Labor Intensive

Last Thursday evening, we received news that we had been accepted for a house* in Sebastopol.


It’s not the home of our dreams, but it is the dream of right Now, and as such, it is very, very sweet.

And small. I went to sleep last night rearranging furniture in my mind, and awoke doing the same. When I told Jeff, he said, Just don’t arrange too much. We have room for about four pieces. Actually, I think that’s an exaggeration.


Since finding out we will be moving (and we haven’t signed a lease or paid a deposit yet, so part of me feels suspended on the in-breath) we have leapt into full relocation mode.

Dear life of 18 years, which box do I pack you in?


Fern seems to be taking it all in stride, capable of expressing what she will miss about our home in the city, while musing about her new life.

What she will miss: our hawk friend, Koshland Park, City Hall lit up at night.

What she is looking forward to: a loft bed of her own, being able to jump in the house since we won’t have downstairs neighbors and horses.

Hades the horse is our next door neighbor. Also, he is not aptly named, because his sweet nudges of hello captured our hearts immediately.

The house is a converted barn on a working horse ranch. The ranch was built in the 40’s and was owned by the original family until just a few years ago. It’s clear that the current owners consider their business to be a labor of love, the property is beautiful, the animals happy.


We will be up there by March 1st. Before then, we will be downsizing, packing, redistributing, cleaning, packing. Packing.

As for me, I am trying to be the still small point in the shaken snow globe of my life, just watching all the balls in play and ducking or catching appropriately. Definitely a creature of habit and nest, I have a hard time orienting when my daily routine is gone. So I am doing a lot of intentional breathing and feeling, and letting moments be rich with the saying of goodbye to the home of my adult life.

It’s a big transition. And it’s also time.


Future home of my garden.

As you can probably guess, my online presence will be decreased in the next month or two. If you are a friend IRL, we could use help the last two weeks in February, with a big push the weekend of the 21-23. Even if you just want to pop by during the week to play with Fern, we would be eternally grateful. And will return the favor.

Here we go.


*When I say house, what I really mean is hobbit closet. As in, 600 sq ft.


14 thoughts on “Labor Intensive

  1. So so happy for you and yours. We used to live in Sebastopol years’s wonderful. Fingers and toes crossed !!!

  2. Oh hello! Quivering with excitement over here. It is, it is, it is, the year of big, colossal glorious change. I wish I could come lend a hand in the proceedings, but instead I will just wait for photo evidence and updates with baited breath. Love you.

  3. Oh Mary, I am crying! Not only are you moving into the country at last, AND with horses as neighbours (bliss!) but the house is right there before our eyes! White and green and all. Oh my, my, my. This is incredible. I love it already :o)

  4. Congratulations!!! I’ve been thinking moving-to-the-country thoughts for you since you mentioned it a few years ago. So incredibly happy for you all!

  5. I’m thrilled for you, dear Mary!! How exciting! Proof that everything is possible. If it’s any consolation, most houses in Ireland are teeny tiny. Usually 800/900 sq ft. Ours is about 900 sq feet and we get by just fine. It makes you more selective about possessions and has created in me, a need to be as clutter free as possible – which is hard for me, seeing as I was raised by two crazy hoarders 😉

    I can’t wait to see more of your new beginning!

  6. I’m so, so happy for you! I’ve been reading for years (pre-Fern), and hardly ever comment. But I’m so pleased this is finally happening for you.

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