Step one in our move to Nashville was to sell the house.  The plan was to stay with some friends for the couple weeks we anticipated being out of the house before the big move.  It sold and closed so quickly, however, that the amazing Koons were faced with losing their guest room for eleven weeks instead of two or three.  You can imagine the upheaval we have created in their home.  If it doesn’t seem too drastic yet, you should know that they have an indoor cat.  And Banjo without his backyard can find little more entertaining than trying to sniff Scot the cat’s bottom.  Scot the cat, as you can imagine, is utterly offended at the attempt.  Adult supervision is required for them at all times.

We are incredibly fortunate, blessed, awestruck to have one very hospitable couple who put us up for six weeks when we moved to town and yet another to house us for almost three months on our way out.

But as important and helpful as the roof over our heads is, the thing I am most grateful for is these experiences of community living.  More than the crunch of going from, between our two households, seven bedrooms and three bathrooms to three bedrooms and 1.5 bathrooms, I have been struck by how much more lived-in this space is compared to our previous one.  In the best way.  Every day there are great smells coming from the kitchen and not always at the work of our own hands.  There is someone home to catch up with at the end of each day, and more stories brought to the dinner table.  And as of yet, always a quiet place to retreat for quiet conversations with our spouses or  reading.  Or writing a blog.

In some ways this is great practice for moving into a small apartment very soon.  But it also makes me sad to imagine that quiet apartment.  Grilling out with friends will take more planning again.  Food will last longer and not be as fresh.  And no one will be betting on how long the pet staring matches will last.

As we get older, experience living in different climates and cultures, feel the renewed importance of simple things, the lesson I’ve been most blessed by over and over is that community is the most important gift we have.  Whether it’s over a bible study, a flooded city, or an open flame and some chicken, life is sweetest in good company.  May we find it and offer it wherever we go.