Tuesday, July 15, 2008

"Life is certainly a riot!"

The title is from a recent email from my mom, where she closed with that line. Knowing her, she meant riot as in "riotous laughter", but there's also definitely a dose of the violently chaotic element in my life. Here's some of what's going on, excerpted from an email I sent to her. (It's a sign of how totally up to my eyeballs I am, when I recycle emails as blog posts! lol)

We've tried really hard to make this rental our home, but every time we decide we'll stay here for the year lease, something new comes up to make us reconsider. (This has happened at least half a dozen times.) Whether it's negative feedback about the property management company (we found some really strongly-worded info in a review online from someone who used to work there, which has since been borne out in our experience), several poor experiences with them, the fact that the house still smells strongly of mothballs if it's not kept open constantly (I had headaches from it when we got back from Oregon yesterday), the ants in the kitchen (which they're not going to do anything about), the fact that it's just not clean (and we can't afford to pay to have it cleaned, and I just haven't had the time to scrub the floors on hands and knees yet), that despite the expansive floor space and two car garage we can't seem to make the space work to meet our needs (the garage isn't large enough for either the Odyssey or the 4Runner), and finally that they haven't fixed the lock on the garage door in the time allotted by Washington law (which means we can't secure our belongings, and are free to break the lease without penalty).

I just have to explain about the garage. It was advertised as a two-car garage. It has two doors, which would barely admit either of our vehicles. Once either car is inside, you can get out of the car, but you can't get out of the garage. There are two regular doors in the garage: one into the house, and one leading outside. They are both in-swing, and due to the miniscule size of the garage, neither of the doors will open because the cars are in the way.

Vern has had a very distinct and persistent feeling that this is simply the wrong place for us since the moment we stepped into the house (this was before he knew how dirty it was, and he couldn't smell the mothball odor). That feeling has not changed for a month now, despite lots of prayer and trying very hard to settle in. Vern has also had definite impressions while at church that we're just visiting . . . that this isn't the ward we're supposed to be in. I've only been once (he's been there three times, and has really liked the people there), so I figured my feeling that way was just because I hadn't attended much yet. But it's so different from when we moved to Idaho, and how attending the Westmond Ward felt like coming home.

So, we're one step away from sending a letter to {ahem} the property-management-company-in-Bellingham-which-shall-not-as-yet-be-named and letting them know we'll be out by August 1st. Since Vern's business partner has severed himself from the project, things are a lot different with Vern's work. We'll just take the next two weeks to find another rental and get out of here. Yes, it will cost money, be a big pain, and be really hard. But with Vern to drive the whole project, and without the constant business pressure on Vern in the background, it's going to go much better than last time, I think. (Ever the optimist, am I. Or maybe just insane.) The kids will be sad to leave the lake so soon, but I think we'll be able to find a place that they'll love even more. I've told Vern quite a number of times that I'm happy to stay here, and that it's up to him whether we stay or go. And he's decided that if we possibly can, we're going.

And yes, life is certainly a riot.