Our Family

Our Family

Sunday, June 1, 2008

A "Little" Break

Yes, I have taken a "little" break from blogging. I've been lax, but very busy. We have been in Illinois now for almost two weeks already. The first week we just tried to get settled, looked at a million houses, and then over the Memorial Day weekend we went to Michigan. We got to go stay with my grandma and visit with my aunt. We put flowers on my sister's grave (which I haven't been to for about 10 years or so) and showed the kids off to as many relatives and friends as we could find, so we stayed plenty busy. My cousin graduated from high school so we were able to go to her graduation as well.

This is a picture of us spending entirely too much time in the car for a long time.

Then on the day after Memorial Day (which was Tuesday) Kendall started his new job. This means that we are no longer homeless and unemployed, just homeless. He trained all last week and I think he's going to really like it. It is interesting that we were trying to get him hired at Caterpillar, and eServ hired him, but he is working at Caterpillar as an independent contractor. So he is meeting lots of new and interesting people and trying to learn all the ropes. They are a very fun company with lots of fun activities and discounts for everything you can think of.

The home buying process is much slower and more painful than we had thought. The property taxes out here are anywhere between 2 and 5 times as high as those in Utah for a similar sized home. We have found a couple of wonderful homes that we can't afford because the taxes alone are $400 a month or more. So we may be waiting for a couple of months before we find something that is right for us. We were really gung-hoe at first, but now we are just tired. So we will continue to live with my family for a little while and save our money like crazy. We are also trying to decide if we should get a cheaper home that needs work to build equity, or if we should get a nicer one, but we haven't decided yet, so the options are almost endless. Avri's input is that it needs to have a sandbox, so when we look at one we don't like we just have to tell Avri "it doesn't have a sandbox" and she says "I guess we will find a different one." If only it were that easy.
The kids all love living with Grandma and Grandpa. They are starting to get used to the schedule that everyone goes to work in the morning and it is just me and the kids, but by the evening the house is full of people to play with. So far, the favorite activity is riding on the riding lawnmower with Daddy. But they also think the swingset is great.

Mercedes is getting so much more personality these days. She coos and tries to use her voice quite frequently now and she is smiling all the time! She is quite the charmer and everyone tells us how beautiful she is. She is getting lots of love with all of the family around, so she is loving life.

We miss all of our friends and family back in Utah and we think of you often. I will try to be a little more frequent about my posts so that they aren't so long. Keep in contact, we'd love to hear what all of you are up to.


Aaron & Chelsey said...

Oh guys...your family is so cute! I can't believe you're all the way out in Illinois! That's great that you're getting settled. We miss you! We are having an Encore Reunion in August and I know you guys won't make it but could I get your info? Like: address, email, blog, phone #, and a permanent address? I am going to make books for everyone so we can keep in touch better. I'll send you one if you'd like!

Paul, Janie, and McKay said...

YEAA!!! I am SO GLAD to see your post and hear what you've been up to. And I got your phone message - I'll call you sometime this week! I've thought about you guys lots and lots! I'm glad Kendall's job is going well and you are enjoying the time with family.

Harrisons said...

So, take it from somebody who's been there, done that and is exhausted...Buy a house that doesn't need any work (and you'll still have a to do list a mile long!) and make sure it has a yard!! (But they finished our fence today!) So glad to see the fun pictures and hear what you're doing. Still really miss you!

Sunny said...

I've been thinking about you guys A LOT lately and have been meaning to call or email or something! It's so good to hear how you are doing. Bummer about property taxes. I totally hear you on thinking you'll be able to get into a house right away and then realize "Um no, it's going to be awhile longer yet" I hope you find something that will be perfect ( and that you can afford ) soon! So glad Kendall likes his job! Can't wait to hear more of how your doing!!

Stacy & Michael B said...

I am so glad you are all happy and healthy clear out in Illinois....sounds like things are working out well and I hope you find a house that suits you. You guys totally deserve it! Good luck!

Anonymous said...

Melissa, I'm glad you're getting settled. I need a new phone # I can reach you at! You're little family is so cute. Email me a new phone #! We'll have to let you know when we have our little guy!
Love ya!!

CallihanFam said...

You guys look great. Beautiful kids. Good luck with the house-hunting. We've sworn off house-dreaming for a few years. Well, if you ever find yourself in Virginia, let me know. I would enjoy seeing you!