She’s Leaving Home, Bye Bye

August 23, 2012

I remember, long ago, telling my dad one of my dreams as he drove me to school.  I chattered on and on about the crazy images I had seen in my sleep and at the end of my long tale my dad told me, very kindly, “It’s not actually that interesting to listen to someone describe their dreams”.

I think this is why I haven’t written that much about our big move.  A bit perhaps but not a lot of what I am thinking/feeling/obsessing about.  I’m not sure that reading about my excitement, fears and sadness would be all that interesting.  This is a food blog after all.  If you visit here regularly, chances are that you are looking for healthy vegetarian food or decadent treats.  Or perhaps you like reading a bit about my life.  Moving is a personal thing but not in the same way that having a challenging child is personal.  Moving is kind of boring to talk about or read about.  It is even boring to think about, so I haven’t shared much.

But the move is imminent and here is the deal.  I think I have readied myself for the big things.  I’ve been saying goodbye to my favorite places and my favorite people for weeks now.  I feel like I have been blowing kisses to Seattle for months now.  I said goodbye to my parents on Thursday and my brothers, sister-in-law and niece and nephew on Sunday.  I’ve been going through our house room by room, getting rid of all the things that we no longer need or will not have room for in our new, and smaller, house.  Randy and I have signed paperwork to buy and sell houses and we have gotten our kids into school in Oakland.  We have mapped out our route to drive south and secured temporary housing while we wait for our new house to close.  This move has been pending since June and I feel ready.

Except that Monday night I went to tuck both boys into bed and I realized, just as I was wrapping my body around Spencer’s, that it was his last night in his room.  This room that also happens to be the one to which that we brought him home from the hospital.  The only room that has ever really been his.  Where there once was a crib and a tiny bundle swaddled tight, there is now a big boy bed with Spiderman sheets (although he prefers Batman) and a big boy who got tears in his eyes that he tried to hide from me when I told him it was his last night here.  I said, “Spencer, moving is one of the hardest things that people do.”  To which he asked, “Harder than fishing?”  I cannot tell you how welcome that smile felt on my lips, so close was I to really losing it.

It started to become clear to me in that moment and more so later on when I went in to gaze at both of them as they slept, that it is not just my family, my friends, my house, my career, and our beloved school that I am saying goodbye to.  I am also saying goodbye to my past.  I have deep roots in Seattle, having moved here when I was five years old and lived here almost ever since.  I have memories in just about every corner of this city.  I bump into people I know all the time, from all walks of my life.  I’m saying goodbye to that past but also the more immediate one.  The one where I fell in love with Randy or was newly married or my children were babies.  That past is more tangible and it is hard enough for me to say goodbye to that I held onto tiny diapers in Spencer’s room, although he weighs nearly 50 pounds and hasn’t worn a diaper in almost three years.

I am writing this post late at night.  There have been many many nights that I have sat up late writing and writing, the only time I can find in my day to get my thoughts and my recipes onto the blog.  I finish, shut everything down, turn off all the lights, and make my familiar way up to the boys’ rooms to make sure their blankets are covering their ever-growing bodies, and on into my room and off to bed.  The next day holds certainty.  Boys I will wrangle, people I will see, errands I will do, food I will cook, exercise I will endure.  Now we shift.  Uncertainty for the next bit.  Until a time, hopefully not in the too distant future, that we will settle into new routines, a new life.

We will take three days to drive south.  We will spend the morning of our tenth anniversary river rafting on the Rogue River and then sleep at a motel in Chico, California.  We hope to move into our house in the first week of September.  I am not sure when I will be back in real time, connected once again to this blog, but I have some posts planned in the interim.  I know this year has been the Year Of Blogging Hiatus.  I promise I will be back soon.




  1. safe travels …..


    Comment by Gourmet Goddess — August 23, 2012 @ 12:59 am

  2. Dana — Wishing you and your family all the best! Seattle will always be a part of you – but now you make room for new experiences in CA too. And I love the remark that it won’t be as hard as fishing!

    Comment by Kel — August 23, 2012 @ 2:05 am

  3. love love love you…will be looking forward to all that is to come.

    Comment by Toni — August 23, 2012 @ 3:34 am

  4. oh i just cant imagine. Such a tough thing but you seem to be so gracious heading into it. I believe that good people attract good people, so I know you will have community around you in no time. Sending love to you and the family in this transition. Hope to give you a big hug in september xo

    Comment by sara — August 23, 2012 @ 4:20 am

  5. Safe travels. I just love this blog so hurry back to your fans. Seattle is going to miss you!

    Comment by Amy — August 23, 2012 @ 4:25 am

  6. Hugs and good luck Dana. It feels better to be on the other side, at least it always has been for me. The unpacking seems much easier than the packing. As a child it was like Christmas for the whole house, especially if we’d had a bit of time between the old place and things and the new place. Enjoy the journey and we’ll be here when you are settled enough to give us more news.

    Comment by Charlotte — August 23, 2012 @ 4:41 am

  7. Good luck Dana! Moving is so hard to do but also can be so rewarding. I hope it all goes smoothly for you x

    Comment by Lis — August 23, 2012 @ 10:19 am

  8. Sounds like you have so many wonderful memories of a place that you and your family love. May your next chapter bring more of the same love, happiness, and joy for many, many years to come! Good luck, Dana!

    Comment by Allison @TypeAKitchen — August 23, 2012 @ 12:32 pm

  9. The past is what has shaped us into who we are. I am sure you will embrace your new life and new adventures in another home just as easily. You have your family as support and I know you hug each and every one of them every day.

    Comment by bellini — August 23, 2012 @ 1:11 pm

  10. Good luck and safe travels!! Moving away from a city you know and love is a tough one, but I know you’ll all be fine. Hooray to new beginnings!!

    Comment by kickpleat — August 23, 2012 @ 5:33 pm

  11. Hi Dana,
    Wishing you the very best as you move to a new place. One thing I was thinking as I read your post that I thought I would share with you is that even with my grandmother and aunt and uncle half way across the country from me my entire life, at age 46 I am still very close with my aunt and uncle and miss my grandmother daily-she died when I was 27. In other words, with distance it is still very possible to be very close to one’s relatives- especially thinking about your boys here, of course. Hope that is helpful in some small way.

    Comment by Liesl — August 23, 2012 @ 5:40 pm

  12. Wishing you every good thing in this new adventure Dana, and somehow, sometime, I think you will be back! Enjoy – and will be fun to hear about the new life – to those of us staying put in September it sounds really exciting! Best, Katy

    Comment by Katy Gilmore — August 23, 2012 @ 6:42 pm

  13. Best of luck to you on your next chapter! As someone who moved to the Bay Area from my home state (Colorado) 14 years ago in order to continue a relationship with my now husband… I can totally relate to how you are feeling. However, while Colorado will always hold a very special place in my heart, California slowly became my home and now I can’t imagine living anywhere else. I can personally say that I am very excited about your move here — I can’t wait for you to get settled and hopefully (fingers & toes crossed)… I can finally take one of your amazing classes and meet you in person! :) Safe travels!

    Comment by angie lu — August 23, 2012 @ 6:54 pm

  14. You have such a beautiful outlook on life. The men in your life are certainly lucky to have such a thoughtful wife and mother to love and care for them, one who sees the beautiful side of life, appreciating everything and sharing it all with them. You take nothing for granted and are a lesson to us all. I wish you and your family well with the move. Bonne chance!

    Comment by Alison — August 23, 2012 @ 7:02 pm

  15. Good Luck with the move!!! I am sure all of the emotions are crazy but as a California native, WELCOME, we are excited to have you!! If you stay in Chico long enough for breakfast, you must try “Sin of Cortez” …You will settle into the Bay Area well :-)

    Comment by Sib — August 23, 2012 @ 8:12 pm

  16. Dana
    From my recent experience it’s not easy at all, and it takes time to adjust… 3 months later and i don’t feel at home… But it’s getting better and better. I hope it will be shorter and easier for you.
    Whising you all the best

    Comment by Idit — August 23, 2012 @ 8:22 pm

  17. Ahh good luck Dana! This reminds me a lot of how I felt when I left Boston. Just this utter sadness at having to say goodbye to the past four years of change and growing up. It was hard.but eventually there WAS a new reality. And I have a feeling you are going to love yours!

    Comment by Joanne — August 23, 2012 @ 9:32 pm

  18. I have been thinking of you and this big move. I hope you are able to enjoy the drive down and take in this transition. (River rafting on the Rogue sounds like a blast)! Have no doubt you will land on your feet……you always do, dear friend.
    I look forward to reading more blog posts and staying connected despite the distance.

    Comment by Kelly — August 24, 2012 @ 3:14 am

  19. Good luck Dana! Make sure to take pictures of all those wonderful spots in the house with your boys. You’ll always remember them vividly, but it is so fun to look back at all of them. Safe travels and happy homemaking!

    Comment by Erica — August 24, 2012 @ 1:49 pm

  20. Chico, CA is so close to home! I will admit, a super ridiculous fan photo of my favorite blogger (not just kissing up, honest) & I involuntarily popped up in my head when I read ‘Chico’. But I am sure something like a signing for your first cookbook would be more appropriate!
    & by the way, I came to find I love hearing about your life. You’re an inspiring woman with the way you deal with life, family, and your career. :]
    Drive safe & have fun!

    Comment by Natasha — August 24, 2012 @ 2:33 pm

  21. I wonder how many readers you have like me, who rarely (ever?) comment, yet who read regularly for the exceptional vegetarian recipes and decadent desserts (what a great combination!). Readers who in our own small way feel we’ve gotten to know you. And your family. Readers who have like experiences and can relate to what you share, or for whom your life seems foreign. I can’t speak for all of us, but from me I truly wish you the best in this time of transition. A new season… I look forward to the recipes and the slices of life you share from the my perch on the east coast.

    Comment by Bridget — August 24, 2012 @ 6:39 pm

  22. Many of us in Seattle will miss your presence at BookLarder events. However, what an exciting journey and gift to your children — to explore and adapt to a new environment, rich in diversity and new beginnings. Safe travels and have fun on the Rogue river :)

    Comment by Janet — August 24, 2012 @ 9:54 pm

  23. Take all the time you need to return to “normal” here on this blog or in your every day life.
    I cannot imagine what it must be like to move your entire family. I only moved myself to a different place and found it challenging enough.

    I come here for all your posts – food, treats, holidays, slices of your life, your moving experience. Share as much as you want, whenever you want!

    Comment by Annika — August 26, 2012 @ 7:06 am

  24. I bet you’ll be back into a routine before you know it. Hope you had a great anniversary and are now starting to love your new hometown!

    Comment by lisaiscooking — August 27, 2012 @ 8:39 pm

  25. Dana, safe travels. I promise to come visit you in Oakland. Hugs.

    Comment by Stephanie, The Recipe Renovator — August 28, 2012 @ 1:21 am

  26. Safe travel and safe home – to your new home – Dana. I’ll be here, ready for more news and recipes, when the time is right.

    Comment by Penny — August 28, 2012 @ 1:36 pm

  27. Sigh. Stopped in here because I was thinking of you. Looks like you’ve made it safely (thank you, Instagram!). Hope you all are settling in nicely. Miss you!

    Comment by Megan Gordon — August 29, 2012 @ 6:13 am

  28. As someone who was raised in Chico (if you need a caffeine break, go to Empire Coffee!), and currently lives on the Berkeley/Oakland border…welcome!

    Comment by Daniel — August 31, 2012 @ 6:42 am

  29. Good luck on this new journey, there will be lots of new memories to make along the way and I look forward to hearing about them! @ Bridget (comment 21), I couldn’t have said it better!

    Comment by melinda ke — September 5, 2012 @ 8:20 pm

  30. Good to catch up on your blog. Miss you already.

    Comment by Lauren Ferraro — September 6, 2012 @ 6:28 am

  31. Welcome back. I’ve missed your posts.

    Comment by linda — September 25, 2012 @ 3:29 pm

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