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The Move

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When you think about the many families who have been uprooted and have lost their homes, I shouldn’t complain, and trust me when I tell you that I am grateful everyday for what we have, but catholic guilt aside, let’s be upfront and honest. Moving sucks.

We recently made the move from urban to suburban and…it sure is dark out here! 

Sure, there are great things like the fact that I haven’t seen traffic since we moved out here, and that I’m conveniently located to EVERYTHING, and that practically everything has a drive through, and did I mention I haven’t seen traffic? But I also haven’t seen people.

Yeah, yeah, there are people everywhere but they’re not as friendly as city dwellers, and I get that same look I used to get in the 70’s in Georgia that went hand in hand with the question, “what are you?” plus people here keep asking me if my very caucasian looking kids speak English…

I’ve just started a new job which I’m thrilled about, but my search for childcare is bleak.  Apparently everyone wants to take care of my kids, but with their kids at their house, and I’m just not comfortable with that. Sittercity and craigslist aren’t as commonly used here, so I’m going  to the churches, even though I’m not a churchgoer, to network for a sitter.

Frick has been a champ, starting a new school mid-year without a hitch, but there’s no parent list, no invitations allowed in the school and despite the fact that I’m making it a point to arrive early to introduce myself to other parents as we wait for the kids to come out, they aren’t very interested in making small talk.

My husband and I keep telling ourselves that it would have been a totally different experience had we moved in the spring or summer.  I guess we’ll see what happens in a few months, and if the first thaw works with the families as much as it does with the foliage!


Burbs or Bust

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Yes, instead of packing I’m writing.  Do you blame me?  I have yet to meet – or tweet – anyone that enjoys packing.  Despite my best efforts to purge continuously, we’ve managed to amass over 5 thousand pounds of “stuff” at least that’s what the movers are estimating.

So why the move?  Well, I was hoping that our move would be to Atlanta, but not yet.  In the meantime, we thought it was time to spread out a little so we’ve rented an adorable little house, slightly larger than our current abode, on a quiet street and with an ample back yard, perfect for two kids.

Is it what either of us imagined?  No.  But it “feels” right.  So Rolling Meadows here we come!!  Granted it’s not another state, but there are some changes so here are my tips on moving to a new area thus far:

  • Get a list of resources from your realtor or the area’s city hall.  City hall is also a great resource for questions like, garbage, water, city stickers and other rules & regs for the area you’re moving into.
  • Call your utility company and change your mailing address with the USPS about 3 weeks before so that you’re not running around last-minute doing these things which could have been handled well in advance
  • If you’re using a moving company know that “insured and bonded” means that they cover their employees and the home in the event of an accident.  Your goods are not covered in transport.  You either need to purchase additional insurance or contact your home owners insurance for a “transit rider” or a “peril count” change.
  • Call the school you are going to move to and find out their enrollment needs, as well as their curriculum.  Remember parents we are advocates for our children.  For that matter, let your child’s current school know that you are moving asap.  My Frick is still little and having her current teacher’s support has been instrumental during this transition.
  • Purge people, purge!! Salvation Army and Goodwill will pick up, plus there are many other (perhaps needier) organizations who are happy to take your stuff (but you may have to drop off).
  • If you want boxes for free, grocery stores on Sundays, Craigslist or check with your mover if you are using one.  If you’re going to purchase boxes, I’ve been told unanimously that Home Depot has the most inexpensive boxes.
  • If you’re using a mover, ask.  Most will breakdown and set-up furniture.  Some will provide wardrobe boxes (I highly recommend these, clothes go from hanging in the closet to hanging in the box to your new closet).  Some movers want your dressers emptied, others will move them full.
  • Always. Ask. Questions. From your mover, from your realtor, from the seller, landlord, whomever.  You don’t know unless you ask and if you don’t know what to ask tell them, “I’m moving into the area, is there any advice you could give me”.
  • Familiarize yourself with the local hospital.  Yes, it’s grim, but I’ve learned from my husband to “plan for the worst and hope for the best”.

Ok, that’s it for now.  I REALLY have to get some packing done.  Really.  Oh and I will update #BurbsOrBust on twitter so stay tuned for the (hopefully) hilarious and (definitely) exhausting process of moving.

Eight days…

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Yes, eight.  Count them!  8 days until the LATISM conference here in Chicago.  The conference that I’ve been working on since the beginning of the year – or spring?  I can’t remember, it’s all been a blur.  One fantastic, mind-blowing, inspirational, frustrating, amazing, stupefying ride.  And it’s not over yet!

During those months there were so many other amazing things that happened in my life (a girl cannot live from work alone right?!) a few highlights include:

  • The time I Zaarly‘d someone to come clean and @AHauntrepreneur from the Zaarly Chicago dream team was the one to respond (which for the record, his mama did a good job, that boy can clean!)
  • The fabulous BlogHer-a-thon with @AnaRC and @ergeekgoddess, that’s 72 hours en tacones learning, networking and meeting all the fabulous twitterati like @LaLicenciada @laflowers @typeamom @presleyspantry and, WHAT?! Nipples and feet?! NOOOO @nibblesNfeasts !!!
  • A live radio interview with Poco A Poco bilingual radio show in Chicago with the energetic and intelligent Maya Escobar and her fabulous father, Gonzalo Escobar.
  • Frick attended a high tea with me at the Intercontinental Chicago for the Royal Wedding and it was executed phenomenally!  Every detail, every flower, every delicious morsel.
  • My husband and I celebrated 10 years of wedded bliss!  More like my husband and I and our kids (they keep following us around!!  Something about make us breakfast, help tie my shoes, I can’t do my buttons – geesh!!) celebrated our anniversary.
  • We took a family vacay to the Choo-Choo Hotel in Chattanooga, TN.  It sounded like a cool experience for the kids, and, thanks to my fabulous shopping techniques, I scored a deal for 2 nights in the converted train cars (1 night would have sufficed).  We also went to Rock City while in Chattanooga, and it rocks!  Plus, there’s a Starbucks right across the street.

Like that, there are many other great stories and people I’ve met along the way, but now, eight days before the conference, I’m freaking out because we’re moving to the suburbs at the end of this month!!!!

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