New House, and Good Things

I have moved into a new house, in a new town, entirely on my own. I’ve been looking forward to this since shortly after I moved out of my last solo house, which was almost two years ago. And now, to my absolute joy, I am once again living alone.

As you are probably aware, I am not the most people friendly person in the world. My experiences living with others have only reiterated to me how much I do enjoy being alone, and having my own space. I like not having to put pants on to walk from one room to another. I like being able to watch whatever I want, and take up all the space on my (admittedly tiny) couch. I like practising guitar, or playing video games at 2am without an angry face popping out of a bedroom door to tell me to go to bed. In fact, there’s not much that I don’t love about living alone, if I’m being honest.

The move was relatively painless, and we got all my stuff into the new place fairly quickly. Though the front two rooms are in various states of disarray, I plan to organise it all this weekend and, assuming I can find the missing screws for my sewing table, hopefully set up a sewing space. Which makes me so happy, because it’s been so long since I last had a dedicated space to create. And the space, sweet baby Satan, the space. There’s so much of it! My first house was a tiny little cottage that suited me just fine, but this place is huge! In fact, it’s probably more space than I need, but I am certain that this house was meant to be for me.

See, when I was applying for houses, the place I’ve moved into is one of only two properties I was actually able to inspect. The other was way too small, so I didn’t bother applying. I applied for plenty of other places, but every single one of them was leased before I even had a chance to inspect. Now, you could argue that the reason I was approved for this place is because it was the only one I got to properly apply for, but I believe the other inspections were cancelled because this was the house I was meant to move into. The universe is funny that way, and when she sets her mind on something, it’s best to just let it happen.

Now of course, the first thing I did on my first night in this giant place, was cleanse it. Sage smudging is an important part of my moving house ritual; call me New Age-y, but if you don’t expel negative energies from your house, you’re setting yourself up for trouble. For me, I like the clean slate and it helps to make the house mine, and remove any lingering energy from the previous tenants.

I’m excited to see what this new adventure has in store for me. I passed my final assessment at work on Thursday, so I am now officially qualified at my job, and I get a pay rise to boot! For the first time in a long time, I feel like I’m on the right track, and that’s a really great feeling.

Home

Those of you that follow my blog will have read a post I put up a few weeks ago, about change. Well, the big change I mentioned in that post is official. At the end of this month, I will be moving to the city. I have a confirmed job, a confirmed house and a moving date. I am finally taking the giant and overdue step of leaving my stifling and stunting home town, to move on to bigger and better(?) things.

I have lived in my current house for a touch over a year, and it has never really felt like home. I mean sure, it’s where my stuff is. It’s where I sleep, where I sew, where I shower. And my ghost came with me…either that or I got a new one, so at least the knocks on the walls and the randomly opening doors was comfortingly familiar. But that aside, something about the house never felt right. It’s like I never really got properly settled.

Before I move out of home last year, I had lived in that house for twenty years. It’s where I grew up, I can tell you every creak in the floor, every crack in the paint, every quirk. My dad still lives in that house, and to me, it will always be home. Every night I eat dinner at his house and flop in front of the heater feels more natural to me than when I (rarely) cook in my own house and settle in on the couch with a movie.

Moving away is going to be interesting. I’m moving in with a friend, to a place almost entirely unfamiliar to me. I am going to have to man up, and start cooking for myself instead of relying on my dad. (shut up, I hate cooking and he can only cook for an army, it’s a win win). I am going to have to get accustomed to living with another person again…and hope that she doesn’t get sick of tripping over my sewing stuff! And I’m hoping that this house will feel a little more like home than the house I’m about to leave.

I am comfortable living on my own. I enjoy having my own space and not having to put clothes on. I like being able to use my vibrator and not worry that someone will hear me. I like doing my own thing and being accountable only to me. It’s unlikely I’ll ever move back home for those reasons. But nevertheless, it is and it will always be home.

House Made Introductions

A person’s house tells a lot about them. You can always tell the people who tidy for company from the people who don’t. You can usually tell if someone supports a particular sporting team, or if a girl spends ten minutes or three hours in the bathroom. It’s the little things we don’t really notice that tell people the most about us. I can be completely summed up to a stranger by five things in my house. Which is to say, someone I don’t know could walk into my house today and leave after ten minutes with a fairly good notion about the kind of person I am.

Firstly, when you walk into my house, is the typewriters. They’re right at the front door, sitting atop some bookshelves that house a rather significant collection of books. This is the first thing people see. You can deduce one of two things from these cute little vintage pieces. I am either a) a pompous hipster with a penchant for buying vintage items to make myself seem cool or b) I am a writer (and aspiring author) with a deep and profound love of the written word, and a genuine interest in writing implements from history. It’s the latter, by the way.

image

Secondly, as you make your way through my house – and by that I mean taking about a step and a half into my lounge room – you will see the large collection of books stacked slightly precariously atop a small but varied DVD collection. Now, in addition to the bookshelves when you first walked in, these thirty odd books will tell you that I am a voracious reader, with a tendency to buy books in bulk and happily make my way through them at my own leisure. That stack has been, at varying levels, a part of my living arrangement for the last six years. At least.

image

Before you move onward, to the right is my bedroom. There, on my side table is my iPod, plugged into the dock and playing music (Amorphis at the time I took that photo). My iPod is perpetually playing. There are very few things I do, without the accompaniment of various styles and genres of music. Everything from Metal (the likes of Dimmu Borgir, Opeth and Dark Tranquillity to name a few) to instrumental pieces, progressive rock to folk and blues. I have what one might consider an eclectic taste in music, and I can’t go through my days without some musical motivation.

image

Take a couple more steps and you will find yourself in my kitchen. To the right is my sewing room, where you will find a dressmakers mannequin wearing an almost finished gown of my own design, just awaiting the final touches to complete. Now, this is pretty obvious. Mannequin, almost completed project, fabric everywhere, sewing machine on the table; I sew, guys. There’s really nothing more to it than that.

image

You don’t even need to take any more steps here, because on the wall outside the sewing room door, hanging in my kitchen is a canvas print that reads ‘Keep Calm and Put the Kettle On’. This could be admittedly taken a couple of ways. Perhaps I enjoy entertaining? Nope. Maybe I am a coffee drinker? Nuh uh. I drink copious amounts of tea. Can’t live without it, I am truly a writer cliche. I have about thirty different kinds of tea in a cupboard specifically designated for it. So I suppose, perhaps the fifth item should be my tea cupboard, but the canvas is more obvious and frankly, if a stranger were to go through my cupboards, I would find that unforgivably rude.

image

And that’s about it. Oh, of course there are other things, if one cared to pay attention. The collection of Pop Vinyl figures that indicate a love of pop culture and geekery, the empty fridge that tells you I am a lazy cook, the prints on the walls that let you know I am a collector of cool art. My house is very Amy. There is no way you would walk in and mistake me for a footy loving jock, or a smoker or a painter or a cat lover. We make our space our own and sooner or later, that space will inevitably tell others who we are. So what does your house say about you?

Pretending to be an Adult; Refrigerator Edition

I’m doing a pretty good job of pretending I’m an adult. I have recently gotten a second job, I own (and paid for) my car, I live on my own, I pay all my bills, do my own washing and…sometimes cook my own dinner. At a glance, anyone would think I am a fully functioning member of society. And then they look in my fridge. And all the illusions are shattered.

1363334922_refrigerator-empty-milk-carton
My house is small, and my fridge is small to accommodate. But when you open it, it looks rather like a vast, cavernous space, large enough to comfortably fit a family of ten. The contents of my refrigerator are pretty dismal, really. Two eggs, a half carton of milk, half a packet of crumpets and a third of a tub of butter. An unopened bottle of mineral water, a small container of peach slices, a jar of olives and various vegetables going slowly bad in the crisper. My freezer just holds large quantities of bread, because I keep buying more and forgetting I have plenty, which is a bit ridiculous for someone who doesn’t actually eat bread all that much.

I once laughed at my brother for having a similar fridge situation, despite living out of home for two years. Well, brother, the joke is on me now. Nearly two months on my own and I still haven’t learnt to properly stock a pantry or a refrigerator. In my defence, my pantry is less an actual pantry, and more just a little set of wicker shelves shoved against the wall, so there’s really not a lot of storage room. But even still, I often forget about the so called ‘essentials’ in favour of things that are yummy and on sale. I mean, I have a constant supply of chocolate in my house, and yet only last week did I think to buy salt and pepper. That’s bad enough, but I really I have no excuse where the fridge is concerned. I mean, I often tell people how independent I am, and yet more and more I think I still need some adult supervision. It’s time to confess; despite appearances, I actually have no idea what I’m doing.

I envy those people who do their shopping and come home to fully stock their pantries and fridges. The people who don’t have to spend an entire day trying to decide on something for dinner, only to get lazy and settle for packet pasta and juice drunk straight from the bottle. If there’s any out there who are successfully navigating adulthood – and know how to stock a fridge – please feel free to throw some tips at me. Or, y’know, even some suggestions for dinner!

Help, I Live Alone

There’s a lot to be said for living alone. You get your own space, to do with what you will. You don’t have to worry about anyone else; if your dishes pile up, no one else can yell at you. You can eat Mi Goreng for dinner and no one can frown disapprovingly at you for making poor lifestyles choices. It’s a fun time. However, living alone does have its downsides, as I am beginning to discover.

Take for example, the bins. I am used to bin night being on a Sunday. End of the week, it seems a reasonable night to put the bins out. In my new house, the bins go out on a Thursday night. At least, I think they do. You see, the opposite side of the street has their bins out. And yet every single neighbour on my side of the street? Not a bin to be seen. So I get paranoid. Is Thursday really bin night? Are the neighbours testing me, like some kind of bizarre, fraternityesque hazing ritual? See how many times the new girl tentatively takes her bins out on a Thursday before she realises bin night is actually Saturday? I don’t know. And despite my bins being emptied every time I’ve put them out, I can’t help but think the rubbish truck drivers are only emptying my bins out of pity. Can you say paranoid?

And then there’s the food issue. Sure, I could have Mi Goreng, as I mentioned earlier. Except I am trying – and very hard I might add – to be an adult. Which means trying to think of something to have for dinner every night. And even for someone as imaginative as myself, boy is that a tough job. I am not overly fond of cooking, largely because I suck at it. But it’s now not uncommon for me to spend my entire day trying to think what I’ll cook that night for dinner. I suddenly have so much more appreciation for my dad, and his unfailing ability to think of and provide dinner each night. I would suggest getting him to move in with me but…well, that would most certainly defeat the purpose of moving out in the first place. Still…

And then, the most difficult of all things. This hadn’t actually occurred to me until tonight, when I was faced with this particular obstacle but now that it has come to my attention, it is absolutely a problem. Spiders. I am utterly, totally, one hundred percent terrified of spiders. The ‘my body freezes and my heart races and I can’t function’ kind of terrified. Tonight, one of those eight legged freaks infiltrated my sanctuary. I glared at it from across the room, desperately wishing looks really could kill. And when that failed, I had to actually deal with the beast, on my own. No gigantor brother. No bearded, impervious father. Just little old me. And a big fuck off can of bug spray. I got him, boy did I get him. And I was only shaking for like, half an hour afterwards! But I am here for the next year and I can only dread the inevitable onslaught of spider armies that will come to
avenge their fallen brother in the coming months. I’ve started a war that I may be too frightened to win. Ooops.

Yes, living alone is great. But being an adult? What, with the decision making and the responsibility having and the spider killing, I think I should just leave adulthood to those better equipped to deal with it!

image
Me all day, every day.

On Moving and Living Alone

Well, it happened. I am officially a big girl. I own a car, have a steady job, and as of the weekend, I live on my own.

image

My brother and I spent the entire weekend moving what I genuinely believed wasn’t a lot of stuff. I mean, I’ve been living in one bedroom for so long, how could I possibly have accumulated that much stuff, right? Wrong. Between the big items like the bed, the chest of drawers and the couch, there was the DVD collection and the multitudes of books I’ve collected since I was first able to buy them. The kitchen items, my sewing machine and fabric upon fabric upon…

The point is that I moved. It took us two days, and I still have at least half my books to transport, but I’m out of home. Naturally, the first thing I did was cleanse the house. The person living in the house before me was a male, and it was important to clear out any negative energies, or residual male energies left over from the previous tenant. Once that was done, I started making myself familiar with the building, and getting myself settled.

My plan of attack is to take it one room at a time, so of course I started with the bedroom. I set it all up, slowly arranged and organised and last night, had a place to sleep that was familiar and comforting. Admittedly, I had the worst night sleep I’ve had in a long while but at least I had somewhere to lay awake, warm and comfortable while I stared at the dark ceiling and listened to the house creak and groan. It’s important to become familiar with the noises your house makes, so you can distinguish between normal house noises and potential spirit activity. Seriously, it’s a thing.

Today, the nice delivery gentlemen will bring me my fridge and I’ll continue my organisation of the rest of the house. I can’t wait to start sewing up a storm for my new fledgling business venture (more on that later) and using my lack of television to my advantage, by doing the creative things I’ve been putting off.

After the moving and the mishaps, the running back and forth, the losing and then finding items and the multitudes of small injuries, I am tired and sore. Moving hurts and I’m thankful that I signed the lease for 12 months, so I don’t have to move again soon. In any case, I have a feeling this is going to be a very interesting year.

Moving On, Moving Out

I have decided to be an adult. Not permanently, I’m not a crazy person. But for long enough to do the big girl thing and move out on my own. I am 22 years old and I live with my dad in the same house I have lived in for twenty years. Twenty. Years. I feel that people only talk about time in terms of decades when they’re, y’know…old. And yet here I am, young and very definitely not adultlike, discussing my time spent living under a parent’s roof in that very same manner. And I’ve decided that it’s time to change. I want to be able to talk about my living arrangements in terms of months, goddamnit.

I’m the second oldest of four kids, and the last still living at home. My older sister moved away years ago, and now has two kids and a wedding date set for next year. My second youngest brother moved out a couple of years ago with friends and is a qualified boilermaker. My youngest brother still lives with mum admittedly, and after much procrastination and laziness, now has a steady job and a beard. And then there’s me. I work four days a week, try and fail to keep up with my creative pursuits on the other three days, and have never lived alone.

My dad was away a couple of days last week, and I enjoyed having the house to myself. A lot. And so I got to thinking about doing that all the time and thus, the decision to move out was made. I put a fridge on layby. I arranged with a friend to temporarily borrow his couch. I started looking at houses. I’ve been imagining how I would set it up. I even had dreams about it! Now all I need is a bit more cash behind me and an approved rental application, and you’ll be looking at a proper renter.

I think what I’m looking forward to is the space. I want to set up my sewing somewhere where I can leave it. A place to sew at 11:30 at night, without having to worry I’ll wake someone. I’m looking forward to cooking what I want. Watching what I want. Playing my own kind of music without annoying someone. I’m looking forward to walking around naked.

A few people have been pretty negative about it. I understand that it’s not going to be all fun and bubbles. I know it’s going to be more expensive. I know that there are going to be times when I wish I was still living at home. But I also know that now is exactly the right time. It feels right to me, and I’m always one for following my instincts.

So here’s to doing my own thing, to being (temporarily) an adult. Here’s to walking around naked!

image
Aw yeah.