Monday, July 18, 2011

We're Home!

I haven't had internet in a few days, so I'm up here at Starbucks during CJ's nap to give a quick recap update!! The two nights we spent at the Miramar Inn were "challenging". The room had two full beds, so JT and I each had our own beds, which would have been nice had CJ slept through the nights! He was having a hard time both nights and therefore slept with me both nights (because JT needed to go report to the military and "check-in" on base and needed to sleep!) Doesn't my Navy Man look so cute with my Little Man? :)
After one of the long nights, CJ took a nice long nap!! He always looks so sweet when he is asleep!
He discovered Fruit Loops because I took a couple of individual cereal bowls of them at breakfast and they are now a new fave!!
We went to the playground on base while JT was doing military stuff. CJ loved the "vroom vroom" wheels! Ha ha!
And OF COURSE my daredevil child did not want to play in the baby/toddler area...Nope, he climbed to the VERY top where all the big kids were. I was right there with him the whole time but it was still scaring me! I like the way the playground has giant tarp-umbrella things so that the play structures are in the shade!!
We found a neat "Kebab Shop" in Mira Mesa that is between the base and our house in Rancho Bernardo that was really yummy! CJ tried Lamb for the first time, and really like the saffron rice. I kept trying to give him some of mine, but he preferred just grabbing right off my plate. Ha ha!
He also tried out a new way to sit while you are eating...ha ha!! It is hard to put food IN your mouth when your foot is in FRONT of your mouth. Silly boy!
I took a picture that "sort of " might give you an idea of the crazy traffic here?! This was around rush hour, so it isn't this bad all the time!
Just a quick background on how military housing works: The military gives "x" amount of money per month based on your rank just as "housing allowance" (separate from your actual paycheck). If you live in a military house, y0u just don't get the housing allowance (covers rent, water and electric). If you don't live in a military house, you can save money by finding a home less than your allowance!! The wait for a military house here in San Diego is at least 9 months. It is hard enough having to move every 3 years, that I knew we would NOT want to move again 9 months from now! JT did SUCH A wonderful job picking out a house for our family! I could NOT be any happier!!! Not only is it $500 dollars less than our allowance (which will easily cover water and electric as well), but it also has everything we wanted and is in a nice neighborhood!! On Friday, July 15th we got the keys to our new house!!! It is one story, 4 bedroom, 2 bath. Has a dining room, a den, and a living room. I did take pictures but it is hard to get an idea of what is what with all empty rooms. Here is CJ playing (lining up his cars! while wearing his cowboy hat) in what will be the living room. We plan on putting the TV and couches in this room. (The tile you see in the back is the foyer and those double doors are the front doors).
This is part of the kitchen! CJ is eating breakfast on the floor (so I can easily wipe up the messes!) I am SOOO looking forward to getting all of our belongings, of course, but especially CJ's high chair, because he is so easily distracted the he gets up off the floor and runs around in between each bite during mealtime right now!!
CJ is already loving his new backyard!! He enjoyed "vroom vroom"ing his car along the bricks surrounding the patio!
Our "little bully" (hopefully not really, but I thought the shirt was cute!)
More lining up of the cars on his chair! It's hard work, but somebody's gotta do it!!
CJ woke up in a REALLY good mood in his new bedroom!! We had one pretty rough night that resulted in all of us sleeping on the air mattress together, but last night CJ slept through the night again in his pack n play! Poor boy is probably just sick of sleeping in that thing after almost a month!! One more night, and then tomorrow our household goods get delivered and CJ will have his crib and we will have our BED!! :)
CJ is LOVING having an entire empty house to run around and play in! He enjoys climbing in and out of the master shower! (It helps when you wear your cowboy hat and book bag!-look for another blog about the "big boy book bag")
And running down the hall having a BALL!! :)
Yesterday we went to the mall to check it out and see what stores they have, etc. It is a nice mall that has every store I would want with the exception of J.Crew. I think I will be able to live with that! ;) It is just one exit up from us on the interstate, so it is pretty close! There is a good play area, and this mall has a "family lounge" almost as great as that other mall we went to! :) When we were in Hallmark picking out some birthday cards, we glanced over and someone must have gotten tired of wearing his shoes and socks because there was a trail of footwear...
Today we went to the San Diego Zoo. (We have to do something because it gets boring sitting around in an empty house!) We got a yearly membership, and I got the "single" one because then I can always bring one other adult with me for free (either JT or a guest!). CJ is free until he turns 3. It is a HUGE zoo, and just like is the kind of place that we will NOT try to do all at once with CJ. That would just be pushing him too hard! He loved the meerkats, and it was so funny because I told him "those are meerkats" and he started saying "oww" (meow). Ha ha!!! Meerkat = Cat to him. So cute!!
Stopped for a quick snack of milk and cookies!
CJ with a lion!! "Rooaaaarrr"
Part of our membership gives free unlimited rides on the sky tram so we took it back to the front of the park since we were getting close to naptime! (which saved us a lot of walking & time!!)
CJ loved looking down at all the "mam-i'-mals" (animals).
Tomorrow we get our stuff delivered and then the unpacking begins!!! I can't wait to make our new house into our "home". We get internet on Thursday, so I probably won't have another chance to update until then! Prayers for a smooth move in are appreciated! I've gotten lots of great advice from other moms to do CJ's room first to "keep him busy" while I work on the rest of the house!! Hope doesn't try to "help" the movers too much tomorow! ;)

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

New Kid in Town

Surprise, the Miramar Inn is not nearly as bad as I imagined, and they DO have internet (ethernet, but I will settle for that over none at all!) A little background as to why I was so skeptical of this joint...when JT and I moved to Hawaii we had to live in The Lodge at Kaneohe Bay for three weeks, while we waited for housing to become available. It was bad enough to make me become very leary of military lodging. At least the Miramar Inn has a kitchenette with microwave and fridge...we didn't even have THAT in HI. But, I guess it was Hawaii. Ha ha.

We woke up this morning and left Valencia and started heading south toward San Diego!! The final stop on our road trip! :) People in California are CRAZY drivers!! The traffic in LA and SD is nuts too! Today we were 8 lanes going the same direction in San Diego at one point!!! That is going to take some getting used to, for sure, compared to our small college town of Ann Arbor. I lived in Atlanta for a short time and used to drive through there quite a bit forever ago back when JT and I were long distance dating...but this CA traffic is way worse than anything I ever saw in GA!! One thing that is scary, is that the motorcycles pass in between cars!! YIKES!!
We got to see the Pacific Ocean for a brief moment on the drive down. We are hoping to go to the beach sometime maybe this weekend since we will just be sitting around in our empty house.
Almost there...
The first stop once we arrived in San Diego, was to see our new house!! JT did a great job house-hunting for our family last month, and we signed a lease on this house. JT was nervous that I might not like it since this was the first time I was getting to see it in person. I didn't like it. I LOVED it!!! I can't wait to share more pictures as we officially move in, and unpack..but since the house was empty, we just peeked around a little bit a couple days early! ;) (We get the keys on Friday).
I thought I had seen an orange tree in the backyard in one of the pictures that JT had taken when he visited, but there are TWO orange trees, both BUSTING with fruit!! I can't wait to make some fresh squeezed juice for breakfast!!
And there is a lime tree too!!! Margaritas anyone?!
Here is the grassy part of the backyard. I am already envisioning putting CJ's pool (that I am going to buy) in the shady area!
And I LOVE the patio area!!! An oversized sliding glass door, and the large kitchen window that opens so you can pass food and drinks out onto the patio bar!!! I hope I can make lots of friends and host lots of parties here. :)
JT telling CJ that this is his new house.
We didn't want to stay too long since we were technically "trespassing?" Rebels! I am just so excited to get the keys and get to see the inside of the house (that I couldn't see by peeking through the windows, LOL). :)

We checked into the Miramar Inn. See the light saber on the floor? We found that in our room (I don't even want to think about what else the cleaning crew missed if they missed a giant light saber! :P) and CJ loved it immediately. Must be a boy thing. Ha ha! I gave him the bottom drawer of the dresser as a "toy chest" and I guess he wanted to play inside with the toys!
And then tonight I gave him a bowl of Kix cereal as a "nack" (Snack), which he promptly dumped on the floor, and wore the bowl as a hat.
He was just too darn cute to get cross with!! ;)
Tomorrow JT is going to report into the military and start the "check-in" process. CJ and I are going to just hang out here I think. There is a nice playground at the Inn (that is under these huge umbrellas making the playground shady) that we can go to. And the Commissary and Exchange are within walking distance from the hotel also. I'm going to do some price comparisons at the Commissary to get some ideas of prices after being away from the military life for 3 years. Maybe I'll go ahead and buy a pool for CJ at the Exchange if the price is right! :)

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

I'd Take My Shoes Off Too...

We aren't sure if it was:
1) The heat, 2) An allergic reaction to grass OR 3) Too much kissing dogs, cats and goats
But at 1am Monday morning JT & I were awakened by the horrible sound of our baby throwing up in his pack n' play next to us. The instant worry jolted me awake like nothing else. Since we were at JT's cousin's house, and there are 5 other people at the house trying to sleep, it was a little challenging trying to clean everything up. I'll spare y'all the gory details, but just say I AM sure that I won't be eating any velveeta shells & cheese for a while. Poor CJ went right back to sleep with us (since obviously the pack n' play was out of commission). He never had a fever, and the next morning acted totally fine. But we still just felt we didn't want to overstay our welcome, so it was time to hit the road again!

CJ got lots of goodbye kisses from Mana
He was pointing to the tractor next door planting some Sudan Grass Seed.
One more kiss for Mana
Saying "bye bye"to the goats!
We thought we would try to take a mamas with their babes pic...but CJ thought he would try to say "bye bye" to KB by beating her on the head.
So we quickly rearranged the pose!
Stopping for gas before we got too far down the road (to allow CJ the largest chunk of napping time!) wearing the cowboy hat!! Our boy LOVES hats!! He took a 2 hour nap, and I took an hour nap.
We stopped for the evening in Valencia, California, mainly because it was north of LA and we were quickly approaching Rush Hour and the estimated delays according to Berta (our GPS) was approx 48 mins. No thanks! I thought it was SOO funny that CJ lined up his cars in a row! I've heard of kids doing this, but this was his first time, so I grabbed the camera to capture it!
We walked over to Denny's for dinner since it is right next door to our hotel. JT was more ready for bed than CJ since he was the only one of us who didn't get a nap after that long night/morning!
There must be something going on in San Diego this week because last night when JT and I were trying to book a hotel room we couldn't find ANYTHING for tonight (unless we wanted to/could afford to spend like $400 a night) so we decided to stay here in Valencia another night. There is a really nice mall here so we went shopping a little this morning. CJ took advantage of the building blocks they had at Carters while we picked out some sale items for him!
There was a kid's shoe store, and since we had suspected that CJ's shoes were getting snug, we took him to get him measured. Sure enough, those little feet had grown a full size in about a month!!! Poor little guy, no wonder he didn't want to keep those shoes on, they were probably hurting his feet! Lesson learned by these first time parents!!! :( So we bought him a new pair of Stride Rites.
He wore them out of the store and seemed to like them immediately from the way he RAN out of there!! hee hee! And I must mention, that he kept them on the rest of the day, so that must have been the problem! :( (In case you can't tell, JT and I feel bad!!)
The mall had some outdoor shops in addition to the regular indoor mall, and the landscaping was really pretty. (Kinda reminded JT and I a little of the shops in Mt. Pleasant, SC). They had a koi pond, and I was pointing the fish out to CJ who kept saying "Memo, memo" (Nemo).
This mall was seriously the nicest one (besides the Ala Moana mall in Honolulu) we've ever been to!! Their kids play area was clean, and CJ had a BALL!!! Of course the first thing he had to play on was the Car!!
And then he gave "Memo" a big hug and kiss!!
And it was neat to see CJ make a "friend" with an older kid. The bigger boy was calling "CJ" and then having CJ chase him. They both really enjoyed it!
And they had a nice padded climbing/slide structure that CJ had fun on too!!
And these next two pictures could possibly be the weirdest pics I've ever taken, but any other MOM will really appreciate them! This mall had THE NICEST FAMILY BATHROOM EVER!!!! There was a huge stall (that a stroller would fit into!) with a toilet. And then each baby changing area had it's own sink/soap, wipe warmers, a mirror, and it was SOOO clean!!!
And there were FOUR private nursing rooms, with comfy chairs! (what I wouldn't have given to have something half this nice all those times we were struggling nursing in public under the cover!!) There was also a nice sitting room that had a TV and a few toys!! And they had a microwave. Basically anything you would need to take care of your baby/kids!!! Made me kinda wish we were moving here. Ha ha!
Even though the mall had a big food court and lots of restaurants, JT and I needed to have some CFA!!!
CJ and I stayed in the car while JT ran in. And he was being SOOO SILLY and making funny faces at himself in the mirror!!! HA HA!!!
CJ took a great 2.5 hour nap, and then we went to Buca di Bepo for dinner. JT posing with one of the 3,000 statues they have at the restaurant. No, I'm not being sarcastic for once. The hostess told us that they have over 3,000 statues/pictures decorating the place as she gave us the tour. Ha ha!
And CJ watched cars (AGAIN!) and at some spaghetti!! We aren't going to show him a movie on the iPad every time we go out to eat (if we ever go out to eat again! We are so sick of it!)...but when you are on the road and have to eat out for every meal, you gotta do something!
What a big boy feeding himself! I can't believe it!
Tomorrow we will finally arrive in San Diego!! :) I am so excited to see our new house (the outside) and start to get a bit of the feel for the area!! We move into (camp in) the house on Friday, and then our household goods will be delivered on Tuesday! We are staying on base the next two nights (since everything else was booked or unaffordable), so that should be interesting! Not sure if we will have internet at the Miramar Inn (yes, that is actually the name!), and I don't know when the internet will get set up at our new house, so a little time may pass before the next blog? I hope not too much time, and I will update when I am able!!!