Monday, March 24, 2014

Starting Over

We've now been in Arlington, Texas for four weeks! Overall, it has gone by very fast; fast and very busy... I'm almost too tired to type about it. But I will because I think it's important.

It's interesting in the last year we have consolidated our stuff down to less than ever before- its been for the good as we have needed to lessen the load, help pay off debt, and help our stuff fit in a smaller space. A few years ago Tom's grandpa sent out a Christmas letter saying something to the affect that after he left the Air Force he got rid of all his belongings except for a suitcase and a backpack. I really liked that thinking- it reminds me of that quote, "Things you own end up owning you." Thus, we've started over with less than we had when we first got married, heck even way less than when we were both single and truly we've never been better!

First, the move. The weeks before we moved were packed. There was not an hour that wasn't accounted for, it was nuts. Trying to visit everyone we wanted was impossible and even now it's annoying to think of all the friends we just didn't have time to visit. GRR (Sorry Emily, Michele, etc.)

After church on February 23rd we drove down to my parents and had a dinner where Bek and her family came as well as another of my favorite people, Marie Winegardener and her husband Dave. My mom also asked a friend to take photos and I'm excited to see when they're done. The big activity that evening was watching family slides! Okay, I know for some watching slides is grueling but in the White House its awesome! The highlights were seeing slides from my dad's mission in Australia as tons of unsolicited comments from us snarky kids were added but dad was a great sport and really they were cool photos! We also re-looked at my parents wedding, Rex's and my births but by the time we got there it was after 8:30pm and we still had to get home, finish packing and start early the next morning so we couldn't stay longer, as it was Ben screamed SCREAMED for a good 30 minutes after we got home around 10pm, it sucked.

I can't remember when we went to bed that night nor when we got up the next morning but I know we were tired. We loaded up the moving truck with help from a couple guys from the ward and help from my brothers, Scott, Brian (both who have backs like mine, except Brian's who's still way more messed up from his accident a couple years ago) and Scott's girlfriend Gretchen and my mom who kept Ben out of trouble!

We were able to load up the moving truck and have everything cleaned up and keys turned in about an hour. Then we drove up to north Portland began packing our two moving pods, both 7x6x8. For the record that is not a lot of space. I got so nervous! I was freaked we were going to have to try and sale couches or just drop them off at a Goodwill BUT we were able to make it all fit! Oh and during all this the rain was majorly coming down! We were all soaked for a few hours.

After we finished we all went out to lunch, said a last goodbye and then drove a doctor's appointment for injections, YES they are THAT important to me! From there we checked into our hotel close to the airport where the girl who promised to buy my car several weeks earlier kept her promise and bought it! (Side note she was VERY nice! I kind of want to text her to see how she's doing with her pregnancy but I'm afraid JUST in case the car decided to die after we left or something horrible that wasn't fore scene) Anyway, I said goodbye to my little Focus of 10 1/2 years! Lacey and Ryan also came up for a last supper (pizza) and we all hung out until Tom and I could barely keep our eyes open. We woke up Tuesday morning, wolfed down a continental breakfast and took a shuttle to the airport. Ben did pretty good through the whole trip, in fact, the almost 4 hour flight flew by (no pun intended). And soon after we met Cassi and her two boys (Jackson and Keegan) at baggage claim. As Tom was getting Ben in his carseat I got a bit emotional and needed some husband hugs for a few moments.

Fast forward three weeks- a TON as been accomplished: reorganized kitchen, pantry, raked and bagged 36 40lb bags of leaves and branches, unloaded and put our new bedrooms together and completely unpacked everything, helped clean out tile to-be-grouted-lines and then grouted about 1000 sqft, and sealed the floors, helped Cassi organize her room, got Tom a new license (I'm stalling as long as I can- I like my Oregon license dang it!) We've (I) also found a car and will be picking it up today or tomorrow! Oh it's a Saab =) 2001 4-door TURBO Super exciting!!!

Things I don't understand about Texas:
  • First thing I noticed before we even got here was how ridiculous car prices are. For instance... here you'll find a trillion ford taurus' or chrysler vans or any normal, typical domestic car way over priced. Like, people want a ton for their junky, banged-up 200K miles+ re-built title crapper. But on the other hand people sale their 80K miles, in fantastic shape imports for a steal! You'd think, okay maybe Texans just want their American made cars but....there are tons of BMW's and VW's and Mercades everywhere I guess Texans just have no idea what good a Saab and/or Volvos are?! (Totally their loss and their loss is our gain).  
  • People don't have gutters here. It makes ZERO sense! ESPECIALLY with how the dirt reacts to water (like oil and water) it makes even MORE sense to have gutters but nope!
  • My sense of direction is shot to heck here!
  • My garmmies have been destroyed in just a few weeks. Help me figure this one out please. I know I'm an easy sweater but it hasn't even been hot yet. I know I've been doing HEAVY, hard labor and def have been sweating a lot while being in a dusty environment, but my garmmies all have dark brownish stains in the armpits like they were used to clean dark mud....????? Am I sweating out toxins or is it a sign I eat WAY too much chocolate and now I'm actually sweating it out?!
  • This isn't really a Texas issue but my period has been insane the last few months. I've had 2-3 periods just 13 days apart and this last one was 20 days apart so I guess its getting better?!
Things I am enjoying:
  • Having girl company all the time. Cassi is the best! I am absolutely spoiled in the in law department! 
  • There are some awesome converts in my new ward whom I assume were southern baptists at one point so during sacrament meeting and relief society there's a lot of "Amen!'s and "Amen Lord" and "Yes ma'am!'s" etc etc I LOVE IT! 
  • For the MOST part Ben and his cousins get along pretty well!

Last Sunday with the White Family

Moving van

After loading pods and finishing lunch

Ben calls the iPod his "mePod"

During the first week we arrived Tom went with Cassi and the boys to the zoo (I was home sick for a moment I thought I was pregnant but then remembered you don't get morning sickness on day 9 lol)

Loving the Merry-Go-Around

Playing at one of several parks close to home with older cousin Jackson

Ben LOVES to get dizzy!!