The Two-House Dilemma

Is it menopausal memory loss or is it…simply what happens when you have two homes?

Summer may not be official yet, but for us, it is summer and lake life has truly begun. We’re here early this week–came down on Wednesday to work on the boat lift. It’s done and gorgeous and ready to go back into our slip, thanks to our lake buddies, Ron and Rich–thanks, guys!! You are the best! There are many bottles of terrific wine in your futures!

But there’s nothing better than the mid-week anticipation. Wednesday is “it’s only three days ’til we go to the lake!” Thursday is a rush of laundry and list-making, and then Friday is packing and heading north. We’ve actually gotten pretty good at making it out of the house and on the road in less than half an hour after Husband gets home from work.

The flaw in the operation lies with one tiny, little, minute thing–my complete inability to remember what I have where. Seriously, this can get almost silly at times. At home, I’ll open the fridge and reach for…whatever and it’s not there, even though I distinctly remember seeing it there just yesterday. Oh, no wait…it’s in the fridge at the lake. Damn. Or I’ll get to the lake believing I have plenty of eggs for breakfast on Saturday morning, and then arrive to find nary an egg. The full egg carton is at home. Well, crud.

Or I’ll go into my closet for a certain shirt and it’s missing! I dig through the laundry basket, search my drawers, go hanger by hanger through my clothes because, dammit, I know it’s here and I want to wear it. Then it hits me—I left it at the lake. Damn, damn, damn!

Having two houses also, by necessity requires that we have two of everything—two sets of pots and pans and dishes, two wine racks (bien sur!!), two collections of sheets, bath and kitchen towels, two of all kinds of staples like spices, oils, vinegars, etc. When I go to the grocery down home, I buy two bags of coffee beans—one for home, one for the lake. If  I happen to be at the Kroger when I’m at the lake and they’re having a great sale on strawberries or melons, I grab an extra to take home with us when we leave on Sunday.

We’re slowly getting the lake house outfitted so that we don’t have carry too many things beyond clothes back and forth each weekend. Yesterday, I went with Moe, one of my dear lake ladies, to a fantastic place about 40 miles north of the lake called Bailey’s Discount Center. This place had everything imaginable and I got some totally rockin’ placemats and kitchen towels with a beachy theme and several other things that I needed/wanted for the cottage, while my friend picked up—you’re going to love this—a kitchen sink! Because Bailey’s has everything, including kitchen sinks!

Lake life is wondrous and I’m fairly sure that eventually, I’ll remember that at home, the cinnamon is in the third drawer, but at the lake, it’s in the rack above the stove;   that the beach towels are in the cabinet in the hallway bath at home and in the bottom cabinet of the master bath in the cottage; and that I keep my silverware in the drawer under the coffeemaker at home and in the drawer under the microwave at the lake.

Or maybe I won’t…menopause, aging, and a busy life take their toll on my memory. I guess if I can remember how to get from home to the cottage and back again, I’m gonna count it as a win.


  • robena grant

    I remember those days from having a vacation condo in Park City. Of course most of the clothing left there was winter/snow gear, but still I’d often miss a fave pair of gloves or a hat when it would become unseasonably cold in L.A. and I’d do a search and rant and rave.
    Yep, just remember the directions to and from and everything else will eventually fall into place. Or not. : 0