Wednesday, January 31, 2024


Fiddler on the Roof (1971) - IMDb 

    We have just started the basics of packing. Mostly my china from the dining room hutch and other things we don't use much anyway. Instead of packing it in June, I might as well start now. Nothing major, just some little things. 

    Back in high school I was in musical theatre. My very first production when I got the esteemed title of "villager" was Fiddler on the Roof. At the very end of the show, the whole town is evicted by the evil czar and they sing this dirge of a song called "Anatevka". They look around at all of their stuff "A pot! A pan! A broom! A hat!" and decide who really needs any of this stuff anyway. It's just stuff. It's replaceable and the whole town of Anatevka isn't that great after all. They have each other will be ok with not much else. 

    Every relationship needs a chucker and a hoarder. Jeff is the hoarder and I am the chucker. I throw things away when no one is looking and Jeff keeps everything and is very sentimental. We balance each other and it's a good thing. Well, moving to Africa and knowing we will have crazy small living space has made me want to get rid of even more. I feel like I am leaving Anatevka and looking around at my house going "A pot! A pan!" and feeling good about becoming a minimalist. 

    So in the meantime, if you need a good pan, stop by my house. There is a good chance I'll be giving one away!

Friday, January 26, 2024

Heart Preparations: Saying Goodbyes

Waving farewell to the Pacific

We are discovering there are many items and aspects to consider when moving halfway 'round the world. One part is saying goodbye.

Earlier this month we went to one of our favorite places in California: the Mendocino coastline. It seems silly and, perhaps, even trite to say "goodbye" to the Pacific Ocean. It's not going anywhere! It is the largest ocean in the world and will continue to hold that championship ring. It'll be here when we return. Sounds ridiculous, right? We'll be back in a couple years. Overkill?

We'll say "goodbye" to things over the upcoming five months. Goodbye to our favorite restaurants. Goodbye to local events such as the annual Christmas Parade. Goodbye American Thanksgiving on American soil (we'll see you in 2026 — keep those mashed potatoes warm). Goodbye to our house, our furniture, our backyard and garden. Goodbye to authentic al pastor tacos 🌮. Goodbye to friends and family (Woah woah woah, don't forget FaceTime).

This process has been a healthy, encouraging, thought-provoking, and family-bonding experience to collectively say goodbye. It's preparing us. We're not taking what we have for granted. Yes, we're excited about new beginnings and new adventures, but we also mustn't move past the emotions of today and pretend they don't exist; no, we must acknowledge, work through, and when necessary grieve losses for ourselves and for our kids. We have the opportunity to show emotionally healthy ways of saying goodbye — and of grieving.

Goodbye Pacific Ocean. We'll see you in a few years.