So far, life in Austin is good. Key highlights/updates:
- Atlanta/Austin drive - can be summarized in one word - "sucked". My mom was gracious enough to fly out to the ATL and help me get our crew to Texas via car, because we decided that as hellacious as that sounds, it would be easier than me getting 3 kids, 3 car seats, a stroller and a plane full of luggage to Austin by myself. During the 2-day trip, the Bigs were as good as gold as long as they had a steadily rotating supply of electronic devices (iPod, Leapster, DVD player, etc.). Josh fussed and screamed the entire way and was just generally unpleasant to be around. In retrospect, I think he was getting teeth and we should have busted out both the ibuprofen and the Benadryl a lot sooner than we did. The real hero of the trip was my mom, who tirelessly sang children's songs across all 4 states and even learned to drive faster than 65 by the end of the trip. But in all seriousness, I could not have done it without her.
- Austin living conditions - Our house in Smyrna hasn't sold yet, and we are temporarily in a furnished corporate apartment until we figure out whether we want to buy/rent and where. Said apartment is actually nicer than our house, has amazing views of the Texas Hill Country, AND comes equipped with a fabulous pool and fitness center that we do not have to maintain ourselves. The whole "no-maintenance" thing has us wondering why we ever wanted to be homeowners in the first place. The only drawbacks of of the apartment are A) it only has two bedrooms and B) it is on the third floor. We have circumvented these issues by A) putting all three boys in one room and B) teaching the Bigs how to be grocery Sherpas.
- City of Austin itself - is still fabulous. Did I mention how pretty the Hill Country is already? Austin still has all the same amazing dining options I remember from my college days, only now I can actually afford to take advantage of them without a loan from my dad. What I had forgotten, and what I love MOST, is how laid-back it is here. I took the boys to scope out our Chick-Fil-A today and was amazed to note that only a handful of moms in the place were wearing makeup. Several were in *gasp* running shorts and t-shirts! The one mom that was fully decked out Atlanta-style in a precious sundress complete with jewelry, blown-out hair, and makeup, looked oddly out of place. FINALLY - a place where I can be true to my low-maintenance tendencies!
So yeah - all in all, it's pretty good. We still face just a few key challenges to getting settled, which include:
- Kids are making me crazy. School starts next week - that should help. Hopefully.
- It is hotter than hell here. Every day this week will be over 100 - no joke.
- Now that they are all in the same room and unsupervised for roughly 8 hours a night, the Bigs have discovered how to team-lift Baby out of the Pack-N-Play. This means that all three boys are standing in the doorway at the crack of dawn, greeting us with smiles. On the bright side, Baby's vocabulary is expanding to include "'Ello!" as a morning greeting. Obviously, a 2-bedroom apartment is NOT a long-term solution.
- Finally, the pesky matter of finding somewhere permanent to live. Do we buy? Do we rent? And where? Only time will tell...