It Turns Out You Can Go Back Home Again

Downtown Houston

Oh hello.

After a long hiatus, I find myself back here again.

I’ve wanted to come back to this space many times, but I’ve had some serious issues with WordPress security, which took a while to fix. And of course, life got in the way as usual.

Anyway, here I am again.

Twenty-seventeen brings with it a host of life events for us: Roxi’s graduation from university, a silver anniversary for me and Mr. DJ (wow, that went by in a blink!), and 10 years since our little family pulled anchor and left Houston for our expat journey.

Although we’ve been back in Houston for nearly two years, it’s only been in this last month or so that I’ve really felt like we’re home again. The first year, I was traveling to Boston frequently to help Roxi with her band. Last year, I was traveling to the Netherlands frequently to see Mr. DJ who is working on a long-term project in Amsterdam (but not living there).

However, since mid-December, I’ve only been out of town once for a short trip up to Boston. That means I’ve had a couple of months to finally sort through the piles and stacks of STUFF we left semi-unpacked. We actually moved into this house four times: 1) June 2015, our initial move (new furniture and beds), 2) July 2015, our move from Boston, 3) May 2016, our move from deep storage, and 4) June 2016, Roxi’s move from Boston. From May 2015 to now, we basically have been living in a glorified storage unit!

It does feel good to get rid of some the boxes and to be brutally honest with the things we had in storage. Even though we did a hard-hearted deep storage cull when we moved back from the UK in 2013, I have found carloads of stuff to take to the charity shops and even more I wish we could let go of but don’t have the nerve to do so YET (working on those sentimental feelings). I still have much to unpack/organize. My studio remains in boxes, and I have too many large plastic bins labeled “SAVE: MEMORIES”, which is code for “25 years of things I don’t have the heart to throw away”. Any tips on how to deal with stuff like that?

I hope 2017 will be the year we will finally feel settled in our home. In addition to all of the traveling we’ve been doing, last year we had about six months of living with the possibility of moving back to London. Naturally, we didn’t want to unpack our things only to have to repack and send the stuff back to storage. That move seems to be off the table now. Honestly, we’re glad about that. It took living away from Houston for eight years to really appreciate everything that our hometown has to offer.

Now we can genuinely say it’s good to be back.

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About the Author: JaPRA is an expat Texan living in Boston (by way of London by way of Houston) with her husband (Mr. DJ), their 19-year old daughter (Roxi), and their dog Trudy.

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