Tag Archives: moving

Transitions Part 2, A 1700 Mile Adventure!

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Hello, my blog reading friends! You may recall that back on July 10, 2013, I began a series of posts called “Transitions“, promising to continue the series a little later. Well, the continuation begins today, as part of the Review Crew’s Summer Blog Hop! I think you’ll find the Summer Blog Hop to be a fun ride, with 90 bloggers and 450 posts on a wide variety of topics. So, without further ado, let’s get on with the Hop! 🙂

If you went back and read the first Transitions post, you will recall that we had finally gotten our belongings loaded up, and were about to set off for our big move to Albuquerque, NM. And so we did, rather later in the day than we planned, after the delay of waiting for the moving truck to arrive until much later than expected. But, finally, we were ready to go, on the afternoon of July 30, 2012!

We headed west out of Port Huron, MI to Flint, MI, so we could make a brief (hahaha, as if brief visits and good-byes EVER happens in this family!) stop at my brother’s, to say good-bye to him, my sister-in-law, one of my nieces and her beautiful little girl.

Here is “The Batman” playing with my great-niece, Penny before we left to head on to another little side trip . . .

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And here are all of the boys and Penny together!

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From there, we headed to Northern Michigan, more specifically Rapid City and Bellaire, MI, to see my mother’s last surviving siblings, Aunt Marge and Uncle Jim, and their respective spouses, Uncle Leon and Aunt Ann. They are all elderly, and I wanted very much to see them before we moved so far away, so my husband made it workable for us. I’m so grateful to him for doing that for me . . .

With our late start, and then a longer stop than we planned in Flint, we didn’t get to our motel (The All Seasons Motel in Bellaire) until about 10:00 p.m., but they were ready for us, after my husband had called them to say we were delayed. It was a small, basic room, which was fine for us. We just needed a place to sleep, shower and change, as we spent most of our time there either with my aunts and uncles, or swimming, or roaming around the village of Alden, showing the kids some of the places we went to when I was younger.

“The Batman” and “The Artist, bedding down for the night . . .

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Mr. “Loquacious”, sound asleep . . .

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And the “Puzzler”, totally zonked out!

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Spending the morning at Torch Lake, in Rapid City MI . . .

“Mom! Are you SURE this water is warm enough?!” (Torch Lake is a spring fed lake, and cold when first going in, lol!

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They soon decided it was worth it, though!

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In Alden, MI wandering around before heading back over to see the aunts and uncles one final time before heading west . . .

This sign is right at the edge of the lake in the village of Alden . . .

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Torch Lake has been rated by National Geographic as the cleanest lake in America, and the third cleanest in the world!

One of the shops we like in Alden . . .

Carter’s Candles, I still have a Petoskey stone magnet from this store that my husband and I bought on our honeymoon 23 years ago!

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Love the new Alden sign posts!

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At this point, we’d checked out of the motel, and gone back to see my aunts and uncles one last time. Here are the boys with my Aunt Marge and Uncle Leon . . .

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And here is the only picture that came out of me with them, I look half asleep, lol!

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After saying good-bye one last time, we headed down the road to my Uncle Jim’s house to see him and his wife, my Aunt Ann, one final time . . .

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It was a difficult good-bye for me. As I said before, my Aunt Marge and my Uncle Jim are my mother’s last surviving siblings, and they and their spouses are all in their late seventies and eighties, so this was very likely my last time I will ever see them. It was very quiet in the car for a while after we left . . .

We then headed west, and as we were going through the area of Holland Michigan, I phoned my Aunt Carol, who lives there with her new husband. She is my Uncle Keith’s widow, and I so loved him, and her, so I was hoping we could meet up briefly. She didn’t answer her phone, but called me back shortly after we passed Holland. We turned back, and met her at a road-side farmer’s market.

Here are the boys, entertaining themselves while we wait for Carol to meet us . . .

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We followed her over to the beach on Lake Michigan, someplace we’d never been, which meant we’d now driven from the east coast of Michigan (Port Huron) to the west coast of Michigan!

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Here are the boys with my Aunt Carol . . .

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and here’s one with just me and my aunt!

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And now, we were truly leaving Michigan, on August 1, 2012, with our next stop being a quick night in a motel in Indiana. Stay tuned tomorrow for the next leg of the journey, because it starts out super FUN (see the sarcasm there, lol?)

As always, I’d love it if you’d sign up to follow my blog via email! Just click on the “sign me up!” box at the top right of this page and enter your email address! 🙂

Hop on over to the main blog hop post, so you can check out all the other participating bloggers!

Summer Blog Hop

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Filed under 1700 Mile Adventure, Blog Hop Aug. 5 - 9, family, Kids, Schoolhouse Review Crew Post, Transitions, Travel

Coming Soon . . .

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I will be writing a series of posts about our trip from Pt. Huron, MI to Albuquerque, NM. This is part of my “Transitions” series, which I began on July 10, 2013. As you can see above, this five part series will be from August 5 – 9, 2013, as part of a five day blog hop. I will give you lots of details about how my boys and I made our way across the country on our big move, a month after my husband had already moved here for his job transfer. We had a lot of fun, and I drove a LOT of miles, more than I EVER have on my own before! You’ll see how I managed to do this with four special needs boys, without falling apart, lol!

Now, this blog hop will cover a lot of varying topics, ranging from homeschooling, to crafts, to travel, just all sorts of things, written by more than 80 different bloggers! I’m so certain that you will find a number of things of interest to you, and maybe even a new blogger or two to follow! I do hope you are following me, but if you aren’t yet following by email, you can do so by entering your email in the box at the top right of the page and clicking enter.

Please come back and check out the blog hop, beginning August 5, 2013. See you then, and remember, if you just sign up to follow via email, you won’t even HAVE to remember, your email will remind you when it’s time to come to the blog!

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Filed under 1700 Mile Adventure, family, Transitions, Travel

Finally Found My New Mexico Hair Stylist!!!

So I have been desperate enough to go to an assembly line, “get ’em in, get ’em out” place (which shall go un-named, but has the initials F & S . . . ) for cut, color and eyebrow wax ever since we’ve been here, because, well, I couldn’t just not get my cut, color and wax done on at least a semi-regular basis . . . But I have NOT been happy with the results at all.

I REALLY miss my stylist, C.J. Greer, the owner of Urban Chic Salon back in Michigan, and Whitney Ouellette, who did my hair whenever C.J. was booked . . .

This is what I’ve been looking like, after the assembly line, chain place.

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Today, I went to a wonderful place called Neilmarie Salon, and one of their stylists, Jody Muniz, worked on my hair. She took the time to consult with me about colors, about cut, about my hair texture, etc . . . She did NOT try to rush me through. She told me right from the start, “I don’t let a client leave until they are happy”. THAT made me feel happy, right there! 🙂

The atmosphere there is very comfortable, very colorful and artistic. There are a number of art pieces for sale that were created by the owner. The place is even decorated in similar colors to Urban Chic!

So, Jody and I conferred about my colors for this appointment (I like to play, so every time I go my hair color WILL be somewhat different, LOL!), she went and mixed the colors, and came back with colors and a pile of foils. After a few moments, I was in definite “Beam me up, Scotty!” mode, LOL!

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25 minutes on a timer to process the color, then she removed the foils and washed the excess dye out. Then, she created a really, really cute cut for me!

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Just so you know, that is NOT pink in my hair. Between the lighting in the salon, and my camera, it may look that way in the pictures, but it isn’t. Jody used one of the chocolate shades, a mahogany (it’s the mahogany that looks pink in the pictures, but it’s actually a nice red tone), and a coppery shade, weaving those colors and the color that was already there, to give me TONS of color play. She showed me how to style it like this with just my blow dryer, fingers, and some stuff called Working Spray (which I bought), and she also put a really nice solution on it before styling, it made my hair feel so soft! It was called Moroccanoil,
and I will definitely be going back to buy some in a couple of weeks when it goes on sale. 🙂

I am VERY happy with the result, and have already made my next appointment toward the end of April! 🙂

I shall miss you greatly, C.J. and Whitney, but sadly, 1700 miles is just too far for me to go for regular hair care. Thankfully, I’ve found someone here who cares as much about how my hair looks as you always did!

*added on April 13, 2013*

I went back and bought the Moroccanoil Treatment, and the Moroccanoil Hydrating Cream when they had their product sale a couple of weeks ago, and have been very pleased with how easy they are to use. I will be stopping back in probably at the end of this month, and purchasing the Moroccanoil styling product for curly hair, which Jody used during my appointment today, along with the other products. I LOVE this place, and am SO happy with Jody as my stylist! I know my hair is in good hands, just like it was back in Michigan! 🙂

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What a Difference a Year Makes . . .

Today, my husband Mike posted the following on his Facebook status:

“One year ago today, my life (and the lives of my family) drastically changed. It’s the day we found out the office in which I worked would be closing.

We had good options and more than 90 days notice. We could take a severance package based on seniority, interview for a different position within the company, or “move your desk” and keep the same job in a different location.

The first thing I did after the “all hands” meeting where we received the announcement was to call my wife…I did NOT want her to find out first by watching the TV news.

Once I got home, I got on the computer and researched the web site we were given to investigate our options. Lori got on her computer and looked for home school friendly states. We compared notes, prayed, researched and prayed some more…and we decided on Albuquerque.

That was a year ago. We’ve had trials and challenges, victories and defeats. We miss our old friends and old church…but we’re making new friends and love our new church! The center I work in now has a much better morale and is more relaxed then my old one. At this point, I’d have to call this whole adventure a blessing!”

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He’s right, too! For me, it’s been a scary journey, but one well worth all the researching, planning, packing, having the moving sale, etc . . . it was scary when Mike left for Albuquerque at the end of June, knowing the kids and I wouldn’t be leaving for another month. It was really hard to be on my own for that month, without him to help me get us ready and moved. It was scary knowing I had to trust him to choose a place for us to live, too! (but he did pretty well!) 🙂 And it was REALLY scary when the kids and I set out on our cross-country drive, knowing we were about to begin a brand new life, 1700 miles away, at the end of the longest distance I have ever driven without help! But you know, we did it! I had awesome friends back home in Pt. Huron, MI, who helped me get a moving sale set up (thank you, Phyllis Blount and Kim Milton!), and my awesome friend Phyllis who came and stayed with me from early morning all day each day of the moving sale, who kept my kids for me when I needed to do things without them, who took them each day to VBS at our wonderful church back home (this was the first year I couldn’t do it).

There were wonderful ladies at our church (Sparlingville Baptist Church who brought meals for my children and me during the last four days we were there.

There was a very sweet lady at church who asked if I would sing “one more special” before we left, so I sang the special during our final service, Sunday night, July 30, 2012. At the end of the service, I was just floored when Pastor Milton called the boys and me up to the platform and gave us this beautiful plaque:

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Which is proudly displayed in our new home . . .

Yes, it has been a whole new journey for me, for us. It is hard to be so far away from everything and everyone we’ve known and loved. But, we are living someplace where I’ve been wearing sandals all winter! God has placed us in exactly the right church for us (Mesa Baptist Church). We are making friends, and we have an awesome church family here, too! Just as when I had surgery back in Michigan, and our church family helped so much, with meals and such, when Mike had his back surgery this past December, our new church family rallied ’round, and we had meals, and someone to stay with our kids for the day (thank you, Charles & Charlie Wright!). Then, when less than six weeks later, he wound up back in the hospital for surgery on his back AGAIN, with less than 24 hours notice our church family was here for us again. We had two ladies here the next day with practically no notice (thank you, Ann Wright & Rose Yates!), to stay with our kids so I could be at the hospital with Mike. They took them to church that night (it was a Wednesday) and I met them there for service and took the boys home. And, again, ladies from church provided meals for us. As did three different people from our Thursday Home school Park Day group.

We enjoy Albuquerque, New Mexico, more than I thought we would. I’m even getting used to the big-ness of it, in comparison to Port Huron, Michigan. I’m getting used to the traffic, and getting used to spending much more time in the car, as everything is further apart than it was in the Port Huron area (hey, Pt. Huron is about seven square miles in area, and Albuquerque is 187 square mile in area! It’s quite a change to get used to, lol!)

Tonight, we went somewhere for supper that we’ve never been before, Chik-Fil-A, where for the first time in over two years, I was in a restaurant where they had something other than water for me to drink! I don’t do carbonated anything anymore, and no sugar drinks. This place has an awesome fresh squeezed diet lemonade. GOOD, GOOD, GOOD!

Since moving here, I even have worked up the courage to do something I’ve wanted to do for some time, I applied for, and was accepted as a member of The Old Schoolhouse Magazine Schoolhouse Review Crew. I’ve wanted to get back into writing, and it is helping me to be more disciplined about getting on here more regularly and writing these posts! I have hopes of writing professionally one day . . .

I have made some good friends at our new church, and have been able to be a help via email to the mom of one of them, who back in October had weight loss surgery herself.

I hope my family is as much of a blessing to our new church family as they have been, and continue to be, to us.

I hope we live here in the Albuquerque area for a long, long time . . . I’ve grown to love it here, it feels like home now, and our church feels like home, too. 🙂

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