We had one hell of a week last week, but we're all moved into our new house and the construction/painting work is almost done. OK, the larger pieces of Sister A's furniture are still in the garage, but at least the PODS container has been emptied and picked up and all our belongings are somewhere on the premises.
A couple of my co-workers volunteered to help us load the last of my stuff into the POD Sunday, June 5, so that the POD could be picked up Monday morning; we never would have managed it without them! We also had both of our cars crammed to the gills, with a small space left for one cat each (in carriers, of course). Two people who have lived independently for 30-40 years end up with a lot of stuff, including lots of duplicates, and since the net living space per person in the new house is smaller than I had by myself, we'll be culling our belongings as we unpack boxes. The Salvation Army, Goodwill, Habitat for Humanity, Savers thrift store, and our local library will be getting lots of goodies.
On moving day, we headed off to the new house early, and the cats squalled all the way there. They continued to raise hell upon arrival, and for quite some time thereafter. Sammi (A's cat) is settling down pretty well, but Minnie (my cat) is still pretty freaked out and so upsets Sammi more than she would be on her own. That first night in the new house, Minnie yelled at the top of her lungs nearly the whole night, and with very little furniture in the place yet because the contractor and his guys had their tools & materials everywhere, she had quite an echo to emphasize her displeasure! That probably freaked her out even more. I got about two hours' sleep that night and was thoroughly dead the next day (but still had a lot of work to do--couldn't shirk it, unfortunately). Sister A. has the advantage of one deaf ear, so she can sleep on the good one and shut out all noise, the rotten egg.
We began taking our kitties outside on supervised walks early in the week, and Minnie has the run of the yard now, but I don't know if I can claim it's helped with her stress. Instead of getting used to our house and grounds, she appears to have adopted the neighbors' yard and hops over the fence into it at every opportunity. It's definitely more peaceful there right now, and of course there are no piles of lumber, tarps, and discarded parts on the other side of the fence. She comes home to eat and sleep, but that's it, and she probably wouldn't even stay to sleep if I didn't refuse to let her out again after supper. I've shut her into my bedroom the last two nights so she won't wander around the house yowling all night, and she has calmed down considerably (until around 5am, that is, when she jumps up into the metal venetian blinds in my window with a racket like a whole corps of cymbals), but she's right back to wanting out, out, OUT the next day. And she still doesn't like Sammi. But at least the house is bigger so the cats can give each other a wide berth, if necessary.
I wish I knew how to make her more comfortable in her new home, but there's just no way to explain this sort of thing to a cat.
Every day this week, in addition to dealing with upset kitties, Sister A. and I have worked hard cleaning (the kitchen was especially gross), hauling boxes and smaller pieces of furniture inside, fetching supplies for the contractor from Home Depot and wherever else, unpacking, hauling out trash, cleaning the bathrooms repeatedly as various things in each one get worked on during the day (have to clean 'em up before we can take a shower each night), and generally runnin' & gunnin' from morning to night. The contractor and his guys have run into plumbing problems, wiring problems, and just plain problems caused by weird amateur repairs over the years, which has led to the work stretching out longer than he anticipated (but doesn't that always happen with remodeling?). Just living and working around the remodelers is tiring; add all the rest we've been doing and we are EXHAUSTED. I'm lucky I got to go back to work today so I could get some rest!
But we really like our new home. The colors and tile have turned out great, the new bathroom fittings are going up and look beautiful, A. loves her little living room, and I love my combination den & office. My bedroom in the new house is smaller than my old one, but it works and it's comfortable, plus it has an attached bathroom--hard to beat that! We'll be sooooo glad when the contractor and his guys are done and we can move in the rest of the furniture and get back to a normal life.
AND we finally own the house--we closed on it this morning. So now it's official. :)