Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Official Update

Well it is official...we are moving to...drumroll please... Dallas, Texas! My boyfriend found out last night that he will be starting in the treasury department beginning February 4th. Although I would have been happy anywhere, I was secretly hoping for Dallas since I am currently in Pennsylvania dealing with this cold winter. Goodbye snow and hello tanning! My boyfriend's family is also currently living in Dallas, so it will be nice to have some family close by. We have decided that my boyfriend will fly back to Philadelphia and drive with me in my car back out to Dallas. 24 hours is a long drive to do by yourself. Luckily I have the best boyfriend who is wiling to drive with me even though he is already in Dallas. It looks like I will be leaving for Texas the end of January. 

Looking for places to live while being 1,200 miles away can be stressful, but lucky for us my boyfriend is able to check out all the places we are interested in. We think we found the perfect place and the perfect deal! This place comes furnished which is what we wanted since moving furniture all over the country is not something I am interested in. Check out our new place (hopefully!):


360 View
Hello Texas weather!
Gym time!! 
How beautiful is this kitchen?!
Anybody who knows me, knows I love any kind of water. This is perfect! 
Second pool
The great thing about the company my boyfriend has been hired by is that every time we relocate, they give us a check to cover the moving expenses. We won't be getting that relocation check until the end of January/start of February so moving in is contingent on that. Also, I am still waiting to get back our security deposit from our last apartment. Hopefully that comes soon as well. Moving is so expensive! We need to pay for his flight back here, gas, hotel, and food for the drive down, having our storage unit shipped to Dallas, application fees, renter's insurance, security deposit, and first month's rent. 

I can't wait to be reunited with my love and start this next chapter of our lives in Dallas. It is exciting to finally know where we are going after all this time! I just want to sign a lease, move down South, and have a home of my own again. As soon as I find out more information I will be sure to update! If anyone is from the Dallas area and would like to share information with me about living or what I HAVE to do while there, it would be much appreciated! 

Our Moving Map, Next stop Dallas, TX! 
Another update 1/21:
It's official! I am leaving for Dallas on Saturday the 26th! I am really excited, but also nervous, scared, and sad to leave my family. My boyfriend is flying in to Philadelphia on Thursday (thank god! I miss him!) and we will be packing up my car and driving back to Dallas together. 

I didn't realize just how much there is to do before even moving into our new apartment! We had to fill out our applications, book his plane ticket, open a new bank account, open an electric account, open a cable/internet account, get renter's insurance, etc. It has been kind of stressful, but we are getting through it together. Can't wait to update you all once we get into our new apartment! 

Thursday, January 3, 2013

The First Move From Hell

I HATE moving! I guess I better get used to it! After leaving home for college back in 2007 I think I've gotten pretty good at moving and packing. Over the last 5 years I have moved apartments 5 different times and never ran into any serious problems or issues. This move was unfortunately not so easy! My boyfriend and I moved into our first apartment together in State College, PA while he was finishing up his Finance degree. 

   Our first day in our new apartment in State College. We were really tired!              
I loved living with my best friend and love of my life <3
In December 2012 he graduated with his Finance degree and was offered a job with an amazing company. He was accepted into a special training program that only 5 people get the opportunity to participate in (I am super proud of him)! The program doesn't start till July since that's when most people graduate from college. He was on the 5 year program :) The company liked him so much that they are willing to offer him a position before the training program starts. Unfortunately with the holidays and it being the end of the year, they haven't told us where we are moving to first. In July, once the program starts, we will be moving every 6 months. 

Since we don't know where we are moving to first or even when for that matter, this first move out of State College was difficult. Our lease in our apartment ended on December 31st which caused enough problems since it was a holiday and most companies are closed. I'll never move over another holiday again! We decided that our best option was to put most of our things into storage until we find out where we are moving to first. We rented a UBox from Uhaul since it was the cheapest storage and shipping company. After our first experience with Uhaul we will NEVER use them again! 

On Friday December 28th we went to pick up our UBox. We drove the box attached to a truck back to our apartment. It wasn't till we got home that we realized there was no way the truck and box would fit into our parking lot without blocking other people (it snowed about 13 inches the day before making it very difficult to park). My boyfriend ended up being on the phone with 20 different people from Uhaul all telling us different things. We had terrible customer service and so much miscommunication that by the time we finally figured things out, it was past dark and we couldn't move anything out that day. We decided that we would wait till tomorrow (Saturday the 29th) to move our things out.

On Saturday December 29th we woke up to this!

Thanks a lot Uhaul!
We literally had to move out in a blizzard! We asked Uhaul if we could wait one more day, but they needed the trailer the box sat on for someone else with a reservation. We had no choice but to move out in the snow! Our apartment company was closed that day so we were out there shoveling our own sidewalks and putting down salt (again the holiday was an issue). It might have been slippery and very icy, but somehow we managed to move our entire apartment into our storage unit in less than 3 hours! We make such a great team! Luckily we were renting all our furniture, other than our mattress and desk, so moving wasn't so difficult.

Our UBox out in the snow before moving our things out

Finally we packed everything up!
As far as packing, it was very last minute since we were home for Christmas and we were also waiting till the last minute hoping we would hear from his company where we would be moving to first. I decided the easiest thing to do was to just throw everything into trash bags. It actually worked out pretty well since they didn't take up a lot of space in the storage unit. I am super OCD, so I think next time we move out (in July) I will buy a bunch of storage containers and label them. You live and you learn right?

Trash bags filled with kitchen things

And clothes I won't need for the next few weeks

Suitcase filled with food and bathroom things
On December 30th, it was cleaning day. I spent the entire day cleaning my apartment in order to get my full security deposit back. In all 5 of the apartments I've lived in, I make it a point to always get the full security deposit back. My Mom always comes up to help me move and clean my apartment (love her!). Thanks Mom!  

December 31st, was our last day in our first apartment together. I arranged for our furniture company to come and pick up all our furniture early in the morning so we could be out early since it was NYE. We ended up staying in a hotel that night so we could have one last night to celebrate in State College. It was much harder than I expected to say goodbye to the town that I have lived and loved for the last 5 years. I know this is not goodbye forever, but it didn't hit me how sad I was until I was driving home for the last time and when I had to say goodbye to my best friend :( Until we find out where we are moving to first, my boyfriend drove home to Texas and I drove home to Philadelphia to stay with my family. I am excited about spending some quality time with my family before possibly moving across the country, although it is hard being away from the love of my life for an unknown period of time. 

Celebrating New Year's Eve in State College 

Being so far apart is hard, but hopefully we will be reunited soon!
Until we get more information (hopefully soon) this is where we will remain. I will update as soon as we find out more information. I hope everyone is having a great start to the new year. I am so excited about what this year holds for me and my baby! 

Our Tracking Moving Map. First stop was State College, Pa

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

The Start of Our Journey

Hello and welcome to my blog! My name is Valerie Smith and I've decided to start a blog to document mine and my boyfriend's journey around the U.S. My boyfriend just accepted a job at a great company and we are very excited about it! We were also informed that with this job we will be moving... A LOT! Every 6 months for the next 3 years to be exact. Like most people I hate moving, but I am actually very excited to travel the country and explore different cultures, foods, and attractions. I've lived in Pennsylvania my whole life. I grew up outside Philadelphia and then moved to State College when I decided to go to Penn State (that's where I met my amazing boyfriend). My boyfriend is from Austin, Texas and always tells me how different the South is from the North East. I am very excited and a little nervous to explore all new part of the U.S. It looks like we will be moving to Dallas TX, Los Angeles CA, Chicago IL, Atlanta GA, Shelton CT, and Indianapolis IN although those places could be changing. In this blog I will be writing about the actual moving and how I am dealing with packing my life up every 6 months. I will also be writing about each of the places we are moving to and the food, culture, and attractions of each of those places. I'll be updating about our first move (out of State College) really soon! Thank you for joining us on this exciting journey and new chapter in our lives! 

My boyfriend and I where it all began... Penn State!