Monday, September 30, 2013

Birdy's new nest: big reveal

To say that last week was completely insane is the understatement of the year.  It could've been a much, much, much worse week, but it wasn't really that great for a variety of reasons. One of the top priorities of last week was getting Leslie all set in her new apartment in center city--very exciting, of course .... but anyone who's ever moved once knows the work it takes to get packed and on her way to her new address.

Leslie has been working non-stop since 2010. (Summers off? don't kid yourself.)  Law school is a full time job ... worse than the average full time job.  She graduated in May, but as soon as one graduates from law school one must hit the books again and study (full time) for the bar exam ... which ironically includes (what else?) going to class, doing homework, studying after class, etc etc etc.  Eight weeks later when the bar concludes at the end of July, typically one's new employer (if you're lucky enough to have an employer ... most people out there don't right now) will give you the month of August (unpaid--don't get the wrong idea) and ask you to report to work right after Labor Day.  And then commences at least two or three years of 60-90 hour work weeks (paid, of course).

What I'm saying is: None of Leslie's belongings were packed before last Thursday night.  And the moving van was scheduled to arrive on Sunday morning.  See what I'm getting at?  Leslie is a 25 year old woman ... a grown up.  With all the stuff a grown up owns.  And all of it needed to get packed in 48 hours.

We did it. But it wasn't pretty.

Oh my God. It was not pretty.

So here's Leslie's new place--we headed down the weekend her lease started just to scrub the place top to bottom before any of her stuff arrived the following week.  While we scrubbed, Leslie's law school friend Eileen stopped by with her baby girl, Mae (aka, "Sugar"--remember her?).  Actually, you should meet Mae and she'll take you through the kitchen and family room:

There she goes ... that door in the background leads to Leslie's private rooftop deck.

Please note how badly everything needed painting--the landlord took care of that a few days later ... totally refreshed everything.

Mae actually really likes Leslie a lot, but you can't tell from this photo.

After we hung out with Eileen and Mae, the cleaning continued--here's what everything looked like before re-painting and furniture:

Kitchen and breakfast area

Hallway leads down to bathroom, laundry room, and bedroom

Bedroom--are you seeing the walls? What the hell was the previous tenant doing? Who knows.
Family room

The following week, somehow (I still don't know how, but it happened and I participated in it) all of Leslie's stuff got into boxes, the boxes got on a 40' truck, the truck was able to park out front of the new apartment because Philadelphians actually respected the "NO PARKING BY ORDER OF THE POLICE" signs on the street, and everything made it upstairs to her 4th floor walk up.  And as soon as the movers had finished and were paid (they were so awesome by the way) ... we started UNPACKING EVERYTHING.


Down to the last spoon, the last shoe, the last book, the last hair tie.


Oh but wait--first, more friends came by.  Very oddly, through totally unrelated circumstances, four of Leslie's college friends have found themselves transplanted from Philly/NYC to San Francisco this year.  Three of those friends were in town for a wedding this weekend, so up they came:

Leslie and Lindsey met during college orientation ... so I guess Lindsey is Leslie's Katherine?

Everybody up on the deck (which is easily the size of my family room).

Something very bizarre to me about so many people living stacked on top of each other.

Rittenhouse Square in the background

Love the gargoyles on the building next door.  My mom said what I was thinking: "You know, you better be careful sunbathing on this deck because literally thousands of people can see you from all around."

I think this was around 4pm?  We hadn't sat once the whole day.

Think Leslie has a thing for neutral shoes?

View from her bedroom window

View from Leslie's kitchen window--right after I took this, Leslie and I walked five blocks to Trader Joe's to buy food for the week. Three big paper bags of stuff--coffee, butter, milk, eggs ... and then we walked five blocks back and up four flights of stairs with all of it.  We had been working for 12 hours at that point and had at least three more to go.  Thank you, Jesus: my foot really has healed.  Yesterday proved it.

Ok, want to see what it all looks like with everything put away?  Leslie's couch is on back order (it's gorgeous), so she's missing that for now:

The green glass case and smaller end table still need to find a place--easy to determine once the couch is here.

Please ignore the huge pile of trash--it went out the next morning.

The poster above the mantle hung above Leslie's childhood bed for 8+ years ... my mom and I had never looked twice at it until it got a new life on that exposed brick wall. Totally transformed it.

I did pretty much every homework assignment of my pathetic life from 7th grade through college at that white desk ... it will now serve as Leslie's bar.


The desk Ron made for Leslie will serve as buffet for now

Laundry room/pantry

Bedroom--all of my queen sized bedding has a new life.  Ron looked at Leslie's bed at one point and exclaimed, "Holy crap, did we really sleep in a bed this tiny for years and years?"  Yes: we did. Thank God that's over with.

Isn't that great?

That sink drives me nuts, but who really cares?

So there it is.  It's all done. Packed, transported, and unpacked in three days.

All my mom (who did the bulk of the work) keeps saying is, "I think you'll really love it here. And when it's time to move everything out of your fourth floor walk up?: Call a team to do this for you because I'm too old!!"

After a looooong, hard day, just a happy momma with her last birdy.

I hope you love your new place, Leslie--God knows you earned it.  I know there's a lot of pressure at work and everything, but I hope you get a chance to really enjoy where you are (geographically and career-wise).  It'll be so much fun to come see you--I want to come this weekend, but it sounds like you are planning on coming back to the burbs instead? ooooooEEEEEE what up with that? ; )


Susie H. said...

Congratulations on the move! I hope I'm done with those moves as well. Here's something to store in your memory banks for the next time though. We used twice with much success. The website helps you choose a group of movers whose rates are quite reasonable. We used them in Virginia and in Connecticut. By the way, I love the brick wall and the private outdoor space. Best of luck to Leslie.

Jo Harper said...

Thanks Susie! We're all so excited for her. Can you believe she was six years old the first time you came to drop Erin off at my house in the fall of '94? How insane is that? All grown up now ... (and I hope people see the website you recommend!)