Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Leaving Rock Springs

I will be honest, as much as we wanted out of Rock Springs, I also had become comfortable there.  I can't speak for D he never was.  He loved his job and that was about all he loved there.  Paiglee had her friends and loved her activity day leaders.  She was finally going to get the teacher I have been wanting her to have.  It was just familiar and I like familiar.  I wasn't sure if I was going to miss Rock Springs.  To be honest I was just glad we were finally leaving.  We have struggled really bad the last two years with finding happiness there.  Don't get me wrong we were happy with our life but the place we were living was really wearing on us.  If that makes any sense.  But I didn't have a lot of time to think about these things because moving was so stressful and I thought I just needed to get there then all would be okay, stress would be alleviated.  Not the case!

The morning of moving, saying goodbye to the place we have called home for the last seven years.  I already knew I was going to miss my house and certain things about it.




The girls were troopers through it all and dealt with things so well.  I tried so hard to keep my crap together for them.  We were on the road to a new place!



I knew I wasn't going to be walking into a home that was as clean as mine in RS.  My realtor in RS already told me I wouldn't get a house as clean as mine.  I guess it is uncommon for people to be clean?!  I had planned on cleaning a lot but little did I know how much I really would be cleaning.  I just wasn't prepared for what I walked into.

I did the final walk through when we pulled into Lander.  The owners were out weeks before and they had a contractor doing some of the negotiated repairs during those weeks.  Also my contractor had been in to scrap the popcorn ceilings off.  But I walked into that house and it didn't smell like I remembered.  Plus my contractor had left more of a mess than I would have liked.

Here is a list of everything that went wrong:
-moneys negotiated to be exchanged were not exchanged
-the swamp cooler wasn't working
-the down stairs toilet wasn't functional
-the whole entire house was disgusting
-the kitchen was the worst of it
-my brand new refrigerator got dented and scratched really bad
-the foundation had a crack that was discovered
-the bugs and spiders are out of control here

I think that might be it.  When I say the house was dirty I really mean dirty.  There was a greasy film on every wall and the kitchen was so bad.  It took three days for my mom and I to get the kitchen really clean.  Then it still needed some touch up done.  But we washed every single cupboard inside and out.  Every crack was scrapped and cleaned.  My mom spent one whole day on the oven while I worked on cupboards.  It was not just a wipe down of them either it was taking a sponge that wouldn't scratch them and scrubbing.  The grease was compounded by the fact that they had a cat and the cat hair was everywhere sticking to the grease.  It was in every crack!  I literally don't think they ever cleaned.  I didn't look hard enough at the kitchen when we first saw it.  But guess what it wouldn't have changed anything because it is still one of the better homes on the market at the time and I even kept looking at houses after we put an offer on this one and nothing compared.  I am so glad that we bought a fridge, theirs was so nasty.  The oven needs to be replaced and probably could have been if we didn't have to do unexpected construction.

My parents were only going to stay until Sunday.  We moved on Friday and they could only stay until Sunday.  Well Sunday morning Daryl discovered a big crack that you could see through in the foundation.  I was appalled, I was mad because they should have disclosed it and they didn't.  I talked to the realtor and she said they didn't have to unless it was structural and it wasn't.  But how in the world do you in good conscience sell a house like that and how did my inspector not make note of it. A lot of shady things went down with them and I still have yet to look into them all.  I will at some point, not now.  So my parents made plans to come back after my mom's appointment on Monday and get all the stuff needed to fix the downstairs room properly.  I had to get on my contractor to do his job in a timely manner.  It was just a hot mess and I kept my cool through it.  That in itself is a miracle.  The whole situation taught me a lot.  But I am so glad that first week is over.  I looked back from the second week and it felt like a life time had passed that first week.  I couldn't believe we had done so much in so little of time.  But once again through all the things that went wrong there were many heavenly mercies that I saw.  I cried once I think that Sunday and it was the two previous days finally catching up to me, and it felt like almost a panic attack.  I was so mad at the sellers and my realtor.  I felt blind sided in so many ways and the Sunday morning I finally had a moment to absorb some of it and it came out in tears.  I was trying to hold it together because the girls were pretty mortified by the house as well.  I didn't want them to hate the house we were suppose to be excited for.  Emery wanted to go home the first day.  She told me she hated this house.  But I knew once I cleaned it she would change.  I made that kitchen spotless and with the cleaning the smell began to go away.

I don't want to go back to that week or two ever.  They were really not fun, so stressful.  I still have so some cleaning to do to make this home feel clean enough for me and up to my standard.  But a ton is behind me and that is all that matters.  I am so proud of myself for keeping my cool like I did.  even Daryl was shocked and I kind of was too when I look back on it.  But it really taught me about myself.  I know for a fact though that if my parents weren't here helping me during that first week and a half I wouldn't have handled it so well, probably.  They really helped and dug in and cleaned and repaired.  I was afraid it was going to kill my dad he was working so hard.  I stopped several times just to hug my mom and thank her for helping.  I thought about taking pictures for before and after but you can't see the film of grease on everything you just had to see it in person.  I still need to scrub my ceiling in the kitchen and repaint it.  There is so much that needs to be done to this house, that we have planned.  But for now until we can recover it is good we will continue to paint and clean.  I swear it took three deep cleanings of the bathroom to get it really good.  Each time grim came off and it made me curse the sellers.  I actually hate the sellers and have hard feelings toward them.  So much so that I hate my room because I know that is where they slept and for some reason it makes me mad.  Plus with the headache they gave us before we even moved in just to get the house then the nastiness of it, it just compounded to..... I can't stand those people.  People I have never met in my life.  I don't understand uncleanliness, I never will.

Before we moved we had tossed the idea of getting a hypoallergenic dog.  Well with me having to clean all the cat hair up I told Daryl it is out of the question.  Also the linen closet in the hall had a horrible smell to it.  My mom scrubbed it from ceiling to floor and it still smelled.  I put my stuff in there anyway thinking it will air out and I put dryer sheets in there.  It didn't work it made my towels and everything smell like it.  Daryl said it was the smell of a litter box or kitty litter.  Once he said that I knew he was right.  So finally this week I painted it with KILZ and it is gone.  Hurray!  The downstairs toilet is almost fixed too.  Also did I mention the sellers also did the worst paint job ever.  Even if I liked their colors I need to repaint to cover up their bad job.  In the bathroom I noticed they painted over hair.  I mean why couldn't they wash the wall, then paint.  It kills me the laziness of the sellers.

But I love my house now and there is a lot of improvements we want to do but they will come with time.  The house is livable and breathable now.  I do a little something new each week and up keep on the rest.  We love this house and the uniqueness of it.  Also we love the yard as well.  So once it was cleaned I was reminded why we did choose this house, there is so much potential and character to it.

My fridge, it happened the first day while they were trying to get it in.  Daryl was sure it would send me over the edge, but it didn't.  I just said it is okay we can replace the door.  We haven't replaced the door but we will eventually, but once again we need to breath.





The first night we didn't have the swamp cooler and it was so hot so Daryl and I slept on the couch with fans blowing on us.  This night I was exhausted but I was the last one up and I really missed my house.  It killed me to know I gave a really clean house to a guy who was probably sleeping soundly and I was in a pig sty and miserable missing my house wide awake.   Funny tidbit in RS in our living room window we had a view of the hospital there and here in Lander we too have a view of the hospital on a hill from our living room window.  Those are the lights you see in the window and part are from the airport as well.





Leading up to the move

We came back to RS rearing to go.  We tried to sell our home without a realtor for about a week and then realized we needed a realtor.  We learned that they are able to shuffle out the not serious buyers from the serious buyers.  Plus they just give your home more exposure than we ever could.  We looked into three realtors and decided to go with Paula Doody for one reason really her no BS attitude.  She was worth every single penny.  We absolutely loved her,  she helped us beyond what was required of her.

We came to Lander one weekend to look at houses and luckily I was already looking online and had a list of what I wanted to look at.  I thought I found the house I wanted online and was ready to make and offer without walking through it.  But Daryl and Paula strongly disagreed with that.  Good thing too, it was the biggest dud.  We walked in and smelt the place and looked at each other.  We hated it, and I am so glad we didn't listen to me, not like that was even going to happen.

The day of looking at houses was becoming quite the downer, the houses here are old and smell funny and not well up kept.  I was grossed out and just discouraged.  We looked at the place we finally ended up buying and it was the best we saw all day.  We loved the yard and it had some upgrades and didn't smell as funny when compared to the other houses.  We also wanted to stay within our current house payment/price range.  We didn't want to go to the max of our price range and be house poor.  Also their aren't new housing divisions going up like in Rock Springs.  If a new house is being built it is already called for.  The economy is different here than Rock Springs.  So we made and offer on this place and followed the great advice of Paula.  When they countered our offer we should have known then that it was going to be a roller coaster with these sellers.  But they finally accepted our offer and they had another offer on the table but we were the better offer.

We had a lot of struggles with the realtor here in Lander and the sellers.  I actually would never recommend the realtor here.  Our lender (who is also amazing by the way)had to do part of her job for her, he felt our pain having to deal with her.  I rarely talked to my Rock Springs Realtor and from the moment I put an offer on the Lander house I was texting or calling the Lander realtor daily up until the week we closed.  It was awful and so stressful.  The sellers acted like we were trying to take them to the wood shed, when we were just trying to be as fair to both parties as possible.  It was a huge learning experience and I actually dealt with it pretty well.  I did have to call my mom several times just to vent and yell.

Daryl had to commute two weeks from Rock Spring to Lander everyday because his job started before we could close on both homes.  That also added to the stress of packing and selling a home and buying a new one.  I remember there being a time in July where it seemed like we were never going to move and the days moved so slow.  I was in a limbo I couldn't pack because our RS realtor said that just incase our buyer fell through we need to keep it in normal order as long as possible.  So I felt like I was a sitting duck waiting for something.  Then when D was commuting it was hard things began to get super hard ten fold.  Our van's a/c broke in it and no one could get us in, in Lander or Rock Springs.  So he had to commute for two weeks without a/c.  Plus I was really behind with the packing.  Luckily my parents came to help and really helped to get us packed and moved.

Our Bishop in RS let us borrow his moving truck and that a lone saved us a boat load of money.  I am so grateful for that.  We had a few friends come to help us load the heavy things we really needed help with.  I was a little disappointed to be honest though.  In the seven years we lived in RS Daryl had helped many, many people move in and out of the ward and even non-members.  We didn't get the help like we had hoped for in return.  I guess my thought was oh you have helped and now it is our turn to dip into that and get some help.  It made me feel glad to be moving.  But my parents were our saving grace and really helped a ton.  We wouldn't have been able to do it with out them.

This moving experience compared to when we moved to Rock Springs was much more stressful.  But through it all I could probably name as many blessing through it all as I could stressful events.

Looking for New Horizons

I can't believe we are moved and settled for the most part.  It has been a whirl wind and a roller coaster this summer.  Actually our summer kind of sucked because of moving.  But we are here and happy now.

Daryl and I knew it was time to move.  D's loan repayment was going to be up in June and we began to look in March when most districts post jobs.  He applied to many places.  We have this imaginary list of things we want in the place we would like to live.  So we tried applying in places that met some of those requirements.  We even applied in IA and the rest was in WY.  It is hard to leave Wyoming as an educator because they pay amazingly well.  But there are not a ton if any of the places that meet our imaginary lists requirements.  But we tried to pick the best places we thought would be nice to live.  We just knew it was time to get out of Rock Springs.

We didn't get any bites and the only serious interest he got was in Rock Springs and they went with someone out of State.  It was a blow to us we had stopped looking at that point and when he didn't get it he started looking again.  He found this Lander one but of course me not wanting to live in a tinier place wasn't excited.  He waited a long time, in fact the night before the job listing closed he submitted his resume'.  The next morning while at church Daryl got a call for an interview.  We couldn't believe it.  Either no one had applied or D's resume was what they were looking for or the job wasn't a great one since it was open so late in the hiring season.

We made a little trip out of it and went up as a family.  Daryl wanted to make sure that I liked the town.  I had only ever been on one side and it was in the winter/spring time.  This was late spring andI couldn't believe how green it was.  I didn't remember the mountains being so beautiful.  I didn't want to think about this place as our home, I didn't want to jinx any thing and I wasn't sure if I was really ready to move.  I had kind of come to the sad reality of Rock Springs being our home, even with us not being happy with it.  Plus no one and really bitten on us so I felt it was a hope in the wind.  

Daryl had the early interview and he said the guy after him had experience and when he found that out he felt like it was a no go.  He lost out to someone with experience in RS a place they knew D and how amazing he is.  Lander didn't know him and so we felt it was now a long shot.  I do remember while D was in his interview I had taken the girls to a school here and let them play.  I was swinging on a swing and looking at the gorgeous green mountain view and I felt peace.  I felt like this was going to be the place but I didn't want to acknowledge it, in fear of it not happening and fear that is was just my hopefulness talking to me.

Daryl was done and we hung around to eat and go to another school to talk about how his interview went.  He said it went well as good as it could have gone but he mentioned the guy after him.  We were just anxious at this point to know whether we would be picking up our life to move or staying put and putting our big girl pants on to keep trekking along in RS.  We decided to get on the road to Rock Springs and the drive literally has no service shortly after leaving Lander until you get to Farson and Hour and 15 min away.  We were just anxious talking about how we thought we might hear either way as to whether we got the job or not.

Then in a small stitch of service Daryl sees he has a missed call and voicemail.  Daryl checked it and it was them asking for D to call them back.  We then spent a good amount of time looking for service to call back.  D said after that he knew it was good.  When I think of us driving around on hills trying to get service along the way to Farson I laugh it was so comical.  D finally was able to call back and talked to the Principal and he got the job.  We were so excited!  We began to call all of the people close to us and tell them.  Paiglee was excited but I know she was scared.  Emery didn't get what moving really meant.  D's old Pincipal found out he got the job before us really, because when he called to talk to her she said that the other principal had just called and talked to her.  We were more in disbelief that we would actually be moving.  Something I think D and I thought wouldn't happen yet.
 

Fall Activities

While I have tons of catch up to do on this blog, I have to start posting the current things going on in our life.

We are moved and about as settled in as we are going to get right now.  We really love it here and love our home.  The girls have adjusted really well and I couldn't ask for more.  I knew part of their success was in getting them active and involved as soon as I could.  

Paiglee has been asking us since last school year to play soccer and so we got her signed up as soon as we could and luckily Lander doesn't do their registration as early as RS does.  I found a lady in our ward to do piano lessons for us.  Then Paiglee also has activity days as well.  She is busy when she has all three in one week.  Paiglee is doing awesome with soccer, I was impressed with how much skill she had kept, with not really using it for a few years.  

Paiglee tells me daily how much she loves soccer.  There are two older girls on her team and she looks up to them a lot. She told me she wants to be good like them so badly.  I told her she would if she sticks with soccer, tries hard, and practices.  She wants to do good and asks "mom did I do good"?  Of course she does, and she has improved even with the three weeks she has been playing.  She also has matured a lot since the last time she played in 1st grade. She use to never go for the ball and she would dance and hop around the crowd of kids that were around the ball.  Now she gets in there and she controls the ball better.  I am excited for her, and her new love of soccer.

The beautiful Wind River Mountains are one of my favorite things about living here.  The pictures don't even do them justice.  I constantly say how pretty they are and how much I love the mountains.  


Emery has some activities as well.  I signed her up for gymnastics two days a week, and I was able to get her into Tiger Tots here two days a week.  She loves Tigers Tots and barely has time to hang up her coat an back pack before she runs in to her classroom.  She barely has time to say goodbye to me as well, and never looks back.  She feels big and loves to talk about "her" school.  

Gymnastics has been good she cracks me up watching her try and learn these skills her teacher is teaching them.  Watching her try to move her body they way she is told to makes me giggle.  She is such a social butterfly and is not afraid to talk to the kids.  She is so fun to watch.  I haven't been able to get picture of Emery at gymnastics because her teacher likes parents to go but next time I pick her up a few minutes early I need to remember to pull out my phone and snap a few pictures.  

Monday, May 18, 2015

April 2014 Easter

We couldn't decide if we wanted to go to Laramie for Easter, I wasn't feeling like I wanted to so we decided to stick around here.  We dyed eggs late, I believe we did it on easter.  Luckily Emery was napping and so Paiglee and I just colored her eggs together, which was nice.  I didn't have to worry about Em breaking the eggs or spilling the dye.  She joined at the end when she woke up.  She was able to put stickers on some of the eggs.  It was a really laid back easter.  I didn't get pictures of their Easter baskets or anything, I believe so I kind of dropped that ball.  But I was able to get some cute pictures of the girls.  








Look at this cute little lamb Emery got from the Easter bunny, I believe Paiglee got a piggy.





April 2014 Temple Visit

Since living here in Rock Springs we haven't gone to the temple like we use to when we lived in Laramie.  Funny part we are about the same distance from a temple as we were in Laramie.  It seemed more convenient then, then it does now.  I think we had more of a support system there I guess.  We always went with people and took turns going in.  It made for a long day but we always rewarded ourselves with yummy restaurants.  Also we had sitters and what not.  But all that aside I wanted to take the girls to the temple since we never seem to get there with them or as a family.  D and I would always go to the temple with the ward when the RS or EC went but not as a family.  So we were headed to Salt Lake and I really wanted one of the main things we did, be visiting the temple with the girls.  
Lots of pictures of the same thing but the little story they tell cracks me up now.  Also it is a little glimpse into our real daily life.

We think we are getting a good picture


mom asks Em to stop and just smile




I think go her to stop 


nope


Dad asking her to stop and take a nice picture, Paiglee very obedient not usually our misbehaving child


Em really not caring what dad is saying, Dad leaning in a little more to plead her to stop, Paiglee still trying to be good


Em still testing Dad, Paiglee checked out


Just when we thought we had her cooperating with us, she books it and we call it good


Funny thing about this picture.  There was this young couple probably not even married.  But they were giving some serious PDA.  It was actually a little inappropriate for the place.  The girl was like on the guys lap and kissing a lot and very touchy.  It was very hard to act like they weren't there.  This picture shows Paiglee looking at them, it is kind of how I felt, as well.


look at little sasserilla's pose, silly girl.  Funny thing: When we were walking up the spiral walk way to see the statue of Christ Emery was yelling and once she realized it echoed she really laid into it.  D and I were scrambling to silence her. 


I am glad we took the girls, now we try to go walk the temple grounds when we go to Utah every time.  Love these girls for their individuality and all the bring to the world.  They are so polar opposites and it can be so entertaining but also sometimes I wish they weren't so far apart on the spectrum of being different.

Sunday, May 17, 2015

Grandma Nickelson's 100th Birthday

At the end of January we all headed to Thermopolis to throw my Grandma Nickelson a surprise birthday party for her 100th Birthday!  If at any time you feel it appropriate to have a surprise party it would be for a 100th birthday, right?  I had asked my Grandma many years ago to promise me she would make live to be 100.  She did it and I was so happy for her.  Not only was it a huge accomplishment for her but I have always wanted to say my Grandma lived to be 100.  I mean that is just cool, no matter how old you are.  We had so much fun this trip, and it is a great memory of my grandma.  We really surprised her and I think she felt really loved.  We had her cousins come and that really surprised her.  She is a very modest person so she thought it was craziness that we made such a fuss over her.  She is a big deal to us, and so it was only appropriate to make her a big deal.

Most of my family stayed at my grandma's which is not a big place.  D and I opted to get a hotel room, we need our space.  We went to the Star plunge to swim one day, we sat around talking a lot.  We had her birthday at I think the best mexican restaurant in Thermopolis.  We spent a lot of family time hanging out and just enjoying this time, that we all hoped wouldn't be our last to be all together with our Grandma.  It was wonderful and everyone gave her, her favorite treats.  She also received a letter from President Obama.  We all laughed and made jokes.   We didn't celebrate on her actual birthday but the day of her birthday I had sent her flowers to make her feel special on her actual b-day as well.  My mom sent me a picture of the flowers on my phone but I have yet to get all my pictures off my phone.

I love this lady and I am so glad that we were able to celebrate this huge milestone and show her how much we love her.

























She means the world to this family