We're in Austin! Thankfully, the move-in process continues to be less and less stressful the more we organize and put items in their place.  While we've haven't had too much time to explore since we've been settling in, today and this saturday promise adventures.

^^A little glimpse of our new home (and a few new pieces of furniture!)

Everything went smoothly upon our arrival to Texas, but the move prior to that was...eventful, to say the least.  Long story short, we drove two vehicles, and the transmission in the vehicle pulling our trailer went out about 2 hours into the drive. Thankfully, we were in a parking lot in a major metro area (not on the interstate or in the middle of nowhere) when the car stopped. Thanks to the best parents ever (all 4 of you!!) who not only borrowed us a replacement vehicle to pull the trailer to Texas, but also handled the towing/logistics/future of the broken car, and who sent us on our way with their love saying, "Just get to Texas!" The whole switch made for a six-hour delay in our travels (not too bad, really!) But since we were eager to get to our new apartment for our check-in window, we decided to just drive for as long as we could. When we started to get tired, it seemed impractical to get a hotel room for just a few hours, so we we made the decision to drive on and off throughout the night. The conversation went something like this: "Let's just keep driving.  It'll be fun! It'll be an adventure!" In reality? The 20-hour drive was an adventure and also a bit of a nightmare. BUT we made it safe and sound with 1.5 hours to spare for check-in. 

^^The last bit of our drive in Indiana

Some things we learned/observed during the moving process:

  •  McDonald's coffee is okay as an emergency caffeine fix, but "coffee with cream" at one McDonald's in Arkansas apparently means "coffee with Reddi-Whip" (we're still laughing about that one) 
  • Arkansas is really pretty, even at 3am (bonus: no traffic)
  • Singing silly songs to each other over the phone helps with fatigue to a point
  • Rest stops are fairly suitable for brief naps...but brief naps don't make for fully functioning human beings the next day
  • Our REI cooler is a champ at keeping food cold.
  • Good snacks (pecans, nut thins, apples, bananas, hard-boiled eggs) were great! But next time, we should pack more.
  • When the drive is 20 hours long, you hear yourself use the phrase. "Only 6 hours left!" and then laugh hysterically, because neither of you have any idea how you'll accomplish it (somehow we did)
  • We will most definitely get a hotel next time we make the drive

And some things we've experienced/noticed about Texas so far:

  • Because it's so different from both Minnesota and Indiana (the only other two places we've lived) it feels like we're on an extended vacation— & we're curious how long that will last.
  • Showers are helpful in the heat, but we'll still be sweating the second we venture outside.
  • Bring a water bottle with you everywhere
  • Produce at the grocery store is really fresh and tasty (can't wait to try the pineapple)
  • IKEA is less than 15 minutes away from our apartment!
  • Cooking and eating meals with Fleet and Molly is so, so fun.  And being neighbors with them is the best!
  • Our apartment truly felt like home (for me) when the kitchen was organized and a place I could prep meals
  • We're loving Austin evenings (cooler, breezy, and perfect porch-sitting weather)

Our first home-cooked meal together with the four of us ^^

These two :) ^^

What the Lord provided for us:

  • Safety in travels (an answer to lots of prayers) 
  • A good attitude and lots of laughter during the move, even though it wasn't always a smooth process
  • The warmest of welcomes from great  friends, including a wonderful home-warming gift with all(!) our favorite things. Thanks, Fleet and Molly!
  • A full week to settle in/spend time together/get acquainted with Austin

^^ and the luxury of slow mornings together with good breakfasts before Nicholas starts his new job next week.

For those of you  who prayed for our travels and transition, thank you! It's been a huge, but GOOD transition so far.