We did it! We totally live in Illinois!
We had quite the eventful move, but now that we're here and all moved in we couldn't be happier.
Well, unless all of our family and friends lived here, too...hint, hint...
Our little family left on a Monday and arrived in Chicago (the suburb of Evanston is actually where we live) on Thursday evening. We were told that our belongings in the moving truck would be here Thursday, Friday at the latest. When I called them on Thursday, however, they said that the soonest they could deliver it was Tuesday, if they could deliver it to Evanston at all. Perfect. So there we were in a huge apartment with nothing. Well, we had a nice, big oriental rug that we picked up on the way into town from a craigslist find (random fact: it turns out that there are like 5 oriental rug stores on every block. No joke!). No bed, no crib, no pots and pans, no dishes, no nothing. Luckily I had been in touch with the relief society president while we were looking for an apartment, so I had her number programmed in my phone. I called, but got no answer, so I left a message and we settled in on our rug with some beef jerky, string cheese, and wheat thins for dinner (we didn't have the internet or a phone book to look up any restaurants or stores and Louise was done). The RSP called back a little while later and put us in touch with a couple that lived close by who let us borrow a portable crib, an air mattress and sheets, some towels, and a pot, which is the only reason we made it through the weekend. We went shopping the next morning for some food that we could make in the pot (no microwave), and went to IKEA to get a bed. We were so ready to get a good nights' rest because we hadn't had one since Sunday night. That was my first experience with IKEA and it is truly a magical place.
Our bed was delivered on Saturday, so we spent the day putting it together and deep cleaning the apartment, which hadn't really been cleaned when the previous occupants left. The moving company decided they could deliver our stuff on Monday after much convincing and finagling. When it arrived and we figured out parking (another nightmare) they finally threw open the doors and...our stuff was everywhere. The bulk head and somehow (I suspect foul play!) come loose and fallen down, allowing our things to tumble and fly around in the back of the semi. The driver said he had never seen that happen before. Right. Anyway, with the help of a couple of guys from the ward we got it inspected for damage and all moved in just in time for it to really start raining. I think that out of the first 6 days that we had been here it had rained for 4 of them.
The next few days were a flurry of unpacking and unloading boxes mixed with grocery shopping and walks around town and to the lake (3 or 4 minute walk away), and playing at the park next to our house. Justin had to go to Napa on Thursday, so we wanted to hurry and get as much unpacked as we could before he left.
We absolutely LOVE it here. It is so beautiful. Everywhere. And there are people out walking and riding bikes and roller- blading and walking dogs and strolling with families at all times of the day. Everywhere. The everywhere thing is taking a little getting used to. It's so weird to drive and drive and not leave city, just change cities. The neighborhood we live in is wonderful, too. There are so many young families and so many LDS families doing the same thing we are that we feel right at home.
We're going to bed now, so I'll post more later, with pictures! We've been going to bed so early since we've been here, it's ridiculous!
We LOVE Chicago!