Night #202

I lie awake on night #202 – at least I think it’s night 202 since we left our home in Las Vegas – my middle of the night math might be off a day either way.

They say that what makes something unbearable is doing it repeatedly, that the pain builds, that day 22 is more painful than day 1 because you’ve endured ut for 22 days. It certainly is self-revealing.

The worse part is being awakened several times a night by the cats reacting to this place. Cats have a sense of space and what’s home and they sense our feelings, our anxieties. And what makes it extra difficult is that Skipper is going on 18 and has special old cat needs.

Yesterday we started packing, exhilarating for us, signaling our torture here is almost over but Shadow has his usual delayed reaction, howling just when trying to get back to sleep after getting up for Skipper’s midnight feeding.

Inspired by NaNoWriMo, NaPoWriMo, and “50 Blog Posts in 50 Days,” I wrote 50 poems in 50 days on my site, most of them in the middle of the night on my iPhone, all live by the end of November. Interesting to connect with so many people through poetry.

I started thinking in poems/lyrics. It was so enjoyable, rather addicting, not only a great way to make it through the night because I loved the process, but a useful exercise, providing me with some raw material to work with in my music studio.

Thanksgiving began the kickoff to changing our lives from here to there. We’re getting closer but we’re not there yet. We’ve had such fun with so many Disney distractions. We’re thankful to be out of Las Vegas, to be back in Florida, and for our new home almost within our reach. We’re thankful for supportive friends and family and for those who take time out of their life to read our blog.


One Year Ago

One year ago we were finishing up packing our suitcases for our flight from Las Vegas to Tampa on Saturday morning. Rich worked that Friday so I was sprucing up the house, doing last minute laundry, and preparing for the pet sitter.

We had until 10 minutes before the flight to cancel so we weren’t actually sure we’d make it back to Florida. But we were desperate to leave Vegas, the real estate market was finally looking promising for selling our house, and we sensed that this trip to Florida was an important one.

So here we are one year later, preparing to pack to move from our temporary housing for the past six months into our brand new Florida beach house. Wow!! We can’t wait to finally start the settling in process.

Highlights from last year’s trip to Florida:

The Nights Are Long

Staying at Embassy Suites in Nashville was a nice break. I’ve always enjoyed the 2-room suite hotel with atrium, the way you feel like a part of things, the clinking of breakfast dishes in the morning and the hum of laughter and cocktail glasses in the evening while retaining your privacy if desired.

The large bedroom was far more relaxing and sleep-inducing than the small bedroom where we’re temporarily living now. We had a huge master suite in our Las Vegas house and I can’t quite adjust to this small space where our dresser is kept in the kitchen outside our bedroom door.

Boom boxes and the idling of engines outside the apartment gates just below can be heard at three a.m. as I write this, not to mention awakening at five a.m. yesterday to a semi truck pulled up to the gate expecting it to open if he waited long enough. He’d back up, idle for awhile and then try again. This went on for about half an hour. Eventually he left and returned at a decent hour at around ten a.m. to make his delivery. There are still some buildings under construction so there’s still that kind of activity.

The weather in Nashville was also a nice break although we Floridians were freezing. Wearing shorts of different lengths, we were shivering in the elevator greeting each other with, “Damn, it’s cold.” Lol! There was no heat in the room. The front desk clerk said, “It’s still summer so the A/C is on–not the heat.” I drove to Kohls the next day and bought a pair of long stretchies to wear in the room. So when we returned to Florida, I had to adjust to the humidity all over again. But I was struck by the beauty of Florida after Nashville and was happy to be back.

The best part about returning to our “resort” is having our stuff with us. Other than that, it feels like we’re still living in a hotel. 20 weeks in but who’s counting?


We’ve Got Foundation: Remembering When We Built a New House 8 Miles from Disneyland and the Beach #FlashbackFriday

When we drove by our lot last night, we saw the foundation for the first time – now it’s really getting real. It’ll cure for a few days and the next thing will happen – we’re thinking the cement blocks will be put in place.

Thinking about this, I realized this will be my twelfth new place I’ve lived in, and the 4th I’ve actually watched being built, starting with my childhood home in Orange County when I was 7 years old and we lived 8 miles from Disneyland and 8 miles from the beach.

During that summer of my 7th birthday when we lived in an apartment and I got my first keyboard, an electric organ, we’d drive over to the house being built and I remember walking through the framing and seeing where my bedroom would be. Happy times, very similar to what we’re doing now – living in an apartment near Disney and the beach, playing my keyboard, and visiting the house in progress.

And while we’ll be more than 8 miles from Disney World here, we will be 8 miles from the beach. Funny how life comes full circle.


100 Days In, 100 Days Out

It’s been 100 days since we left our house in Las Vegas and checked into a local Residence Inn. Rich supervised the packing/loading of the long haul movers while I stayed with the cats. Leaving our home was the hard part about leaving Las Vegas.

We met with the construction manager yesterday and we all laughed about how nobody says, “Oh, take your time. We’re in no hurry to move into our new home.” He asked what we were living in, “An apartment?” and we laughed again when we said, “Yeah, we’re pretty squished in there.” “Yeah, yeah,” he’d heard all of that before. lol!

He told us the houses have been taking about 100 days to build, then there are two weeks of inspections, closing, etc. The move-in date could vary depending on weather or if things go faster than expected.

We’re so done living in this apartment. Rearranging furniture every couple of weeks because the same old thing gets quite claustrophobic. The cats are also feeling the lack of space – they start yelling at us by 3 or 4 a.m. if not sooner. And there’s no place to escape – we’re right there. So, needless to say, neither of us have been getting enough sleep.

I lie awake for hours at night sometimes, as time seems to stand still. The Disney outings are amazing and I’m very thankful we have those distractions – we’ll miss our access to all of that we have now. Still, it is quite difficult. Especially when maintenance barges in to fix things – it’s like any new house, you have that breaking in period. I’m still waiting on lunch since they said they’d be here this morning and they’re not here yet.

So I had this vague idea about remembering the first 100 days with all we’ve done with going forward with the building process of the next 100 days. Maybe writing it all down will help.

Happy August 1st

Now that it’s August, it feels as if things are starting to move forward. We’ve been “on the road” for 12 weeks now, if you can call not really being settled in your own home being “on the road.” It certainly feels like it when many boxes are in storage and we have to do without whatever is in them until our house is built and we can finally settle in.

One difficulty is that we’re not living in the town where our house will be so instead of settling in here for 5 or 6 months and then upsetting everything and resettling in, we’re trying to “act as if” we already live there, going to church and hanging out in our new town. This, along with our frequent trips to Disney, keep us very busy. I’m still recovering from last week’s trip to the Magic Kingdom, always a difficult park to get to when it’s hot, crowded, and you’re offsite.

On Sunday after church, we noticed the ground had broken on our lot (see previous post). We’re hoping this means that we’ll meet with the construction manager soon and really get things rolling. August seems to hint at that and why it’s very exciting to see. Just seeing some activity this past week gave us a big boost.

On Saturday, we finally made it back to the Shrine in Orlando near Disney, always a boost. We really feel at home there. Following our visit, we did our usual post-Shrine tradition of lunch at Chevy’s. Orlando feels very much like California (the Shrine grounds, especially feel like San Diego with the type of palm trees and pond), and we’re feeling more at home here than ever before.