Saturday, October 1, 2011

Moving On {Project: Rewind}

After over four and a half years living and serving in Pekin, Illinois, our little brood of four packed up our home and our lives and moved on August 20.  The circumstances were not how we wished them to be.  The timing was a bit off.  And our new destination wasn't ideal.  But it is what it is, we are where we are, and we're moving forward.

Brad's parents arrived on Thursday the 18th (bringing the boys back home with them after their stay in Pella) and helped us pack up the final boxes.  My parents arrived on Friday, just in time to pick up the truck.

We rented a 24 foot Budget truck and *crossed our fingers* that all of our stuff would fit inside.  Funny, right?  Here's a bit of foreshadowing for ya: Good thing my parents drove down my brothers pick-up "just in case" we'd need to get a little trailer.

I didn't sleep much Friday night.  Nary a wink, it seemed.  I maybe got three hours, and when I woke up around 2am my mind starting whirling and I couldn't fall back asleep.  I think it was around 4:30 when I finally got out of bed for good and started my day.  I picked up and packed up a few odds and ends before 6:00 rolled around and the rest of the house started waking up.  The morning started out cloudy and a bit rainy.  Not good. The showers didn't last long.  Good.  But then the humidity set in.  Not good.  It didn't deter us too much, though, and we got the work done...  

...with an incredible amount of help.  This wasn't even half of it!  I wish I would've gotten a photo of all of our family and friends who spent the better part of the day to help us move everything out of the house and into the truck.  So many of our dearest friends from our church spent the day with us.  Many hands definitely made for lighter work, and there will never be a day we will be able to repay them all - but greater than that, it was incredibly meaningful to have them all there with us on our last day in Pekin.   

My dad was the designated crew chief.  He is an amazing packer.  Ah-mazing.  If there was any possible way to fit all of our earthly possessions in that 24 foot truck, my dad would be the man that could do it.  His post was in the truck, directing traffic and calling for what he needed next to pack the truck just so.      

Everyone else worked on either emptying the house or cleaning it.  Those lucky little worker bees.  The side lawn of the house became the dumping grounds for boxes and everything that didn't fit into a box, waiting for my dad to have the perfect space to put it all.  So funny that all these photos show people sitting around, like we're having a party or something.  We did have a good time, but I tell you what - our friends and family worked their tails off.  Now that's love.

{See?  I was working hard, man. I almost broke a sweat.}

Where were the boys during all this action?  Safely tucked away so as to not be underfoot all day.  The boys' Pekin grandma, Chris, took them next door to the church nursery, although I don't think to keep the boys out of our way so much as to have the boys all to herself one last time. ;)

Lunch break!  Pizza, pop, cookies and cake.

After lunch found us back at it, this time with help from the little guys.

We packed up every little (and big) thing we could fit into that truck, and whaddayaknow, we were gonna need that little trailer after all!  We did auction off {"Anybody want this???... It's yours!"}  a few small pieces of furniture that wouldn't fit, and had to send a few non-essentials home with Brad's parents.   

But we got it all loaded - somewhere - and we even ended up with a bit of spare room in the back of the trailer...perfect for these two little buggers!

By 3pm, everything was out.  We started a round of good-byes, full of hugs and kisses and tears and sweet words...

...said good-bye to our home - the boys' first home...

...loaded up Luci {she was Brad's co-pilot in the moving truck}...

...and headed out.

We were able to travel the eight and a half hours straight through, all the way to our new home-for-now in Minnesota, arriving just before midnight.

Everything was unpacked from the trailer and truck on Sunday morning.  Unfortunately, we didn't have the unloading crew we had when we loaded, but fortunately, unloading is much less work than loading!

So now, here we are.  Moved, unloaded, making it work.

Because wherever we are together, that is home. 

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