On June 5 the moving truck got loaded up in New Jersey. The conclusion of our NJ chapter had arrived. It was a hard good-bye. We have really great friends there that we are leaving behind. It's different too, because we don't know when we'll be back for a visit. When we left Michigan, we knew family would always draw us back. We don't have that with our NJ "family" and that made for a tough parting. Even this picture of our family in front of our house makes me a little teary. We have a lot of memories there, and we are so thankful God brought us to NJ for 3 years!
Around noon on June 6 we all piled into our (much too full) minivan and began our journey across the country. We stopped in Canton, Ohio the first night to visit the Schnyders crew. They are wonderfully hospitable and we had a great time with them! Next stop was Illinois. We stayed with a family from our new church who graciously allowed us to unload most of our minivan into their garage until we could close on our new house. The following morning we headed off to Iowa (see previous posts).
On June 17 we closed on our new home! We are so excited to discover all the wonderful things about Illinois and what God has in store for this new chapter He has brought us into.
My parents came down from Michigan to pick up the kids. They took them back to their house for the rest of the week so Chad and I could get as much done in the house as possible! Of course, they had a wonderful time and even squeezed in a tea party with Uncle Kyle!
Our main objective was to get the kids' rooms completely painted and organized before they returned that Friday. Almost the entire house is white (better than crazy colors, but still sterile in my mind). So we worked from the afternoon of June 17 until the kids arrived on the evening of the 20th pretty much from 7am-midnight/1am every day. We scheduled the moving truck to arrive on Thursday so we could get somewhat settled in before the kids came home. Here's a picture of how jam-packed that truck was! Chad's cousin Tanya and her family live about 45 minutes away. Our second night there, Rick took the kids and brought us dinner and came for a visit. We are thrilled to be so close to their family!
It was so much fun to see Kassidy find her new room when they returned and to have her discover that all her old things from NJ were in place! The walls are even the same color in her room. :) This is her first night in her new house!
We are still unpacking and de-cluttering our house, and there is plenty of painting and projects to be done. BUT... we are home! We love our neighborhood so far and have met so many neighbors. The kids have adjusted wonderfully! We bless God for a smooth transition across the country when there were so many little details that could have gone wrong. Thanks to so many of our friends/family and both our old and new church communities for going the extra mile on our behalf. And to those of you in NJ who are reading this, you're always welcome to visit! :)