I have packed until I'm so tired of stuff... Why do we have so much stuff? But I'm trying, I really am. I have discarded, or plan to discard or recycle, many books - and that's saying something. The books. The pictures. (Not to recycle the pictures; but I am thankful for CDs and external hard drives...) The Iuka house is relatively bare compared to everything that is "out" in ours - mementos of trips, family gatherings, souviners. Sher and I both like to be surrounded by things we love. But the more I pack, the less I see them. Doesn't mean I care any less about them and their meanings, but the old saying is somewhat true - "out of sight, out of mind." In our retirement years, I would like to be in control of just a few things, not having a lot of stuff controlling me. Oh, I'm sure eventually everything will find its place, but for now, it's nice to get things coralled by similarities - I have all our church directories in one box and they were scattered among the books... Just being more organized.
That is not to say the Iuka house is bare. Paul talked to his brothers about any of the furniture, etc., they might want because at some point we'll have to move ours in. It's almost twice the size of our house here but Mama Nick, as I may have said, didn't keep a lot of books - the most she had were crossword puzzle dictionaries, an old set of encyclopedias, and several I've given her over the years. Indeed, I think she did discard more than just my letters to her (to my utter disappointment, but I didn't tell her). She had many steno books of notes probably from church. I had never looked in them, but they were in her pantry. When I was cleaning it out and boxing up personal items of hers, I found a couple apparently overlooked. Anyway, a matter of transitioning.
The hostas we took Easter weekend and planted seem to be thriving. The roses look like dead stems, but so did my Oldham rose here that's now blooming every day. This time I took a peony and put it (the root) near the edge of the yard. Our neighbor Joe and my friend Gay have each given us sprouts of Japanese maples, which we love. All told I think we have about half a dozen now to plant. Below is a buckeye, one of many around the house. In Wynne, we have two in the back yard, but they're not blooming yet.
This past weekend (Mother's Day, though we only stayed to Saturday afternoon), I was clipping Mama Nick's pretty rose bush which has dwindled down to thorny twigs, with one little red rose on it. I was using an old pair of clippers, which weren't really cutting. So I was twisting, and before I knew it, I was twisted, and down I went. Paul said I turned a somersault. I know for sure it made my head spin (and it has been very good lately!). After I sat there a few minutes, collecting my wits and catching my breath, and Paul asking, "Are you alright?" over and over, I finally decided I was upright again and nothing broken. Of course, I had on my old mules, my Merrills... When we got back home, I brought out my New Balance that lace up and have been wearing them.
The news of the flood, the Mississippi River cresting at over 47 feet, the White River, the L'Anguille, and others - all the rain we had, plus ice melts and run-offs - the water had no place to go but seek dry land. It was so very strange and a little scary driving over the Old Bridge back and forth seeing all the water where it wasn't supposed to be. So very sorry for all the people who've been affected in any way - having to pack and move, being stranded. And the terrible tornadoes before the floods... Yes, we have all this stuff, and it can be gone with the wind or washed away by torrents.
Transitions. This has been a year and a half of transitions. I've already been retired almost 18 months! I emailed by friend Brenda and told her I'd be so glad when we could sit in her swing, or mine, and just talk to each other, person to person. Just sit. So the less stuff I keep, the less I'll have to put up or take care of. Do I really want to spend my, hopefully many, retirement years collecting and dusting? Or visiting gardens and nurseries and relatives...