Monday, September 28, 2009

For those who are really THAT interested...

Nate randomly fell upon this video the other day.

Go to the bottom of the page, where it says Ridgecrest Movie. This basically can teach you anything and everything there is to know about this funny little town we live in! It's definitely something you should check out, when you have nothing else better to do.

In other news, Nate also came across this article in The Salt Lake Tribune (you know that he is always checking on his Jazz team). A little background, Spencer Nelson, my very favorite former Aggie basketball player, has been at Utah's training camp.
Coach Sloan:
Stew Morrill fan club member

During the conversation about Nelson, Sloan took the opportunity to sing the praises of Utah State coach Stew Morrill.

"I'll say this about the guys we get from Utah State," Sloan said. "They all know what's going on. The head coach up there is probably the best coach in the country, in my opinion. He does a great job, and the kids we've gotten in here from up there are just wonderful people."

Oh, my beloved Aggies! Stew is my hero, too, Jerry. And if you knew what was good for ya, you'd pick Spencer up at your first chance!! Not that I care about the Jazz, but it would sure guarantee my fanship! (Is that a word? Oh, pregnancy mush brain + excessive Death valley heat is really starting to wear on me.)

Speaking of being pregnant, our little guy decided to flip around! He has been breech since the first ultrasound we saw, but today, at our 30 week appointment (can you believe it? 30 weeks???? AAAH!) we learned he has turned around sometime in the last two weeks! We were thrilled; let's just hope he decides to stay that way. I'd like to think that's why I've been so uncomfortable lately, he's been pushing me like crazy trying to get his head in the right direction!

We've been here in Cali for about a month now, and yes, I have a new list of things I've learned.
#1. The people are still nice. Very, very nice. We even lived to tell the tale of the California DMV, which we'd heard horror stories about. but even they have been nice! We LOVE our ward. They have made us feel like we've been here forever, and that home and family aren't far away. I'm so very greatful for the Gospel, and can't imagine living this crazy adventure without it.
#2. The sun sets at 7pm. Just when the day is starting to cool off a bit, and you'd really like to go for a nice walk after dinner; but you can't, because it's totally dark. Solution, waking up at 630am to get your walks in when it's still somewhat cool out.
#3. You can get a suntan just from driving in your car.
#4. You can get a sunburn just walking from your car into the grocery store. Be careful on the asphalt parking lots; your rubber flip flops may or may not stick.
#5. Instead of listening to crickets at night, we listen to frogs. The first week in our house, we were pulling into the driveway one night and watched a frog hop all across our driveway. Nate really wanted to catch it and put it in our pond; he said it needed to be in water. So I told him it was the frog's own dang fault for being in the middle of the desert. Moral of the story, I did not let Nate catch it, but he did give me a lecture about how I am going to have a son, who will catch gross things and whose Dad will highly encourage it. (sigh. I know he's right, but I don't like to think about it.)
#6. There is no cold water in this town. Anywhere. When we came for visits before, we thought maybe it was just the hotel. Nope, our temporary housing, the grocery store fountains, our house, all of it is luke warm at best. You can't even get the shower to turn cold! I'm not sure if they have just forgotten what cold is, or maybe it's just too much work to get anything cold here. Who knows. Moral of this story, we have several jugs of water constantly stacked in the fridge, always cold. Doesn't help the shower situation, but it's a start.
#7. Produce is not cheap in California. I'm quite sure we bought our fruits and veggies from CA while living in Utah, and it was a heck of a lot cheaper there! Fun thing is, when there are only three grocery stores in town, it's not that hard to find the lowest prices.
#8. There are cockroaches in CA. I am not ok with that. I had never seen one in real life before living here. After having a nothing-less-than-disturbing conversation with my sister in Texas, who has horror stories of the awful little creatures, I realize my life could be worse. But I still pray that our house and neighborhood are clean enough to be pest free. I don't know what I'd do if I found a live one scurrying around our house, and I was home by myself. It gives me heebie-geebies to even think about! Nate told me he saw the biggest one he's ever seen in his life the other day on the base, out in the middle of nowhere. Bigger than the one's in Brazil! EEK!
#9. You can find old American Gladiator classic episodes on tv at any given time, day or night. This brings me great joy in life. I vaguely remember it coming on every now and then when I was younger, and my sisters all saying how they used to watch it ALL the time when they lived in CA. It doesn't seem like much has changed!
#10. Airplane fly overs are more common than water. not just any kind of fly over, and not just once a day or so. They fly so low, it sounds like they are right on top of your roof or in your backyard, and it is ALL day long. The first few days made me a bit nervous, but now I'm almost to the point I can time them throughout the day. OOH! I felt my first bomb last week. That was super exciting! I was on the base waiting in a parking lot for Nate, and I heard and felt the boom! Better than in a movie. When Nate met me, he said that was the biggest one he has felt yet. He was mad no one told him where it was going off so he could go watch it. Better luck next time.
So there's my update from the desert! I'm STILL trying to find some part time work to keep me busy and hopefully out of the house every now and then. It is supposed to cool off a little this week, thank goodness. And by cool off, I mean a high of 90 or 95. But we'll take it! We both received callings in church this week, and are excited to get involved. Nate is the assistant teacher advisor in young mens, so lots of scouts, mutual, and camp outs I assume. I am the 2nd counselor in primary, and we are both looking forward to our new duties. I don't have any pictures of my house put together yet, but I promise I'm working on it! We have visitors coming to visit us this weekend, so there is a lot of work to be done this week!! Hooray for visitors! Something to look forward to!!

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Post from HOME

Well, I've registered my vehicle, applied for a CA driver license, and am about to start paying property taxes and a mortgage. I suppose it's official, I guess this place is home now. Fortunately, the one thing that I really truly love here in Ridgecrest is my house. Thank goodness, since this is where I spend ALL of my time. If I could just pick up my house and Nate's job, and move back to Logan, life would be so sweet. Yes, Nate STILL loves his job. In fact, it gets better for him everyday. Saying he loves it actually doesn't even do it justice. I'm really happy for him. He worked so hard through school, and deserves to enjoy what he's doing. Now if only I could figure out how to get me a part time job doing something I somewhat enjoy until the baby comes...I will post some pics of our home when it gets put all together. But here are some pics of our temporary housing place from the first week we were here. It was nice and cozy.
Our bedroom. Funny, that tv was bigger and nicer than the tv we own, but we never even turned this one on. Maybe one day when there are teenagers around, I will find a need for a tv in my bedroom. I certainly can't find a reason now.

The cozy little kitchen that thankfully came with all cookware and appliances, since ours was all packed; we didn't have to eat out every meal for a week.

The living room. This is most definitely where we lived for that week. Again, very cozy. I started to feel a little claustrophobic by the end of the week. But we sure did get used to that nice flatscreen. Nate is now convinced we need a new tv. But I just can't justify buying a new one, when there is nothing wrong with the first one! Where will we put the old one, that works just fine? Certainly not in the bedroom.

Here are the pictures I took of our house while we were waiting for the movers to come. It looks a lot better with our stuff in it! But atleast it's a little sneak peek for you all. Like I said, when I can get pictures on the walls, and make it feel a little more like home, there will of course be more pictures.
The view from the kitchen window. Yes, that is a fish pond with waterfall and fake deer. Really.

Nate's becoming really fond of the fish. I even find myself checking on them every time I walk past a window, makign sure they are still there, or something. Don't worry, I really don't think that deer is going to stay. It's just a bit much.

Nate read in on of the books the owner left us about Koi fish that you can train them to eat out of your hand. I don't have any idea why one would WANT to have this happen, but here's my dear husband trying.

The view of the whole backyard. We are greatful to have greenery in the desert. I would think it helps keep the backyard cooler, but I'm not sure. I DO know it makes me FEEL like it's a lot cooler back there. Just to see and hear water!

Nate's ritual has become going right out to feed the fish as soon as he comes home from work. They still kind of freak me out. Traumatic experience with Koi fish at the DC arboretum.

The owner of our house and his daughter came over on Sunday to teach us about the house, pond, backyard, etc. They said there should be about 40 fish in the pond. Apparently these guys multiply in the blink of an eye!

This is my giant kitchen that pretty much sold me when looking at the house. I have lots of cupboard space and the countertops are brand new.

But it is kind of gigantic and haven't quite figured out what to do with it yet. But there's a dishwasher!!!!!! And I can't believe I've ever lived without one. My mom still doesn't have a dishwasher and she cooks every day and never has a sink full of dirty dishes. And never complains! One of the many, many reasons I love and admire her.

All of the storage space in the hallway. Thank goodness, because there are no basements in this town. So I have no idea where we would put anything if we didn't have this lovely little arrangement.
The living room. Also, a selling point for me. You can't tell from this pic, but it's very big and open. I like it a lot. Don't worry that EVERY house we've seen in Ridgecrest has a huge fireplace. I don't know why they would ever need more heat here!

The baby's room. (His closet is bigger than any Nate or I have ever had.)

The guest room. Hint, hint...guests.

Our bedroom. There are french doors going out to the pond, and the door on the left goes to the back patio. There are also two bathrooms, but I didn't take pictures of them, because who wants to look at a toilet? Though they are nice bathrooms; recently completely remodeled.

So that concludes our tour, I guess! Any questions? :)
Update on this baby that's currently trying to push my organs out of his way, he's good. very, very, very active. I have felt very, very pregnant since being here. I've narrowed that down to three reasons why: 1)the unbearable heat (has yet to be below 104) is worse with my mini heater going on all of the time. Heat+prego=misery. 2) Up until now, I haven't really had time to think about being pregnant. I was always busy working, getting my husband to complete his thesis, worrying about moving to the middle of nowhere desert, etc. Now that we are here, have a place to live, husband is actually DONE with school, and I still can't find a job, I pay a lot more attention to being pregnant. Or 3) I'm now in the third trimester and that is just supposed to be destined uncomfortableness. I saw my new Dr. this week and he said he's positive this baby boy will not be your average 7 1/2 pound baby. Duh, doc. I don't have a PhD, but I certainly could have told you that. Do Nate and I look like average sized people? Atleast he confirmed my hope that the baby (and me) are measuring further along than what Logan Regional has been telling me all of this time, and that the baby is more than likely going to arrive before the original estimated due date. Hmm, interesting. :) So for that reason alone, I like this doctor.
I hope all of your lives are more exciting and eventful than mine! Look forward to another post coming along about the things I'm learning about this town. I've started a list. Number one: The beloved Carl's Jr $.99 spicy chicken sandwich is $1.29 here. Who does that?! My ever optimistic husband continues to remind me atleast we have a Carl's Jr. Life could be worse.

Oh! And here are a couple of pictures of me and Trayson on the day we left my parent's house to come to Cali. I was so sad when we drove away. I basically cried all the way to Layton. And EVERY time I talk to Trayson on the phone, our conversation goes like this: Trayson="Where are you?" Sara="I'm at my new house. In California." Trayson="Oh. Is that far away?" Sara="Kind of. It's farther than my Logan house. I have lots of fish! Do you want to come see me?" Grandma="Trayson, remember when your dad showed you on the map where Sara lives?" Trayson="Oh, yes. I don't want to come there. It's too far away. Bye." Sigh. I fear this is going to be the conversation I deal with from everyone.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Quick update

Just to keep all of your inquiring minds at ease, we arrived safely in Ridgecrest last Saturday, after making many stops along the way to see family and friends. We have been in temporary VIP housing all week, but have just learned we get to move into our house tomorrow! The VIP Housing is fully furnished, complete with kitchen wear, so we didn't have to eat out every sinlge meal, thankfully, seeing as how this housing was being paid for out of our pockets. It has been nice to not have to worry about how much the AC bill will cost us (that was included in the money we put down for the week), but we are really excited to be in our own home. Hopefully, it will start to make things feel a little more permanent.
Nate LOVES his job. Plain and simple.
I'm bored out of my mind. Hopefully getting to move in and get settled will make me feel useful again.
Here are a few things that I've learned about Ridgecrest thus far:
1. The wind is ALWAYS blowing
2. LA is not that far; this I know becuase it's smoke and ashes from it's gigantic fires come our way, thanks to #1.
3. Everyone LOVES their job on the Base.
4. Our little family arriving here has pushed the city population to 25,000. They'll need to change their sign soon. Go us.
5. To get a job in this town (which I'm trying with all of my might to do), you need one of the following things: a)PHD, b) very high security clearance with the government, or c)nothing at all. not even a high school diploma. Pizza Hut and Kmart are not biased. It's tough feeling like a bachelor's degree does nothing for you.
6. There are more churches than bars here.
7. This desert is NOT pretty. I know that there are people in the world that say the desert is beautiful. And I believe that there may be deserts in the world that are beautiful. THIS one, however, is not one of those places.
8. "Only 104 (degrees)" is not a sarcastic remark. It's been "only 104" all week, and according to everyone else, it's lovely.
9. The people are seriously friendly. We have already been offered 2 desert dads and a couple of desert grandma's. Within the first hour and a half at church, we had 2 dinner invites. Cashier's at the store talk to you like you're old friends, as do the people in line with you at the store. Preston, ID may be getting a run for it's money.
10. My favorite saying I learned at church (where the hymns are listed and may be sung in either English or Spanish, your choice) "Rocket Scientists are a dime a dozen in this town, but a plumber, now that's somethin' special."
I imagine there will be future lists like this. For now, that is my expanding knowledge of this foreign place we are supposed to call "home". I have only been here for 5 days.