Oh man. Just a few hours into the actual work of moving and Doug and I were both saying, "That's it, we're never doing this again." I know we said the same thing last year when we moved to Maine, that we'd never move until we were able to pay movers to do the work for us.. but obviously that didn't work out. I guess a year was just enough time for me to forget how horrible it actually is!
Here's Colwyn in our ABF U-Pack trailer. The guy who dropped it off was very nice, and had no problem parking it in our driveway. It looked huge and considering the amount of stuff we had gotten rid of, I really didn't think we'd need all the space, but we ended up going over our allotted 17' of space and had to use an extra two feet. Mom, Dad, and Kristine came up to play with the kids and help a bit both Monday and Tuesday. I'd rather forget the awfulness, so I'm not going to talk too much about loading the truck. It was very nice to have my family there to help, though. I spend most of the time cleaning each room as it was emptied, and Kristine did a great job touching up the paint. It just took forever, and there really wasn't any wiggle room in our departure time, so it was a real rush.
Around 10:30pm on Tuesday, I loaded the kids and two cats into my car and drove down to my parents' house while Doug finished up at the house. We got the kids all set up with their air mattresses and crashed, though I couldn't fall asleep until Doug got there (around 1am or so) because I was worried he'd fall asleep and crash on the drive there. Thankfully he made it with no problems, and even remembered to bring the dog and the other cat.
The next morning we said tearful goodbyes to my parents, swung by the hospital to say good-bye to my sister at work, then hit the Dollar Store and Target for some last minute things before leaving (somehow we forgot to pull out toys for the car ride for Niall). With the kids set up with breakfast and toys, and the animals properly harnessed, we headed out!
I was imagining that the cats would want to sit on the front seat and I'd be able to pet them, but they preferred the floor, so we set up their cat bed down there. They were extremely unhappy with me, but thankfully didn't yowl too much.
We stopped once on the Mass Pike for gas, then made it to the Garden State Parkway before needing to stop again. We fed the dog, let the cats have access to the litter box (none of them used it), stretched our legs, and ate a late lunch. Doug and I switched cars at that point because Maddy's smell was too overpowering for him. I did a bit better, but only because I found a way to perch the air freshener in the neckline of my shirt!
We made great progress again on our second leg for the day and made it to Fredricksburg, Virginia. We had a late dinner (Chick-Fil-A and Panda Express!) and crashed at a super cheap, pet friendly hotel. The kids delighted in telling Mom and Dad just how crappy it was when we called, but at least it was clean. I don't care so much about run-down if we're just sleeping there for a night. And if we can sneak in extra pets and kids without the front desk noticing!
On Thursday, we booked it to Doug's mother's house which is just outside Atlanta. It was a bit out of the way (added a total of four hours onto our total drive time), but we really couldn't pass up the opportunity to visit. It was a really long day of traveling, though. The fun thing was that the cats finally decided to move around a bit within the car, which delighted the kids. They finally settled on cowering by Lachlann's feet.
We were relieved to finally arrive at Grandma's house at around 10pm. We stayed up talking for a bit then zonked out in her living room. It was so good to stretch out!