It’s the 6th of December and I’m walking the dog in a T-shirt, skirt and flip flops. It’s been a lovely, lazy Saturday morning so far, the right kind of day for pancakes and coffee and warm sunlight streaming in the windows.
We live in a beautiful apartment community just a few minutes’ walk from Frank’s Apple office building. It’s quiet, green, full of families and impeccably clean. I pass the one lone smoker as he has his morning cigarette on the outskirts of our group of buildings. He smiles and goes back to his phone. Though it’s a pet-friendly community, Georgie is one of only a handful of dogs here, much to the delight of the children when we pass the play areas. As I walk her around, she stops to sniff at Redwoods and many other trees I don’t know. Some have fluffy little pink flowers that fall like snow.
Ha. Snow. You know I’m a snow-loving gal. And I will always prefer a white Christmas to a green one… but this year is going to be pretty special, nonetheless.
We’re just getting started with the holiday merriment in our house – we only moved in two weeks ago, after all. The nativity set is out, as are the Christmas books, CDs and movies. The kids are eagerly opening their advent calendars each morning and Evelyn writes letters of reminder to Santa several times a week. Her personal elf, “Robbie,” keeps a watchful eye on her from different spots every day. We have a mantlepiece this year, and even a real gas fireplace.
I love how homey our apartment feels already, how “us” it is. Even though the last few years have been tough, this place in which we now live is proof that we’ve been blessed, and our lives have improved dramatically. In Drogheda, we made do with what we had. In Indianapolis, we lived with what we could afford. Here, in Cupertino, we have finally gotten to pick some things we really like. Within reason! We got a wonderful sectional couch at a used furniture place, a beautiful rug from Home Depot’s online Black Friday sale, a master bed and mattress from Ikea, two new lovely matching lamps from Goodwill, and two matching bookshelves by the side of the road for free! It’s still a work in progress, but it’s a place I like coming home to. It feels safe, and that is huge for me. The kids and Frank are more relaxed, too. Georgie doesn’t have a big yard to run in, but I think she’s pretty happy anyway because she gets to go on walks at least twice a day now.
I still don’t know much about our area, which is the South Bay part of San Francisco. I can find my way around a bit better these days, though I still get lost in Apple’s Infinite Loop, ha ha! It’s a very expensive place to live, but the people are pretty “normal,” especially in our apartment community. It’s very international, with more places to shop for Indian, Middle Eastern and Asian cuisine than any other specialties. There’s lots of traffic and there are lots of people everywhere… but we’re not far from the beach, and the mountains, and some stunning natural woods. There are parks everywhere. I like it a lot. I may even love it, before too much longer. :) Continue reading