Saturday, at 4:45 pm, after a laughter and tear-filled day spent with son Greg and daughter-in-law Camille, and going through a lifetime of photos, handing off precious bits of memorabilia, enjoying a homemade low carb gluten free pizza, we realized it was time to get ready and head down the street to our party.
Scheduled to begin at 5 PM, it was a short walk of only four doors down the road to attend a going away peninsula party, hosted for us by our friend Sue.
Twenty six years of blissful dinner parties, cocktail parties, cocktail cruises on the lake, lawn parties, neighborhood parties, 4th of July celebrations, graduations, holidays and birthday parties. Ironically, each of the three husbands in every other of five houses in a row on the point were born on December 23rd, which included my Tom, Doug and Chip. Coincidence?
(And most recently, hundreds of friends and family members came to celebrate his life and to grieve the loss of our dear friend Chip, Sue’s loving husband’s memorial service at the nearby University of Minnesota Landscape Arboretum. He would have wanted a party, but it was hard to celebrate without him there. Then again, he was there in all of our hearts).
The thoughtfulness, the love and the generosity of a friend, amid the throes of such loss, such grief, so zealously decided to throw a party for us. Mind boggling. Beautifully executed. Gluten-free foods for us. Our neighbors, our friends, in attendance, happy for us, wishing us a great adventure, interminable safety and relentless freedom.
We couldn’t have had more fun. Thank you, dear Sue. Thank you dear friends. How lucky and grateful we are.
Sunday morning, we faced yet another day of seemingly endless list of “to do’s.” Starting our day with a big breakfast of free range organic eggs fried in a dab of coconut oil, topped with guacamole, nitrate free bacon, a thick slab of nitrate free ham and organic chicken sausage with spinach and feta cheese, we were fueled for the day.
Since we started this way of eating almost 15 months ago, we aren’t hungry all day. Formerly grazers, it’s a pleasant sensation to be comfortably satiated all day, free of the endless search for the next “food fix.”
Eating low carb, gluten/grain/starch/sugar free diet prevents the addictive centers of the brain from crying for a constant fix of high carb foods. Over the past year I’ve been following the new research that is emerging daily clearly defining that our relentless hunger is a result of blood sugar spikes and brain chemistry.
By eating a moderate protein, high fat, low carbohydrate diet, we have found it easy to stop thinking about eating, simply enjoying two delicious and satisfying meals a day. More on this later.
So, we hauled our six orange Antler suitcases to our friend Karen’s home where we will reside from the night of October 24th until the day we leave Minnesota, October 31st.
The thought of staying in our house during the estate sale seemed preposterous to us and to our estate sale guy, Jim Anderson. Most likely, the furniture will sell first. If returning during the sale, we’d witness the vacant spot where our two comfy chairs had been or, see strangers traipsing down the road with their arms loaded with our stuff. No thank you.
It’s unusual for us to stay in another’s home. We seldom traveled over these past years together, rarely feeling compelled to leave the lake or our pups (dog lovers understand). When we did, we stayed in hotels, fearful of imposing upon others in varying parts of the country.
Let’s face it. I am not the easiest house guest. Tom is. Not me. My family and friends accept my cooking and eating habits along with my endless array of eccentricities around the house; nary a dish in the sink or an item of clothing left in the laundry basket.
Of course, my ultimate desire is to avoid making others uncomfortable with my peculiarities. Thus, I am somewhat of a “closet” perfectionist.
It is only this confession that so clearly reveals why all the details of the planning of this year’s long adventure is not laborious to me. It fuels my passion for the infinitesimal, researched and documented until there is no more. Then, the finale, let it go and enjoy it.
Thank you, dear husband Tom for accepting my eccentricities with your usual aplomb and great sense of humor, for teaching me to laugh at myself and not taking it all so seriously.
So, house guests, we will be. I will temper my ways, saving room for the relentless teasing I have so welcomed over the years while trying to simply enjoy the process.
In 9 days, we move out for good. In 16 days, we leave. Thank you, family. Thank you, friends. Thank you, husband. Thank you, God, for them, for the joy they’ve given us and for that which the world has yet to offer.