Noé and Aleni did an amazing job of keeping themselves entertained. I'd worried they'd be frustrated as they waited for us to unpack... but they had all kinds of fun as they ran around inside the building full of storage units (thankfully, we had the place to ourselves) and playing with random toys we unloaded.
(*Seriously. I WAS helping. A LOT. I wasn't just taking pictures of everyone else working. But, no one takes pictures of the momma.*) ;)
It took us about 2 hours to unload everything, and we were all exhausted when we finished. (Rey is a seriously superman--you have to see the things he can move on his own to believe it).
We went back to the hotel room, and the kids rested while I did laundry and we tried to clean out the van from the trip. We also busted out some new Lego sets to surprise the kids, and they had fun playing with those.
Boredom inspires silliness:
Chalk time by the pool....
The next day, we stopped by a prospective preschool for Noé and toured it. Then, we stopped by a friend's house who is receiving our forwarded mail for us. In the evening, we tried out a Mexican restaurant... and then found a great park near our hotel for the kids to run around for awhile.
Heading in for their first train ride!
Just a tiny bit excited.
A tunnel!!!!!!!!! :)
The *free* Tea Garden was so cool!
When we got back to the hotel, I had to lay down for awhile... Rey and I had felt like the apartment was a good fit, so we decided to apply for it. I filled it out, and then Rey ran over to the apartment to turn in the paperwork. While I rested, the kids played and watched cartoons.
Saturday morning, we decided to run to a Mexican restaurant that had been recommended to us as being "authentic". It was near the downtown area, in a real "hole in the wall" place, but it had just the things we were craving and it was definitely authentic! Unfortunately, I wasn't feeling that great to enjoy it more... but we were happy to have found at least one good place!
That evening, we went to see a movie... (I didn't have energy for any other options) and then went to the hotel for bed.
I was feeling pretty sick. Tremendous head pressure, my nose was running non-stop (I don't know how many kleenexes I went through), coughing all the time, fevers on and off all day and night, swollen throat, body aches. Just gross, and it was especially annoying with all the running around we needed to be doing. I was also having horrible nights, since I would wake up with my throat being completely closed off. Even if I sat trying to breathe in and out, I'd feel like I was getting no air. It would make me panic!
Sunday morning, we visited a Mexican church. It was good, but I was so miserable it was embarrassing! Blowing my nose, coughing... I didn't know if I could stay upright until it was over. We got back to the hotel, and I went right to bed. Sadly, resting didn't help much, because it seemed whenever I would drift off to sleep, I would wake up not breathing.
I wondered if there was mold or something in the hotel room, so I kept propping the door open to try to circulate fresh air into the room. At one point, around midnight, I sat out in the van to see if that would be better for breathing.
The lady for the apartment said that maybe the apartment would be ready Tuesday or Wednesday, but after the long, awful night on Sunday, I said to Rey, "I don't think I can do another night without sleeping! I am so desperate!"
Thankfully, Noé's first day of school was Monday morning... so, he was able to have some fun while Aleni and I laid around the hotel room. We talked to the manager at the apartment and explained my situation--wondering if there was any way she could speed the process and we could get in that evening? She said she would try.
Such a big brave boy!!
So sweet! His "to-be" classmates made him a welcome banner!
We got into the apartment just fine, and unloaded all the stuff we would need that night. And... that night... I slept the ENTIRE night. It was AMAZING. I felt much better, although I pretty much had lost my voice.
Tuesday was spent unpacking and cleaning and organizing the apartment. Our 855 square foot apartment made the kids felt like they were in a mansion after being in hotel rooms for over a week!
Pictures of the apartment and unpacking:
On the way back, we decided to stop at Goodwill, to look for some household things we need. While there, I spied the "perfect" couch for us. We were currently sitting on pillows in the livingroom, so "couch" was definitely on our list. I NEVER have found a couch I liked at Goodwill, and NEVER at a price I liked... This one needed a little cleaning, but it had no breaks or rips... and it was priced at $69! We couldn't pass this up!
So, we bought it... and then realized: "Shoot. Where are we going to put this?" Since we'd just been to the storage unit, our van already had several random boxes in it, and of course, Aleni! So, we loaded up the couch anyway and then stood around trying to figure out what to do with Aleni. Rey wondered if we could have her lay down on the couch (if you are a policeman, please stop reading) ;)... but, then we thought we should probably wait for the parking lot to clear out so there wouldn't be any witnesses. :)
Just then, a lady stopped by, kind of laughing at our predicament. As we were chatting, she said, "Why don't I just give you and her a ride back to your apartment?" Seriously? Our apartment was about 20 minutes away, but she insisted... So, Aleni and I loaded into her car along with her 4-year-old son, Evan. Tracy and I had a great chat as we followed Rey back to the apartment.
I apologized for my voice--because it was still squawky and unreliable, and I told her, "I think I'm getting over a bad head cold." She shook her head, "No, you have oak allergy. My older son has it, and it's bad. He's on 5 medications. Without it, you feel like you can't breathe, you can get fevers, body aches, loose your voice, runny nose, headaches..." I was thinking, "Have you been living with me the past few days?"
So, I feel like she was a God-send not only because she helped us avoid jail-time by not having Aleni ride in our car with no seat belt... but, also because she helped me solve my issue of "What's going on with me???" I kept wondering why I couldn't kick this cold... and I kept all the windows and doors open trying to fill our apartment with fresh air... And, then! Knowing it was allergies helped me to learn I should keep the doors and windows shut during this oak pollination time, what kinds of days and parts of the day have higher pollen in the air, to take a shower before bed to not be breathing pollen in all night... And, to take Benadryl! I am like a NEW person... I've never had an allergy before (that I know of), and if I hadn't bumped into Tracy, I wouldn't be feeling as good as I am now!
Thursday, we took the kids to Fiesta Farm, specifically so Aleni could do the pony ride there. She kept insisting we weren't in Texas yet, because she hadn't ridden a horsey, so we had to prove it to her. ;) The farm was a great mix of animals, all very gentle and tame and they allowed the kids to pet all of them. They were given 2 pony rides and a tractor ride... and had fun roaming around. It is small enough to not be overwhelming, but a big mix of things to see and do, so it was great. The kids were already asking to go back when we were getting in the car to leave.
In the afternoon, the kids went to the pool for a while... And then we all went to the car wash and gave the van the complete vacuum and hand wash it was needing. The kids ended up soaking wet (and rode home in their underwear). ;) By the end of the day we were all a little sunburned and all worn out. So great!
Friday, Noé had school again...
A little swimming to end the day...! :)
Saturday, the apartment had a little Easter egg hunt for everyone... along with a hot dog/chips/lemonade lunch! It was a fun morning getting to know some other tenants... and letting the kids play. In the evening we got to go see Rio 2. Fun day!
All ready to find some eggs!
Time for the Texas tradition: Photos with bluebonnets! :)
Sunday... we went to church and then just had a low-key afternoon at the apartment. In the evening, we went to a great park near our house. I'm sure we will go there many, many times in the months to come!
Cutest little church-goers you've ever seen! ;)
Yay! Rey found us a dryer! Can you believe this crazy guy? Carrying it up the stairs by himself??
That afternoon, Rey decided to run down and see his family now before he has a job. Of course he is dying to see everyone, and he'd found a washing machine he wanted to give to his mom. He left around 5:30 this morning, and got there around 11:30a. He plans to get back late Wednesday night--I hope he has an AMAZING time. He deserves it. He really is the bomb.
That's all! :) :)
The view off our balcony... to the field of bluebonnets... sun setting... ahh! :)