New Chapters

The 15th of October this year will mark three years since I set foot here in America, husband and one of two sons in tow. My everyday now includes a panoramic landscape dense with trees that never fail to take my breath away. I have come to expect the changes that are part of living in a place that sees four seasons. I have slipped on ice, had doors opened for me by seniors with walkers (which have led to apologetic expressions of gratitude), become friends with the mailbox, and have come to the conclusion that all the Chinese takeout places in our little town must be run by just one family.

We also found our own little personal preferences, including which supermarket is best for certain things, which salon does hair better (or cheaper), which big box store carries what we might be needing at a particular time. We’ve also found our spiritual home at the Lourdes Grotto Shrine in Litchfield and that’s where we go every Sunday morning. The 40-minute drive is our way of enjoying the trees (lots more out there!), the towns, and even our music of choice for the day.

Last July, we made the big move and rented an apartment above a flower shop in town. With the help of cousins (who made our immigrants’ experience way more cushy than it could have been), the apartment was quickly turned into a comfy living and working space. I now have an office space for digital work and the landlady’s glass-top dining table has become my art and craft work table. It sometimes functions the way it was meant to but we did purchase a couple of folding tray tables from Walmart in case I had artwork that can’t be moved going on.

The walls have yet to be filled with art–my husband’s black and white photos will soon grace the living room. I intend to put my favorite poem on one of the walls. For now, we are finally rid of the 80’s chintz roman shades and curtains. I found a black and white printed curtain from Ikea and the kitchen window has the Eric Carle print that I had bought more than a year ago at the Eric Carle Museum. One bedroom window has another Ikea product hanging from it. The other window has to wait.

Work continues, of course. The BD Lifestyles pillow covers are still available on Amazon    and on the website. Illustrations for a book by Jaimie Hope are ongoing, and I hope to be able to add a shopping cart to my website as well.

2012 has been a roller coaster ride so far (I have purposely left out the dips in this post because–and I am outing myself here–I really am a kind of a Pollyanna). I find that as I move on to new chapters, I feel better leaving older ones just slightly ajar. Must have to do with my packrat tendencies. I just know that there will be a use for that one thing that I tucked away. 

By the way, July also closed with a big whoop. We received our Welcome Letter from the USCIS and are now permanent residents of the United States. The permanent home may or may not happen but for now, this nest above the flower shop suits us fine.