And so it has happened…

I dropped Roxy off at school this morning to find a card in her cubby.  The card was from the parents of a little girl Roxy talks about fondly everyday.  Yay for Roxy making friends!

However, here is the what the card said:

Dear ______’s Mom + Dad,

_______ would like to invite _____ over for a playdate.  We are free almost all weekend, and would love to host.  _______ insists I tell you that we have LOT of princess dresses.

Hope to hear from you!  

Oy.  Obviously the “Dad” part struck me first…but fine, careless assumption.  Actually what struck me first was that Roxy’s name was wrong – weird, but okay.  The teacher assured me it was meant for Roxy.  So thirdly, the princess thing.  I need not reference the vanity post from a few weeks ago.  Roxy and I talk at length about the Duchess and her charity work.  I show her pictures of “the princess” in pants, kneeling down, getting her hands dirty, feeding the homeless and say “How could she do all that work in those dresses the masses are trying to sell you?”  (I know, I know)  We don’t have any dress-up princess clothes at home but rest assured that at bio-mom visits, Roxy is told for sixty minutes straight that she is a princess (where does that woman get all those crowns??).  I digress. Fine, Roxy can play princess at other houses but I will still stress the real and exhausting role of a princess and continue to explain to Roxy the phrase, “sensible princess.”

BUT…and there is a but.  How can we let her go to a playdate at another house without first CORI’ing the family?  We can’t.  It’s very much against the rules.  And how do we navigate this without telling too much of her story to the other family?  Of course, we’ll try to invite the other child here but at some point we’ll have to explain the delicacies of social services.

The bright spot in this story is that the family seems to have just moved here from SF so hopefully we won’t rock their world with our family structure.

Planting roots

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Fall and winter are my favorite seasons and we just happened to move to a popular tourist area for foliage drives and apple picking.  So when Red’s sister flew in last week, we knew we had to take her to our favorite farm stands, apple picking, horse gazing, and antique shops.  She found a hundred year old book of poems by Emer.son and then we took her to Slee.py Hollo.w to visit his grave.  We lunched in Litt.le Ita.ly and rode the carousel downtown.  We hosted a dinner party to celebrate three different birthdays (Red’s included!) and even my mother attended.

Moving from the city to this rural life has been a breeze.  Sure, there are challenges but so far they’ve been learning opportunities.  Today I plan to replace a dryer belt!  We are still perfecting our wood stove strategy (we suck at getting it going).  We had a sofa delivered last week and despite measuring and ensuring it was the same dimensions as the seller’s, it wouldn’t fit through the doorway of its intended room.  I took out the crowbar only to find the doorframe was original (about 150 yo) and one solid piece (with forged nails, no less). Short on time and patience, we called an emergency contractor.  It was sad to rip down this door frame for the sake of a sofa but it had to be done (Red’s sister was arriving and this was a sleeper sofa for the guest room).  The bill stung a little but the door frame was rebuilt so that I can successfully pry the pieces off separately in the future, if needed.  We had three cords of wood delivered last week and Red insisted she would stack it.  Well, three cords is a lot of a wood and half of it still sits, unstacked. We knocked down a wall two weeks ago that sits, cords hanging, supports standing – waiting for a contractor to install a lvl beam.  Sometimes I feel like we’re in over our heads and then I realize we can slow down and take our time.  Bonus that it’s impossible not to get in shape here!

Roxy and I have been busy raking a “road” in the woods (really just a path to the pond). We’ve hung a hammock in there and it’s truly divine.  I’d love to hang sculptures from the trees and Red and I have been meaning to carve out our initials.  We own more woods than cleared land with this place but with talk of horses, we may have to clear a little more. My favorite part is the Unitaria.n church bells that ring every hour.  Just last evening I realized I could see the pond shimmering from our second-floor bedroom window – 6 weeks in and I’m just seeing it!  Everyday there is more magic to discover.

Roxy continues to thrive in school full-time.  I’d been with her non-stop since she came to us so it’s a big adjustment not having her by my side all day.  She said this morning as I dropped her off, “Um.i, I going to miss you today!”  I plan to get a dog since I work from home and I’m not going to lie, it’s kind of eerie in an old house alone.  Red started yoga classes – something she was committed to when we first met and stopped shortly after we settled into married life.  Last night, I began archery through the town’s rec department.

I feel like after so many years of being stuck, making this jump was huge for us.  Our circle of friends had always talked about “buying a house in the country” and the fact that it has happened is a dream come true for us.  I have moved so many times in the last 17 years that thinking about living here long-term is hard to believe.  I miss one thing and one thing only about the city…the awesome food delivery options.  When we tell Roxy, “that will be your school when you’re 5,” it’s unreal to think we’ll still be here.  But we will.  I can mark Roxy’s height on the wall and she can grow taller and compare to last year.  I can pull up a floorboard for her to hide a treasure for her future self to find.  I can plan the nursery for our next child and think about how he or she will grow in that room.  Home sweet home, folks.