One month ago today, we arrived in Carlsbad, CA. What have we been doing?
We arrived on Monday July 16th at Dave and Lana’s house and Wes started first thing in the morning with scheduled work back east. The kids made many friends in the neighborhood, spending their days biking and hanging out. Through out the week Wes and I went looking for a place to live. We visited houses, condos, duplexes and apartments. Thursday, we found a place we both liked and put in our first application. On Friday, Wes went to a video shooting with Dave and the man who was to play the father did not show up so, they asked Wes and he got his first role in a movie and was asked to be the “father” figure in any other videos they create. (He was so natural:)) Saturday we took the whole family (Wes’ brothers family and parents and our kids) to see the condo to which we sent our application. Beautiful place, but after a second look we were not sure it would meet our needs.
Wes continued working with clients back east and we continued to look for a place to live. Feeling more certain that the first place was not for us, we called the owners to tell them to take our name out of the 20+ applicants, which they replied, “We were just about to call you to tell you, you were approved and are our first choice.” We expressed our concerns and they kindly made the choice for us and took the next applicants of choice. By Wednesday, we explained that we were done looking (feeling we were maybe wasting our time) when Lana came to us and expressed that a house just one street over from theirs put their house on craigslist this morning. So we made a phone call and the realtor said that she was coming that evening to look the house over and that we could meet her there. After going through twice, we filled out another application. Friday morning, we got the call that we have been approved and we could meet and sign papers that afternoon. Phew! what a whirlwind of emotion. Can we afford this? How were we approved? …. Since moving in I have talked to one neighbor who has been looking to move out of her house into the smaller style that we just moved into and in her words, “That house was meant for you! In 8 years I have never seen one of the smaller houses open up for rent.” In the meantime, our kids continue to hang out with their cousins and neighbors. They went to the beach once this week and set up a freshly-squeezed lemon aid stand at the playground around the corner. They are having a good time!
August 1 move in day! Didn’t take much to move our belongings out of the trailer. Wes’ brother Dave, Wes and myself along with the kids unloaded the trailer in just one hour. Unpacking, well… that’s a different story. For the first few days, we didn’t all have beds. So Wes and I slept on an air mattress and Kadin slept on a bunch of foam toppers. We had 2 chairs shared between office and kids room, and no dressers. Just days before we moved in, we got Kasey a bed on craigslist that was perfect for her room and guests. Clothing is either hung or stacked neatly in closets, or still in containers. We are on the hunt for dressers, kitchen table, chairs and a couch.
Between running back and forth between Walmart, Target, Goodwill, and Thrift Stores, we got a good number of basic needs. However, sitting on the floor is getting a bit old. One day we were at the pool in the neighborhood, when our next door neighbor (who moved in a day before us) asked if we would want their kitchen table and chairs. It was too big for their house but fits perfectly in ours. Yeah! we can get off the floor. Also a neighbor and friend from back east gave our kids gift certificates before they left, so we took the kids shopping and they picked out 3 round comfy chairs for the living area. Thanks Malcolm! This week the kids went to the beach twice, once to see Lauren baptized in the ocean. Congratulations Lauren! They also had a volleyball tournament created by the kids in the local park.
Dakota has been getting involved with the youth ministry. He spent the night locked out of the church building with 20+ other kids on Wednesday just to see what it would be like to be homeless. It was a great experience for him and he is really excited about being involved with the leadership team. Read his blog here.
Two kids are finally registered for school and the third will be registered next week. The kids have been biking the local trails that are fairly rough in terrain in areas. (Pictures of that in upcoming post). Wes and I have been biking the kids down to their school everyday, trying to get them ready. It is a great downhill to school but a bit difficult coming back up. Also they need to cross one major road, which according to the locals, is very congested when school starts. Maybe we will just start off by walking for a while. Wes and I drove around to Thrift stores, Consignment shops, and Goodwills looking for dressers. No dressers however, we did get a very comfy loveseat, chair and ottoman so now no one has to be on the floor. Not even our guests! The good news for this week, is that we sold our trailer and it is no longer in our driveway. The best news is that the people who bought it, we may have built a relationship with them both professionally and personally. They were a great couple and share many of the same values as us. The wife may use Dave and Wes to help kick start her business which helps children all over the world.
Here are some pictures I took of the house in our second week. Also, there is no picture of the front yard because it was mostly of the trailer. It took up the entire driveway.
Thanks for all the prayers and support.