1. I had three design jobs that had taken over my free time, and more. This led to me dropping the ball on Mom duties and parenting challenges. We realized that this was not a good thing, and that I should really take jobs sparingly for a while. These jobs were complete at the end of May, at which point I promptly had to begin packing to move by the end of July. Our landlord sold our house, so we didn't have a choice. We had a very hard time finding a home in our neighborhood, where we love to be, so were discouraged and stressed for a couple of months. 6 days before we had to move, we found a place a few houses away from where we were living :-) Whew...thank goodness that worked out, although we had a month between when we moved out and could move into our new place.
Thank goodness a dear friend from church opened her home to us, and gave us a safe place to land for that month. She has helped us more than she will ever know. The kids love her, and loved exploring a new neighborhood :-)
In September we moved into our new rental. Love it!
2. For the past year, Lila and I have been going to a local woman to do energy medicine work on us both...Jin Shin Jyutsu. It is amazing!!!! I have found my new love, and passion. In May, I was able to take a 5 day course on Jin Shin, and have been engrossed in it ever since. The teacher from the 5 day course lives in Boulder, so we went for a week visit over the October break. Lila had Jin Shin twice a day for 6 days. Amazing changes :-) Eventually, I would love to practice Jin Shin here in Reno, but have some schooling to complete before this is possible. Beginning classes in the Fall, and so excited for this new adventure!
3. Matt went on an amazing fishing trip with his Mom to Alaska! They caught a lot of fresh fish, saw a ton of whales, and brought home some good eats :-)
4. Matt began interviewing for this position at University of Wisconsin in their facilities department, which meant that we only partially moved into our new home. After rounds of phone interviews, and a face to face interview, he ended up taking the job and quitting his position here in Truckee as of December 19th, scheduled to start in Madison on January 12th.
|Goodbye Matt! (oh, and Hello Matt again :-)|
5. Since July, we had been speaking frequently with doctors to schedule Lila's next stem cell treatment. These were deep, involved conversations, with a lot of stress surrounding this big decision for Lila's health and future. It was supposed to happen the beginning of December, but got pushed back until March 2015.
6. In October, Matt gave me a weekend to go up to Truckee to my favorite art retreat...Create Explore Discover. This is my favorite weekend of the year, as it allows me the opportunity to relax, be creative in a supportive environment, and take some time for myself :-)
6. For the Holidays, we went on a road trip to the coast of California from December 21st to Januray 2nd. This was amazing! We took our travel trailer and went from Pismo Beach to Big Sur to Monterey to Costanoa to Belmont to SF. Ending this amazing adventure visiting with our favorite Uncle...Uncle Ron!
5. On the first day of our road trip we received a call from Lila's stem cell doctors that she can have her treatment on January 8th! Holy Moly! So, we discussed the timing in relation to when Matt had to leave to begin his new job in Madison, as well as the timing with school break, and ultimately decided to do it. I immediately went online to book flights and accommodations. What a whirlwind! I then realized that we would get home from our road trip and have to turn around two days later to get on our flight to San Diego. WOW! So, we rallied and Lila had her stem cell treatment on January 8th.
6. Following a stem cell treatment, it is recommended that the patient do intensive physical therapy to feed those cells the oxygen they need to grow and develop. We were already scheduled to do therapy here in April, and had some amazing friends switch around with me to get us in during the month of February. We did this, so that we could move in March.
7. As for the move...Matt began his job on January 12th at U of W. A few things happened within the first four to six weeks of the position that ultimately led us to where we are today. First of all, the Governor took away all habilitative care from University insurance, as well as medicaid, meaning that Lila would not get any of her therapies and services that she needs to move forward. The Governor also announced $300 million in budget cuts to the University this year alone, limiting Matt's potential for pay increases and advancement. Secondly, the cost of living is far greater than here in Reno. Last year the cost of housing in Madison was around $170 to $190,000 for a modest ranch home...today these same homes are $240 - $260,000. The cost of housing and groceries has significantly risen since our research began, limiting us as to how we were going to move forward and set down roots. Lastly, after an HR meeting four weeks following the beginning of Matt's employment, it turns out that he had miscalculated his monthly net income, which made his income unlivable for a family of four with a disability and special diet needs. This was an honest error, which catapulted us into this adventure, and I believe that Matt needed to go and see if this was where we belonged as a family...making this a good mistake in all reality. We couldn't live on his income, couldn't buy a house, let alone afford to live monthly after the ridiculously high rents (58% of his monthly income), and Lila would not have gotten what she needed to progress and become an independent adult. As the rug got pulled out from underneath us week after week, we realized that this was not the place for our family. I am sincerely sad that we will not be closer to my family and dear friends that I grew up with and went to college with, nevertheless there are always long summer visits to be had in the future :-) The door is ALWAYS open here in Verdi for you all to come visit whenever you like! Tahoe is calling you all :-)
8. Matt and I truly are at peace with this very large decision we have made to remain here in NV. We hope to buy a house, or even some land and build, to be able to set down roots and enjoy the amazing mountain surroundings we find ourselves in every day :-)
9. Lastly, I have a creative burst that I cannot seem to satisfy, so have decided attend a vendor show (Reno Mini Maker Faire) on May 30th. Been painting, glueing, sewing, and crafting for the past couple of months. So fun! Hope to see you all there :-)