“If you sweep a house, and tend its fires and fill its stove, and there is love in you all the years you are doing this, then you and that house are married, that house is yours.” -Truman Capote

We put our house on the market on Tuesday, and we have been cleaning things out because that is what you do when you are trying to sell a house. Would anyone like a nice end table? What about our baker’s rack?

One of my jobs has been to go through all of our magazines that we have stored (it is very hard for me to throw away magazines) and pull out any recipes that I want to keep. Also, I am pulling out book reviews to write the titles down and add them to my list of books to read. I am not going to tell you how many book reviews I have pulled out. I will say, however, that it’s a good thing that I have an entire summer off, and that I will apparently be spending it reading. When I am done with all of the magazines, I am going to take the rest of them to the art teachers at school, who always need more of that sort of thing. May I just say that I am going to try to turn over a new leaf and pull out recipes/write down book titles and discard magazines more quickly? It’s my new resolution. I hope. I am very excited to try some new recipes, though. So at least there is that.

As I was doing all of this, I found the title of this post quoted in Real Simple. My professional opinion is that Real Simple is awfully pretty, but generally a waste of my time. But did I mention that it’s awfully pretty? However, there are occasionally recipes that I find useful, and I like how they use quotes with all their articles. I don’t know where this Truman Capote quote came from, but it does explain a bit of how I am feeling about leaving this house. I love this house so much. Mike did his four years of college in this house. We threw parties here. Friends stayed with us. I remember the last time my dad was here. I learned how to cook in this house, in its wonderful kitchen. I made pies and cookies and took risks. This house has been our refuge. More than anything, though, I think this is the house where Mike and I grew up. We have been here four years, and those four years have been incredibly important ones. We holed ourselves up in this house and really learned about ourselves and our marriage. We moved in with some dreams and some ideas about our future, and, when we leave, we will have put ourselves in a place to make some of those ideas come true. We are both such different people now, having grown in confidence and compassion, having stepped out on our own in ways we hadn’t before. And this house, our first house, will always be a special place to me because of that. These years have not been all sweetness and delight, but our home has been, for the most part, a happy place, and I hope that whoever lives here next will sense that happiness.

People have asked us (a lot) if we have already found another house. The answer to that surprises some people – we haven’t even started looking. The current economy has got us a little bit scared about how long it will take to sell our own house, and we can’t afford two mortgages on one salary, so we are going to wait and see what happens with our house before we get our hearts set on another one. What I keep saying is that we just have to take one step at a time, and then the one after that. I don’t make big, grand plans anymore, because I just don’t know what happens next. In some ways, it’s the opposite of stepping out in faith. I will just take the next step as I have an idea of where, exactly, that might be. But in other ways, I think that it’s a big deal for me, not to have to know where we will be in the future. Just trusting as we take the next step.

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