We don't, and therefore didn't, celebrate any of the three major holidays which fell in order. Not the start of Passover Friday night, nor any of Easter on Sunday, and not even any festivities for 4/20, despite several of our state's borders now encouraging that sort of thing.
On Saturday, we cleaned. There's a half-bath in the cellar, which has been out of use for years except as a storage room; since we can lock it off from the cats, it's the safest place in the house from their comings and goings and leavings. But, like most crap catchers, it acquired plenty of crap of the non-cat variety over the years, and it was time to say, No mas!
We pretty much filled our entire garbage tote with never-to-be-used again wrapping papers and boring Christmas ornaments and other assorted whatnots. The recycling tote, of similar size, is virtually full of the boxes previously hoarding all this stuff. Four huge racks of cassette tapes came up, to be checked for the few we haven't digitized over the years; once that's done, they, too, will hit the road. A printer went to the town recycling center; a bunch of old kitchen things and books got marked for possible sale at a library event on an upcoming weekend; and lots of my old statements and other records from more than 3 years ago are awaiting a one-way trip to Shred City.
But there were three other things which told a more interesting tale.
I found three of Emily's old school art projects, dating from pre-K to probably late elementary school. Here are my texts to her sending them for her reaction:
(the two above, that is....) and then I sent her this one that she'd done in pencil- not terribly well rendered even at full size, but she could make out the title:
So she did:
Did more cleaning things after that exchange, and got back to work today for multiple rounds of Mostly Frustration. I did leave early, because I had to bring Eleanor's car in for its overnight repair. As I was walking home, I saw I'd gotten an email from a relatively new client, who teaches at Emily's old high school. Last time we contacted each other, I thought to ask the teacher if Emily's name was familiar.
It was. And not just to the teacher: I got a photo of a painting Emily did back then, which still hangs on the wall outside the school library:
I asked Em if she knew it was still on display there; she said Cameron's parents see it often, since his youngest stepbrother is in school there now ("what even is time," she asked).
Eleanor's piece has now gone up on our dining room wall. Two more are ready to be picked up for future displaying, here and elsewhere. Work may be difficult, but home is as beautiful and surprising as ever:)