Friday, February 27, 2009


People often express concern about us "leaving home" or "not having a place to come home to." Many think we should keep our house instead of selling it.

But Chip and I have a common bond: we were each the rambling sheep in our family, the only one of the herd that left the fold, that wandered outside the pasture to have a look around. To us a house on land feels less like being grounded and more like being tethered. Sure our house is comfortable. It's home in the sense that it's respite, a sanctuary from whatever is buffeting the four walls. However, it has never been our center, the place that holds our attention or our dreams. It has only been for us a place to safely harbor the kids on their trip from childhood to their newly found adulthood.

Neither of us feel any sense of loss in leaving this house. On the contrary, it's like shedding a burden that no longer has to be maintained, mowed, painted, cleaned or vacuumed. We can both be perfectly content living in a studio apartment, a tiny house, anything until we're living onboard.

The concept of home has always been an elusive one for me, but when I imagine moving into our new boat, putting away our clothes, making the bed, stocking the tiny kitchen, checking the lines one more time before going to bed, the moment when my head rests on the pillow brings with it an enormous, overwashing sense of finally being home. Finally, finally home.

Here I am on the road again
The song began and then in the end
I'll be standin' by the sea
--Western Highway by Gerry O'Beirne

--two appointments to show the house, one today and one tomorrow
--sold many more things on Ebay
--listed the boat on craigslist Annapolis and obx
--have an appt with a lawyer Monday to talk about offering owner financing on the store

Thursday, February 26, 2009


I got plowed down by a stomach virus this week. Monday morning I was just fine, ate breakfast, made some phone calls. Two hours later I was driving myself to the emergency room with outrageous stomach pain. Crazy.

The emergency room is such a bizarre experience. I can't go in there without playing the whole Brian Regan emergency room bit in my head. When they asked me to rate my pain on a scale of one to ten, Brian Regan was screaming in my ear, "SAY EIGHT! SAY EIGHT!"

Anything to make light of a dreadful experience.


Wednesday, February 18, 2009


My new camera has been stealing a lot of my attention. With two new babies, I've had some little subjects that, if not willing, are at least immobile. As my photography teacher says, "That's a lot of camera." When I get frustrated that I'm not yet Annie Leibowitz, I remind myself this is all new.

The house is very lonely. No lookers since Groundhog Day. One of those Groundhog visitors said we were their favorite. And then we never heard from them again. Sigh.

Our Atlanta prospect for the business has opted out. Our broker told us we might have to lower the price and "carry some paper," which is odd broker-speak for offering owner financing. The listing expires March 1, so we're considering a lot of things, including selling it ourselves. A little creative marketing maybe? Ideas are welcome.

This is boat week. We're listing Isabella on craigslist in every major city along the east coast. Once I have a sunny day, we'll have new pics to use.

We've made $240 on Ebay in the last two weeks. Salt cellars, earrings, a pocket watch. Tomorrow I'm adding some clothing.

We're both feeling the uphill battle right now. Chip has a map of Mount Everest on the refrigerator and claims we're on the Lhotsi Face. We're cold, low on oxygen and just want to reach the damned summit! Thank god for little babies.

Friday, February 6, 2009

Wednesday, February 4, 2009


Eleni Grace Kiousis

February 4, 2009

9:00 p.m.

7 pounds 8 ounces

Welcome little girl! We can't wait to meet you.

--someone new is looking at the house tomorrow
--the new lookers from Saturday/Sunday think the house might not have enough storage
--lots more stuff on Ebay
--sold the Flintstones thermos for $48!!
--had my first photography class last night

Monday, February 2, 2009


So, we amused ourselves by googling dolphins, ladybugs and feathers. ALL of them are good omens in one culture or another, sometimes all of them.

Yet Punxsutawney Phil saw his shadow this morning, a foreshadowing of six more weeks of winter, so the legend goes.

And our house lookers? All silent.

The minutes tick slowly down on Groundhog Day and another 'X' on the calendar.

Sunday, February 1, 2009


Tomorrow is Groundhog Day, the day where tradition has it that we find out if this long winter will end or be with us for another six weeks. Several months ago our friend Lincoln told me that Groundhog Day would be when everything would finally come together for us.

"Mark my words," he said. But I forgot.

He reminded me last Thursday, "Groundhog Day," he said.

I wondered if it was a good omen on Friday when the very first thing I saw was a ladybug. I opened my eyes and thought, "What's that black spot on the door?" and then it started moving.

The new people who looked at the house yesterday came back for a second time today. As they looked, we went to walk on the beach. On our first glimpse of the ocean, we saw dozens of dolphins slowly, methodically cresting as they swam south.

All along our path on the beach, we saw feathers at the high water mark, scattered amongst shells and bits of wood. Could that be a sign?

Lincoln has a tattoo on the back of his head, a feather.

It doesn't really matter so much if tomorrow is the end of winter or if we wait six more weeks or six more months. Each day we learn one thing more about watchfulness, about our own high water mark of patience and about, not signs, but faith scattered amongst shells and bits of wood.

ladybug ladybug fly away home
your house is on fire and the children are gone