Jon flew in Thanksgiving Eve! It’s been SO wonderful to have him back. McKenzie and Bennett spent the Thanksgiving weekend enjoying their Daddy’s company. I think it’s pretty obvious what I was thankful for this year. =) Bennett also got to meet his great-grandma (aka GiGi–get it? Great Grandma?). She’s 98 years-old! He also got to meet his Uncle Jacob, too. For the most part, it was a great weekend of food, family, and fun.On the moving front: we got word last week that they’ll be packing up our house tomorrow (Monday…and yes, they pack for us), and then they’ll load the trucks on Tuesday. We’ll all set off on Wednesday for our new home in North Carolina! Annnnnnd we still have no idea where that’ll be. It’s a wee-bit stressful! Just a little. Hopefully that will be figured out by tomorrow, we found a few prospective houses in great school districts…BUT it’s pretty scary not to know where we’ll be living in FOUR days. Eeek. I’m a huge “planner” so it’s been a little rough for me. I’m also really bummed to be leaving all the wonderful friends I’ve made in Madison. We’ve met some really great people who were there for me for some of the hardest times in my life (like my pregnancy and Bennett’s NICU stay). But I’m so happy to have Jon back for the foreseeable future, and to start our lives together as a family of 4. So, so happy. It’s quite bittersweet for me. ♥
Welcome to Life So Lovely! I'm Nicole: an Active Duty Army Wife, professional photographer, and currently a stay-at-home momma to our beautiful 5-year-old daughter and newborn son. I love photography, reading, writing, and finding fun things to do with my family. I blog for myself, but I love posting fun photos, crafts, and delicious recipes, too! Stay tuned, and follow my adventures as a woman, wifey, and momma of two.
So, alas the house we were going to rent was in a less-than-ideal school district. Jon drove by it yesterday and promptly declared that McKenzie would absolutely not be going there. I believe he said, “hillbilly trailer park school” or something to that effect. I could be wrong though. GIANT oversight on my part. Did I mention that the $340 “hold fee” was non-refundable? And obviously the $35 overnight UPS fee was a waste. Epic fail for Nicole. But alas, there is no price on a good education (sort of?), and I’m willing to give up a couple hundred dollars so she can go to a better public school. For the most part, I firmly believe that education has mostly to do with parenting, but a good school can’t hurt. And no way in hell I’d ever send her to a private parochial school. No offense.
On the bright side, though, if we live in Fayetteville we’ll be closer to entertainment/restaurants/friends, and the commute will also give us about 20-30 minutes more with Daddy-o every day. So I suppose there’s always a silver lining. Plus, I obviously want our Little Princess to be a huge smarty-pants…so the search continues!
In other news, we accepted an application on the condo! So that’s a huge load off our shoulders. =)
I mentioned in my last post that we’re moving soon…but apparently it’s going to be MUCH sooner than I thought! The good news is that we got the house that I thought was “the one!” It has everything on our wishlist except wood floors (but it also has extras, like a fitness center & pool!) I’m really excited about that. It was quite an ordeal, though…when we found out the new timeline, I overnighted the application and the $300 “holding fee” via UPS (the holding fee ensured that we would be guaranteed the property, provided we were approved). I was running around with my head cut off the whole day getting everything ready! The application, cashier’s check, proof of income, etc. Blah. The next day, I found out that 4 other people had viewed the property this week…but we were the only ones to submit the holding fee, so WE got it. Phew! The real kicker is that neither of us have actually seen the inside yet (he did a drive-by), but Jon will be doing a walk-through on Sunday. Hopefully it looks as good as the pics. Things seem to be falling into place, and my inbox is full of inquiries for our condo, so hopefully that’s taken care of soon, too.
Here’s a preview of our future home, ain’t it purdy?! And anyone who talks smack about living in the ‘burbs obviously doesn’t have kids…because when you do, everything you do is for them, and it’s nice when they can play outside by themselves, or ride their bike in the driveway, or play with their dogs in a back yard without being snatched up by a stranger or accosted by a weirdo. Which is also nice for me because a) I don’t have to worry about those things, and b) I don’t have to accompany her everywhere. That’s something McKenzie’s never been able to do living in our condo, so as excited as I am, I can’t wait to watch her blossom in our first home. Oh, and I also got a little emotional thinking about how Bennett will probably take his first steps here. Cheers to building memories. ♥
So Jon has FINALLY completed all his training and finished the try-outs! In my first post after he left, we’d learned that he’d be gone for 23 weeks. And I thought that was a long time! Well, that 23 weeks (6-ish months) turned into 35 weeks (8 months). Basically longer than his deployments as a Marine (aside from the worrying part). It sucked. But that’s the Army, I guess. Anyhow it’s been such a long time, and we really can’t wait to be together again as a family…hopefully before Christmas! [[Insert fit of joy here!]]
We’ll be moving to North Carolina for about two years while he undergoes training to become an Engineer. When he’s finished with that, we’ll move on to a more permanent duty station. We don’t have an exact timeline, but that’s the plan as of now. I listed our condo on Craigslist for rent, and I’ve been scouring management companies near Fort Bragg. I’m super excited to pick our next place! It’s gonna be such an upgrade. I want: 3 bedrooms + bonus room, 2 baths, fenced-in yard, and a playground for McKenzie. It’s going to be so nice for her to go play in the yard whenever she wants! And to let the dogs out a door, instead of leashing them and walking them around! I think we’ve found “the one,” so I’m going to apply ASAP! It’s all coming together. =)
I know a little lady who’s excited to see her daddy again, a little man who’s excited to get to know him, and a wifey who’s excited to have her partner back. ♥
Also, can you tell who’s who? McKenzie was 3 months old in the picture on the left, and Bennett at 3 months old on the right. I almost can’t tell them apart! And as you can see, Bennett has lost a lot of his luscious locks. As another aside, there’s an awesome deal right now on babyleggings.com…5 free baby leg warmers, and $2 thereafter, using promo code “thanksgiving.” Shipping was $12. It’s a steal! And as you can see, I like putting ‘em on Bennett. =)
On Monday I posted my first giveaway on behalf of Tuttorosso Tomatoes, and this morning I selected a winner by using the random list generator at random.org—the winner is: JESSICA KENNEDY! Lest anyone cry, “Nepotism!” (since she’s my sister), here is a screenshot. How do you like my latest Google (verb): “How to do a screenshot with mac.” I crack myself up…but you learn something new everyday! ;)