I mentioned some time after our move last summer that we were all having a hard time making the small adjustments that come with a new home. Where are the cooking pots? Where are the cutting boards? Where is our stash of paper towels? Etc, etc etc.
The longer we’ve been in this house, the more all of that newness has become routine. What continues to be strange, though, are the seasonal things we did in the old house and how to bring them to the new house. Living in one place for 15 years, we had countless established routines that waxed and waned with the movement of the calendar. As we drifted from summer into our first fall here, I kept having weird, unsettled feelings, like I should be doing something. I was never sure what exactly it was I was supposed to be doing, but I felt a sense of unease left when those habits of 15 years were uprooted.
For example, at the old house, we always put up Halloween decorations as close to Oct. 1 as we could. We’d take a look at the weather forecast, our schedule of kid activities, and sometimes the weekend before Oct. 1, sometimes exactly on Oct. 1, we’d pull the boxes out of the basement and start spreading our lights, skeletons, witch, vampire, etc around the front yard. This year it took me a couple days into October to realize that we needed to drag all of that stuff out. Then we realized many of our items were purchased because they perfectly fit something about the old house, but were not as good of matches for the new setup. Oh, and it didn’t help that those young punks stole a bunch of our decorations a year ago.
We still got some decorations out. Just not as many as in the past. But it took us years to build up what we had. I suppose the same will be true here.
We stuck to the old plan for Trick or Treating last night. We left a bowl of candy at the front door of the new house and went back to the old neighborhood to hang with friends. C and L both dressed up – C as a “party llama” and L as a hot dog – and made their rounds. M decided she was too old to dress up and beg for candy. I think in truth she would have gone out again if it was up to her. But her friend in the old hood is a year ahead of her in school, and decided that high schoolers do not trick or treat. So M just hung out with her. Which was fine, but I was a little bummed that she let someone else make a decision that I’m not convinced she was 100% down with. Oh well, she still gets plenty of candy from all of our leftovers.
S and I sat in our old neighbors’ driveway next to a fire, eating chili and drinking beer while catching up. Fortunately it ended up being a cool but pleasant night. It had rained most of Halloween day but stopped just before trick or treating time rolled around. As we were getting ready to head out, the sprinkles of the next round of rain were just beginning. It poured overnight – our power went out twice – and today has seen a steady, bitter, cold rain fall. It’s been unseasonably cool here for several weeks, but November 1 definitely brought the feel of late fall with it.
And, of course, November 1 means the holiday countdown officially begins. I noticed two Christmas music stations on SiriusXM this morning. We saw a Miller Lite commercial that was Christmas-themed during SportsCenter this morning. With the countdown will come a whole new set of bumping between old traditions and new ones as we host our first Thanksgiving here and then decorate for Christmas for the first time.