Moving is a little bit stressful. I always laugh to myself when people tell me this. The packers and movers both mentioned this to us - and our property manager ... and just pretty much everyone who finds out we are moving. "Moving is so stressful," everyone says :-) I've always just looked at moving as an adventure. I think when Chris and I moved out to California, it was one of the best times of my life. We had such a fun "vacation" while moving out there. The move to SC still felt like an adventure, b/c Chris had just gotten back from Iraq, so it was nice having some family time with Chris, Jake, and me. The move to GA ... still an adventure, but I feel a little more of that stress everyone talks about creeping into this adventure. :-) I think when you have 2 boys the ages of 3 and 1 .... and you are spending lots of time in the car - and then lots of time in hotels, it becomes a little more of a "stressful adventure", but ADVENTURE nonetheless. I try and treasure these moving moments, b/c even though there are lots of decisions to be made about where to live, etc., we get UNDIVIDED attention from Daddy, which is definitely something to treasure. So, with all of that being said....the boys are doing wonderfully! We have spent so much time in the car driving from place to place and trying to find the "perfect place" to live for the next 6 months. We had decided we would probably try and live on base, but after getting here and checking it out, it made more financial and practical sense to live off base. To make a long story short, after we visited about 20 apartment complexes (yes, 20), we finally found one that we liked and IS available (most apartments, including base housing would be at least a 3 week wait, which is so long in a hotel with little kids)! Apartments were pretty much our only option, since we know we are only going to be here 6 months - and there are some great, luxury apartments around this area, so we found a good fit (with a playground about 20 yards from the door and a pool about 40 yards - huge plus)!! The only problem is that we realized that we don't get cell phone service! We have such bad luck with cell phone service - I mean, 100 yards away is 3G, but not at the complex - ridiculous! Nothing a microcell can't take care of (which is what we used in Beaufort anyway), but still.... just frustrating. The Columbus area is actually really great, at least the North Columbus area. I hadn't heard too many good things about this area, so maybe with hearing that, I just wasn't expecting much, but we have been here 3 days - and I really like the area, the people, etc. Everyone has been so friendly everywhere we go .... and there are so many amenities! You have to keep in mind that I have lived in 29 Palms, CA., so maybe when I hear people talk about an area, there really is no more "secluded" than 29 Palms. Just to name a FEW things that are 5 minutes from our apartment complex: Panera Bread (which is where we have eaten dinner the past 3 nights), Moe's, Firehouse Subs, 3 Starbucks, Dunkin Donuts, Honey Baked Ham, Smokey Bones, Red Lobster (Ashleigh, come visit, please), Chick-fil-A, Outback, TEXAS ROADHOUSE (our favorite!!), Olive Garden, Buffalo Wild Wings, TGIFridays, Chilis, Tropical Smoothie, Target, Kirklands, Bed Bath Beyond, Best Buy, Kohl's, Barnes and Nobles, a mall .... and that just names a FEW! There is so much more. I just drive around DROOLING! Even in Beaufort, Target was about 50 minutes from our house, so having all of this in my "back yard" is just amazing. Chris may, in fact, be headed back to 29 Palms by himself come October. I think I'm going to enjoy these luxuries and conveniences a little too much :-)
So, back to finding an apartment, we sign the lease tomorrow ... internet/cable comes on Wednesday, and our household goods get delivered Thursday. We are going to go on and stay in the hotel until Tuesday, but hopefully now that we have found a place ... we can "explore" this area a little more since the stress of living arrangements has been settled.
The boys really are adjusting so well. It's amazing how resilient they are. There have definitely been trying moments, but I know how overwhelmed I have been over the past 48 hours, so I know it has to be tiresome for them, too. HOWEVER, Jake LOVES elevators - and if we would let him just spend all of his time on the elevator pushing all of the buttons, he would be happy. AND ME, well.... I'm handling the hotel situation pretty well. Chris even said tonight, "Even if we were staying at The Plaza, you would still be wiping everything down with wet wipes" :-) I had to laugh out loud, b/c it's so true (as I walked around wiping down the remote, door knobs, etc. - I know, I'm CRAZY, but hotels are gross). He also said, though, that I am getting more and more "lax" with hotel stays, b/c I let the boys roll around without trying to keep them off the floor. I mean, all hotels are still "ugh" to me (yes, I have a problem) :-), BUT .... when you have to spend time in hotels like we do with all of the moving, you just learn to "let it go" a little bit. Give it another move across country, and I may not even pack my wet wipes .... okay, probably not ;-)
Anyway, just wanted to throw out that update. Thanks for all of the thoughts and prayers while we have been traveling and getting settled. We really appreciate it! Columbus, GA (and Ft. Benning) is our new home for the next 6 months .... and we plan to enjoy every moment! I am especially looking forward to lots of quality family time before we head back out to the fleet! It has already been so nice having Chris around 24/7. It doesn't get old .... it really doesn't!
Happy Cinco de Mayo! I'll post the rest of the pictures from our trip soon.