Just the facts, ma’am

Well, we’re here in the States, and about to move into an apartment tomorrow morning. I’m at an internet cafe writing this, and I can tell you that it’s not gonna be a lot…I just need a place holder for now. Hopefully our internet service at the apartment won’t take too long to connect…and I’ll put a real update then. There are many things to mention…hope I remember them all!

Bill who?

Man, we have made some trouble for ourselves. The way the government pays for housing is you tell them what your bill is and they give you that amount of money.

So our plan for moving here was renting a furnished apartment (since our stuff will take a while to be shipped here). Because the gov’t would only pay one bill, though, we had to find an apartment complex that would be willing to pay for the furniture and then bill us. That was the trick. We went to an apartment finder and the guy (Mark, very nice) said that that would be pretty difficult to find (which I had thought, actually).

We visited only one other apartment building, but it was pretty old. Mark suggested this complex because it was new and in a good area, in our price range, and they said they’d work with us on the furniture. We came out and looked around and loved it. The apartment is so big, and the fact that no one’s ever lived here is a huge plus. After looking it over we went back to the office to see about the furniture. We talked about it with the office chick, and then she let us use the office computer to choose the furniture from the rental place that they would work with. The price was in range for us, so we showed the girl and she said she’d call the company and confirm the price…she thought that the prices on the internet might not be current. I told her that they’d better be current, they couldn’t very well change the price on us like that. Tj and I had to go back home to get a check for the deposit because the complex wouldn’t take cash.

After we got back (and this was right around closing time) she told us that there would be a charge from the complex. We’d expected that all along; what we hadn’t expected was a $400/month charge for the matter! I talked to the complex manager and she said because the apartment would be responsible if anything happened they had to charge us that much. This didn’t make sense to me because there would already be a charge from the furniture company built in the price…obviously this wasn’t an insurance charge but a ‘just because we can’ charge. We told them that we’d have to think it over and get back with them the next day.

We were nervous about losing the apartment; there aren’t that many 3-bedroom apartments available. But this complex was so new that we thought there should be enough available units left. We went home and talked about it. Neither of us thought the complex should make that much money off of us. Finally I asked Tj if he was sure that what he thought about how he got paid was correct. He said that’s the way the government used to pay him, but he would look it up online. After a little research he saw that things had changed recently; now the government sets a housing price for each area and that’s what each individual is paid. Yea!

So we went to Aaron’s this morning and picked out a bunch of furniture to rent. And then we went to the apartment building and gave them a check for our apartment! The crazy thing was that the reason Tj wanted to go to Aaron’s was that there were tons of signs saying that they delivered in 24 hours. When it came time for the lady to tell us when the furniture could be delivered she said the first available day was Tuesday. When she went to check on something I mentioned it to Tj; he wasn’t bothered, but I figured I’d just mention it to her. When I asked her ‘what about the 24-hour thing?’ she said that they were very booked up, but because we had to wait she’d take off the $50 move fee. Woohoo!

Just a little more

Here I am starting off another entry with grumbling, but oh well. Papa called Wednesday night to tell Tj that the car people had called him (he’s our backup number) and were wanting info. After he relayed the message he asked how Max was. No, we still don’t know what we’re having, but he’s mentioned before that he has a BB gun for Max! I guess he thinks we’re having a boy. (‘Course, that’s what he hoped for when he had all his girls!) Then he asked how Max’s mom was, and then he hung up. The whole call was no more than five minutes. Now I know I’m being extremely petty here, but that really annoyed me. Every time I call him he apologizes for not calling me. Mom always complains that she has to dial 39 numbers when she calls and says that’s the reason she never calls me. So here he is, already talking to Tj, and he can’t spare a few minutes to talk to his own daughter!? I’ve got to let this go, but it really goads me. I really want to try not to be this way with my kids. I don’t want to go off the deep end and smother them, either; but there’s got to be a happy medium.

Well, I was gonna write something good, but I’ve been gone awhile, and now it’s time to put my baby to bed! Tj’s taken care of the car and is home safe and sound. Will write more later, but don’t know when…the movers will be here Tuesday!!!! It’s getting so close!

And now, the news…

Ugh…I hate to start this post out with bad news, but I just can’t wait to get out of here! I’d been putting off washing the dishes for a day or two (it’s amazing how few we generate when I hardly eat anything!). Finally got off my lazy butt this morning and was taking care of business. After about 3/4 of the way through I started smelling something…now this really isn’t unusual around here…I can’t wait till we get back to where my house NEVER smells like sewer…that’s just not attractive, ever. Anyway, I couldn’t figure out what that smell was. The phone rang and I was on it for two or three minutes. When I went back and was rinsing a bowl I noticed that the water was brown…hmmmmmm…. Side note: this was a ‘clean’ dish that I’d gotten back from Grace. I’d sent her home with some food about three weeks ago and got the dishes back yesterday with cat hair in them!!! Disgusting! So, since she had cleaned all but the cat hair out the water should’ve been clear. Needless to say I’d been smelling the dirt and crud coming out of my own faucet! I don’t know what they’re doing with construction around here, but I can’t wait to get out of here! The last two mornings the water has been cut off for a time…and now this. I’m sorry to report that I cried about it; just a little bit, though.

And now the good news: one week from today we’ll be in the air at this time!!! YEA!!!

Tj’s gone now to take the car up to Madrid. He mentioned last week at church that he’d be doing that and we found out that the preacher was gonna be driving his kids up there for camp the next day. Tj told him if they had somewhere to stay he’d bring them up there with him. The preacher was glad not to have to do that 12-hour round-trip drive, I’m sure; and Tj was glad to have some company on the way. He’s gonna try to get a hop on an Iberia flight back down today…Fran says that with his pilot’s license he shouldn’t have any trouble…it’s pretty much up to the discretion of the pilot on the flight down here. If he can’t swing that he’ll just get a train ticket to Balsicas and Fran will go pick him up around 9pm tonight. Fran and Teresa have been so good to us; Tj was gonna ask if we could borrow their second car to go to church Sunday night (they’re having a going-away party for us and another couple), when he mentioned it to Fran he said he (Fran) had already talked to Teresa and they’d decided to give us their car tonight for our use until we leave next Friday morning! Tj told him we didn’t need it except to go to church but Fran said he wouldn’t hear of it. What nice friends we’ve made here!