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Thursday, September 5, 2013

Back on American Soil

WOW....so it has been almost 2 years since my last post. 

We finished up our time in Korea..said our goodbyes..and headed back to American soil.  We were so excited to be heading home.  We were looking forward to spending a few weeks withour families in Oklahoma before moving on to our new duty station at Fort Stewart, GA! 

As much as we were so glad to be with our families, you really begin to feel more like a guest, than family after a few days.  Living out of suitcases, relying on someone else's dinner plans, oh...and the no vehicle thing really put a damper on the visit.  We did have Lance's little Eclipse, but with 2 kids, a cat and 7 suitcases..LOL..that just wasn't really feasable.  We left all of the luggage at my parents house and crammed a weeks worth of clothes for 4 people in 1 suitcase, as that was all that would fit in Lance's trunk.  Oh..and did I mention that I can't drive a stick shift?

So we grabbed a rental car for me to load up with luggage and began our journey to Georgia.  It was a 2 day trip with a 5 year old asking every 5 minutes if we were almost there.  LOL.  I sincerely apologize to my parents for asking the same question on every trip we went on when I was a kid...because I now know how tiring that question becomes!  We stayed the night in Tupelo, Mississippi..which was about halfway.  Day 2 was just as tiring..but at least it was our final destination.

We settled in at the LaQuinta Inns and Suites of Hinesville, GA, which was a fantastic hotel.  The great thing about LaQuinta's is that they have no fees for pets..and since we weren't sure how long we would be in lodging, those fees would have added up quickly.  We had a nice big room, the continental breakfast was good and the kids enjoyed the pool.  For the first 20 days, I didn't have a car while Lance was at work..so the kids and I had to come up with games to play.  On top of that, laundry in a hotel is NOT cheap!  We ended up staying 33 nights.

From day 2, we started looking at homes to rent.  It was a harsh realization that we were spoiled in Korea.  Our house was 3 floors, 4 bedrooms, 3 bathrooms and almost 3000 sq ft.  To get that here in GA, you'd be looking at at least $2000/month...definitely out of our price range.  The first few weeks of house hunting were pretty painful.  We looked at some awul places.  AHRN is a good website to use for house hunting, but you have to keep in mind that there may be some places that haven't had pictures taken in a year or more.  Plus, learning about the neighborhoods is a must.  We found one house online that we LOVED.  We talked to the property managers every day for a week trying to set up a viewing.  She called me on a Thursday saying the owners would let us in that Monday.  Monday rolls around, I call the management company to find out what time we could see the house..and I was informed that they rented it out.  WHAT?? 

So back on the hunt.

We found 2 other houses that we liked.  We actually put in an application for one house.  It was big..but an older house.  The rooms needed painting, the carpets needed cleaning.  We asked the property mangers to contact the home owners to verify that they would either take care of the issues, or be willing to allow us to do it ourselves.  After a week, we still hadn't heard from the owners, so we moved on.  During the first week of house hunting, we looked at a house that Lance liked.  The location was good..the size of the house was decent.  Unfortunately it had a swimming pool in the back that was the most disgusting color of green and smell of sewage, I couldn't stand being anywhere near it.  It actually turned me off from the entire house.  Plus, it was at the very top end of our budget.  After we didn't hear back from the owners of the previous house we were interested in, I told Lance that I would be willing to look at the "frog house" (I called it that because the number of dead and bloated frogs in the pool was outrageous) one more time if the owners had started cleaning the pool.  We returned to that rental company and we were informed that just that day, the owners signed a cleaning contract for the pool.  We went back to look at the house again..and it grew on me.  It wasn't perfect, but compared to what we had seen, it seemed right for our family. 

On August 2, we signed the Lease.  YAY!! 

We didn't get to move in until 16 because we were waiting on our household goods to arrive from Korea.

Now...here we are..September 5.  The pool is CLEAN..our furniture is here..the kids are in school..and I am unemployed.  :/  But we have a house..and are settling in to our new life in Georgia.

At least I'll have more time to update my blog!

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