Sunday, December 2, 2012

Our New Adventure

Well... the new adventure sure has been that...  We have finally accomplished our goal of moving to Florida!!  It took a while to sell the house in PA, but we did it!  We had to put a lot of work into it and some extra things (selling a house is NOT fun!), but it's done.  There were many days that I had 2-3 different contractors in the house at the same time.  Trying to work with Pack Rats for the pods has been a nightmare.  They have made multiple mistakes and their system doesn't handle changes well.  Our movers were FANTASTIC!  Terry and Pat from Kauffman's Movers are the best! 

We decided to rent instead of buying right now.  The timing wasn't right to buy with getting Kate into school, so we found a great house to rent for now.  We will start looking after the new year.  I actually need a break from looking at houses anyway.  They are all starting to run together.  We finally decided on looking for a house with 1/2 acre+.  After all the BS we had to deal with in PA with a BAD neighbor, I don't want to be able to see or hear a neighbor here.

We had a pretty easy trip down from PA to FL.  (Other than the rain, the ENTIRE way down and the van being packed with not an inch of spare space in the back!)  We stopped in VA to visit with Chrissy and Seth before stopping in Richmond the first night (Monday).  We then drove to Savannah, GA to stop the second night (Tuesday).  We made it to Oviedo in about 4 hours the next day (Wednesday).  We met with Paul to look at rentals on Wednesday afternoon.  We picked one and had the contract that day.  We moved in Saturday morning, which was good since that was when we needed to check out of the hotel!

It also had a pool with the enclosure.  It is my retreat.  I find solace out there.  I am finding more and more that I need to sit out there a few hours a day and soak in the sun to really feel good for the day.  It's been a challenge living with only the items we were able to bring in the van.  We have been sitting on the folding chairs that we use for soccer games and sleeping on air mattresses... and I am Sooo sick of it!  I don't even want to talk about how challenging it was making Thanksgiving dinner with hardly any supplies.  I am please with how it turned out.  Our dining room table was 2 desks put together and we ate on paper plates, but we were all together and that's what really matters.

The house has an amazing view of a lake. (I would think of it as a pond, but down here, it's a lake.)  We went for a walk around the lake behind the house. 3 Sandhill Cranes were visiting (we usually see them at the golf course). We have a resident Egret (whom we have named Eugene). He was hunting for clams (we thought it was for fish, but at closer examination, we found tons of clams!) There were countless butterflies and dragonflies too. I picked up a pine cone and much to my surprise... we found what we think is a green anole. Amazing what we have in our backyard!!

Having to get Kate enrolled in school really motivated us to get what we needed done.  We had our driver's licenses that first Friday and had Kate in school on that next Monday before Thanksgiving.  She had 2 days of school and then a 5 day holiday!  We became Platinum Pass holders for SeaWorld, one of our favorite places on Earth!  We have been there 3 times already!  Kate even got Ray to go on the Manta.  A benefit of having the Platinum Pass is the "Ride Again Privilege"... Once you ride a ride, you can ride again without having to get back in line.  Kate rode the Kraken 15 times the other day!!  I can't believe she didn't get sick!  We also get preferred parking.  It's almost mean to drive past all the people walking from the back of the parking lot as we get a spot, literally, right up front... almost!

Ray and I went for a walk down Lockwood and stumbled across the Little Econolockahatchee River (people around here call it the Little Econ).  It was amazing.  The color is an amber color.  I have never seen that color in a river before.  It's called a blackwater river and it's from the tannins from decaying vegetation in the water.  The banks are all white sand too.  So different from what we are used to!

We joined the YMCA yesterday.  Kate and I went this morning before school.  I took the water aerobics class and Kate worked some machines.  I was, without a doubt, the youngest one in the group!  I think the average age was 65 - thanks to me bringing the average down!  I think before I was there, the average age was 75!  The ladies were extremely welcoming though.  I was able to get a really good workout too.  I am feeling it in my legs, but not my knees.  I love working out in the water.

We finally got one of the pods today (11/29)! YAY!  We haven't had a chance to completely empty it, but I actually have one of my small totes of scrapbook materials!!  It's not everything, but it's a start. LOL.  I can't wait until I have all my supplies and I can be creative.

I got a call from a coworker today letting me know that our office (in Reading) is no longer open... and that my old boss and co-founder of my old company was let go.  We knew it was coming, but definitely didn't think it was going to be this soon.  It's the end of an era.

(update as of 12/2/12 - We received the 2nd pod yesterday.  Everything is unloaded and about 80% of it is put away!  We are exhausted!!!  We have the last pod coming tomorrow.  I can't wait to get it unloaded have everything put away.  Life can get back to normal... at least as normal as we get!)