So we knocked down a wall recently.  And there was all this extra space.   And we moved every item of furniture in the living room and dining room.  I call it “removeling.”  It’s like remodeling?  But not.

I was thinking about where we were three years ago.  We lived in The World’s Shittiest Apartment, which was small and run-down and featured trashy neighbors.  And we had to actually sue the landlords to get our deposit back!  Good times.

Have you ever lived in a two-bedroom apartment with three children under the age of 5?  Try it sometime.  It’ll make your life seem better when you stop doing it.  Trust me on this.

We were both in nursing school, struggling with a full time workload of classes, homework, and clinicals.  We both also worked at least 16 hours a week.  We drove one decent car and one crappy one, and we lived on basically nothing.  One night some jerk stole every towel we owned (except I think one?) out of a dryer in the Shitty Apartments laundry room, because evidently we were just not sacrificing enough.

We were both semi-estranged from our families because we’d bailed on our previous lives and immediately thrown our lots in together, and it turns out that your parents get kind of pissed when you do that, no matter how old you are.  They’re absolutely correct in thinking that you’re doing something really stupid and you never learn and WHY DO THEY EVEN BOTHER.

It was scandalous, and it never should have worked out, but it did.  It was a hard, hard time and I don’t know how we did it, but we did.  And we were pretty happy most of the time.  Love is like that, I guess.

But don’t try this at home, kids.  Actual Results May Vary.

A year later we ended up here, in the home of The Lovely Rhonda’s Previous Life.  Long story, don’t ask.  It’s a crappy tract house, indistinguishable from every other crappy tract house in the vicinity, but it has some good things going for it.  It’s on a nice hill, no view but the wind rushes through the big trees behind the house and makes a lovely sound, there are Very Loud Frogs nearby that really whoop it up in the spring, and it’s so quiet (except for the frogs).  The fenced yard is nice for kids, and it’s close to the freeway and stores and things without being too crowded.

But, as I say, it is a crappy house.  And when we took possession of it!  Oh!  The humanity!  The yard was overgrown and neglected, and yeah.  I could go on and on about the condition of the house.  The Ex-Mr. Lovely Rhonda was not particularly good with home improvement, let’s say.  We patched holes, we cleaned and cleaned and cleaned, we painted (with help from some extremely good friends) and we were happy.  The kids have their own rooms.  We have a yard.  Life is good.

Now we have all this extra room, suddenly.  Our versatile OCD friend Amber came over today and she and TLR moved furniture around.  I call it Amber-shui.  She’s got a knack for this kind of thing.

Suddenly our crappy tract house is spacious and inviting.  We can have friends over and they’ll have someplace to sit!  It’s like a miracle, except we made it happen ourselves.  With so much help.

Thanks, everybody.  It means a lot to us.


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