I am a house plant

This is the first time I’ve sat down at this computer, in the chair I usually sit in to write, since I moved house earlier this week. This morning I finally got the broadband working, so I don’t have to rely on my iPhone to connect me to the world (THANK THE GODDESS FOR IPHONES). I’ve been posting photos to Instagram constantly, the act of noticing, recording and sharing grounding me as i float though this strange transitional time.

Moving house is not for wimps, eh?

The move itself went without a hitch, the removals company I used were AMAZING, sending me two guys who were so professional and good humoured it was a delight to work with them (seriously — there are five flights of stairs to the flat in Bath and five flights to this new place. Good humour was needed ;-) Even the guy who rocked up with the hoist (to get furniture through the third floor window) was a sweetheart.

The move took two days, packing and loading the van on day one and driving to London/unloading on day two. My sister was with me on Monday, helping to clean the flat (she is a cleaning ninja) and hold my hand in case I freaked out. I got the train up to Londontown that night, leaving under a full moon — this felt particularly auspicious. There were a few overwhelmed tears on the way to Sas’s place, but she and Ash looked after me in their warm and cosy house. Next day we drove over to my new place and got the keys, taking a few feet shots in the empty flat (obviously) before the boys arrived.

Everything fitted in the flat, thank goodness, though there was a moment when it looked like the sofa wasn’t gonna make it:

We went from this…

To this…

So I am a Londoner once again. I’ve walked past my old house several times already — the first time I found so many feathers in my path it felt like a certain someone was welcoming me home. I had a few concerns about moving back to my old stomping ground, but being somewhere familiar is proving to be a good thing. Enough time has passed — I’m not the same girl who left. In all honesty it feels like my DNA has been changed, i am so remade.

The last few days I’ve been tentatively walking around my new/old neighbourhood, reacquainting myself with the area and figuring out where the doctor’s surgery is (and the nearest Starbucks, of course. There are three. Ridiculous, non?) There’s been a few teething troubles with the flat, but on the whole it’s all good. The light is gorgeous, even on cloudy days. The wooden floors are epic. The space is smaller in some ways (hello tiny bedroom with no radiator) but bigger in others, and I can already feel the potential for expansion that’s coming. I feel like a house plant that’s just been repotted — my roots are ready to push out into the new soil. My leaves want to reach higher.

I’m ready to grow bigger.

But first, I need some sleep. Remaking all your routines is exhausting! And where the hell is the iron/linen basket/spare pillows going to go?

Posted on 02-11-2012
55 responses
  1. Melinda

    I’m excited for you! Love the shot of the sun on your beddie bye!~Blessings sweet lady! Melinda

  2. Maria

    I have no permanent address in the city, and I have moved out several times and I agree that it is an emotionally taxing ordeal; settling in is another story altogether.

    I love what you said that about moving houses. It definitely takes courage!

  3. Andrea Ellison Photography

    wishing you every ounce of warmth.. good luck..and happiness in your new home xx

  4. Kate

    Oh so exciting Susannah, and incredibly inspirational! Your new home is beautiful x

  5. Carin

    I’ve followed your move on instagram and been seriously impressed with you not only taking this bag step, but how hard you have worked on getting the new place ready so quickly. Hope you are very happy there and find many more feathers in your path as you settle in. xoxo

  6. GInger

    Susannah, it looks like one of the cushions in your gorgeous living space is a Skinny LaMinx cushion, all the way from South Africa!

    How funny to recognise something from home in one of your images.

    Happy nesting xxx

    yes it is! :)

  7. Mary C. Nasser

    You are such an inspiration, Susannah!!

  8. kat {pipkin hollow}

    Susannah, so excited to hear you are settling into your new/old London space, despite the upheaval that a move brings with it. Your space looks gorgeous … warm, bright, welcoming … and I love the texture and colour. Sleep well!

  9. Sherry

    I love this – “I am so remade” — yes, yes you are…and in doing this you’ve shown all of us that no matter what…we can be “remade”. Blessings on your new home Susannah and your new, remade life in your old familiar places. xo

  10. kathryn

    moving is a pretty major life event…congrats on it going so smoothly!! you’ve decorated beautifully!!

  11. judy-sue

    Excited for you

  12. Cristen

    I’ve enjoyed seeing you transition into your new place on Instagram. This post was just beautiful. You almost made me want to move. Almost. I wish you much luck and love in your new home!!

  13. Ellie

    Congratulations! Really enjoy your nesting time.

  14. Deborah Jackson

    Thank heavens for ninja cleaning sisters and instagram eh? Love that picture of the iphone and the feet and wooden floor – very interesting! Your new home looks like something out of a House Beautiful magazine (gorgeous). Talking of magazines, I bought the November edition of The Simple Things and guess who popped up on page 101? :)

  15. La plume et la page

    I like the pillows on the sofa. You found the right place for each item. A wonderful ne home…

  16. Laura M.

    Hooray! Congratulations on the move and on your fortitude. Sending you blessings in your new home. Enjoy!

  17. Nina

    Welcome back! Moving is NOT for wimps. But by the looks of it you’re managing it beautifully. x

  18. Bella

    Lookin’ good, honey!!!

  19. Ruth

    I love that — you are a house plant that’s just been repotted, ready to grow bigger. Beautiful. I’m so inspired by you xo


    where have you moved to? I am in fulham if you ever want to meet for a coffee

  21. karen

    Congrats on your new home, I a new poster but have been following you for quite a bit. Love the light of your new apartment and I was amazed how they hoisted that furniture up to the room! I’ve never lived anywhere that needed furniture hoisting :)

  22. Kathleen

    The floors look amazing! Looks like you have gotten everything unpacked – what a feat. I also lost my significant other and moved away within the first year, (three years out now) and am glad to see that it feels different this time – and ok.

    Looking forward to hearing more of you adventures in your new/old city.

  23. HULA~LA

    Oh, I do not envy the moving thing…I swear I will never move again…not fun!!! But, I’m glad you are getting re-acquainted with the old homestead…ENJOY. Can’t wait to hear/see more! You keep my spirits up! SMILE!

  24. Shandi

    Wishing you lots of happy, serendipitous encounters in your new city!

    I’m amazed at how fast you managed to unpack and arrange everything.

  25. Lynda Howells

    welcome homexx

  26. Gennifer

    Wow, it looks amazing! You know, if you get tired of this whole author/photographer thing you would make a kick-ass interior designer. ;)

  27. Leonie

    Oh! You’re here!

    Love the peeks into your wee place. Looks lovely

  28. Angela Vular

    Wow…your place looks amazing. I love the pillows and your furniture…..great look you’ve got going. Those floors are gorgeous. Good luck in your new space.
    Many Blessings,

  29. Marjory

    How lovely! Such a refreshing feeling moving into a new space, growing new roots, exploring everything like a child. Wishing you delicious unfurling in your new home dear Susannah. May this space welcome many blessings into your life. xo

  30. Kirsten

    congrates on the move and willingness to begin again. thanks for sharing your journey and i love the image of house plant ready to take root in a new neighborhood. enjoy all of that newness, it really sparks being present

  31. Gerri Smalley

    Bravo!!! So happy to hear things went well! Goodness, the crane thingy looks like pure madness…those movers must’ve been brave and strong! I’m glad it worked! Kisses and the biggest hug ;)

  32. An

    Yay, you did it! Love the before and after pics. Your new home looks gorgeous! xo

  33. Babu

    Wishing you ~all~ the best in your new home!

  34. alison

    wow! so exciting for your new adventure! everything is so lovely! all the very best! waiting for our turn for the big move in the next couple of months, eek!

  35. Kathryn

    how exciting! congrats on being in London. :)
    your new place looks gorgeous.

  36. Mati

    Congratulations, full moon is always a good omen. I hope you’re very happy in your new home, a big kiss from Spain :)

  37. Rhiannon

    Honestly you are the Queen of Moving ! I am still amazed when I see how fast you got it all unpacked ! New space looks wonderful – look forward to seeing you flourish there.

    And I am in awe of movers – we were the same – lots of stairs at each end – they stayed smiling – goodness knows how !

  38. L.McG.-E.

    You already have a beautiful new home, so pretty and stylish, so you. Every blessing to you and your future in it.

  39. Jodi

    just beautiful – and so exciting. Good luck…enjoy every moment of this reawakening. all good things.

  40. Sarah

    Happy new pot and happy growth :)

  41. Tracy

    Congrats Susannah!! Your new place is gorgeous and watching this transition unfold has been so inspiring. I’ve LOVED your instagram pics. (reminding me I need to get my iPhone camera back in action). I love this line from your post: “Enough time has passed — I’m not the same girl who left. In all honesty it feels like my DNA has been changed, i am so remade.” So real, and forward looking with acknowledging the reality of so many feelings in the midst of such a transition. Thanks for taking us along, through the blog and your book, on the journey of being remade.

  42. LL

    I’m happy for you. This move is so symbolic and hopefully very healing for you…

  43. Rachael

    Looks a gorgeous apartment and congratulations on the move – you’re right, moving is not for whimps!!

    wish you the best of luck and lots of happiness in your new home x

  44. Photopuddle

    Glad the move went well. Looks like you new home looks very cozy. And I spotted you in The Simple Things magazine this week. Very exciting.

  45. shannon

    your new home looks so sweet and special. cheers to you for taking that adventure, despite the trepidations. i can SO relate to your feelings. i just moved from my beloved home of 10 years. it was the place i started my family. so many memories within those walls. i cried a lot. and yet…after a few short weeks in my new space…my world has expanded beyond measure. it IS home…and i learned that no matter what…it’s where the “spirit” of the home is…my old space no longer feels like home because the spirit of my family isn’t there any more. i’m excited and thrilled about the new opportunities opening up for us in our new space. And I’m wonderfully excited for YOU, Susannah! xoxo

  46. laurie b

    I have moved over 30 times in my life so far so I know exactly what you are dealing with. But a new beginning is always exciting and I’m sure you will settle in very soon. I recently bought a home in the town I lived in when I was in high school. I never, ever thought I would return but coming back as a more evolved, experienced person has been a wonderful experience – I can soak in all the good memories without the angst of who I was back then. Welcome home.

  47. Nicole

    “I feel like a house plant that’s just been repotted — my roots are ready to push out into the new soil. My leaves want to reach higher.

    I’m ready to grow bigger.”

    These words spoke deeply to me. Congratulations on your move. Wishing you the best in your new chapter in London. Happy nesting!


    I am glad finding your way back to London has been rejuvenating. Welcome home! xxx

  49. Vanessa

    Dear Susannah, may you be blessed and happy in your new home and city. Your home looks beautiful and I hope the new space provides you inspiration and constant flow of creative energy so you can continue your amazing and important work. All the best!


    Congratulations on embarking on a new chapter in your life Susannah. I love hearing that you feel remade and ready for expansive new heights. You inspire me!

  51. Tracey@chalkboardliving

    Wishing you love and nice things in your new home. Who cares about linen baskets with those floors!

  52. Cat

    your home is beautiful….

    love and light

  53. Christina Masterman

    Looks beautiful Susannah. What a wonderful new chapter. Sending love and very best wishes. Chrissie

  54. Gemma

    Lovely house. I´m also new in mine and still trying to decorate it. I like your style. Do you have more pictures?


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