As Christmas gets closer, I find myself less enthused for the season and more likely to seek distraction or distance from others. Nevertheless, the second part of my big move begins on Saturday and that deserves a blog update. Plus, I probably won't be able to update for the next week or so anyway.
In keeping with what seems like a Midwestern tradition, I need to first talk about the weather. Luckily enough, it hasn't been that cold. There was another light dusting of snow last night, and a few days before that, but it's gotten just enough over freezing that it somewhat melts during the day. While this means that there really won't be a white Christmas here, it does mean that I won't encounter weird weather delays on Saturday. I clearly remember seeing news coverage of families stranded in airports on Christmas Eve due to snow, and never thought (before now) that I could be one of those people ... which luckily I won't be this time.
Saturday I will fly out of the Twin Cities to Sacramento, where I will be spending Christmas with a past co-worker/friend and her family. It was ridiculously nice of her to insist I come over, and I'm looking forward to the food and watching her young kids open gifts. After Christmas, I'll pick up my rental car and prepare to drive (again) to Iowa. This time, not only will I have Bailey, but Natalie is going to come with me! We're going to make it an adventure, although the only thing we have planned so far is to check out the Amana Colonies in Iowa. As far as I can tell, they're German villages that have good places to eat and drink (and really, what more could you ask for?)
Natalie flies out day before New Years, and I will then be settled in my new place. I'm really excited about my new house - I've kept myself up late thinking about how I'll fill it with my things (and new things), what living in it will be like, and what Bailey will do with all the windows at perfect dog-height. The house is a two story place, and I'll be renting the bottom floor. There are two bedrooms - a master bedroom in the old parlor/sitting room area and a smaller, wood paneled room off of the dining room. The master bedroom has a massive closet and door length mirrors. The living room is nicely sized with a fireplace, and opens directly into the dining room. Both rooms have built in cabinetry and big wall-length windows. The kitchen has a washer and dryer and even a gas range. Then there are all these features I'm not used to needing - like a tiny room that connects the front door to the living room which keeps the cold air out, and a three-season porch off the kitchen that functions as an un-heated room for storage and, well, three-seasons of usage. I have a nice little patio area, and then a garage to keep my car snow-free. The yard has two big trees which will be nice for shade in the summer, and plenty of space in the front to walk around with Bailey. There are no fences, so she'll be leashed most all of the time now. Besides how awesome my house is on the inside, its location is perfect. My house is down the street from the grocery store (by three houses or so), two blocks up from the main downtown drag, and really close to a handful of my co-workers. I can walk to any bar, restaurant, or even the co-op within ten minutes, I'm certain.
So really, regardless of how I feel right now about Christmas I do have my house to look forward to, and soon enough I'll be returned to Bailey. There's even a New Years Eve party via some co-workers. Win! And the new year brings so much more in the way of adventures - the Iowa caucus (of which I'll be attending - the Democratic one, at least) is January 3rd, then it'll snow more and I'll get to try cross-country skiing, ice skating on real lakes, and shoveling my walkway!
So dear friends, have a very merry Christmas and a fantastic new year celebration. See you in 2012!