Sunday, January 5, 2014

Moving. It Kind of Sucks.

We moved and I haven't blogged in forever, again. It's been the farthest thing from my mind because I've just been in survival mode. Moving Survival Mode.

No matter how much you want to move, are excited to move and need to move- nothing- and I mean nothing can really soften the blow of ACTUALLY moving.

Moving to a new city. Selling a house. New jobs, preschools, churches... Everything's. Ah. Changing.

This move has been hard, that I cannot lie about. Our hardest move yet, for sure. I think if I had remembered how much I don't do well with um, ya pretty much every aspect of moving- I would have realized it wasn't going to be a fun. Instead, I just thought about the things I love, like decorating. And visits to Ikea. And not the things I hate (err, despise) like unpacking random boxes full of things that don't even belong in the same room- let alone box. This is the style of packing you do when you've just given up: throw it all in, hope it doesn't break and slap some tape on the box. You're angry when you're doing it and even more angry (at yourself) when you're unpacking it. Unpacking it is a blunt reminder of how much you procrastinated packing. And that right there is pretty much my entire style of packing. (Incase you don't remember, packing isn't really my "thing".)

I hate chaos, I hate being out of a routine and I hate not knowing where anything is. I like being in control and I hate feeling like a spaz, which- even when I'm in control I am somewhat spazzy- so during a move it's like amplified to a level 11. It was definitely too much for the husband to handle. I locked keys in the house, in the car, in the garage... who knows where? Everyone was over Kenna, even Kenna. Whomp, whomp...

I would go so far as if to say, if people decided to just divorce in the middle of a move- I would not blame them. If they stated on their divorce papers, "We Tried Moving Our Family" instead of "Irreconcilable Differences", I would totally just nod and say, "Ahhh yes, The Move got them- totally..."

And here's the thing- I am not a novice to moving. I may sound like one, but actually in fact I am quite the opposite: I am a habitual mover. Before I was married at age 25, I moved 9 times. Since being married we have moved 8 times. In 7 years. It makes me anxious to even add those two together.

Moving as a single woman was almost a game to me. I had a great job and was kind of, in a way- always looking for a better place to live. Closer to the beach. Bigger. Cheaper. Better roommate. I would move on a whim, and often. I had an Ikea credit card and used it like a gas card. I was always designing new rooms in my head and I can't ever really remember a move actually STRESSING me out. I can remember powering through my living room, bedroom and kitchen in about 48 hours, max.

Moving as a married couple became a little harder, but still- Shawn and I's usual moves were usually to gain space. With almost every move we "upsized"- and there is really nothing that stressful about throwing things in a spare bedroom and closing the door and getting to it when you can.

Now let me tell you some things about this move. We moved to one of the most beautiful places in the world: Santa Barbara, 4 blocks from the strand to be exact. We're moving in to a church denomination we've wanted to be a part of for a long time. The husband is getting a nice raise. And did I mention we're moving back to the beach? We are. We've missed it- although I don't particularly love frolicking in the water, I do love living by the beach and the lifestyle it provides. Lots of major pros for this move. In the midst all of these pros... there's been just one con- if you want to look at it like that... We're downsizing. Fact: to move to Santa Barbara, unless you are Oprah (who lives 10 minutes away) you WILL be downsizing. I won't go in to the logistics about the space but we're missing some serious square footage. 


As we finalized our plans to move in to the new house we had to PURGE. I mean amongst the obvious kid's-now-sharing-a-room reality-- the pink couch didn't fit. My beloved pink couch, my baby... There were almost tears.


It took us 2.5 weeks to move in, which I'm sure in the grand scheme of everyone who's ever moved with a family- is like warp speed. In Kenna-time 2.5 weeks is like slow motion... a painful, tortuous slow motion where you can't ever see the light at the end of the tunnel until you have less than 5 boxes left to unpack. I have not had anxiety like I had with this move for a long time, and I forgot how much anxiety sucks. In the midst of the move was Christmas. Who moves during Christmas? Oh ya, we do- twice. Christmas almost killed me. Santa's elves were majorly lagging, especially that damn Elf on the Shelf who gave such a pathetic attempt it wasn't even worth one Instagram photo. I mean, everyone knows if you don't Insta your Elf you've committed a parenting crime! 

I was shopping on Christmas Eve for 75% of my gifts-my heart racing as I was mad about everything, including the fact that I was standing in hour long lines purchasing less than amazing gifts because I couldn't even handle the fact that Christmas decided to show up in the middle of our move. I mean, the nerve. Let me tell you I was NOT feeling the Christmas 2013 spirit. I tried my best to decorate our house around the boxes, just so the kids wouldn't miss out... but nothing was helping this Grinch. I was so happy to de-Christmas- I've never been happier to not see Christmas d├ęcor all the more cluttering my already cluttered home. (Should I publicly admitted that last sentence? Probably not.)

I made a pathetic attempt at getting our family's Christmas pics in to one of those annoying "Facebook Christmas card" status updates- something I swore I'd never do. I learned that during a move you are capable of doing things you swore you'd never do.
Aside from the annoyance of unpacking box after box... there is also the emotional aspect of moving. Realizing that the friends you've spent every day with for the past 5 years are all now an hour away- not a block away. When your son is asking you 10x in a day if we can meet our friends at the park or if he can see pictures of our old house- it just makes you sad. And sad people can't unpack, they can only wallow. Wallow in boxes.

Fast forward: As of New Years Eve I declared us "officially moved in" (I had to declare it in order for it to be real, you know?) We even had friends over New Years Day which my kids were beyond excited about. We still don't have a complete back yard (yet) but we're unpacked and comfortable, like we can actually walk through the house without tripping- always a plus! It's crazy because the minute I put away the last box in the bathroom I felt like I could function again. And breathe. And text people back. My tunnel vision for parties is the same with moving- I physically can NOT do anything else except the task at hand.

Enjoy some pics of the new digs... Including the kids new Neverland room which I had a great deal of fun designing.

THE headboard. If you don't know why I capitalized THE, you missed this post.

New Years Day!
The kids and I have been exploring the last few days since Shawn's been back to work and I know we're going to love it here. We've found amazing parks and made a trip to Michael's today to get a start on Cormac's 5th birthday party. I still got lost (what is up with these One Way streets?!) and it is still crazy annoying that there is no Target (WTH?) but I can definitely remember why we decided to move here. I mean, we've been the beach alone like 10 times since moving here- thanks to my husband's pleading to get away from "the move". We've discovered elote and helado and they're going to make me go broke!
Sometime soon I plan to blog about our decision to send Cormac to a Spanish Immersion Elementary School this Fall but until then I will be working like a mad woman on his Pop Art Balloon Party- sewing 19 aprons for all of his little artist friends! See- I'm back to my normal self ;)
To follow the Pop Art Balloon Party fun- come follow me on Instagram!

xo Party or Die xo


  1. welcome back, Miss Party Mom! We've missed you. And thanks for answering my texts again.

  2. "And sad people can't unpack, they can only wallow. Wallow in boxes." my favorite...

  3. you are not making me excited at the prospect of a huge move. i amm already packing up and putting away. *sigh*

  4. um, i love your house. everything you've used to decorate it looks awesome. and the kids' room is more than ANY kid could ask for. they don't even know about Trash Mountain, but i'm sure they wouldn't miss the idea even.

  5. kenna, i didnt think that anyone could possibly hate moving as much as i do, but i think you just might. and youre totally right about the marriage thing, before/during/after our move back to california i REGULARLY told james that i literally DO NOT know of a single marriage thats survived a relocation.

  6. Packing is definitely not my favorite thing to do as well! But I'm glad to hear you're easing up in your new home and the kids' room looks really cute! Love the neverland theme :)


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