Sunday, August 24, 2014

Trading one view for another

We moved into our more permanent housing yesterday and traded this view ...

... for this one ...

Out on our deck we were treated to a glorious sunset that just glowed and glowed for over an hour.
It was a wonderful welcome to our new home.

Friday, August 22, 2014

What I {already} love about this place

Jason started work nearly a week later than anticipated which meant we had four extra days together after moving to Moscow to explore and relax which was great. After seven weeks of travel and visiting, we were pretty pooped and needed time together with just our family before launching into this new phase. I'm so thankful for the unexpected extra time we had together and for what we have found in our new home town!

I LOVE that there is a Main Street - a wonderful, tree-lined street with interesting shops/cafes in abundance.

Main Street hosts a Farmer's Market every Saturday morning - hurrah for fresh produce (although at 10 times the cost we're used to paying in Guatemala), live music and tasty international foods.

There are TONS of parks for Luke to play at -- a new thing for him since there were none in Panajachel.

Gotta be in-love with Mini-donuts (buy the dozen)

So happy to have such a pretty campus to roam on --

LOVE LOVE LOVE the New Hope Thriftstore -- they are serious about moving their inventory and it's priced with that in mind. Every week a new tag color is 50% off and the previous week's sale items are all 47 cents!!!  Woo-hoo!  After being in Guatemala where household goods were super expensive, I have felt like a kid-in-a-candy-shop here. We're moving into a fully furnished place but it has been so hard to not buy things just because there are nice things at incredibly cheap prices.

Stoked on the Moscow Food Co-op where they sell all kinds of local food and even raw milk!! Haven't seen that since Vermont and it makes me happy :) Plus, another bonus (to balance out the higher priced food at the Co-op) is the local Winco! Woo-hoo to cheap bulk foods ... and just cheaper food in general :)

I still miss Guatemala ... when pictures from our life there pop up on our computer's screensaver the heaviness I feel for missing that place overwhelms me. Sundays are the worst ... we are trying to find a new church home here in Moscow and it is just so hard. I sit in these new churches on Sunday and try to keep from crying with how much I miss our Sunday fellowship at Porch de Salomon. It wasn't even close to perfect and perhaps that is why I miss it so much - it was REAL.

Monday, August 18, 2014

Last days in Spokane & a trip to Montana

The remainder of our time in Spokane was filled with fun outdoor activities, relaxing at the Schlafmann house and time with family & friends. Unfortunately, all of the travel/change finally caught up to Luke and he started waking up during the night and stopped taking his daytime nap. Boo! I felt pretty exhausted all the time, but it was a good reminder to be {really} thankful for the days when we have a baby who sleeps.

Just before we made our move to Moscow, we drove over to Kalispell, Montana to visit my friend Gail (who I've been friends with now for nearly 25 years!). She and her husband made the move to Montana from California this past year and it was great to see their new home and explore their new town -- the gateway to the incredible Glacier National Park.

An afternoon at the beautiful Ashley Lake, just a few miles from their house --

Found a version of my very first car (the 1976 Mustang!) and had to stop for a picture --  mine was darker, metallic brown and a year older, but to me this looked identical.

Gail and I couldn't pass up a loaded Serviceberry patch alongside the road --

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Glamping in North Idaho

Our temporary housing in Moscow is unfurnished and we've essentially been using our camping gear while we're staying here. This has made us feel like we're doing some version of glamping (glamour+camping). We've got heaps of space, an indoor bathroom, fully-equipped kitchen and laundry machines, plus a card table and chairs from our kind landlady, but not much else.  It's odd, but fun and we're fully enjoying every luxury we have.

Fancy breakfast on our camping plates --

Luke's room -- we've tried to put a few familiar things around for him. He's also gotten REALLY into owls since staying a room with a large, stuffed white owl at Jason's parents, so I was excited to find this one at Ross for his room.

Our room and the bathroom, complete with this amazing thing called a bathtub -- haven't had one of those since we lived in NYC seven years ago. Bathroom also has awesome embossed wallpaper that's been painted over and is now peeling off revealing other awesome wallpaper beneath it.

Kitchen and extra living room with second fireplace and deck.

The main living/dining room where we spend most of our time (which is close to twice as big as our Guatemala apartment!). Has the best views -- Jason works in the tall brick building on the right (10 stories with 45 dorm rooms each floor - ay yi yi!)

The not-so glamourous part of our stay --
Floors that have only been swiftered for I don't know how long -- this is my advert for Pinesol & a scrub brush! The previous tenants had pets, so we've also been trying our best to de-fur the place. Ick!! It feels like the more I clean, the more fur I find.

On a funny side note -- we'd been encouraging Luke to play in one of our empty plastic storage bins (looks fun, right?) when he stuffed something into his mouth and ran into the other room. When I'd retrieved the object, I laughed out loud. We're great parents, aren't we??!?

Thursday, August 7, 2014

The next adventure -- Moscow!

Moscow, Idaho that is! While Moscow, Russia would be completely amazing, it seems we're sticking stateside for now.

Jason was scheduled to start work at University of Idaho on Wednesday, so we drove the 90 minutes from Spokane to Moscow on Tuesday afternoon with our car loaded to the max. Our destination? A site-unseen duplex which was to serve as our temporary home until our scheduled rental was available toward the end of the month.

We were so thankful to God for providing a space for us during the interim period -- we only got it arranged three days before we needed to move. Nothing like waiting until the last minute, right? Short-term options in Moscow are incredibly limited and we thought we were going to be spending 2-3 weeks in a low-end motel, so a two-bedroom duplex walking distance to the school (for cheaper than a hotel) sounded incredible.

When we drove past this however we did pause for a moment --

After pulling in and making introductions with our new landlord, we got to peak inside and immediately had our breath taken away --

On the other side of the front door is this incredible room! It felt like we walked into a tree house or something - it was gorgeous! Between the leaves there are lovely views of the U of I campus which is only a 5 minute walk away. Perfect for getting to know our new home city. How lucky are we??!!?

The details of what we're doing -
- Jason will be attending U of I this Fall as a Forestry student
- In order to get free schooling, he'll be working as a custodian for the school (you know your husband's serious about a career change when he's willing to clean toilets to make it happen)
- I'll continue to stay home with Luke for now, but this is always up for changing
- Our more permanent home in Moscow is a fully-furnished, garage apartment (or carriage house as the landlord describes it) located 5 miles out of town on 25 wooded acres

Please keep us in your prayers as we make this transition back to US life and all the changes that come with it!