Steve's work also threw us a fabulous "good-bye" party and his bosses spent hours making our favorite home-made tandoori chicken on the BBQ. It was obvious what a big part of the COAC family Steve had become. His boss gave a touching speech and I couldn't help but get a little teary. We are so thankful that they found another awesome engineer to fill his shoes. Again... another hard good-bye.
Then of course we had to say good-bye to Charlie, our fabulous nanny that has watched the kids every Friday morning so I can work on my photography business. She had become an extension of our family and the kids LOVE her. Another hard good-bye...
And last but not least we had to say good-bye to our church family. We attended Sanctuary Covenant Church for ten years and they have been so great to us. They brought us upfront and prayed for us on our last Sunday, and then our friends the Edwards' threw a huge ice-cream party at their house for everyone! It was such a blessing to be surrounded by all those amazing people that we have walked through life with. Yet another hard good-bye!
We had a ton of help with our packing. The Quayles and the Lin-Delcollos took turns entertaining our kids for us, which was such a HUGE help. Faye even took all SIX kids (her three and my three) to go to a movie at the theater! And Brandon and Logan (Steve's cousins boys) help load the heavy furniture into the moving pods.
It was surreal watching our whole life get packed up and hauled away. We had a HUGE vehicle transport service take Steve's grandfather's old Lincoln. We befriended the sweet Romanian family that ran the transport service, and for a ridiculously low price they offered to take Steve's pick-up truck as well so that he could drive with us up to Oregon. They also took about 6 extra bins of stuff that we weren't able to fit in the pods which was such a HUGE blessing because we may have had to leave them behind! The two pods that we had were not quite big enough to fit all our crap (I mean "precious items"). It was amazing to watch them pick up those pods (which each weighed between 7000 and 8000 pounds when filled) and see them put them on their trucks and haul them away!
Despite the complete and utter chaos, the kids did amazingly well. After all our furniture was packed up there were still a few days before we drove up to Oregon, and they enjoyed "camping" in the house and having "picnics" on the floor.
And of course we had to make sure that we enjoyed as much In-n-Out Burger as humanly possible since they have not yet branched out into Oregon!
Then Saturday arrived. We ran around like CRAZY people cleaning and making sure the house was ready to be shown to realtors, and then we all piled into the van (four hours behind schedule) and started our trek northward. I was amazingly emotional saying goodbye to our first home... the house we lived in as newlyweds and brought our babies home to. Although I'm not really sure if it was true emotion, or whether I was just so utterly exhausted from the previous week. Who knows...
We drove all day, and landed at Steve's sisters' home around midnight. I don't think I've ever been so exhausted in my life. And that's where we are now... a week later. Scott and Christie have been abundantly generous letting us live with them for a couple of weeks while we prep our house for "move-in". We are painting, having hardwood floors re-done, and having the carpets cleaned. It is going to be so nice to move into a clean house and we can't thank them enough for letting us live with them that long. It's definitely awesome to see the cousins reconnect and hang out together. What a blessing to know they are going to get to grow up together!
And of course our kids are thrilled to be able to play with all their cousins toys!!!
A couple of days after we arrived, Christie's family took off for a week long vacation. This allowed my parents to come down and help us out. They worked their tails off and painted all three of the kids' rooms, the laundry room, and our huge play room. It was so amazing to have their assistance. Their last day here, we went to the zoo with the generous zoo membership that Christie and Scott gave us as a "welcome to Oregon" gift! It was so great that the kids got to spend time with their Nani and Papa.
Most of the renovations are wrapping up, and next the carpet cleaners and house cleaner will descend upon our home. Then August 5th our pods will be delivered and we can finally load into our home and get settled. I'm not going to lie... the transition has been truly emotional and exhausting. Steve worked at COAC on the Friday before we moved and started his new job on the Monday after the move. We have been living in a state of limbo for weeks out of suitcases. And we miss our Sacramento community. But there has been such an amazing outpouring of love and support through this transition that we can't help but smile.