putting down new roots


Many years ago, my mom and dad lived in Stavanger, Norway.  While they were there, my Auntie Penny, my mom's sister, and her husband went to visit them.  My mother has a thing for house plants, and my aunt noticed a particularly pretty plant in one corner of my mom's house:  it was full, with lush green leaves.  When my aunt asked my mom for details, my mom said she didn't know what it was called, but that it was a hardy plant -- it didn't seem to need much attention, and flourished nonetheless.  My aunt asked for a clipping to take back with her to New York, and my mom obliged.

Years later, after my parents had returned to the States, my mom and dad visited my Auntie Penny and Uncle Tracy at their home in New York.  There, my mom spotted a lush, thriving houseplant, and asked my aunt about it.  "Don't you recognize it?" my aunt smiled.  "That plant is from the clipping you gave me in Norway!"  My mom laughed, and they changed the subject -- but a couple of weeks after my mom returned home, she went to the mailbox and opened an envelope from Auntie Penny ... and there, wrapped in a paper towel, were a couple of clippings from the plant.  Mom promptly put the clippings in a glass of water, and a few weeks later, roots appeared.  She planted them in soil, and placed the pot in her dining room.

A couple of weeks ago, Marcus, Alex and I were at my parents' house for dinner, and I noticed a beautiful green leafy houseplant.  My mother laughed, and told me the story above.  "Can you believe that this started as the same Norwegian plant, and are from cuttings that Auntie Penny sent in the mail?  It survived the mail.  This plant can withstand anything," she giggled.  

I laughed.  And then I realized that we didn't have any plants to care for anymore.  "Hey, mom -- I don't supposed you'd let me have a clipping, would you?" 

"Of course!" she immediately responded, going for her clipping shears.

I brought the clippings home to the garage apartment we've been staying in, and placed it in a plastic cup.  Yesterday, I noticed it had finally sprouted roots.  At the end of the week, I'll put them in a little pot with some potting soil, and hope I can keep them alive.  We still don't know what kind of houseplant it is, but I've decided to call it Bjørn.  It's a good Norwegian name, and after all -- this plant seems capable of being bjørn again and again.

Last week, I decided it was time for us to rent an apartment.  We've been staying in the gorgeous garage apartment of some friends, and while we've been beyond grateful for their generosity, I've been really mindful that ultimately, we're in their space.  Also, we need to start getting things for our future home -- like beds, and that sort of thing -- and since the apartment we're staying in is already furnished, there really isn't space for us to be bringing more furniture in.

No sooner did Marcus agree, than I was out scouring the city searching for an affordable place to live for the next year while we rebuild.  I found a lovely little apartment near our house on Wednesday, and by Friday we'd signed a lease.  This weekend, Marcus and I bought a couple of beds and a sofa.  We hope to move completely in by this coming weekend (and return the keys to our little garage apartment refuge its rightful owner).

I'm unreasonably excited about moving into this space (you can see a little tour of it here).  While I'm hoping that we'll be moving out of the apartment in no more than a year's time, I'm also hoping that while we're there, we can begin gathering items to make our future permanent home feel like home.

You know, start sprouting little roots.  Kinda like Bjørn.