The last time I sat down to type something was in August 2019. It is now January 1st, 2020. So much life has happened between then. I turned 30 on August 20th. Valhalla moved out in September. Shannon and I started packing up the house, took a trip down to Louisiana, and came back to finish packing up the house and move out. After cleaning our way out of the house we hopped into the van with the cats and went on a three week long con tour that took us to Minnesota, Wisconsin, and Kentucky. We have posted up at my Dad’s house in Silver Spring to be with family during the holiday season. Shannon and Valhalla took a trip down to Florida to see family.
The past few months have been pretty hard but there have been some wonderful moments of brightness in the dark. My birthday was lovely. There were friends, fire, and drumming. I got to see some friends that I haven’t seen in years and I feel blessed that they took the time to drive from out of state to be with me as I turned an age I never thought I’d see. Looking at you Amanda and David, lots of love to you both and I can’t wait to visit each of you. Shannon and I got to spend time with friends that are family for an ancestor celebration and I got to drum with one of my favorite crews to drum with. It meant a lot and felt really good to get that time in with friends before we hit the road.
We had selected our leave the house date as November 4th but we didn’t technically get out of there until very, very early on November 5th. Our move was a little bit more complicated as we weren’t moving from one place to another. We took some workshop stuff and my forge down to some friends in Virginia. We took stuff that we didn’t want in storage to my Mom’s; things like books, altars, and our fancy clothes. Everything else we either got rid of or put into a storage unit.
Our first leg of the journey was the longest and hardest; 26 hours in the van with the two cats. The cats did so much better than we ever could have hoped for. Gravy was excited to have so many things to look at and enjoyed navigating the obstacle course in the van. She would often end up in my lap for naps. Blackey spent most of her time in the van hiding in a little cave but would come out to get pets and have a look out of the windows when we would stop for food or gas. She did not figure out that she could sit in laps until a couple of hours before getting back to Maryland.
The con tour was exhausting but there were so many good conversations with new people. I got to see so much creativity and got so many ideas for clothing, costumes, and accessories to make. Shannon and I both ended up with new coats at TeslaCon. Shannon got a full length red leather that is just perfect for her and I ended up with a sweet little jacket with lots of neat buttons. I was also gifted with an awesome new grey leather piece that matches a leather piece Shannon has, so now we can go out in matching leathers (gross, I know). Thank you Jessa for the early Christmas present!!!
We had a quiet Thanksgiving at my Mom’s. Shannon picked up Valhalla and they spent the night in Frostburg and came down the next day. After food the three of us came back to my Dad’s and caught up. We got to give Valhalla little gifts we had pick up for them during our travels. It felt really good to have all three of us in the same place at the same time, the last time we had that was at the house in Baltimore. There is a way that the three of us will all click in with each other to stand strong as a family unit when we need to and I felt that strongly that day. With the two of them around I feel like I have all the love and support I could want or need. It wasn’t too long before we all got to see each other again. I drove Shannon and Valhalla to the airport when they went down to Florida to be with Shannon’s Mom during her husbands passing.
While we were on the road there wasn’t much time to take care of paperwork and some catch up was taken care of while we have a period of stillness. During the renewal process I lost my healthcare coverage just before we moved out. When I was trying to renew my coverage online I missed uploading a document in time and letting them know Valhalla had moved out. We went to an office and spent the whole day there getting it sorted out. They told Shannon she had lost coverage when I had tried to renew my coverage online so they closed my individual account and put me on Shannon’s. We got our household and address updated and were told that all I had to do was call the next day to enroll in a MCO. When we called the next day they were closed. A couple of days later when we called we were surprised to find out that the guy helping us in the office had checked a box saying that we didn’t want the insurance coverage provided by the state but that is what we had gone in there to do. Shannon spent two hours on the phone to get everything sorted out again. So now we are covered and just in time for another check up with the neurologist at Johns Hopkins.
Solstice day we had a fire out at my Mom’s. It was a nice quiet moment to sit and reflect alone and with each other. A moment of stillness amidst some fast paced change. We put some intentions into a cedar log. Releasing, cleansing, growing, healthy nourishment. My sister, Eleni, made us an awesome dinner that we all shared before Shannon and I came back to my Dad’s house, where we put up Christmas lights. Christmas Eve we were back over at my Mom’s for some baking and burning. Shannon baked some amazing cookies, they had raspberry, white chocolate, and sage. I worked on wood burning some Christmas themed wooden slabs. The first gingerbread man I made kind of looked like an alien, the second one came out kind of cute but I was definitely better at trees. Christmas day we went over to my Aunt Sharon’s and had a day full of good food and lots of family. A few days after Christmas we got up to Pennsylvania for a Humm holiday gathering and I got to meet Shannon’s extended family for the first time. It was so good to finally put some faces to names that I’ve heard over the years from Shannon. By the time New Years eve rolled up we were happy to spend a quiet night in alone with each other.
Now on the other side of the holidays we have some time and space to figure out our schedule for 2020 and get prepped for event season.