We moved away from Flagstaff on July 1st in order for Jeremy to pursue more education--namely, another Master's degree in hopes of preparing him for a future PhD (yikes!). He enrolled as a student in classes at Talbot (Biola's graduate school) and we moved back to the house in which I grew up...oh, and yes, my parents still live there/here. The name of our town in Placentia, so I mostly tell people that we live in Orange County because people in Arizona get hung up on the name and then might make sick jokes about afterbirth and the like. (It's pronounced "Plah-sen-cha", people!)
Here's how it's been feeling to be living back home with my parents...
Of course there's been a little bit of this:
But sometimes I feel like this:
And I definitely struggle with feeling like this:
My mom was wondering what I tell my friends when they ask how it's going here. I told her that most of them have stories of their own because almost everyone my age I have talked to has lived with their parents or their in-laws at some point recently. So maybe my parents are feeling a little like this:
Living in Southern California does have its perks...
Old college roommates come to visit (oh, and that's my parent's house in background):
And then there's this awesome place called The Beach:
And because everything is Bigger! and Flashier! in Southern California, my kids got to go to a "Back to the Future"-themed VBS with a Dolorian that lit up and lightning and smoke and a clock tower and all sorts of sound effects.
|But the fun was still mostly in the friends and the songs and the fun classes.|
|On the last day, Evan was on the verge of tears and said to me: "We didn't get to go to the real future. We just stayed in class. I want to go home!"|
Orange County has no lack of events (which means no lack of crowds) so we've been to museums, the movies, restaurants, and even the county fair.
|The kids were captivated by the 100-year-old ring master and his magic birds. I was just hoping he didn't keel over and die in front of us.|
--walking around on smooth sidewalks barefoot!
--not needing to put on lotion every day
--going for a run in my old neighborhood=a fun trip down memory lane (otherwise known as The Tour of Houses I Once Toilet-Papered)
--Grandma and Crampaw are here=lots of attention and a garage full of woodworking tools
Orange County also has some quirks:
--my hair is all weird and frizzy and frumpy and halfway curly and I don't know what to do with it
--I literally have to sign a waiver comparable with a driver's license application in its thoroughness to take my child to the bathroom at the public library. The bathroom that has a locked door and is right behind the librarian's desk and is only a one-seater anyway.
--people all seem in a rush to get everywhere...mostly it seems that they are always in a rush to get stuck in traffic
--don't even get me started on the 4th of July seat-saving outrageousness...it explains why I have line stress and parade stress and a deep-rooted seat-saving anxiety disorder. Let's just say there was lots of caution tapes and stakes and territorial sideways glances.
-- --Some people here still seem to think (as I once did) that the OC is the center of the universe. There was actually a quote in the newspaper about how many Olympians are from the OC that said: "This tiny nation of Orange County boasts more Olympic medalists than most other countries..."
--We often feel like hillbillies in the big city. I went to Taco Tuesday the other night in what I thought was my fancy t-shirt and was completely underdressed.
But I should stop making fun because there are lots of good and normal people here (though I sat at Starbucks the other day listening to two girls discuss their rise to fame through avenues such as America's Next Top Model and The Bachelor, and my old high school friend recently won a lot of money on Deal or No Deal...you can just DO that kind of stuff here and it makes me smile).
|Fun in grandma's living room...my cute little revolutionaries playing Les Mis at their barricade|
But if I'm honest with you, our big adventure to CA that so many friends were excited about for us has been starting to feel a little like this:
Jeremy's first class was cancelled due to low enrollment and getting a job has been much harder than we thought. Things are expensive and the kids are a little stressed out...even Evan's invisible friend Jacob sadly moved away and Evan says he will never see him again (yes, it's very ironic). It's been humbling, to say the least.
Jeremy randomly heard this song on a free song sampler I downloaded and it is uncanny in how it fits our situation (from his prospective). He even went to 3 different universities over 5 years! Here are some of the words:
Well the show must go on though I
don't know what I am supposed
To do now that the spotlight is on me
there's a room full of people
And they're starin' at me oh
they've been waitin' on a sequel but,
Ahh, I don't really know my next move yet
My next move could be very jeopardizing
I put it all on the line like the horizon
And these fears can be very paralyzing
But I won't let 'em take my eyes off the prize and
Even if I crash and burn I'll wake up tomorrow with a lesson learned
I don't think they understand me
I understand see 'cause most of the
Time I don't even understand me
it doesn't make sense and for that
Reason it's hard to make dollars and that's why
I went through 5 Years of college at three different schools see
I never knew my next Move but lookin' back I can see my steps were ordered
I know the Author wrote a good end to my story