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empty nest

Progeny on the move…

Recently I went house-hunting with my daughter. I know it’s uber cliché of me to say this, but it truly DOES feel like just yesterday I was bribing her to eat breakfast… Just yesterday that I was braiding her hair and picking out her clothes… just yesterday that I was wondering when the hell her feet would stop growing and bugging her about whether or not she finished her homework. And now… we come screeching to the present, where I’m helping her find a new place to move into with her… with her… with her…boyfriend!

I leave the little one with Scott… and off Sonora and I go to inspect this potential new abode.

First off, I notice, it is NOT on the beaten path- score, 1 point.
Second, it’s a water tower – score, 10, points.

Water Tower House

Water Tower House

It seems as if we drive over the river and through the woods to get to the water tower. We arrive and the second she sees it, she’s in love. (I will take a brief moment to gush at how much she is like me. I too would have loved this very weather-worn house.) I see the house through her eyes and with all my heart I immediately send out messages to the universe that this NEEDS to be my daughters first house. It’s so full of character, I can almost see the creative energy seeping through the nooks and corners of the interior.

We are greeted by the grounds keeper and he’s like a character out of a book. He too is weather-worn and full of character. He shows us into the house and we walk into a very small bottom floor. There is a small kitchen and small (as in micro-mini) bathroom. The bottom floor can easily be taken in with a glance. We then climb a small staircase, to the middle section of the house. It has been labeled as the bedroom, but only out of necessity… because no mattress could venture up beyond this point. This small area has a mini-gas-stove stuck in the corner. A double sized mattress would engulf the entirety of this room. Then, there is a ladder that leads you through a hatch in the ceiling to the third, and final, level of the house. On the top story, there is a closet and views of the surrounding rural area… oh, what views!

This room longs for shabby chic!

This room longs for shabby chic!

She’s in love… and I’m in love. That’s when it hits me…. I’m unemployed. The funds that I have to help furnish any new place have suddenly become very limited. Last year, when Sonora lived in Florida for a couple months, I sent many-o-care-package. That’s what moms do. But now, this time around, I’m unemployed and I need to conserve my spending and remember that my savings needs to remain dormant for a while.

This unemployment is a bit of a fart in a quiet room… it stinks!

What to do, what to do… Thank gawd I was poor in a past life. I’ve totally got this. I know how to decorate on a dime! I’m having flashbacks of my first apartments…. and suddenly I’m having an epiphany moment: I’m going to give Sonora the ultimate gift for those who need to decorate on a limited income– a high temperature glue gun! Though it may just be the espresso talking, and not an actual epiphany, I’m feeling like I’ve got a plan. And I always feel better when I have a plan. All hail the mighty glue gun, making 2nd hand objects look all funky and new!

Now I’m all excited and raring to hit garage sales… but I need to pull back the reigns and acknowledge that the espresso has hit my blood stream, because I’m getting way ahead of myself. After-all, I suppose I should let her turn in the application first…

Leaving the Nest…. without going splat!

“Oh gawd, she’s not ready!”

Last Christmas my sister gave me a beautiful incense holder. It was a tall wood tower that you lifted off of a platform. In the platform was a small hole where you’d place the incense. Once lighted, and the tower in place on the platform, the incense smoke would stream out of the holes located on the roof of the tower. Lovely. Well, it WAS lovely, until I went away for a weekend leaving my 17 year old daughter in command!

I noticed it right away. As I walked in the door and placed my bags down on the living room floor, my peripheral vision and the eyes in the back of my head were all a flutter checking the place out and narrowing in on the table which holds the incense burner. I walked over and KNEW something about it was askew, but since it was newly acquired I couldn’t quite figure out what was missing….. Then I saw it! I turn to Sonora and ask, “What the heck happened to the top of my incense burner?!?!?” To which she calmly replied, “It sorta burned off….”

This is the first time I found myself uttering inside my brain, “Oh gawd, she is not ready….” A thought I’ve been repeating, like a mantra, several times since what is now referred to as the ‘incense incident’.

My heart races… the panic has set in…. it’s the last inning and while it appears that team Competent Parent is ahead, the inning is not over with yet…

The realization that my BABY girl is months away from being legally old enough to vote, buy tobacco, get married, get divorced, rent a house, work full-time, finance a car, get a tattoo, or bungee jump out of the nest WITHOUT parental consent…. is enough to make me hyperventilate, let alone question if I’ve really done a good job in the life-prep-work called parenting. I find myself throwing at her “last minute” tid-bits of “life lessons” that has her no doubt convinced that I’m preparing to change all the locks the moment the clock strikes midnight on her 18th birthday….

The race is on to impart all of that knowledge that must have slipped through the cracks. I mean, if I never properly taught her to light an incense (SONORA…. you BLOW OUT the fire on the end of the stick!!!) what else have I neglected to share?!

Perhaps I should prepare a Final…. A test she must pass in order to earn her 18-year-old-I-am-an-adult-and-don’t-need-no-mamm’s-signature status? I think this is a good idea!

I will quiz her on candle lighting, dishwasher loading, turning off the oven remembering, do not spill bleach on the carpet technique-ing, and how-to-keep-your-animals-alive multiple choice questions….

Oh gawd, she’s not ready!!