Friday, April 15, 2011

This New House -- Just in Time for Pesach

We're settling nicely into our new digs and we absolutely love it. We're still waiting on the basement construction to be finished and at this point we're pretty sure it won't be done by Pesach which is a very big let down, as it was the main reason we almost killed ourselves to get in here before the holiday.

But on the plus side I love how well lit the kitchen is, how spacious and open the living space is, and how soon we'll have a nice big playroom. There is a big porch off the master bedroom that lights up the whole upstairs at all times of day and serves as a very convenient laundry area for me. The kitchen is on the small side, but we aren't feeling the pinch yet since most of our kitchen stuff is still in the "old house". Our new neighbors are amazing, I just keep worrying that I'll scare them off with all my pre-Pesach mandatory screaming: "Don’t eat that in here! Don't put that there! Can't you see we're making Pesach here!?!?"

Ah yes, the Big P is fast approaching and for a while there, I had many Sisyphus moments, feeling like I was the only one pushing uphill while the rest of the family pushed back with full force threatening to flatten me.

Take for example the night before the movers were supposed to come (but let's not revisit the fact that they never showed, that just makes my blood boil). I stayed up well into the wee hours vacuuming our couches. Now, in the states I had a cleaning lady who did both sets of couches a couple times a month, but best case scenario I've cleaned them three times since we moved here. We now only have room for one set, and that's pretty much where every single person spends every single living moment of their day. Do I even have to tell you what I found in those couches? Seriously, the stuff that nightmares are made of. Banana peels, about 200 shekel in coins, books, cereal, other unidentified food, a phone, toy cars, homework that was lost, pens, pencils, and lots and lots of garbage. So, there I was at 2am enjoying my perfectly chometz-free, junk free couches. Cut to: the next morning. We were getting ready to move the couches and I took off the pillows to find…a complete, whole, single BREADSTICK. I have no idea how he did it, but Little Red managed to get a breadstick (not cornflakes or rice cakes or something as simple as kitniyos but a BREAKSTICK people!) into the otherwise pristine couches, between the hours of 2am and 8am. Sisyphus.

But I've made it (as somehow we all always do) and am confident (as confident as one can be with 6 kids, including a 2 year old) that the only chometz in this house is on the dining room table. A good part of the  Cooking is done, but I am really missing my extra freezer and fridge that I had in my previous life. Somehow my current fridge, like the boundaries in E"Y when Moshiach comes, seems to stretch and expand and no matter how much food I make, it keeps going in. Another Pesach miracle!

The best part of Pesach here besides the gorgeous weather and the family time is that there is a lot less pressure here with one day Yom Tov and one seder. The kids are having a hard time wrapping their minds around it. Even J keeps asking, "But when do we do the second seder? Second days?"  For me it's just another way that our life has been simplified, which is a very, very good thing. That means an extra day of Chol HaMoed, less food prep, more family trips. And you know us, that's just awesome

Monday, April 11, 2011

And, we're back...

The Husband, as Perfect as he may be, has been on my case for a while now to get moving on another post. He tells me he needs something to read. As if most of what we just moved into our house was not reading material. Or as if he hasn't read through almost every one of the 200 books on the Kindle. So, reading material, huh?

I feel like a kid kicking and screaming, "I don't wanna write a blog post!" Don't know why, sometimes it's just hard to get back into the groove. So, let's see, where did we leave off? The terrible bombing of the bus in Jerusalem, that's right...

Life has been hectic as usual. The real reason for not writing sooner (not just because I am a big baby) is that we've done what W's do, and we've moved again. We thought this move would be an easy one, as it was "just outside our back door and up a flight of stairs", and it may have been on the easier side, if we hadn't woken up on our moving day to pouring rain, and a flaky mover that cancelled on us last minute. So, TPH and I had only one choice; we moved just about every single thing that we own ourselves. We had the help of our great new neighbors who helped with some of the heavier pieces, not to mention brought us dinner! And my sister D who came with a friend and did some schlepping and took the kids out for lunch. BAW and I moved beds, mattresses, dressers, bookshelves (and books!), sometimes up three flights of stairs. The good news is that we did almost everything that needed to get done. The bad news is that for two days afterwards we could barely move. Maybe we are getting older, maybe we are out of shape. Or maybe it was just way too much for two people to do on their own...

Whatever. What's done is done, and we're in. The new house is fantastic. I am so much calmer because there is so much more space to move around! Hopefully I'll get on it and post some pics of the new abode soon. There were the initial kinks to work out being in a brand new apartment for the first time, but those were to be expected. For example, the gas issue. We had the plumber come the evening of the move to hook up the stove and he took one look and said, "Well, I'd love to hook this up for you, but this apartment isn't connected to a gas line." Um, ok. Did I mention it's a week before Pesach? So, no gas means no stove, but hopefully they are coming tomorrow and we should be able to be up and running again soon. And if we're not, well...we'll cross that bridge when we come to it. We also had no running water downstairs for two days, but again, it's been fixed, and we're all good.

At this point, I feel a little guilty. Everyone I know is running around cleaning like crazy, and I have had some pretty leisurely days  (ok, they were spent learning to walk again, and wondering if my arms would ever feel attached to my body again, but hey.). The pros of moving into a new house a week before the big P are NO CLEANING and NO KASHERING. I cleaned everything thoroughly before it was moved, and there has only been chometz at the dining room table. Kitchen is brand new, so no kashering, which is huge.

One thing that strikes me as a girl from the sticks is how easy the shopping is here. Every store has everything we need, on sale. The choices! No running to Penfield Wegman's to get the last few half gallons of triple the price pesach milk, because you weren't there to attack the guy at the regular Wegman's when he put it out, and  you were left with none. No more bribing the kids behind the meat counter to tell you when the Pesach meat is coming in so you can be there first, whether or not it's 3am. No more ordering from out of town, or having siblings schlep things from across the great US to our door step. But, this also means no more of our famous family seders which I will miss terribly.

Anyhoo, that's about it. My life is as boring as yours right now, but at least TPH has some reading material now.