The End of an Era

Hello my People!

It feels like a sweet forever since I have done any blobbing, I feel rusty. I am going to just start typing and see what comes because at the moment I feel like all I have to say is, we worked really hard last week and then we worked really hard again and again.

It feels appropriate to gather up all of the weary loose ends.

As of this moment, my Dad is homeless. Ah, not really! He is in limbo, he is staying with us this week. He is 99.5% moved out of his house and into the garage of that house. That .5 percent is the refrigerator that he thought he was leaving but they thought he was taking. He will remove it when he actually moves next Monday. They have closed on the old house and the new owners graciously allowed him to continue using the garage until he can close on his new condo on August 5th. They will not be moving in for a while but are already hard at work making it their own. They have ripped out all the carpeting on the main floor to install hardwood, and painting has begun!

That paragraph looks all neat and tidy, but it masks the flurry of seemingly endless activity that was last week. We had spent the week before packing and sorting everything in the house and separating it all into two camps; The Keep Pile and The Salvation Army Pile. I actually think the latter was the larger pile!!!

My Mother had almost 70 years of belongings stored in that house. 70 plus if you count a good amount of my Grandmother’s things. My Mom loved pretty things, all kinds of pretty things. Crystal, dishes, accessories, decorating things, clothes, jewelry, everything. She was very sentimental, she kept things that others had given her, correspondence, all of the things that made up the memories of her life and the lives of her children and grandchildren. She was also a child of The Great Depression and had the suspicion that hard times might come again and she might need something, therefore she rarely got rid of anything useful, just in case.

All of these factors combined made for a huge job. And I am here to tell you that we tackled it and have lived to tell the tale!!!!

After packing up all of the things he wasn’t taking, Dad, Beeve and I hauled all that out to the garage. I personally feel I have been up and down his stairs hundreds of times!!!! Tuesday morning Honey and I helped him load a big old U-Haul, then we could really see what all he was taking with him to the condo. Once the garage was clear of the give-aways, The Keep Pile was loaded into the garage. He had help from many, but the job was fierce!

He had to be out by Thursday at 4:30 when the new owners were coming for their final walk through. We spent that entire day cleaning and removing the last bit of belongings and rubble that was left behind. We just made it by 4:30! The new owners seemed thrilled with the place and said Dad could come back any time to visit the home he had lovingly built with his own hands.

Once again, I am shocked by how tidy that looks on the written page. It seemed anything but. It was a monumental task, a seemingly overwhelming job, but you have heard the expression of ‘how do you eat an elephant?’ One bite at a time. We just plowed on and kept working.

I had joked with my Mother many times over the last decades of her life. Told her she should start going through her belongings, purging, donating, reducing. She always laughed and said don’t worry about it. I teased that we were going to need a dumpster because we couldn’t keep all her things.I was only half kidding. I always had a feeling that she would never get to it.

We did end up keeping some of her lovely and useful things. We have boxes of household goods and pretty things in our basement, set aside for our kids. Everyone needs pyrex and Tupperware and pots and pans. They each chose some of her pretties from her china cabinet. Precious memories of the Grandma that they loved so much and who adored them in return.

I had always feared I would be mad or resentful about this job. It could have turned out that way, really, it could have. I have to say that, surprisingly, I was not. It was a big job, but Mousey and The Ab-Cat helped us. Honey and Beeve helped us. Dad’s friends helped. It brought up so many memories and we talked about them along the way. Good memories of a life well lived. We hope many people will be blessed by the things we didn’t keep. There are going to be a lot of happy people excited about the great finds they made at Salvation Army!!! I might even read about them on someone’s blob!!!

God was in this move. In the details, the decisions, the timing, providing help. protecting our backs and bodies! I feel like it was a final act of love to my Mom, who I miss every day.

I had a moment when we were all finished cleaning the other day. I was outside on the driveway, putting my pail of cleaning supplies into the back of my car. I turned around and was struck by a fact. I will go to my Dad’s new condo, Lord willing, many times, but I will never go to my Mom’s house again. She loved the house my Dad built for her, loved the life they made out there at the lake. It was like the last link to the place she last lived.

I cried for a bit then continued on. It’s all we can do here in this life. But we will meet again, that’s the best part. It makes it bearable.

John 3:15

New International Version (NIV)

15 that everyone who believes may have eternal life in him.”



  1. Vickie Smoker said,

    July 29, 2013 at 9:54 AM

    Lovely article, Kel. I’m holding back tears as I finish reading. It was a lovely home and your parents were gracious hosts. I treasure the times that I visited there. Vickie

  2. caprilis said,

    July 29, 2013 at 1:35 PM


  3. deb said,

    July 29, 2013 at 6:54 PM

    I know how you feel, kind of. I had the same feeling when we moved my mom and dad out of their beloved “farm” in Howell. But at least I still had my parents. So much work, you must be exhausted. Hugs to you.

  4. Robin said,

    July 29, 2013 at 8:48 PM

    Such a sweet sentiment. We have walked that same way ourselves. It’s a hard place..but not hopeless…thankfully! Looking forward to that “meeting again” time!

  5. Barb said,

    July 30, 2013 at 10:19 AM

    Thanks for posting. You are a wonderful daughter.

  6. jodaley said,

    July 30, 2013 at 8:00 PM

    I understand the emotion. Sometimes I think God has moved me around so much to remind me this earth is not my home. I tend to cling to stuff more than I should. I’m glad your dad is on his way to being settled and the biggest part of the job is done. I hope you’ve had a nap after all this activity!

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