Living in our Katrina Cottage



We finally made the move!  And this beautiful site – taken from my front porch – greeted us two days later!  An omen you say?  I think so.

An all out Full Rainbow!

An all out Full Rainbow!

It’s been a long road moving down to our beautiful “designing our retirement” property. We’ve owned the property eight years now, and have been building things little by little – the garage, the Crab Shack, (see the inside here),  the metal building, the bocce court, the wind turbine and let’s not forget the fence (more on this in a future post) -  till we culminate with the Dream House!

We needed to fix up our house, and it needed a lot more work than we realized!  When you live in a place for 22+ years, you don’t notice how dated things have become.  We actually worked on some part of the house for over a year!  One of the first things was cleaning out the attic.  While I was recuperating from knee surgery, John and Jackson brought down boxes, and I was able to go through them a few at a time. We cleaned it out and brought the bins down to Maryland.  That was “Truck Number One” as it’s called around here.  Just FYI, we went up to “Truck Number Four.” Then we started updating.  And updating.  And updating some more.  Here’s an example:

Before update

Before update













In a future post I’ll chronicle more of the work we did on the house and give you a few suggestions based on things we’ve learned.


But as I take a quick look back at last year – February 13, 2014 – here is what was outside my door:











And thankfully, here is what is outside my door today:

Little Choptank 2015 B February 215      Little Choptank 2015 B February 216








Yes, today it’s cold, and I won’t say we’ll never get snow.  But it’s always warmer than where we lived in NJ, and there will be less snow.  And that – for sure – is a good thing!


Back to Reality



It was not easy coming back to “reality”. We spent a little more than a month in Maryland, the site of our future home. It was the first time ever in our 32 years of married life that John took off so much time in a row. We love it there, we truly do, but we wondered, will we get bored? It is in some ways a quieter life. There are less stores, and as of now, no internet to speak of. Will we regret that we picked this place to retire to? We both grew up in New York, John in Brooklyn, me in Queens, and just moving early in our married life to Long Island was a big adjustment. How will it be moving to a more remote area? Well, suffice it to say, we didn’t want to come back.

It is quieter in some respects, but much more active. A lot of our time is spent outside down there. We cook and eat outside more, we kayak, we fish, we ride our “Gator” up to the mailbox. We take our coffee down to the beach in the morning to look for the herons and plan our day. Some days we plan a trip to the dump! Yep, then it’s Dump Day! Even that’s an experience. We have so much to explore since the area is new to us. So if the weather is rainy or cold and windy, we’ll take a drive and explore a new town. We found a restaurant in a cute waterfront town with a little gift shop, and bought a pretty piece by a local artist to hang over our bed.

Little Choptank 2013  H August 2 to Sept 4 444

I don’t think we were bored for one single minute!  And even though I was (and still am)  recuperating from knee surgery, we still managed to do a lot and keep ourselves occupied.  We kind of figured – but now we know for sure, that we have absolutely no regrets about moving there.  Actually, we can hardly wait!

But first, back to reality.  And the reality is, John is very busy with work.  And the house up here needs updating, sprucing up, and cleaning out.  It needs work  that today’s young “marrieds” and lots of bloggers are finding fun, but which to me are just a chore.  Cleaning out 22 years of living in one house, yikes!  Like George Carlin once joked, our stuff has stuff!  And when we first move to Maryland, we’ll be living in the little Crab Shack – most likely for a year – while we interview builders and get the house built.  As a result, so many things will need to be stored, but… not everything.  So packing up now has to be divided into what will come to the Crab Shack, what I might need sometime, but I don’t have room for IN the crab shack so has to be stored close by, and what can wait till the house is built.  And then there’s also the “kid’s” stuff.  And by kids I mean two grownups who have left a lot of their treasured belongings here at the house.  Some they can take now, some they also don’t have room for yet, so that has to be stored in Maryland. But it means waiting till they can go through all that stuff.  I ought to buy stock in plastic bins at the rate we’re buying them!

This and That 2013 079

But at the end of all this clean up and clean out…. ah….   paradise.  At least to us.

Little Choptank 2013  H August 2 to Sept 4 095