Saturday, March 17, 2012


It's been two very long, overly productive days, but we're here and we're settling in. Yesterday morning began at 7:01 a.m. when 6 movers arrived at our door. We gave them a walk through and they jumped into the packing. Landon came downstairs around 7:30 and we found him silently standing on the landing of the stairs, clutching a stuffed duck and looking at boxes and paper and tape and strange men, with a complete expressionless face. I have no idea what was going on in his head. We shuffled him back to his room to change into clothes and let another mover get in to pack up his furniture and closet. I finally woke Claire up a few minutes later because they needed to get into her room. She was displeased, but when I got her downstairs she yelled out some cheerful "HI!!!!!"s and then went to the garage to sit on Natalie's extra set of car seats for a while. I think they wanted to make sure they'd be packed into the van with the rest of our stuff.

I tried to get a final picture of the kids in front of the house, but Landon flat our refused and Claire wasn't much better.

The rest of the morning was a blur of daycare drop-off (and tears when I said goodbye to the kids' teachers), a bank trip for the biggest cashier's check I've ever requested (down payment and closing costs), two goodwill drop-offs, a few craigslist sales, and then an in-home closing with a traveling notary and our lender. We signed a million documents at our kitchen table while JP tried to work (he couldn't get the day off, which was awesome) and the movers packed and loaded everything around us. The kitchen table was the last thing in the truck at noon.

I took off with the original documents to bring to the title company in Fort Worth. The two trucks and three guys JP picked up the kids from daycare, dropped the Austin keys at the realtor, and delivered the cable box and modem to Time Warner. Then he remembered the attic above the garage. It wasn't packed- we'd told them about it, they'd asked about it, and then at some point in the 5-hour pack and load madness we both forgot. I frantically called the moving company, which tracked down the trucks, which sent one back to meet JP back at the house. The truck got caught in traffic, JP waited with two kids missing naptime for two hours with no furniture or food. JP and the mover got the attic stuff loaded and left Austin about thirty minutes before I arrived in Fort Worth.

Where I exchanged the loan documents for keys and garage door openers! I drove to the house, met truck #1, which realized all their loading equipment- ramps and dollies- were tucked away in van #2 that was still 3 hours away. They persevered, carrying in everything themselves, while I directed and unpacked. This house is almost the same size as our Austin house, but the layout is completely different and it's missing quite a few of our old extra rooms (and nearly ALL of the closets).

Sometime later (time had lost its meaning) JP showed up with truck #2, Tex, and the kids. (The kids who were now hungry with two parents who had no food for them.) Now the unloading went into hyper speed, and we just tried to find places to put all the boxes (and keep Claire out of the pool). At one point, when Landon was asking again when we'd be able to eat, he let out a long sigh with "Mom, this day is not fun at all." Fair enough, though he did enjoy helping the movers.

JP ran to the store for some staples and a frozen pizza. I held Claire for over an hour because every time I'd set her down she'd burst into tears and wail "up! up! mama! up!" We ate the frozen pizza (baked on foil, removed from the oven with a towel, and turn into pizza). Landon dissolved into tears around 9 p.m. when we didn't know what a "moneybank" was and he kept asking about it. Finally at 9:30 p.m., after 14.5 hours of labor, the movers were done. We tipped generously, made up the kids' beds, and tucked in their exhausted little bodies. JP and I took one survey of our disaster of a house and went to bed ourselves. Not even I could contemplate tackling any part of that until morning.

And then this morning came. The kids got to watch cartoons in our bed (we've never had a TV in a bedroom before- it blew their minds) and then we began Unpackapalooza 2012. In which JP unwrapped, I put away, and Claire and Landon got to do pretty much anything they wanted that didn't involve bodily harm or breaking anything:

We made a lot of progress:

Time lapse camera: 8 a.m.

10 a.m.


3 p.m.

6 p.m.

We have completely unpacked and organized the kitchen and pantry (oy), the master closet, master bath, kids' closet, kids' shared bedroom, and JP's office space. In the midst of that we had an appliance delivery (fridge, washer, dryer- they're so pretty! and you can't even see the scratches and dents that saved me over $1,000 on them), a long visit with our contractor (because we now have a longer list of projects, including a demo of our laundry room due to a water leak and newly molded walls), a visit from a friendly neighbor, a trip to Lowe's, and two trips out for food at delicious local restaurants (living so close to a university is awesome- we walked to dinner!). We also entertained the kids and kept them alive and unharmed while we unpacked (and met with the contractor, etc.). I'm exhausted, but I'm pretty darn proud of ourselves.

Tomorrow I plan to unpack pretty much everything else in time to prep the kids lunches for their first day at the new daycare and peruse all the kitchen/bath magazines I bought at Lowe's. The contractor arrives at 8 a.m. Monday morning and I'll be at the tile superstore with him at 11 a.m. to make all our design decisions for the 3 bathrooms. We don't do things slowly, but oh I can't wait to see how great everything is going to look when it's finished!


  1. Congrats on the move!

    I'm so impressed with your ability to unpack. It takes me months to unpack most of it and there will still be boxes with junk I don't use hidden away in the closets.

  2. Wow....I'm exhausted just READING about your day!!!! You are AMAZING!!! Looking forward to reading about all of your Ft. Worth adventures! Best of luck to all of you!!!

    Patty from TX

  3. You know what else is so awesome about living so close to a university? BABYSITTERS. Seriously. Advertise on the job board, and you will have a ridiculous slew of qualified applicants.

    Love the new house-- congrats :)

  4. I can't believe you got so much unpacked in one day! Great job!!

  5. As someone who moved every 3-4 years growing up (Dad was an Air Force pilot) I'd say you are on track to match my Mother and I at "fastest and most efficient movers & unpackers" of all time- and that is saying something. (We can move either of our houses in about 1.5 days now.) It all looks great & is oh-so-exciting!! I'm thrilled this has all come together for you.

  6. I concur - you are AMAZING!! I've been a long time reader of your blog - since the Chicago days!! Your family is absolutely precious and you are a dynamo of energy. PLUS your Mexican Cheesecake recipe is now incorporated into my own family favorites for holiday gatherings! I read this post yesterday and it made my smile - BUT I kept worrying about something all night long and into today. I just have one question - are y'all going to put a safety gate around the pool? I just worry...

  7. Staring down a move myself, this post is making my hyperventilate. But if Lag Liv can do it, I can do it! (I tell myself. But I don't know if it's true - you're pretty amazing!)

    I'm glad of this move - sounds so perfect for you guys. Congratulations on it all, and hope the home renovations and stuff all go just swimmingly!

  8. That is an amazing amount of unpacking for one day! The part about the attic over the garage would have given me hives, literally. Way to keep a cool head! Your new neighborhood sounds wonderful!

  9. Wow. We should put you in charge of the country!

  10. Which washer/dryer did you choose??

    I'm frantically on an appliance spending spree so my brand new(-to-me) house won't be entirely empty when we move in in 10 days.(wheee!)

    1. We have a Maytag XL HE washer and dryer. I really like them! Super energy and water efficient and very big capacity.