Friday, May 11, 2012

If you can read this headline, that means it didn’t fit in the box

I think my family may be plotting my death, so I wanted to publicly say something here in case anything weird happens. Wait, let me clarify: weirder than usual.

Why are they angry? Well, now that we’re moving, it’s been brought to my attention that I may have gone a little bit overboard on the packing. As you’re home reading this Sunday morning over coffee and a donut, my family will be unpacking box after box of items that we moved yesterday into our new home.

Now re-wind to last weekend. In an effort to help with the move, I took advantage of a full day home alone to pack everything that wasn’t moving, currently being eaten, or presently being worn by a family member. This resulted in a quite a bit of confusion when the other three members of the family returned home.

It was late, and Lily was getting ready for bed when she called from her room upstairs, “Mom, where are my pajamas?”

“Um,” I stalled. “I think they’re in your bottom drawer.”

“Nothing’s in my bottom drawer,” she replied.

Of course she was right. I had packed all but one drawer of her things, leaving her just enough to get her through the week of school before moving day. But did I take into account the need for sleeping attire for the upcoming week? Notsomuch.

Then my son, who has medication that he needs on a daily basis, woke me up Sunday morning and asked me if I packed his medication because the cupboard where it’s usually kept was bare. Before I could even answer in the affirmative, I was out in the garage searching through boxes in the bright morning sun.

A little later that morning while getting ready for church my husband yells, “Has anyone seen my cologne?”

“I may have packed it?” I said weakly, more a question than a statement. When he looked at me accusingly I said, “Okay, I did pack it.”

“Seriously?” he asked. Sadly, yes. But in all fairness, I packed my perfume too, so I tried to cheer him up by telling him we could be smelly together. He wasn’t buying it.

Even our cat seems mad at me, since I refuse to change her cat box until we move to the new house. Why open a new box of litter when we only have days to go, right? Instead she gives me a harsher-than-usual glare; something I didn’t think was possible.

I overheard my husband say to the kids, “Hold on to your pillows or your mom might pack them before Saturday.” Everyone’s a comedian around here.

Okay, I’ll admit it … I’m an over-eager packer. On the upside, I did uncover some items in a basement closet that hadn’t seen the light of day in over a decade. My favorite find was our Y2K stash (kids, go ask your parents what Y2K means). Thankfully, nothing came from the Y2K threat, or we wouldn’t have survived for long on our two, one-gallon jugs of water and one can of peaches. Apparently, my house packing is way better than my apocalyptic packing, which may have kept us alive through Jan. 3 of that year. Maybe.

So as it stands today, I may or may not be allowed to stay home on my own from here on in. I’m still waiting to hear the final word from the jury (my family). Yeah, I’m not holding out much hope either. They’re a tough crowd.

Eileen Burmeister works, packs and now lives in Winchester, Ore. She can be reached at or you can follow her on Twitter at EBurmeister.

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