multi-hyphenated-me

the hyphens that define my life

Blast off! June 19, 2013

My husband had to run to Home Depot for who-knows-what so I’m taking a break, enjoying my coffee and posting this blog.  Thank you for the opportunity to sit down.

Here we are.  The countdown is done.  Today is the day.  3-2-1-Blast Off.  If only moving was as simple as the countdown.  Today is cleaning day.  The final push to get everything that wasn’t shipped yesterday loaded onto the trailer and get the house cleaned.  The carpet cleaner arrives at 1 PM, the landlord will do his final inspection at 2 PM, then we’re hitting the road just in time for LA traffic.

C’mon we’re smarter (just) than that!  Instead of sitting in traffic we’ve organized one last final hurrah, a BYO-Picnic a the park for some playtime and fun before we hit the road.  I’m going to lie down and take a nap.

Did I mention I was feeling 90 years old yesterday?  Today I’m 110.  I ache, I’m bruised and I think I have inhaled too much 409 while cleaning.  Can you get a contact high off of 409?  What about lung cancer?  I have never looked so forward to sitting in a car, or anywhere, for 20 hours.  We haven’t moved yet and you have all been replaced, Advil is my new best friend.

All jokes and exaggerations aside, no real complaints (not out loud, just publicly broadcasted through my blog, Twitter and Facebook accounts, just like a secret). Our move is going smoothly. Shipping our boxes with Amtrak was truly a genius find by my husband.  The story of how he discovered this option was the result of taking the train from Fullerton, CA to downtown LA for his project at LA Trade Tech.  He spoke with the shipping managers at the Fullerton CA station and LA Union Station.  He really connected with the LA Union Station manager (remember, my husband isn’t socially motivated).  When I met her yesterday I understood why.  Marissia is personable, thorough, efficient and interacted well with her peers and staff.  Turns out that Marissia recently celebrated her 30 year anniversary with Amtrak and is a 4th generation railroad employee.  What started as a summer job thanks to her dad, she found her niche career.  You know I love a good human interest story.  I hope Amtrak appreciates her as much as her customers!  Though we did a test run and sent 3 boxes from Fullerton to Spokane in May (giving me the opportunity to connect with the Spokane shipping manager), we felt good leaving our boxes with Marissia yesterday.  Our boxes are on their way.  Plus we saved $1500 from the U-Haul quote received, not including gas and having to tow or ship our second vehicle.  I highly recommend using Amtrak for shipping if there are any long distance moves in your future.  I’ll follow-up with this once our boxes arrive.

After the BYO-Picnic party at the park this afternoon we will drive 4 hours north on I-5 to get us out of LA.  We’ll end up somewhere between Fresno and Stockton.  Tomorrow we’ll continue northward leaving California and the I-5 for the 97 toward sunny skies in Bend, Oregon.  On Friday we’ll arrive in the rain to our new home in Spokane.

Goodbyes have never been easy for me. This afternoon will be tearful but I can not wait to get on the road.

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My Daily Blog T-8 My Life in 40 Moves June 11, 2013

Several of my “friends” have called me their transient friend since the news of our pending move. Hearing this from those who have lived within a 20 mile radius their entire lives, doesn’t surprise me.  Hearing this comment from a globetrotting friend made me take pause and  question what was actually being said.  I had to look up “transient” to confirm the definition as my initial response to the word is derogatory as a drifter, or homeless.

Transient:

1
a: passing especially quickly into and out of existence : transitory <transient beauty>

b: passing through or by a place with only a brief stay or sojourn <transient visitors>

2
: affecting something or producing results beyond itself
“Brief stay” is what dubbing me transient.  “Brief” is subjective.  For me, brief is a day, a week, or a month.  For others, our six years in this community is brief.  What does brief mean to you?
Transient may not be the best word choice, but I have moved quite a bit.  The move to Spokane will be my 40th move.  My 45th birthday is in September.  No, I haven’t moved nearly every year of my life. I have had the pleasure of moving multiple times in a single year to rack up the count.  My moves define my life.  I have lived in 6 states, Washington will be the 7th. Fifteen of my moves were beyond my control while I was dependent on my mom. Four moves during the college years. Eight moves before I realized I was in a really bad relationship before I, well, moved out.  Four moves as a single mom. And eleven moves in the 16 years my husband and I have been together. Some of my moves were transient, to be sure.  In 2001, while our house was in escrow in Parks, AZ, we moved to the apartment my husband’s company provided in Tusayan, AZ, at the gates of the Grand Canyon.  Sixty days we lived at the Grand Canyon.  Our daughter became a Junior Ranger and we hiked and explored every day. I wouldn’t trade that experience for anything.  In fact, I wouldn’t change most of my moves as they, for the most part, have all been for the better. There are some moves that I’m not so thrilled with, but they have shaped my character and made me who I am. Transient or not.
Here is a list of the places I’ve lived:
1. Monroe, MI
2. Sandusky, OH
3. Castalia, OH
4. Sandusky, OH
5. Norwalk, OH
6. Driggs, ID (Teton Valley)
7. Santa Monica, CA (1)
8. Santa Monica, CA (2)
9. Torrance, CA (1)
10. Torrance, CA (2)
11. Playa del Rey, CA (1)
12. Playa del Rey, CA (2)
13. San Diego, CA
14. Playa del Rey, CA (3)
15. Santa Monica, CA (3)
16. Long Beach, CA
17. Playa del Rey, CA (4)
18. Westchester, CA
19. Hermosa Beach, CA (1)
20. Redondo Beach, CA (1)
21. San Pedro, CA
22. Venice, CA
23. Hawthorne, CA
24. Redondo Beach (2)
25. Manhattan Beach, CA
26. Hermosa Beach, CA (2)
27. Oceanside, CA (1)
28. Westchester, CA (2)
29. Redondo Beach, CA (3)
30. Redondo Beach, CA (4)
31. Placentia, CA (1)
32. Tusayan, AZ  (The Grand Canyon)
33. Parks, AZ (1)
34. Las Vegas, NV
35. Laguna Beach, CA
36. Oceanside, CA (2)
37. Parks, AZ (2)
38. Placentia, CA (2)
39. Placentia, CA (3)
40. Spokane, WA
What is most interesting to us about our Spokane move is that Spokane has been selected by us, for us.  Most of my other moves have been dictated by employment, the economy, or current situation.  Spokane is a grown-up move.  We have researched and selected Spokane based on everything it offers us as a family and each of us individually.
Is Spokane our end all?  Who am I to say?  Home is where my heart is, wherever that may be.
 

My Daily Blog T-9 Single Digits June 10, 2013

Filed under: Life — multihyphenatedme @ 9:50 am
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My husband read my blog for the first time last night.  He may have felt some peer pressure from the going away party Friday night when all of my friends were shocked that he didn’t read my blog.  When he finally stopped asking about WordPress and my webpage, his first comment on the blog was “What is the T-# about?” Dude, are you new to our life? No, after being together 16 years including lucky thirteen years of marriage, he is not new here.  Dang it though, he brings up a good point for new readers.  If you’re new to my blog, “T-” is the countdown to our move from Placentia, CA, in the OC, to Spokane Washington.  We are now at T-9. Nine days until we move.  Single digits. Shit is about to get real.

As if life hasn’t been real up until now.  The move isn’t complex.  Work is still work.  Our social calendar is ridiculously full with end of school, 6th grade promotion and other typical activities. No pressure. Just another day in the life.

Ok, there is some pressure. Even though we’re at T-9, my entire house has to be packed by Sunday June 16 in order to get the stuff shipped.  I don’t have 9 days, I only have 6 days.  We physically leave in nine days.  Big difference.  Six days definitely applies some pressure.  Then there are some other issues….

My husband and I discussed meals for the next nine days. We have lots of events this week during or immediately after dinner.  The kitchen, in its entirety, needs to be packed.  I voted for take-out every night with the promise that I’ll cook every meal every night once we arrive in Spokane.  Mr. Spoiled and Frugal says no, we have to have home cooked meals every night as it’s too expensive to go out.  This is why women throw frying pans at their husbands.  No, I didn’t throw any pans, but I thought about it.  He has clearly forgotten who he has married.  My household role is to plan, shop and put the food on the table.  For the next nine days, I’m going to plan the restaurant, drive to the restaurant and put take-out food on the table.    The food will be healthy, no fast food, so no issue. Practical and sane, both of which I strive for daily. Why was this even discussed?  Decision made.

Clothing is another issue.  Currently we have way too many pieces of clothing lying around as we sold the dressers this weekend. I did an initial packing of winter and out of season clothes weeks ago but there’s still too much out. Tonight’s project is to purge everyone’s wardrobe down to nine outfits.  That’s it.   Everything can be rotated, interchanged, washed and ready to go.  If we look a bit more bizarre than normal, keep in mind, we’re moving.

Higher on the totem pole is the internet modem which will stay in place until the final possible moment that it has to be unplugged.   We may look a fright but we will be connected.  Priorities people.

T-9.  The final week of school.  Our final full week in our neighborhood. The countdown to our move is definitely on.

 

My Daily Blog T-11 The Love of Friends and Cake June 8, 2013

“A heart is not judged by how much it is loved, but by how much it is loved by others.”  
The Wizard said to the Tin Man, The Wizard of Oz

Our hearts are full of love for my friends that hosted our going away party last night as well as for those in attendance. Over 100 people ate, drank, went swimming, played water polo/soccer and hung out in support of us, our children and our decision to move from Placentia, California – the OC – to Spokane, Washington. Nothing makes a party better than street tacos, beer, sangria, sodas, salads, dips and, my favorite part, cake.  Thank you my dear friends, my six senoras, that hosted the party.  I love you for your thoughtfulness, kindness, generosity and, most of all, your friendship.

I have to give a shout out to my friend made this Fiesta Cake for the occasion:

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The bottom layer is an inside-out german chocolate cake with chocolate ganache.  The second tier is sour cream almond with strawberry filling with buttercream frosting.  The third tier is ooey-gooey chocolate with chocolate buttercream frosting.  All wrapped in fondant and decorated to match our fiesta theme.  Was it any good?  I made the ultimate sacrifice and ate (not tried, ate) a slice of each.  Which flavor was best?  That is a tough, if not impossible call.  I had to have a second slice of the sour cream almond just to confirm that all flavors are fabulous!  How lucky am I to have leftovers in the fridge!! A huge thank you to my friend that made the cake.

As party favors, I gave each family a jar of homemade strawberry jam.  For the kids, we gave addressed and stamped California postcards to send California love to the boys.  Hopefully this will create a fun summer pen pal program and help keep everyone in touch.

Thank you my friends.  You are not easy to leave.