This past weekend was spent packing up my belongings. Taking clothing out of the closet, folding it in baskets, and dearly hoping that it doesn't wrinkle. Pulling the baking supplies off the shelves, wrapping them in layers of paper towels and coffee filters, and placing them in boxes marked with the word glass in thick black marker. I wondered what's important enough to bring along or trivial enough to leave behind. I wondered if I've chosen correctly. It's strange to see my life packed up into cardboard boxes (and stranger still to see them fit neatly into the back of my car).
It's moving day.
Moving has always been such a bittersweet process for me. It's one of life's true adventures. New cities, new countries, new stories, and new friends are all out there, waiting to be discovered. The thought is exhilarating enough for the butterflies to awaken and whirl and twirl around my stomach. I'm attracted to the idea of moving, of cutting ties and embracing something fresh with open arms. The spirit of moving is looking the unknown in the eye, shaking his hand, and greeting him with a hello.
By the same token, moving is hard. I don't want to have to say goodbye to the place I call home, to the city I've grown familiar with, or to the people I love. Though I wish all my goodbyes could be see you later's, the truth is that sometimes they aren't. People or places get left behind; they fade away into oblivion, into memories, despite best efforts to clutch tightly onto them. I've moved a dozen times in the last five years. I've left so many things behind.
This time I haven't moved very far—only half a state and three hours away. For the first time in my life, I'm living alone. My belongings are unpacked, finding refuge in closets and cupboards. I feel optimistic. My adventure no longer sits on the horizon, to be gazed at with all the longing emotion of a fading sun. It's here and now. It's today.
As I sit here on this new-to-me couch, with my feet propped up on a borrowed coffee table, I wonder how long it will take for this new place to become home.
These Rhubarb Ginger Muffins were a whim on a Tuesday afternoon. Whole wheat ginger muffins meet a wonderfully tart rhubarb and lemon jam, blending bold flavors seamlessly. Just before baking, the muffin batter is topped with a spoonful of jam. Due to the weight, the jam falls directly into the center of the muffin while baking, making these muffins self-filling and giving them an unique appearance. I was surprised by how taken I was with these muffins; they easily fall into my nearest and dearest favorites.