So, more than SIX months have passed and we are finally home in our co-op. Things are still not finished but sleeping in our own bed is the most wonderful thing.
The week we arrived home our kitchen was incomplete–the countertop that we had ordered did not fit properly, and the contractor said that it was "our responsibility" to contact the vendor and figure out what to do. The vendor sent their measurement guy and he identified the problem–the contractor had not installed one of the spacers in the correct spot... thank goodness for the super on site (he used to be a contractor).. he moved the lower cabinets and he and my husband managed to get the countertop installed. One problem down, many more to go.
I washed my china and collectibles outside with a hose as our sink was not yet installed and I needed to move all the stuff that we had put upstairs during the rebuilding back to the downstairs part of our home. (This so we did not feel like we were living in a two-room hoarder's paradise.)
One of the most amazing parts of returning home was that I could finally fully participate in a local grassroots effort to help Freeporters return home to their storm-ravaged homes. I had participated from a distance by crocheting potholders. Now I could help by beautifying people's outdoor areas by joining the Greenthumbs, part of Friends of Freeport, which helps by planting gardens for those who are either almost home or home but have little in the way of resources for planting their usually gorgeous gardens. The feeling that comes from taking an area that is filled with dead or dying plants and returning it to colorful and beautiful live plants is awesome!
I hope that soon we can all put this storm fully behind us and move on to whatever the next phase of our lives will be...