A week ago we got the keys to our new home in Loveland. It was Halloween, so we made sure the costumes were something that came with us. Closing on a home the same day as Halloween could have been one of those stories the kids would have never let us live down, but it turns out if you make something sound exciting to a 5 and 8-year-old, they’ll go along with it. So we totally hyped up the experience. “YOU GET TO GO TRICK OR TREATING IN YOUR NEW NEIGHBORHOOD JUST HOURS AFTER WE GET THERE! They were totally excited! And it proved to be a fun trick or treating experience with neighbors handing out full-sized candy bars and play dough! This mom was happy with the play dough!
We camped out the first night on an air mattress, arriving with just the essentials that would fit in our two vehicles…plus two very irritated cats. Our furniture didn’t arrive until later the next day due to weather through the mountain passes. Moving twice in six months has been tiresome, but between our two moves (from Flagstaff to Rifle) then from Rifle to Loveland, this second move was by far the easiest. For starters, we didn’t have to rent a second U-haul trailer, then tow a vehicle behind the U-haul. We had professional movers who knew how to pack correctly. With the same size moving truck these movers packed it with room to spare. If it was packed correctly the first time, we wouldn’t have needed that second trailer.
It’s been quite an adventure. From the start of our trek eastward in June til now, we’ve seen a lot, experienced a lot and did more together as a family than we did the years before this. We explored. We visited places almost every weekend we’ve lived here. We went camping for the first time as a family and just saw so much natural beauty. I will always remember it.
It wasn’t all great though, I struggled with finding work opportunities that would coincide with my kids’ schedules. This lead me to find work at my kids’ school and has thus proved to be rewarding. I’ve picked up a passion for wanting to help children emotionally, which most likely involves going back to school for my master’s.
On the Western Slope, I learned a great deal about the rural, agricultural area we lived in. It changed my perspective on a lot of things. Farming communities are very different from your typical suburban neighborhood. They all look out for each other, trade livestock and support Colorado-grown produce. There is a big agricultural war here between California and Colorado with water rights and the Colorado River. Colorado farmers don’t like California farmers much. The population on the Western Slope was so spread out with lots of farmland between here and where we commuted for work and school, with only about 15,000 people between Parachute and New Castle, a 30 mile distance. It was 22 miles to the kids’ school where I also worked as a para, and 30 miles to Scott’s work. It was quite the commute, but we were growing accustomed to it when Scott was offered an amazing opportunity in Fort Collins. You may be wondering, “but what happened to the house you were having built?” Interestingly enough, I don’t think that house would have been finished and ready to move into for another year. We were supposed to close on that house on October 27th, just 4 days before we closed on our house here in Loveland, yet they hadn’t even laid a foundation until the week we moved here. I really believe it would have been over a year until the company finished building it. Since there was no new addendum or timelines added to our original contract the company breached its own contract and had to pay back our earnest money. So no money was lost in any way which made the move here to Loveland all the more easier.
I feel like I’ve grown a lot though. The six months on the Western Slope was eye-opening in many ways for me. The simplified lifestyle of the community around us, my experience working with a very difficult child, dealing with the death of a student in the class I worked in, and everything I learned from the teachers at this school gave me a new direction for my life and I’m hoping I’ll be able to pursue it here.
I know that God got us this far, and he has a plan for our future and I know that somehow, someway I’ll make a difference in this world through the lives of kids or maybe grown ups.
On Monday this week, the kids started at their new school. I emailed their teachers when I found out who they were and told them all about the boys and the different transitions they’d been through. On Monday Braidy was really nervous and hid behind me while I talked to his teacher, but left school with a smile on his face and couldn’t wait to go back the next day. Jaydon had the same feelings as well. It’s not easy going to two different schools in the same school year, but I’ve always tried to prepare my kids emotionally for hard things and they’ve approached all of the transitions we’ve had to make this year with the best attitudes. I’m happy that they still love school and come home with something exciting to tell me.
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