Spring Plans

I don’t usually write posts “of the moment”, but today is the first day of spring and I wanted to get my mind wrapped around our spring plans.   I find seasonal action plans very helpful in keeping me aligned to my retirement lifestyle vision.

I had created a fun set of Winter Activities that took into account social distancing. They ranged from my normal life things (on-line yoga, zoom Zumba, beach walks, new recipes) to specific things I wanted to get done (from finishing my series of psychology classes to buying a garage refrigerator). There were also some winter specifics – foods of the season and going to look at Christmas lights. With 66 items on the list, I was happy that I did about 85% of them!  Some items – learning to play chess, finishing that jigsaw puzzle (it’s been 75% done for a year), and starting a cross-stitch project – seem to just move from seasonal list to seasonal list!

Now, with the vaccine on the way (first shot done, second in 2 weeks!), I’m looking ahead to the spring and returning to some in-person connections.  But it will be a very different spring this year for another reason. 

After talking about it for over a year, we are executing the Big Move.  Our Ohio house is targeted to be on the market in early April with movers coming in mid May.  We have the task also of selling and donating things not being moved – from furniture to garden stuff to household items.  I recognize we are still going to move way more than we need – and we will have to sort it out on the other end when things just don’t fit.  Going from a 2200 sq.ft. house with full basement, attic and garage to a 1900 sq.ft. house with a garage but no basement or attic is a big shift down in storage space!

So beyond choosing a realtor & a mover, selling what we can, de-cluttering the house to market it, selling the house, and then packing everything up, there are a few other items on my spring list:

  • Keep doing the things I love in my life – daily journaling, regular yoga, weekly zumba, monthly massage.
  • Instead of new recipes, focus on using up items in the freezer and pantry.
  • Have “final” dinners, coffee, or walks with friends.  And visit a few of my favorite restaurants one last time.
  • Do a few of my favorite walks one last time – Cincinnati Zoo Blooms, Eden Park Art Walk, the Riverfront Parks.
  • Set up life in Florida – everything from fitting things into the house (and more de-cluttering) to getting a drivers license.
  • Start life in Florida as I mean to go on – beach yoga, morning markets, use my jet tub, join the library, regular beach walks, take out the SUP.
  • Keep calm through it all.

It will be a busy (chaotic) spring, on both ends, and a huge transition moment in our life.

Do you have something exciting happening this spring as things start opening up?

Picture credit: Me: an unusual Cincinnati sunrise this week, from my journaling chair.

25 thoughts on “Spring Plans

  1. Sounds so exciting!!!! My two aunts and their husbands in Florida are moving back home to northern ohio.My grandma passed away last year and they decided they wanted to move back to Ohio where they all grew up and where a lot of family, including their younger sister lives. I’m excited because in a few weeks my daughter, son in law and grandkids are moving back to washington from texas.

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    1. Lauren, I hope to do the Eden Park Art Walk which just opened last fall. Zoo Blooms at the zoo is amazing… I’ve gotten a few friends who wanted a last meet-up and we’re going to do that. Outside, walking and talking, seeing all the flowers. I’ve already done my (probably) last Jungle Jim’s visit…. another thing I’m going to miss! Cincinnati has such wonderful things that many natives just don’t utilize.

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  2. Bless your heart. I know this is a trying and yet exciting time for you. Glad you have made progress on what is moving and what isn’t. Great idea to have a spread sheet with that in WRITING!! We have little storage place here in our home, lots of rooms but no attic or big closets to hide, I mean store things. I had a wonderful attic in my small home and miss it every day.
    Happy to read of the fun things you have planned when you get settled. Beach yoga…yes!! A new library to explore. Soaks in the tub. Glorious.
    Just give yourself grace. One day at a time between now and May. And then know that the summer will allow for settling in and exploring.
    Maybe you can find a simple beach-themed cross stitch to do once you get ‘home’ to Florida? I am going to keep my eyes open for one!!

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    1. I love that phrase “summer for settling in and exploring” – can almost feel a beginning to my summer activity list! A girlfriend in Florida has already agreed to be my Tourist in Own Town cohort. She’s new to the area as well (1.5 years). Yes, I’ve started the list for that already as she’s sending me ideas. I know – focus first on the move! There’s a lot to do there.

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  3. What a perfect list for the season of your big move. Wishing you lots of luck! I see that day in our future…a couple of years…but we are definitely thinking about it and what we will do with all of our stuff. I laughed when I read that you have a jigsaw puzzle that has been 75 percent complete for a year. I was working on a Halloween-themed puzzle for at least two years. By the way, I did finally complete it. My husband and I just got our first COVID vaccine yesterday. We go back in three weeks. We’ll still be cautious, but it will feel so good to know we have that protection and can start getting out more! Again, best wishes for your move Pat. Happy spring!

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    1. Christie, I was going to “finish” that puzzle this winter. Hah. As far as the stuff…it’s little by little getting sorted. Gosh we have so much stuff! If I do a few things every single day, it might all get done – donated, given away, sold – I do have 7 weeks!

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  4. Hi Pat, your post came at just the right time for me. I’ve been feeling trapped the past few days with all that’s still going on from the pandemic and the limitations that are part of all of our lives. Yes, I’m grateful for my health, absolutely, but today I’m just feeling blue about the lost time. Sure, I’ve done things, but they’ve all been Plan B or even C. While I felt excited 2 weeks ago when I got my first vaccine shot, I’m back in the rut I felt before because I haven’t yet planned how to add to my daily life. After seeing your careful way of considering your spring list for your life has made me feel a bit less anxious and ready to create my own. So now it begins. Thank you Pat for your post and for sharing with all of us!

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    1. Judi, I was so happy to be able to get the vaccine and realize that yes, I will be able to have a few dinners out with friends to say goodbye. And do some walks with much less fear. Things won’t be completely back till mid-summer or fall, and I’m not sure about traveling, but I am much more positive about this spring and I think you can be as well (since you have your first shot). Make some plans!

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  5. Pat, Congrats on getting the first vaccine! Continue doing what you love, meeting your friends, and taking your favourite walks are great ideas to manage some of the stress normally associated with moving. You’ve got this. All the best with your move.

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    1. Thanks Natalie. I’m also working on breathing through the stresses. A friend suggested a midday walk today and it was super helpful. I’m planning on a few more walk and talks with people … starting a list. (and yes, I hope you chuckled at that – knowing me)

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  6. I am so excited for you and very jealous! You are setting yourself up for an amazing retirement. A house you love with a beautiful view in a place with great weather most of the year! Talk about retirement transition!
    I have two trips planned in April, one to Florida for a son’s wedding and one with a good friend and her husband to Cabo! All vaccinated, I feel like we have super powers and are free to roam the world! Well, maybe not the whole world yet, as they seem to be watching some significantly mutated Covid.
    Upon my return, I plan to rejoin Orange Theory. I am completely out of shape but hopefully can get back to it. My dance is opening competitions back up and I will be considering doing one of my big competitions in Chicago in August (not really a spring activity but we will get serious about the dance training now).
    This will be our first spring in our new house so I’m looking forward to seeing what plants will spring up. Then comes some assessment of what gets to stay and what will be torn out and replaced. I haven’t planted annuals in several years so it should be fun to plant and tend to some beautiful plants now that I actually have time to take care of them. We also plan to do our own yard work, and that’s a first for me. Mowing the lawn (I think I was about 28 the last time I mowed a lawn), weeding, pulling out things that have overgrown and replanting. Maybe I don’t need Orange Theory!
    And last but not least, I plan to sit outside with a nice cocktail and enjoy the weather!

    I will miss you, our walks, our talks and our foodies. Especially our talks. We will need to continue with our Zoom wine time!
    And I will have your blogs to help me keep up with your goings on.

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    1. Candyse, Definitely, let’s plan to keep up on the Zoom wine! And I expect a visit, too!

      I’m so glad to hear dance competitions are coming back… you’ll get back into it, back into OTF, and yes, gardening will add in another element of fitness. I enjoy getting into the garden and doing stuff. Not a veggie garden which requires too much daily work, but perennials and annuals. I’m looking forward to learning about a new climate and have a few nursery’s and botanical gardens on my list to explore!

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  7. It’s an exciting time for you, Pat, but I like how you’re approaching it — not only with excited anticipation but a calm routine, both in the “old” way of life and onto the new. That makes a lot of sense to me, and I’m sure it will serve you well. Enjoy yourself and keep us posted. I love reading about it.

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    1. Kate – You have to realize that almost always on my seasonal activities lists, I never get everything “done”. I’m thinking the calm is the one that might not happen. I’m already stressing and second guessing….am I selecting the right realtor? the right moving company? How will I get rid of some items that are nice (and worth some money)? Will hubby start packing and do any sorting/donating on this end? That’s just this mornings questions! 🙂

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  8. Good luck with the de-cluttering and sorting before your move. When we moved in 2016 we had a basement ‘boot camp’ to clear out 26 years worth of stuff. It took about two weeks! We did something similar in the garage but the garage ‘boot camp’ took less time. I like your plan of seeing friends before you leave. Those lunches and coffee meet-ups may never happen again.

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    1. Jeannette, I’ve come to the realization that 90% of the basement and garage stuff will get moved and then my husband will admit it won’t all fit. I’ve given up the argument to sort and donate at this end. The Courage to Accept What Is… one of my key things this year!

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  9. Hi Pat – how exciting and daunting all at the same time. Moving house is such a stressful time – especially when it comest to downsizing to fit everything in. We’ve only moved three times in our 40 years of time together and each time to somewhere bigger. Our next move will be to a much smaller place (not for years to come though) and there will be a lot of culling to do – good luck with it all and I’d love to see some pictures of it all as you go x

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    1. Leanne, I never thought about pictures… I’m not a very good photographer. But I might try a couple of “what I’m dealing with” shots of the attic and basement! When we sold our last house, our agent created a picture book of it – I was thinking just this morning I might have to do one on this house… I never did one on our last homes though. But this house (Ohio) was one that has some of the things I always wanted in a house (and won’t have in our new place) – stained glass windows, hardwood floors, reading nook, huge walk in closet, my crystal chandelier (Tim moved it here and installed it!). So maybe there will be pictures! There’s a 4 page excel house inventory sheet already – what’s moving and what’s not!

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