Hey y’all! Coming to you from sunny south Texas, where we arrived late Sunday night with half of (what remains of) our belongings.
It was an INTENSE week as we worked to get everything out of our 5 bedroom house and either into storage, a 15 foot Uhaul, or into the hands of people who could use it.
The casual onlooker may have thought we left everything to the last minute, but we’ve been purging stuff since May! That said, we left A LOT of purging for last week, and I don’t even really regret it. Procrastination brought our priorities into focus as we were going through all of our stuff. We only have a 10×10 storage unit to work with, and it’s now packed FULL (thank goodness for super tall ceilings) with pictures, furniture my husband built, and some other useful things we know we’ll need when we get back.
Oh, and also that TOTALLY DEAD Mac that is not at all useful. Scott didn’t want to donate it or recycle it because he didn’t have time to try to figure out how to revive it to wipe it. So anyway, don’t go thinking you’ll get a functioning computer if you somehow get into our storage unit. But you could score about 10 laundry baskets. PRIORITIES!
Listen, I’m not saying we were making totally rational choices at that point or any time thereafter for the next 3 days. Lowell lived in his pizza jams for 72 hours and accompanied us to the storage unit after dark with no shoes.
And we had to have Thanksgiving dinner of some sort because that is what irrational people who need to move out of their house in 3 days do. So it was turkey and cranberry goat cheese sandwiches, and some homemade mashed potatoes. I had a half a glass of wine with dinner, and that was the worst idea ever. Productivity killer, for sure.
Once the housekeeper came, all meals were eaten outside, via our buffet – the ironing board.I’m glad that was after I posted “Best Black Friday Sale Ever- 100% Off EVERYTHING” on the local Facebook garage sale pages, or people would have walked right off with our Chipotle under one arm and our ironing board under the other. We put so much outside that I thought people would scoff at and we’d wind up taking to the dump. It was almost all gone within an hour, though! It was like nothing I’ve ever seen. The only things left on our porch that people refused to take were a battered baseball helmet and a pair of Vibram FiveFingers shoes, which is honestly the kind of comedy I need in my life right now.
I know that a popular way to at least partially fund going full-time is to sell off your stuff. It’s not that we don’t need the money, but that it was more profitable for both of us to spend less time selling our stuff and more time working and collecting paychecks.
So we wound up selling a few nice, big things for cheap and then giving a lot away. The people who showed up to our Black Friday sale scored some great deals, but most of our furniture went to furnish the home of a woman who had nothing but an air mattress and a lamp.
A friend reached out to see if we had anything we could give her, and we said we’d give her everything we could. We furnished her living room, dining room, and bedroom. Members of her church filled a flatbed and the back of a truck with a bed, sofa, table and more, and delivered them to her. One man who was helping was pretty incredulous that we were giving all this up, but I thanked him and my friend for giving us something purposeful to do with all this stuff. It was the best feeling, and has been one of the highlights of this experience so far.
Whatever was left after we filled the storage unit and passed off what we could, went into the back of the truck (and our Pilot, and the back of our new Ford, and the cab of the Uhaul). Scott’s Tetris skills are legend.
Not everything that made it down here is getting onto the RV. We brought more furniture down for family, and we will definitely still have to purge some clothes and housewares, but we can do that as we move into the RV, which should be this weekend!
Funny (now) story: We had to be out of the house by midnight on the Saturday after Thanksgiving. I remember I double checked that we had the date right at our closing. So we planned the whole process accordingly, and we knew it would take us nearly all of Saturday to get completely out of there and have the house nice and clean. We were very committed to leaving the place in fantastic, move-in-ready shape. It’s a kindness that’s been shown to us each time we’ve bought a house, and we try our best to pass it on.
At 9 am on Saturday, the new owners pulled up. They thought they could move in anytime that day. That was…. awkward. They were, understandably, frustrated. Their realtor gave them the wrong info. There were a lot of emotions going around, and it was a very difficult moment for me. We were in the right, though, and all is fine now. It was just kind of a crummy way to start our last day there. But we didn’t have much time to think about it. We pulled out of there at 11 pm, and made our way down I35 to Waco by 2 in the morning, where we crashed in the clothes we moved in. We definitely needed that WHOLE day.
I am super impressed with LaQuinta. We originally had a res. for Austin that night but there was no way we’d make the drive down there. They let us switch to the Waco location, and didn’t bat an eye at us bringing Arlo*, our 170 lb English Mastiff, with us. And they iced the cake with late checkout and free breakfast. (Not sponsored, just really happy with how they accommodated us when we were so tired.)
*Yeah, we still have Arlo, but we don’t plan to bring him on the trip. Another post for another day.
My sister was there the whole week to help, and I truly don’t think we could have done it without her. (I’m going to have to share her hilarious Instagram stories in another post so you get a true behind the scenes look.) We sent her down south ahead of us, driving the Uhaul, so we could take our time saying goodbye to the house and taking horribly grainy selfies and sad videos. I sobbed in the parking lot of 7-11 on our way out.
It was hard, but it felt right. We did it. For better or worse, and about 9 months after we first seriously started thinking of it, we did it. It’s time to see what we’re made of!