Lessons Learned

Moving.  It's an awful project but somebody's gotta do it.  My plan is to box up everything but the children!  In all seriousness, this is quite the project and I have wondered if I would pack something too early and then need to unpack it again.  And I've found that to be true.  Here is what I have unpacked the most...envelopes.  I never use snail mail, but for some reason I've needed to mail items and needed those silly envelopes.  Go figure.

My crock pot was packed away and then it came out again as well.  Lesson learned-keep the crock pot out.

Luckily, I have labeled well and hope that I'm staying organized.

1 Month

It's been around a month since we moved to Arkansas.  And I'm thankful we aren't back to a month ago when we were hauling our stuff across two states!  Whew!  That was a whole lot of work.

We seem to be getting into some sort of routine.  Justin and Jaxson head off to school.  Julie and I have lots of bonding time during the day. 

Usually when Jaxson gets home from school, they both play dress up.

Or draw pictures.  Or play outside when it's nice.  

Grocery shopping is always an adventure down here.  Remember when I found the smoked turkey necks by the collard greens?  Well, I've had other fun food finds too.

Pickled Pigs feet.  Huh.

Can I tempt you with hog jowl or hock?  What is hock?!

Larry the Cable Guy has his own line of chips. 

But with every weird (to me!) food that I find, I can name off many foods that I love.  Shrimp Po'boys, crawdads, and Golden Flake Dill Pickle chips are just a few.

Jaxson is doing real good in school.  He struggled with math when we first got here but he just brought home this test. 

Yay!  I was very proud of his A+.  He worked hard for it.

And the weather here is crazy too.  It's gone from 80 degrees to in the low 20's in just one week.  Tonight we may get some snow fall, but it won't stick.  And then by Thanksgiving it will warm back up again.

Which is good.  These leaves are not going to rake themselves up!

I've been working hard in my yard to get the leaves picked up just so another windstorm can blown more back in!

32 Months {Julianne}

Julianne can say Jaxson now instead of "boy."  It sounds like Jaggun.  She also calls Jaxson "Jaxson Ross" I think she must have gotten this from when Jaxson would get mad at her and call her Julianne Ross.  And I bet he got that from me when I get mad at him and call him Jaxson Isaiah Ross.  Hmmm.... kids sure do learn quickly!

She knows how to get her way.  She will clasp her hands together in front of her chest and give you the puppy dog eyes and say "peeeeeeeze?"  How can I resist?

Speaking of getting what she wants, she roped Justin into a tea party one day.  I'm impressed! 

Julie is now telling whoopers.  Once she had a bug bite and she told me that a mean "woof" (aka dog) had done that to her.  One day she had a dirty diaper and I told her we needed to change her.  She look at me in all seriousness and told me that her dirty diaper was all gone.  She worked so hard to convince me that was true.

Julie got her a princess cell phone the other day while we were shopping at Walmart.  She has talked a lot to Belle and Ariel.  And I have to admit-so have I.  You can't turn away a two year old when they hand you the phone and tell you to talk!

Julianne was a hard little worker on moving day.  She would go up and down the ramp carrying her toys into the truck.  She sure didn't want to leave anything behind!  Of course, she also liked running up and down the ramp-many, many times!

Since we moved she loves our new house.  She calls it "new house".  When I tell her we are going home she will correct me and say, "No, new house."  She associates "home" with our old house in Raleigh.  I wonder how long we will be calling this our new house?

One day I sneezed and Julianne responded, "You're welcome!"  I had a good laugh over that one.

Oh, Julianne.  You sure are a character.  Happy 32 months!

(Notice how we are both wearing scarves.  She is such a fashionista!)

I live in a different (part of the) country.

You know what's a nice surprise?  Going to the supermarket and when looking for cucumbers you notice that right next to the collard greens is a weird looking item.  Upon further inspection,I realized that they were smoked necks.  In the vegetable area?  When I asked Justin about this when he got home from work, he told me that you make collared greens with the smoked necks.  His exact words were, "just like putting a ham bone in beans."  Now, I'm a girl from the Pacific Northwest and I'm pretty sure that is not the same thing.

Julie and I ventured to Walmart by our selves today.  I got a little over confident and decided not to use my GPS on my phone.  I ended up passing the Walmart exit and taking a nice scenic route to get back around.  Poor Julie thought it was taking forever to get there.  Note to self: It's ok to use GPS if you aren't sure exactly where a place is located.

Living in a tiny town has it's benefits.  I didn't realize that it's pretty much ingrained in me to look out around my surroundings at all times when I am out and about.  And always made sure my purse was close to me at all times.  Living in a big city, people (especially at some Walmarts) would steal wallets out of purses and I don't feel like I have to worry about that here.  It's very friendly town and a lot of people talked to me today while I was shopping at Walmart.  The cashier was even telling me all about her grandchildren while I was checking out. 

(On Jaxson's first day of school they had a Duck Dynasty dress up day.  Luckily he had this camo shirt so he could participate!)

Jaxson is loving school.  After his first day I asked him what his favorite part is.  He said everything.  Then I asked him what his not so favorite part is and he said, "Mom, I said EVERYTHING was my favorite."  Oh sorry!  His teacher is so sweet and has helped his transition to a new school go smoothly.  He loves PE the best.  He also told me yesterday that his PE teacher told the class that they need to go to a church Harvest Festival for Halloween and then go trick or treating.  So he came home telling me that we had to go to church first.  Which was our plan to begin with, but funny how a teacher saying that makes it so much more important. (But a teacher could have never told a class that in a big city school...)

The house is coming along.  Most of the boxes are out of here now and I can find most things.  I still have some more work to do and work on it daily.  And of course, I'm already thinking of house projects...painting Julie's room is top priority now!

Julie has loved to help me out.  She thought sweeping with the broom was the BEST thing ever.

Julie has helped me decorate.  Which really means that she has undecorated what I have already worked on.  And I think her wearing the cleaning gloves is a nice touch.  I'm not sure why she thought she needed cleaning gloves to move my picture frames!

In all each day we get a bit more settled into everyday life.  Who knows?  I may be purchasing some smoked necks to go in my collard greens-you know-just like a ham bone!


I'm officially in the deep(er) south now.  And let me tell you, my accent is giving me away that I am not from here.

First, when we were traveling from in the longest state ever (aka Tennessee) the lady at the gas station stated, "You aren't from here..are you?"  Once I said no, she said that my accent gave me away.  My accent?!  I don't have an accent-ha!

When we registered Jax for school on Friday and the lady in the office told us that his teacher was Ms. Lallllll.  I felt dumb asking her to repeat it so I figured I would look it up on his papers when I got in the car.  Again, the whole accent thing is getting in the way.  His teacher's name is spelled Ms. Lyle which I would pronounce LY-ul.  But down here is Lallll.  

Which is funny because this brought me back to the time when I was dating Justin and we were talking and he said the word "ollll."  Even based on the conversation topic, I still couldn't figure out what he was talking about.  I finally had to tell him I had no idea what he was saying.  To which is he described it as "what you put in the car engine."  Finally, it clicked.  He meant "oil."  Which us Washingtonians would say OY-ul.  

Clearly, I'm on an accent learning curve here and it's really entertaining me.  I wonder how long it's going to take for the kids and me to start picking it up! (I think Justin's already eased back into it!)