I honestly can't remember the last time I sat down to write a blog post! Yikes! That must means it's been a little while....I know that we were in Blue Earth at that time so I will update it quickly from there.
By the way, I'm writing this in the car again (I'm not driving though...just in case you were wondering...I think that would be even worse than texting ;). It seems as though it is when I am forced to sit for an extended period of time is when I finally have time to blog.
So once we left Blue Earth, Nathan took 2-1/2 weeks off so we could be home and relax for awhile before moving again, this time up north! During those 2 weeks, we spent lots of time visiting with friends, getting caught up with some dear ones that we haven't seen for over 2 years! They have 4 children, 5 and under so with us together there is 8 children with Tiernan (6) being the oldest! It makes for a lively time but they all play so well that it really doesn't seem like that many kids most of the time.
All the kids...
The dads having fun on the scooters
We also were able to see some of Nathan's family we don't get to see very often...Sarah and her kids who we lived by in Virginia came to visit as well as his brother Jonathan and family from Texas. We got together with them a few times, at his sister's house for a meal and also at the splash pad to play. Jonathan has another foster daughter (Rita, 17..along with Alma, 16 who we met at Christmas) that is living with that we met for the first time during this visit as well so that was fun.
Rita with Ariella
Spending time at the park with Nathan's parents, his sister Amanda and family, his sister Sarah and family visiting from VA, his sister Maria & kids, and his brother Jonathan and family visiting from TX.
Nathan also spent a lot of time in our yard picking rock. Hours and hours and hours he raked, dug, picked up, and moved the rocks in our yard so when we seed, the grass will have a better chance of growing well. Although right now we've just let the weeds grow in the area that we didn't lay sod, and it actually looks kinda nice! They are thick enough that it almost looks like grass and when Nathan mows it, you can hardly tell the difference.
We spent some time at a "beach" on the 4th. It was this tiny little public access that had a ledge where you could put a chair and then a drop off to the rocks which led in to the water. Yeah, it wasn't exactly my idea...it was Nathan's. He bet me no one else would be there...and there actually was, so now that I think about it, he owes me a 30 min back rub...
So, after all that fun stuff was over, it was time to go back to work. That meant moving up to Bemidji!
He started this job, a line going from Bemidji to Grand Rapids, last Monday and it seems to be going alright for him...the only tiny problem is that we can't find a place to live!! This is my 8th or 9th time trying to find housing last minute but never had I had this much problem finding a rental, ever. Usually it might take a day or two of making a million and half phone calls but eventually we find a place. This is different. We have found nothing...zilch...nadda. I have been searching online, calling resorts, realtors, landlords, random people, banks, co-workers of in-laws brothers, you name it and everything is either 1) already rented, 2) too far in the wrong direction, 3) too expensive, or 4) requiring a long-term lease.
There was one place that we thought would be a good fit. It was in decent shape (horrible construction, but livable) that was a 1000 sq ft, 2 bed apt in a tri-plex that was made out of a pole shed....yes, fancy, I know. It was only 10 mins from Nathan's show-up for work, in the country, had great neighbors, and (relatively) inexpensive. I talked with the owner and everything seemed to be a go. He told me to fill out an app and we could move in the next day. Well, it was after I turned in the app that I didn't hear from him so I had to call him...not a good sign. “yeah, you have 4 kids?....Well, in my opinion it is not appropriate to have 4 children in a 2 bedroom.” UM, EXCUSE ME?!?! It's 1000 sq ft! Do you know how big our camper was?? Like 300 sq ft...I think we can handle 1000. Why don't you let US decide what's “appropriate” for our family?? I told the guy that we have a 3500 sq ft house back home and our boys still share a room, that's just how we live! So whatever, he wouldn't rent to us. So we were back to square one.
There is a slight possiblity of a town home in the city of Bemidji that would work out but again, I'm waiting for the owner to get back to the management to get back to me about when we could get in, etc. I'm not holding my breath, but I'm really hoping that it will work out because it's in a nice location, fairly reasonably priced and it's the only thing that we have on the table that the moment. I called a place yesterday that I spoke with the afternoon before who had a cabin south of town. We decided we would tell the guy we'd take it without even looking at it bc it had what we were looking for but once I called him, it had already been rented. So anyway, that has been and is our struggle with this move.
So where are we staying in the meantime?? At my cousins house of course! :) My cousin, Gina, and her family live in Bemidji and have been sooo kind and generous to offer us their son's bedroom to stay in while we look for a place to live! I seriously don't know what I would do if I had to do all this searching and being so stressed with finding a place if we were in a hotel...I would probably pull out all my hair. So it has worked out so nice. Nathan and I get the double bed and the kids all surround us on the floor. Gina does daycare during the day, which makes things even more fun :) The kids wake up in the morning, we eat breakfast and outside they go! She has 2 kids of her own...8 yr old Braden and 5 yr old Ava...and then anywhere from 3 to 6 daycare kids. We buy all our own groceries and Gina and I just take turns in the kitchen making meals for our respective children and families. It has worked out just great! And for some evenings we've had places to go....grocery store, resorts to try to find housing, etc, so it gives them time to themselves and then we go home on the weekends so they have some space as well.
And as of this week, Nathan said they are working 50 hours in 4 days, 12-13-13-12, so if we still don't have a place by the weekend, we'd at least be able to get out of their hair on Thursday night. :) The kids are really enjoying themselves and Gina and I enjoy the adult conversation we get during the day which neither of us usually have!
Oh! I almost forgot to mention too that our house is for sale!! Yep, that's right...as of last monday our house is officially on the market. We love our house but Nathan wants to be completely debt free and once we are, we will be able to move back and start our farm. We can't exactly start it with being on the road and he needs a job to pay for a house, so until it sells we are kinda stuck where we're at. So let me know if anyone knows of anyone who wants a beautiful, custom home on 5.1 acres in the country just 10 minutes from St. Cloud!
Being together as a family is the most important thing to us right now and we are obviously sacrificing a lot for that to happen but to us, it is totally worth it. I have a husband, my husband has a wife, and my kids have a dadddy. Nothing can beat that. I was given this quote my a friend of mine and I absolutely love it....
“Parents often forsake their children (or their spouse) for jobs, ministries, sports and pleasures, all of which pass very quickly. Men need to feel like what they do for a living is important. However, the reality is that many men soon realize that what they did for their company can, and will be, replaced shortly after they leave...We can all be replaced in the workforce, but NEVER replaced in the home. Whatever we may accomplish in our jobs is nothing compared to what we can accomplish in our homes. I understand we must work to live, but we do not have to live to work. I pray we will work for what will remain after we leave this life.” Jeffery A. Klick from the book called Generational Impact.