• Gara

Camping Out




Looks picturesque, doesn't it? Actually, I think we can all agree this looks more like a scene from The Blair Witch Project (maybe with better lighting) than your ideal first week in your new home.

Here's how it all came about. We flew to Vermont last Monday and checked into the Sheraton. We got a great deal of $85 a night through Hotwire. We closed on our house, pictured above, on Tuesday. On Tuesday night we again stayed at the Sheraton. On Wednesday we took the kids to their soon to be home and had a couple mattresses and a table and chairs delivered from Amazon. This was our sleeping situation from Wednesday until this past Monday when we returned to Chicago. (There was a queen mattress in the room next door as well.) The kids seems completely unfazed and actually were somewhat delighted to be able to run down the hallway and fling themselves onto a mattress. By the third or fourth night, though, I think Boris and I started to question our romantic notions of "camping out" in our new house as well as our decision to make this huge move.

Before I start to sound too sorry for myself, I need to take a minute to acknowledge that it occurred to me more than once during our stay that the picture above represents the reality of perhaps millions of American families on a daily basis and plenty of kids would be out of their minds with joy to have a new mattress, clean sheets and a safe place to sleep. This situation is clearly very different from our current living situation though and with a significantly reduced household income on the horizon, I think we both got a little worried that we won't always just be able to take out our credit card and buy bed frames, lamps, rugs etc. to make our situation more comfortable. Then again, we are only able to pick up and move to our dream local and leave our jobs because we have been making smart financial decisions like using Hotwire to book our hotels and deciding to stay in a mostly empty (and pretty dirty - but that's another post) house for five nights, instead of continuing to stay in a hotel or rent someplace nicer. Prior history does guarantee future performance, however, so we just have put out heads down and keep making smart decisions (including sleeping on the floor once in a while.)

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