I've often joked that newly engaged couples should assemble Ikea furniture as the ultimate pre-marital test. Pre-marriage courses are great sure, but nothing will test a relationship more than thousands of tiny pieces and one paper booklet of instructions. Assembling flat pack furniture is a lot like having kids. It looks simple on the outside, perfectly assembled and cute in store and easy to drive away with but then you bring it home and realise you don't really have a proper manual. Believe me when I say putting together tallboys and drawers will push your patience to its absolute limits.
It's taken six days, a dozen car loads, over 50 boxes and insane amounts of energy to move us in to our new house. Not to mention the army of wonderful people who have helped us along the way. Moving house with kids is hard work. My almost four month old decided that last week would be the perfect time for him to scream endlessly unless he was strapped to me and well, I also have a two year old - need I say more?
We're moving in to a newly built home that was meant to come with no dramas because it's new right? Not the case. People have told us there will always be one thing that goes wrong but let's just say it feels like more has gone wrong than right. I would list the things we need to fix and take back to the store but I might cry. Both of my parents on different occasions have said 'take it in your stride, Bianca' as if they can see that I might implode at any moment. As I write this, my husband is cursing a tallboy and I have snuck away to try and find some solace in a messy house full of dust and empty boxes.
Last week, on a 30 degree day (with no air conditioning and only newspapers on my windows) I sat in the empty house with my boys while we waited for tradesman to come in and out. You will never feel more adult than when something like that happens.
As hectic and exhausting as it's been, we are so still so excited.
We have been anticipating this move for 18 months. A year and a half of dreaming about what life would be like in our own home. We've talked about the memories we'll make here with our kids. Water fights in our backyard in summer, lazy weekend mornings in our pjs when the boys pile in to our bed, birthdays and Christmas.
We've even spoken about the mundane, the day in, day out routine of life which will slowly creep in once we're settled. I'm ready for that. It sounds crazy but I've dreamt about it. There is something so sweet about even the most mundane of days spent with the people you love most in a place you can call your own.
When we were handed over the keys to our (humble) castle, our construction manager said 'this is just a house right now but it's time for you to make it a home'. I could have cried on the spot when he said those words (ok I actually did) because I've never felt so much relief, pride and joy in one moment. Relief, that the wait is over, pride that Anthony and I got to this point together by working hard and not giving up and overwhelming joy that we finally have somewhere to build our lives.
Front doors, dodgy kitchen cupboards and flat pack furniture has it's day now but they will be distant memories soon while we begin to build the ones that count.