Coffee Break #34
Happy August, friends! I am so excited to report that I am writing this month’s Coffee Break from our new home in North Carolina! (Cue the confetti!) Its been a long, challenging summer for my little fam as we waited for our on-base house to become available. But after weeks of hotel living, way too much screen-time, and a lot of sleepless nights, we’ve officially begun our next chapter as a family. Even though we’re still getting settled and I’m not fully back into project mode, I did want to catch you up on life behind-the-blog this last month! Let’s get to it!
(Finally) Feeling at Home
Writing is such an interesting way to express yourself. In the last few Coffee Breaks, I genuinely thought I was giving an honest-but-upbeat peek into our moving process. But I guess certain emotions just bleed through no matter how much you don’t want them to. Several of you sweet readers picked up on the between-the-lines sentiment that life has indeed been pretty stressful. (Thank you to those who sent sweet emails and left comments!)
No doubt about it, this move from Virginia down to North Carolina was not our most graceful. In fact, it might go down as our most challenging one yet. And not necessarily because of anything we did or didn’t do…stars just didn’t align for us this time, and it really felt like everything was more complicated than it needed to be.
As a result, every aspect of our lives…our marriage, the kids’ behavior, my work, our schedule, my sleep, our meals (everything!)…just felt very off kilter. As much as I wanted to just embrace the uncertainty and live up the summer, the stress permeated every activity, every situation, every conversation…every minute!
But there’s a funny thing about moving. Just like I talked about here…once it’s over, all the stress and worrying and discomfort quickly become a very distant memory. Maybe it’s because you become so consumed with unpacking and the excitement of setting up a new house. But I actually think it’s a bit more than that.
Even though rooms are different, we’re surrounded by stuff everywhere, and there’s a ton to do, being in our own space with our own stuff made us immediately feel like we were home. And this feeling of being home instantly tilted everything back upright again. Almost over night, our life shifted back into the one we recognized, even though the world outside our window has changed considerably.
I (quite obviously) chat a lot here about the projects and solutions I use to make each house a home. And every so often, a reader will chime in to say that it’s the people, not the house or stuff in it, that make a home. I do, generally, agree with this sentiment.
But having just spent the past two months with only my family and not my house/stuff, I think a home is more than just the people. While it might not be the structure itself or the stuff in it, the comfort, stability, peace, and joy those things provide does contribute to a sense of feeling at home.
While I may sometimes struggle with the superfluousness of what I share here (in light of real-life events and problems)…the last few months have yet again reinforced that there is indeed so much value in transforming a space into a “place you love.”
One situation that was causing me considerable stress this summer was childcare for our youngest son. Like many aspects of this relocation, I thought we were on track to have him in full-time care as soon as we arrived. But when the situation didn’t play out quite as I expected, I saw my dream of having all three of my children in full-time care/school (for the very first time!) dissolve before my very eyes.
I have been at home with my children for 11+ years now, all the while starting and then growing this little business…first in the margins and then with part-time, in-home care. For many, many reasons, I am ready to transition away from being a frazzled work-at-home-Mom. So to say the least, suddenly facing another few months of exclusive night/weekend working while being home with my 3 year old was a pretty big blow both emotionally and psychologically.
However, in recent weeks, we were informed that there is indeed a spot for our son. And so for the first time since becoming a Mom, I will have a quiet house to myself during the day and be back working full time. And I can hardly believe it. I may or may not be counting down the final few days of summer vacation until this new chapter finally, actually begins for me!
Not So Anonymous After-All
As a blogger, you spend a lot of time sitting behind a computer screen, sharing pictures and punching out words that you don’t know if anyone will actually ever see or read. And while I certainly know many of you are out there, sometimes it’s hard for me to know if the ideas and projects I’m sharing are reaching those who can really use or enjoy them.
For most of my time as a blogger, I’ve considered myself pretty anonymous. Even though my name and face are plastered all over my site, I’ve always felt like I was hiding in plain site. In the grand scheme of the Internet, I’m a pretty tiny fish in a quite massive ocean.
Moving back to North Carolina is the first time in many years that we’re living on a big military installation; which means it’s the first time in a long time that I’m around a lot of fellow military spouses. We’ve only been here a few short weeks; and not once, not twice, but a handful of times already, some fellow spouses have told me that they know exactly who I am and/or that they read/follow the blog.
You guys – these are jaw-on-the-floor moments for me…every time! Not only is it just plain exciting to actually know there are people out there reading, but that my fellow spouses are indeed getting ideas and solutions from what I share here.
For so long, I’ve assumed I was just another voice on the web, just another Pin in people’s feeds. So while it’s a little jarring to realize I’m not as anonymous as I thought, it’s far more exhilarating to know I’m actually helping a community so obviously near and dear to my heart!
If there’s anything you’d love to see me chat about in future Coffee Breaks (e.g., military life, Mom life, blogger life, wife life, etc), drop them in the form below!
Please Note: There is no email address on this form, so if you ask a really specific questions about a product or post, I can’t get back to you. Please leave those kinds of questions in the Comments area, and use the form below for broad topics or questions you’d love to see me cover in depth…Thanks!
The month of August may still be a little bumpy around here as we finish out the last few weeks of summer and continue to get settled. As eager as I am to dive into our new house, I do have a few posts to finish out for our VA home. So keep an eye out for those in the next few weeks, and then we’ll kick off our North Carolina home the first week of September! Thanks for your patience during our transition!