Monday, May 27, 2013

Getting to the fun part

This is a test post from my phone, since that is usually how I post from the road. Lesson 1 learned: the Blogger app doesn't auto save a post in progress if you switch to another app. Grrr! 

We took a break the other day from prepping for the movers to finalize our upcoming trip. The adventure of getting to and from Alaska always allows us to explore places we have never been. This time, we are driving from Homer to Anchorage, Tok, and Haines, where we will board the ferry with our people, dog, and SUV. We'll cruise for three and a half days to Bellingham, WA. Then we plan to spend time in Seattle, Portland, and the redwoods of Northern California on the way to Alameda. It will take us 12 days. If you have any suggestions of places not to miss along our route, please let us know!

We have spent the last 4 days getting as ready as possible for the moving crew, which arrives Tuesday. They drive a tractor trailer down from Anchorage and load everything into wooden crates. 

When you do a military contracted move, the moving company does all the packing. We aren't actually allowed to pack anything ourselves. If we do, they will re-pack it. But we do have to weed out anything we don't want packed (food, chemicals, trash, etc), and remove everything from our walls. We also have to unhook all electronics. We try to organize everything as much as we can, trying to avoid opening up boxes of random stuff packed together on the other end.  When we moved to CT, it took us 6 months to find our Crock Pot because it was packed with an old computer in a box labeled "books" that sat unpacked in our garage. We have heard horror stories of live cats and full trash cans getting packed in boxes and loaded on the truck. 

Tomorrow it's one last day of prep, and then 3 days of mayhem before cleaning out a gloriously empty house on Friday. I'm really looking forward to this week being done, because then we move into a vacation rental for the rest of our time in Homer and just enjoy being at the end of the road. 

Friday, May 24, 2013

The Nomadic Newells Celebrate a Decade

Homer, AK 

Today marks the 10th anniversary of the Nomadic Newells!  It has been quite a journey.

Yes, that says 18,795 miles covered in Coast Guard moves alone!  Wow!  This week marks not only 10 years that we have been married, but also 10 years that Mike has been on active duty.  And our first child, the furry one, turned 10 last month.

Kodiak, AK 2003
Newport, NC 2005
Atlantic Beach, NC- USCGC Staten Island 2006
Ledyard, CT 2008 
Newport, RI 2010 
Juneau, AK 2012

There's no telling what we have in store for the next 10 years, but we know it will include plenty more adventures!

Thursday, May 16, 2013

The countdown is on...

I have this app on my iPhone.  The kids love opening it up to see how many days are left.

I'll admit, seeing that little red notification number on my home screen every day stresses me out.  We have done everything we can think of to prep for the move.  We have sold lots of excess stuff, emptied out the smallest bedroom in our house so we have a safe place to stash things that we don't want to movers to pack, and have three to-do lists going with all of the logistical things that have to get finished before we leave.  The main problem is, we really don't want to go!  

This is the first of all of our moves that we would rather just stay put in the wonderful little community we have settled into.  But, we have no choice, so we are making the best of it as always.  I went down to Alameda last month to scope things out.  It helped all of us wrap our heads around our new environment, which will be pretty much opposite of our current one.  The house we rented is even nicer than it looked in the photos we were emailed.  Two blocks away, this is the view from my new running path:

Yup, that's San Francisco!  Ava is most excited about having one of these in our back yard:

The kids will be able to play outside every single day in our private fenced backyard.  Mike will be able to bike to work.  We can walk the kids to school.  And considering that snow is in the forecast here in Alaska this weekend, making it the longest winter snow season on record, I'm ready for some sunshine and warm temperatures myself!  

After the moving truck drives away with all of our possessions that we can't fit in the Pilot, we will be staying in Homer until June 20 in a furnished apartment.  I'm really looking forward to that part--it will be like a mini vacation before our driving/ferry adventure.  In the meantime, are working on the last few items on our Homer bucket list.  Anyone know an affordable way to get across the bay to hike to the Grewingk Glacier Lake?  That's number one on the list!