

My father's rocking chair is 60 years old.
My father’s rocking chair is 60 years old.

A chair in the living room helps me to imagine that we are almost there!

Chaos at both ends.
Chaos at both ends.

I’d forgotten that when you move, there is chaos at the place you are leaving and chaos at the place you are landing and that it takes time to unpack and to find places for everything.

The mess in the hallway
The wood planer creates sawdust and shapes the wood around the door frames.

In terms of moving today, our friends Don and George made several trips with Larry back and forth to the house with boxes and furniture and paintings and dishes. We have a couple of carloads here still and tomorrow we’ll take one to the house, and one to our river retreat for a nice, welcome break from the higher math stuff!Waiting for the marshmallows.We are ready for an evening of reading the coals. It gets chilly in the evening so we may be able to have a little fire one of these evenings.

Tree shadows

Meanwhile, our seats await us under the patient willow tree who whispers “almost there”.

9 thoughts on “Moving Day…..maybe.

  1. Hi Flora,

    I hope the finish line is now truly within sight! It ‘s been great to read how your journey has progressed. Ours is about to really begin… starting next month with the long drive from Vancouver to Bear River. After 21 years it’s high time to shake things up a bit and start doing the things that speak to the soul.

    I’m glad your visit with your sister went so well, and I’m looking forward to seeing how the house has finished up!

    Cheers to you both!

    1. Hi Gordon!
      How well I remember our drive from Toronto to Bear River almost 2 years ago. I fluctuated from thrilled to terrified to happy to wistful to wondering if we were both having a mid-life co-crisis. I believe we were. It was that crisis of knowing that over 1/2 our lives were over and we still weren’t living surrounded by nature and where we could slow down and develop our creativity.
      I worried (that word again!) that we would be bored and lonely, but it hasn’t happened yet.
      We are finally in our house…semi-unpacked with interior finishing to do, but it feels very good to be here. “Do we really live here?” is a frequent question we ask each other.
      We look forward to seeing your moving caravan come lumbering down our road soon! Take care! – Flora + Larry

  2. Thanks John! I wish you could have been here! lol.
    One of the problems was that the back wall of the kitchen had numerous angles in it and the counter , although short, had 3 sections. The guys who measured and made the counter used tape measures, but did not make a paper pattern of the shape.
    The cupboards were pre-fab components and had to be lined up with the studs and, as you well know, it’s all fiddly stuff. As well, we realized that we weren’t sure how high to place the uppers, so we guessed.
    The back of the kitchen sink will have a bar ledge for hiding dirty dishes and for passing food into the dining room. We hadn’t thought in advance how this would be constructed and one of the considerations was how to integrate the drawers that open into the dining room (thereby avoiding a corner lazy-susan cupboard in the kitchen,)
    In retrospect, it would have made sense to have the makers of the cupboards install it for us. Hindsight is always 20/20!
    On the other hand, we learned a lot and now have even more awareness and respect for experts like you!

  3. Hi Barbara!
    I can’t believe it either! It’s not really that hard to move again because so much of our stuff is still packed and an ENORMOUS amount of stuff is still in our studio. We will have to tackle that later in the summer.
    Becasue Bear River is such a small community, every move is within the same neighbourhood. So we still go to the same gas station, stores, restaurant (note the singular here!)
    This move is so very special though because we can finally ‘set up shop’ and spend time in our very own place and not have to leave until we choose to. It is so great creating perennial flower beds and turning the place into a creativity hub for us and hopefully for others too.
    It has really helped to be able to work on this full-time …..weekends and evenings are way too short. Also, we’ve had wonderful help over the past 9 months….lots of creative, willing and hard working craftsmen.
    Well, time to round up the cat and head for the River Road house.

  4. Hi Flora,

    It is a huge deal moving isn’t it! Wow! I am so impressed with you, for taking on that massice renovation project, for living in two places already since you moved out, and planning on living in a third, for your patient buoyant spirit, and for sharing your experience and knowledge with the rest of us. Wow and more wow. My challenges in this little house I’ve lived in forever seem so wimpy in comparison. You do everything on a major scale.

    Ta Da! You are almost there. Trumpet flourish.

    Flora and Larry are moving into their new house!!!!! (old house)!!!!!

    Love Barbara

  5. Those pesky kitchens are one problem after another – welcome to my world! If I could, I’d jump in the truck and pitch in, but it looks like things are progressing nicely without me. Feel free to holler if there are any details that I might help with. So glad you’ve got a nice place to go for awhile until yours is just a bit further along!

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