...and they all lived happily ever after...

...and they all lived happily ever after...

Monday, August 22, 2016

When life turns upside down unexpectedly

I mentioned that life has been a little bit wild around here the last little bit.

Yeah, we are in a state of flux.  It has been an incredible adventure so far, but it has also been a lot of stress on our crew so that isn't always fun.

Here's the low down.

Just over  month ago, Josh came to me and said he felt like we should think about selling the house and moving.  This is something we've talked about occasionally over the years, but never very seriously.  I thought, "Ok, we can work toward that and probably in a year or so we can start the process."

Um.  No.

Pretty quickly I had the same impression that Josh had had that it was time for us to move.  This was not exactly in my plan and I do not really love it when my plans get mucked up (I'm a planner, I like plans).

But, alright, we felt strongly that it was the right thing to do so we decided to move forward.  We called a friend who is also a realtor (and if you need a realtor, you should call her too) and told her we were interested in selling our house.  It just so happened that we were getting ready to go on vacation the next week so she said we should spruce up the house and while we were gone she would take pictures and work on getting the house on the market.  We cleaned but didn't pack much of anything away assuming that we'd deal with that when we got home so the house looked less bursting at the seams.

So while we were away the house went up on the market (take a peek at my super cute -- if a bit cluttery -- house right here).

We got a call from our realtor while we were driving home telling us to take our time coming back because there was a showing that afternoon.  So, we drove slowly and stopped for lunch rather than eating while we drove.

Soon after we got home we got another call telling us that we had an offer on our house for nearly the full asking price.  So, we essentially came home from vacation and our house was already sold.

I wasn't ready for that.

We hadn't yet found a place to go.  We hadn't even really thought through this whole deal because we assumed it would time at least a little time for the house to get some attention.

No dice.  House: Sold.  Family: homeless (sort of).

So, we got to work.  The Monday after we got home we started touring houses and we've seen dozens of them so far, but haven't found the right place yet.  We've been at it for a few weeks and it is starting to get a little bit scary that we don't have an end in sight.  Remember the part where I like planning and it is very difficult to plan when you can't see where you are headed?  Ugh.

But, on top of that, while we were on vacation Josh got a call from a high school principal he used to work with.  That principal was creating a new job at his school and he wanted Josh to come and interview for this position.  It was only about 10 days before schools started.

Josh interviewed and we feel that this job was just the right fit (it is called a "student advocate" position meaning that Josh will work with teachers, families and students at risk of dropping out of school or failing several classes to try to help them get the help and support they need to be more successful -- it's kind of perfect for him).  So, literally days before school started, Josh changed jobs (which was really hard for him because he LOVES the teacher and especially the kids at Murray) and he now works at Granger High School.  He already loves his job and is developing the same kind of care for kids at Granger that he had at Murray.

And then our kids started school.  It is hard on them that they will only temporarily be at school with the kids they have grown up with (we have lived here for nearly 15 years).  That's fair.  I understand and I wish I could do something to make that easier.  I can't even tell them what schools they will be attending in the near future.  I guess we'll see what happens.

So, that's it in a nutshell.

Our life is kind of turned on its end, but we have each other and as long as that's the case we can get through pretty much anything.  Hopefully this will be an experience that pulls us together as a family and makes us stronger.  Hopefully we will find a new home where we can live happily ever after (because I have no intentions of doing this ever again if I can help it).  Hopefully we can be patient and faithful and will feel the Lord's guidance as we try to find the right place for our family.

Thanks to family and friends who have been so supportive, I can't tell you how much that means to us.

And off we go, continuing down the path of adventure.  We'll see how it goes.

Wednesday, August 17, 2016

Vegas Baby!

So life's been a bit crazy for the last little bit.  I'll tell you about the wild summer we've had, but first a bit of fun.

A couple of weeks ago we got to take a trip to Las Vegas and time out from our regular life was a relaxing break.

We stayed in a condo a couple of miles away from the strip (which was wonderful because we don't particularly love the mess there).  The resort was great, the weather was HOT (like REALLY hot), but we had a fabulous time.  It was really nice to be out of our regular routine and to be able to focus on family instead of all the clutter and stress of normal life.

Here's some of our highlights from the week.

Life in the condo:

Josh does a ton of cooking for our family and I'm really grateful for him.

Red Spring Boardwalk Trail, Calico Basin:

Container Park on Freemont Street:

Kids got to build cool things with giant foam blocks.

Yes, that is a gigantic praying mantis in the background.  He breathes fire at night.  There you go.

Old Mormon Fort:

Rockin' Jump Trampoline Park:

Here you can see Me, Bryce, Parker and Gavin on the climbing wall.  One of us didn't quite make it to the top.  One of us got to the top twice before the rest of us got there once, and one of us is was a sores sweaty mess by the time we finished.  I'll leave you to guess which was which.

Nielsen's Frozen Custard (a favorite from Utah that we discovered in Vegas):

Clark County Museum (GREAT place and inexpensive):

Children's Discovery Museum (really fun but really pricey):

Even the big kids had a good time

Ethel M. Chocolate Factory and Cactus Gardens:

Pinball Hall of Fame (sooooo fun...except for the part where Aubrey's wallet got stolen):

Machine that ranks for romance said it is "harmless."  At least is wasn't "clammy."

Swimming in the condo pools every day (because it was freakin' HOT in Vegas):

Historic Railroad Tunnel Trail:

Apparently our hike was a little more ominous than we thought...but we brought tons of water and managed to survive.

As we walked through one tunnel Logan started jangling the change in his pocket
which apparently sounds like bat chat because the tunnel had been quiet but when he
jingled his money the bats starting screeching like mad.  We never did see any, but we could
hear them in the center of that one tunnel.

And then we came home.  He did go to an indoor swap meet one day which was REALLY fun, the kids loved seeing all the treasures there.  We also attended the sweetest ward on Sunday.  When we sat down a member of the bishopric came over the meet us and asked if we were new.  We said no.  He said, "Would you like to be?  We'd love to have you."  It was a very welcoming place (plus Bryce got stared at by a girl the ENTIRE meeting...he didn't notice, but the rest of us did).

All in all, it was a really great adventure.

But now it is back to real life which is a little more harried, but still good.

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