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>Here We Are! (Face to Face…a Couple of Silver Spoons…)

2 Feb

>*Breathing a sigh of relief*. We’re here. Our stuff is here. The ho-temple is a distant memory. By the way, I know there have been some requests for pictures of the ho-temple, but actually, it wasn’t that scary-looking–in fact, when we first pulled up, we were pleasantly surprised and cautiously optimistic that our stay would be safe, clean, and free of shirtless hide-and-seekers. We were wrong.

I did see a cockroach last night. A little baby cockroach that was promptly sprayed with Lysol kitchen cleaner and died what I hope was a slow (in cockroach time) and painful death, slow enough to warn all his little friends to stay away. We’re all relieved to see our stuff and the season premiere of Lost was last night. Plus, Sam is gainfully employed at a job that he really, really likes so far, so we have a lot of reasons to be very happy.

We have had a few misadventures along the way. My sisters and I have all been blessed with horrible senses of direction and it hasn’t failed me yet. Tonight, I ordered a pizza and went to pick it up, my trusty Mapquest directions in hand. An hour and a half later, Sam called to find me at a Chevron on a rural country road without having found the pizza place. I had, however, discovered a scenic, pleasant, and direct route to Sam’s job, a creepy old cemetery, the fact that we’re about 3 minutes from the shopping area of where we live rather than the 15 minutes that it’s always taken me in the past, and a forest. Yeah, I got lost in a forest with my cell phone beeping that it was almost out of batteries. In the dark. That was the only time in my whole adventure that where I thought I might die (we watched Disturbia the other night; there are serial killers all around us). The funny thing is, I’m pretty sure I’ve found myself in the same forest before (unintentionally, of course), but if I tried to find it, it would never happen. This experience goes along nicely with the one the other day where I was trying to get to our house, the post office, and Walmart (which is in a different town than the house and the post office). I accidentally stumbled across the post office and thought I was on my way to the house when I suddenly found myself at Walmart. I was in a totally different town than I thought I was in.

Tomorrow’s the children’s Mardi Gras parade, but we’re actually skipping town and going to Ikea in Texas to get some furniture. Our old dressers were the ones that Sam’s parents got from the DI when they got married almost 35 years ago, so, after a long and happy life, they were taken out back and shot. It was a mercy killing, really–they were lame and half-blind. And missing a few limbs. Oops, Teeny–I’m sorry–they went to the happy dresser farm in the sky. I’m still on my laptop because we have many, many boxes left to unpack, but I’m going to take some pictures of highlights around town sometime soon, including Sue Ellen’s Iron Leather and Lace and, right next door, Sue Ellen’s Intimate Apparel (from the outside, you can’t actually see any iron, leather, lace, or intimate apparel, just wigs. Which I actually find a little creepy.) But we went to church on Sunday and were pleasantly surprised to find that it was very normal and that there were several other young couples with little kids. I’ve decided that grits are icky, but red beans and rice are awesome. All in all, we’re enjoying life here and are thankful for the internet and cell phones which keep me in touch with everyone I love and prevent me from getting too homesick!

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>Last Night at the Ho-Temple

26 Jan

>So our stuff won’t be here until Thursday, but we’re outta this place on Monday night! The only reason we’re waiting until Mondayy is because our new house won’t have a fridge until Tuesday. So we’re waiting. But after last night, believe me, we were ready to go!

So Friday night is apparently party night at the ho-temple. We may have a non-smoking room, but that doesn’t mean the lovely smell of cigarette smoke doesn’t waft into your neck of the woods when seemingly every OTHER room in the hotel is being smoked in. So that was nice. This morning, the elevator smelled like cigarette smoke, booze, and pickles. Not so sure where the pickles came from, but I can just imagine a bunch of shirtless vagabonds partying it up in the elevator with their smokes, beer, and a big jar of Vlasics.

The walls here are not insulated at all, which means that you can hear everything going on above, below, and on either side of you. To make things worse, our room is directly in front of the elevator (which smells of pickles). Last night, there was a rather raucous party going on in the room next to us and we came to find out that the front desk closes at 6:00 pm. Naturally. So any late-night noise complaints go unheard and I’m not about to tell my shirtless neighbors to please be quiet.

**RANDOM SIDE NOTE**

There was just a commercial for this product. Just what everyone needs–a gun rack for the side of your bed! I am definitely in the South…

**BACK TO YOUR REGULARLY-SCHEDULED PROGRAMMING**

So anyway, after the party died down, we were about to go to sleep when our phone started ringing. Sam answered it and someone who spoke very little English requested “a lady who used to live there.” Sam told them they had the wrong number. He comes back to bed. The phone rings again and Sam tells them the same thing. Returns to bed. The phone rings again and Sam tells them to please stop calling. Comes back to bed. The phone rings again. Sam disconnects the line.

Around 3:00 am, we hear a thunk and see that Clark has fallen out of the bed. Sam gets into bed with Clark so as to prevent any future brain damage.

Around 5:00, we hear an alarm clock buzzing. Is it ours? Of course not! It would belong to our next-door, hard-partying neighbors. Who are sleeping through their alarm. Sam bangs on the wall and they turn off their alarm.

Around 5:30, we hear Mariachi music through the walls.

It was quite the night. We went to Sam’s Club and bought an air mattress today and now I just want to INFLATE it. And NOT at the ho-temple.

>Living at the Ho-temple

25 Jan

>Clark calls our “hotel” (yeah, the quotation marks are deliberate…) the “ho-temple.” Given the very classy lady Sam saw with an older gentleman our first night here, he may not be too far off…

Which makes it REALLY good news that we found a really cute little house to rent. The lady’s renting to us month-to-month and is letting us paint the baseboards in lieu of a security deposit. So HOORAY! Hopefully we’ll be out of the ho-temple by Monday.

>We’re Here, Y’all!

24 Jan

>We actually got in yesterday, but we were in such a daze after everything that this is the first time where I don’t feel like my head is spinning! After missing our plane on Tuesday, getting a 1 1/2-ish-hour nap, then travelling all night and then home-hunting all day yesterday…well, it’s been an adventure!

Travelling with two children in the middle of the night wasn’t fun, but it went better than expected–at least my kids were not the ones screaming inconsolably on the airplane! My child WAS the one, however, who told a nice man in Louisiana that his teeth were gone. The man said, “Yeah, my teeth are all gone,” and Clark said, “Well, maybe you should get some more!” We then decided to have a nice dinner last night which Clark refused to eat and where Meredith discovered the joy of screaming. We were a little frazzled, to say the least.

Now, I can say this without getting a panicky phone call from my dad because I know he doesn’t read my blog, but we don’t necessarily feel 100% safe in our lovely extended stay hotel–it seems like a lot of super-classy-looking people have turned their visits into very extended stays (i.e. they live here). A bunch of shirtless men were playing hide and seek in our hallway last night. So, needless to say, our door is locked, bolted, and safety-latched and we’re hoping to get out of here sooner rather than later. We found a house that looks very promising yesterday (we’re going to see it in a little bit) and another one popped up in the newspaper this morning that I want to take a look at.

So that’s our update! I’m off to get dressed and am hoping the hide-and-seekers are asleep and hung over this morning when we leave our hotel room!

>Where in the World is Team Awesome??

22 Jan

>If you’re wondering where we are, that’s an excellent question! Right now, we’re supposed to be on an airplane to Louisiana. Are we? No!

Traveling with kids is quite the adventure. When making reservations for a long flight, you’re faced with the dilemma–do you get to your location early, but leave early? Or do you leave at a more reasonable time and get in at an ungodly hour? We opted for the early-departure option. This meant that we had to leave the house by 6:30 this morning.

We-ell, that is quite the task when you’re transporting two small children and everything you may need for yourself and those two children for a period of 1-3 weeks with you. Plus two carseats. Plus a double stroller. A diaper bag. A laptop. Toys. Treats. How about a Xanax?

Anyway, our flight was supposed to leave at 7:55 and we got there at 7:15. We ran in and they told us we were too late, the gate was closed there was nothing they could do, that we have to be there 35 minutes before our flight leaves. Well, Bucko, we had 40 minutes, but no. “There is nothing we can do.” Once we got home, we got on the Continental website and it says the gates close 30 minutes before the scheduled flight time.

So we’re taking a red-eye tonight at 11:55. This will be nothing if not a fun adventure! Hopefully, we’ll all get a good nap and then the kids will sleep on the flight tonight. We shall see.

On a cuter note, here are some pics of our visit here in Seattle! We’ve had such a fun time and we’re so glad that we were able to come up here for a few days before heading to Louisiana. Especially since our stuff isn’t supposed to be there for at least another week, so we would’ve been living friendless and family-less (that’s TOTALLY a word!) in our ghetto extended-stay hotel. When we first got here, we were walking to Sam’s dad’s deli in a total Norman Rockwell moment, holding hands and walking down the sidewalk in the picturesque historic part of a big city when Clark said, “It’s nice to have family!” It sure is.

>Moving Day 2: Goodbye to the Happy House!

17 Jan

>So we’re out. We’re homeless. But at least it’s homeless in a fun way and not in a sipping-booze-from-a-bottle-in-a-brown-paper-bag way. We decided to spend the night again at Marcie’s house instead of staying at the hotel in SLC and I’m glad we did–driving to Salt Lake tonight would have been YET another thing to do.

So what happened today? The highlights include 1 diaper blow-out, minus any extra outfits, which resulted in one white-trashy trip to K-mart to buy a white-trashy K-mart baby outfit. 1 torn fingernail, resulting in 1 box of Snoopy Bandaids because they were the cheapest ones I could find at the grocery store. 1 almost-parking ticket and 1 threat from a police officer to the movers to have the truck packed up in two more hours or to get a ticket. One chewing-out from the next-door neighbor regarding said truck. 1 decision to never live on a busy road (let alone with a short, steep driveway) ever again. 1 getting-stuck incident in my friend’s driveway after dropping off Clark for the day. Several spider carcasses swept out of the garage. 150 boxes loaded onto a truck and I didn’t have to do any of them.

What else? Hmmmm…it was a balmy 17 degrees today. I guess Utah is cold in January; who knew?? 🙂 We went to Costa Vida one last time and said goodbye to Sam’s brother and then said goodbye to the house one last time. You know, we only lived there a few months, but it felt more like home than where we’d lived for three years prior. I’m not really a touchy-feely vibey kind of person (at least not in the way of the lesbian massage therapist who once told me my back hurt because my yin and yang were out of balance), but I think our house was a happy house; it had good vibes. It was kooky and weird with the rust and orange and red and green carpets (not all in the same room, thank goodness!) and the turquoise kitchen and the macabre-ish bathroom, but…I can’t exactly nail the feeling down more than just saying it was a happy house. And for us, it was.

>Moving Day 1: A Mover Named Elvis

16 Jan

>So it’s begun! Today, a guy came and unhooked our washer and dryer and then three United Van Line employees came to pack up all our stuff. Last night was a little rough–I made it to bed around 2 am after trying to get everything organized and our bags all packed before my back seized up as a result of lifting a too-heavy DI box in and out of the van. And our bags weren’t even packed. So I was a little panicky this morning. But by the time Elvis (yes, his name really is Elvis) and his crew got there and I got our suitcases packed and Clark was playing at Hannah and Leah’s house and Meredith was taking a nap, I was just blissfully watching someone else pack up all my stuff and realizing that I DIDN’T HAVE TO DO IT! After we moved less than 6 months ago, the thought of moving again literally made me ill, but it’s not so bad when someone else does all the dirty work for you. I just happily followed them around with a bottle of Windex and a rag. Sam, on the other hand, had a rough day as he watched all of his many, MANY treasures being packed in a way that he wouldn’t pack them. It’s an exercise in many virtues for the most anal man alive to watch someone handle his personal belongings.

Tonight, we had a yummy, relaxing dinner with our friends Marcie and Matt who have been SO generous and have let us spend the night in their guest bedroom. They’ve offered to let us stay tomorrow night as well and we may take them up on it–we have run a cost-benefit analysis on staying in a hotel near the airport vs. spending the night in Provo.

So yeah…that’s about it. If you drove along 900 E. today and cursed the semi truck that was blocking the right lane, sorry. It’ll be there again tomorrow. 🙂