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  • suzannenorquist

It Takes A Year

Updated: Jul 13, 2020

They say you should date someone for a year before you marry them. See what they’re like through all the seasons, holidays, and moods. It also takes a year to finally feel moved into a new house. Every season brings new insight and challenges.

The first stage involves clicking all the light switches to find the right one. This light switch challenge can last for years . . . Or maybe that’s just me.

Then there are the odd things. My current house had a beautiful engraved plaque with the wrong number. Our new address was 33, but the sign said 321. What?!! Am I expected to add the last two digits together like a math puzzle?

I called my real estate agent in a panic. Did I buy the wrong house?

Apparently, ten years ago, the rural address authority changed the addresses for the 911 system. Whoever heard of the rural address authority, and why did no one change the plaque in ten years?

My theory: The plaque was too beautiful to throw out. It’s a small town, and no one pays attention to the number.

Holidays come, and I must decide where to place the tree, the manger scene, and the handmade snowman- candy cane holder. After eight years with a tree that was to short for my vaulted ceiling, I finally bought a taller one. A year later we moved. The tree stood too tall in the new house. Forget the star on the top. It didn’t matter because we moved again before the next Christmas. The tree fits now.

Heating and cooling present their own challenges. I put pads in the air cooler and figured out how to power it. Eventually, I learned what settings cooled the house best. Then winter came. I’ve had the heating guy out three times, and I compulsively check the thermostats and boiler. In the summer, the propane guys didn’t recognize my name. I had to give them the name of the guy who used to own the house. Now we’re on a first name basis. Hope we get an early spring.

During the cold snap on New Years Day, we learned which pipes were subject to freezing. Not the ones I expected. Next year I’ll know where to put the space heater.

Plant life in a new home can bring a pleasant surprise, especially bulbs that pop up on their own.

Several times I’ve wanted to get rid of a bush only to have beautiful flowers bloom and save its life. Once it was a snowball bush in the middle of the front yard. Scrawny until it bloomed, then it was awesome. At another house purple flowers saved a climbing vine that didn’t appeal to me. I love purple.

And, don’t be fooled by the beautiful blossoms of a crabapple tree. We had one that hung over the front sidewalk. When the fruit fell, the kids were forever tracking crabapple mush onto the carpet.

Unlike marriage, the decision to move doesn’t have to be a permanent one. But remember, you won’t really know your house until you have experienced it in all its seasons.

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