Monday, January 24, 2011

My Suburban's spectacular manifestation of its death wish

My car has a death wish.

I know I should have gotten a clue when odd parts started breaking or when it started running out of gas at embarrassing times. But I thought the car gods were finished using me as their personal comic relief. New drive shaft, new brakes, new dual screen portable DVD player, and new XM radio would guilt the Suburban into playing nice during our cross country move.

When we finished our Tetris worthy loading of the moving van, only to be held up by the Suburban running out of has AGAIN in our own driveway, you would think I'd question my faith. In hind sight, I should have worried.

On the first day, a mere 2 hours into the 5 day trip, I rolled down the passenger side window so I could hand over ransom, I mean toll, money to Peter in the moving truck. (Why didn't we do this before we left? Because we are poor planers.)

It. Would. Not. Roll. Up. Again. We are in the middle of New England winter, driving down the freeway with the window down.

Did I mention the part where we took an 18-year-old kid, Alejandro, with us to drop him off at BYU-I? Did I mention that this last minute addition saved my sanity? So he and I used clear plastic and A LOT of tape to cover the gaping hole. We choose warmth over quiet as it was beyond loud for the entire ten hours left in our first driving day.

The next morning Peter wondered if we could last until our mid-trip rest day at Mt Rushmore before fixing the window. Um, NO. Luckily Alejandro's father works on cars and he phone conferenced his son and Peter through a disassembly of the car door- the only casualty being the locking mechanism. Unfortunately, the window still remained stubbornly down.

So they broke it out of the frame and duct taped it into place. We totally went gettho. But it was now warm and quiet, so I was happy.

I mean every trip needs a disaster. I was just lucky mine only cost me dignity, an unlockable door, and about half a day loss of driving.

 We busted our humps to get back on schedule and pulled into Rapid City, South Dakota, late Saturday night. We were finally back on track!

Sunday was our day off driving. We were supposed to head to church in the morning, visit Mt Rushmore in the afternoon, and enjoy the small indoor water park in the hotel in the evening. One block after pulling out of the church parking lot, someone mistook a green light for a green arrow and turned left into us. Smashed the entire side of the car and caused Peter and Ethan to hit their heads.

Our trip just took a turn for the stressful. It was not until THAT moment that I finally realized how strongly my car wished to die.

Luckily neither head hit caused an injury and there was no doubt that we were not at fault.

A bazillion phone calls and one day later, after a complete clean out of a car that had been stuffed to breaking and lived in for three days straight, we got a rental minivan (it was the only choice we had). Insurance seemed to think the Suburban wasn't totaled. I don't know what number they were looking at: a total of the mechanic bill, the minivan rental bill, and the bill to ship the car from South Dakota to Washington far surpassed the value of the 9-year-old Suburban.

We were fortunate that we already planned on spending all of Sunday in South Dakota and there was a water park in the hotel we were trapped in for the day. The next morning we took a quick look at Mt Rushmore and hurried on our way, arriving right on schedule two days later.

One month after moving here, the Suburban joined us. Since I'd rather not replace it until after I've saved enough to pay cash for something else, we decided to play nice; a full detailing job will be enough to appease a death wish, right?


Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Pictures of the House Part 1

I decided to post pictures of the house before I posted about my adventures with the car. This may be due to implicit threats from family members.

Just remember, I have not had time to decorate. Mostly I've thrown things in roughly the right place, hoping they'd stick eventually. Also, I have not hung any pictures yet. Oh, and I have a room still waiting for the 12 foot couch we've ordered and the flat screen TV we have not.

And I know the table doesn't match. It will after I paint it black. And get new kitchen chairs since mine didn't make it onto the moving truck.

Also, I didn't mop my floors.

And there is a reason you are only seeing the downstairs. It will take a few more days to do upstairs.

So, now that my warnings are made...

Kitchen from different view
Now I'm standing in the kitchen. See the spots for the missing couch and TV?
Facing front door
Pantry.  It will be beautiful, once it is organized properly.
Front Parlor

And again
Powder bathroom
Back bathroom by guest room and mud area
Just in case you think I didn't have a lot left to do...

Guest Room/Craft room

What will be our mud closet but is now Mt. WinterGear

The edge of Mt. WinterGear by door to garage


Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Confirmation that I didn't fall completely into a black hole

It turns out I did not fall into a black hole. It was more like a charcoal hole or maybe just brownish black.

This last move may be the MOST stressful thing I have ever done. Don't forget, I've gone through epidural-less birth five times, plus a bonus epidural-full birth, and survived my husband's medical school and his residency and his job as an ER doc. Not to mention no less than THREE other cross country moves with a total of 10 moves (in 6 states) during my 15 years of marriage.

This was still the worst; I'm still not exactly sure why. Hence the self-imposed silence. It took everything I had to hold onto my sanity as we packed, moved, unpacked. Although I can't say I kept an exactly firm grasp; it was more like a loosely held idea of sanity.

But don't worry, this horrible, stress-filled move garnered many funny tales. Like how we got to our new town December 21st, but our Suburban- which began the trip with us driving in it- only arrived last night. Fun times, I tell you, fun times.

Internet.  I know I lived almost 2/3 of my life without it.  I just can't remember how.  It was its arrival last Friday that finally had me see the light out of my information-and-communication-dark hole I'd sequestered myself in all this time.

So, this is a quick "I'm still here" post.  I will post pictures of the house and regale you with tales of our drive soon.  I promise. 

Unless I accidentally fall into a real black hole.