5/9/16 Chronicles

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  Monday, May 2

It was very early when we got to Texarkana. We were basically flying a whole day.  The airport there is really small. Like, smaller than some bus stations I've seen. Wow!  Then it took us awhile to get a cab because they aren't lined up outside like at most places. We stayed at a Wyndham Garden, which is pretty nice. They don't have a bar or restaurant, though (used to but closed down, I guess). We had a long nap, and then we had dinner at the BBQ place next door, which was really good. It used to be an old gas station, which you can still tell by looking at it. The kitchen is actually a big truck or bus that pulls up to the window, and they get the food through the side of the door/window. It was really good, but so spicy that I could barely eat it. We also walked over to the Hooter's to get some drinks, and to the convenience store across the street to get soda and snacks.

The hotel is on the state line, so we were staying in Arkansas but walked across the street to Texas. We turned in pretty early.... we were very tired. It's not like there was a lot to do, anyway!

  Tuesday, May 3

We had breakfast at Denny's, which was nearby. I was happy because they have the gluten-free items marked on their menu! I had bacon, sausage, 2 eggs and English muffins! Woo hoo! Then we checked out of our hotel and took the shuttle to the airport to pick up our rental car at Avis.

We drove to Magnolia, Arkansas, where we're moving to in June. It's a small town, but it doesn't seem all that small, in many ways. The people we've met are very nice. We're staying at the Hampton Inn, which was the only one not booked up. Southern Arkansas University (David's new work place) is having some kind of softball tournament this week, so that's why.

They let us check in early, so that was nice (again!). Then we met our realtor Randy Ray over at his office. He took us around in his truck (I'm surprised that I wasn't sore all week from climbing in and out of that truck! LOL!). We looked at 13 houses in 4 hours! We know what we like and don't like, and we're good at sizing up a place pretty quickly. I had sent him a list of places I found on Zillow that were near the university and in our price range, and he had found a few others as well.  After that, we went back to his office and figured out which ones we wanted to narrow it down to.  There were 4 or 5.

It was exhausting but fun! We just went to KFC for dinner and then went back to the room. I was so tired and just went to sleep pretty early.

  Wednesday, May 4

We had the free breakfast, which was really good. I also had some coffee, which I rarely do, but I was tried. I've gotten so used to Starbucks that I can now drink coffee if it's very light and sweet. We drove over to Randy's office again, and we chatted some about the places we looked at.  He drove us around again, and we looked at a few new places, and then looked again at about 4 or 5 places we liked.

David and I went to the Taco Bell at lunchtime and chatted about the 3 places we liked most. We drove to each place so we could see if any of them were in walking distance to stores and stuff. Really, none of them were, which is too bad (not many sidewalks and no buses, either).  We checked out the grocery store, Brookshire, and it's pretty good. Reminds me a little of Safeway.

 I loved the house on Holly more than the others.  David liked it, too, but we had to make sure we could afford it.  We went back to Randy's office and talked about financing and then filled out a contract to put an offer on the house. There was a lot of discussion.  Then we went over to People's Bank and a woman whose name I can't remember drew up the bank forms for us, checked our credit, etc.

We had a nap for a little bit and then met his new boss and his wife for dinner at the Flying Burger. It sells fish and chicken, not just burgers.  The burger I had was really good, even without the bun.  We had a nice time chatting with them. They are very nice and friendly people, about our age.

After that, we just had an early night. We're still fighting jet lag. It was hard to sleep, though, because of worrying about whether we would get the house or not.

The house we bought is large and beautiful. You can read all about it at Zillow It has 4 bedrooms and 2 and a half baths.  It's almost 3,000 square feet, like the house we had in Alabama. That one was built in the 70's and they had not done a good job with remodels or updating, so everything broke down all of the time.  This one was built in 89 and has been completely remodeled, very nicely. It's definitely the nicest house we've ever lived in. It has a great living room with a fireplace and high ceilings. The master bathroom is huge, as is the laundry room and the guest bathroom. There's a sun room that I love. There are many large closets and built-in shelves. It has a separate formal dining room as well as a dinette area. The kitchen is very large and has granite counter tops and an island. Of course, the whole thing has heat and a/c. The backyard is not huge, and that's fine with us. Less grass to mow! It's decent size. There's a little patio as well as a trellis (pergoda) and it's all fenced in so that our dog won't get out. The house is brick, with a good roof. There's a 2 car garage with a storage closet and a shop (which we won't use for that, so it'll probably be for storage, too).

There's a little front porch, where you can put rocking chairs or whatever. We won't have to worry too much about neighbors, either. We're in a very secluded woodsy cul-de-sac with just one other house, a huge mansion.  The house is perfect in just about every way.  Also, the owners are leaving us the big sectional, which has two recliner chairs with cup holders; and the fridge, microwave, and washer/dryer.  We asked for those in our contract. Hopefully they will leave other things as well, so we won't have to buy too much furniture! They're moving into a smaller place, so I hope they leave more.

  Thursday, May 5

Happy Cinco de Mayo!

I woke up around 3 in the morning and couldn't get back to sleep. I was itching and having a horrible allergy attack. I finally did get back to sleep later and slept until 9:30.

Randy had some kind of family emergency, so now a woman named Kim is handling our house buying. She called us to let us know that they accepted our offer! We're very excited.  She set it up so that the inspection is happening tomorrow, and we're meeting them at the house. Then I can get photos of the inside!

I went back to sleep again after breakfast.  Later, we went out to look around some more. We checked out the other grocery store, Mac's. It was not as good as Brookshire. We went to SAU and walked around a little, and drove around more, and I took more photos. We went back to our new house and took some photos of the outside, and David figured out that it will only take him 5 minutes to drive to work. We stopped in at the Electro-Mart, which is the music store. I got some suggestions for a new guitar teacher. We had some lunch at Burger King.  We went to the Sears, but it's mostly just the hardware part of Sears. We drove downtown and visited one of the furniture stores, Ivan Smith.  David was getting pretty tired, so we just stopped briefly at a convenience store so I could get a soda. 

We did more resting in the room. I did some work on my site. We went to Cancun, a Mexican restaurant, for dinner. Even though it's Cinco de Mayo, they weren't very busy. The food was pretty good.

We just relaxed in the room. I was going to do some laundry, but their washing machine is broken, so I just washed a few things out by hand. Other than that, I just uploaded my photos to the net and worked a little on my site. Tomorrow we do the inspection and meet with Kim to make a slight change in the contract. Then we'll check out of our hotel and drive to Texarkana, and check into the Wyndham again.  We'll stay there one more night and then fly back to Hawaii. It's been exhausting, but very productive.

The Hampton Inn is ok. The only thing I don't like is that it's not very comfortable for me to work in. Sitting on the bed is hard on my upper back, with my spine problems. I can't get good enough back support. The chairs at the desk are too high for me, though, so that hurts my legs and lower back.  Also, we had a hard time figuring out the thermostat, and the alarm clock is 15 minutes fast. We can't figure out how to change that, either! But it has a comfy bed, at least, and a free breakfast. A good one, too.

I packed up most of our stuff so that we can leave tomorrow after the inspection.

I had a hard time sleeping and didn't get to bed for good until after 4 am. I was really tired, but just not enough to sleep. Also, my neck was hurting a lot. I took a hot shower, and that helped a little. I ran out of my muscle relaxer prescription...I don't take it too often, though.

  Friday, May 6

I woke up before 7 am, so I took a shower and then went down for the free breakfast. It was really good today. They have good free coffee, too.

We went over to the house and met the inspector there. It took almost an hour and a half! Big house. I was freezing most of the time because I didn't realize how cold it would be, so I wore long shorts, short-sleeves shirt, and sandals. I took many photos of the house while we were waiting.

The house had a really cute puppy in a cage, in the sunroom, so we also pet the dog. He was so adorable.

After that, we met with Kim, and I think with the lady at the bank. I'm writing this four days later, so things are a little fuzzy. I believe we did check out of our hotel and then drive to Texarkana. David stopped in Stamps so I could get some food from the Sonic. I love Sonic!

We checked back into the same hotel as before, the Wyndham Gardens.  There was a slight delay, so I worked on my site in the lobby and David went to print out our boarding passes, while we waited. Then he went to walk around the neighborhood a little. I was exhausted, so I just stayed put. Eventually, they let us into the room. I checked us in and then got a luggage cart and hauled all of our luggage up to our room. I was very tired and went to sleep. David came in not too long after I went to bed.  He had a little nap, but I slept longer. I think we had dinner at Denny's.

  Saturday, May 7

 I woke up in the middle of the night and worked a lot on my site. I also packed up our stuff, so it would be ready.

The owners of the house did accept our offer, so that was exciting! You can see details about it on Zillow.

This hotel also had a free breakfast, but it wasn't nearly as good as the one at the Hampton Inn. Ah, well. It's still free!

We left pretty early, as I recall, about 10:30. The airport is so tiny and has no amenities, so the good thing is that you don't have to go there too early! We were both very tired, though.

It was a very long day of flying. We did the reverse of what we'd done on Monday. We flew to Dallas, and then to San Francisco, and then to Honolulu. The time zones were in our favor this time around, though, so it was only about 7:30pm when we got back home.

Supposedly, we had the special extra seats you pay for, with more leg room, but it sure didn't seem all that comfortable. We both slept quite a bit on the plane. Our long flight from SFO was supposed to have Wifi, but it only lasted about 10 minutes and then disappeared.

We didn't have a very long layover in Dallas. We just barely had enough time to go to the restroom and get a drink. As we were walking towards our plane, we heard that they were doing final boarding! We walked pretty fast after that, and thankfully, we made it!

At the SFO airport, there was a lot of artwork on display from disabled students.  As always, you can see the photos I took on Instagram

We sat at this place called Buena Vista Cafe, but none of the food looked gluten free, so I got a pastrami sandwich at another place called Klein's Deli. They put it in lettuce for me. It was delicious!

Although we boarded our flight on time, it took a really long time to take off.  It was a very long flight. I slept a little and also listened to music on my iPod. They did have little TV's with free movies, but none of them were ones I cared that much about. I was more entertained by listening to music.

We were both very glad when we landed and could get off the airplane! Way too much traveling the past few weeks. Fun but exhausting.

I did more work on my site and then went to bed pretty early. I even found a little bit of time to practice guitar.

  Sunday, May 8

I got up pretty early, considering!  We had lunch at Gordon Biersch as usual. It's great to be back home. For now! I had my usual pan-grilled citrus chicken. It's always yummy.

After that, I practiced it a little more on the guitar and got ready. At 2, we walked over to the guitar studio and met with my guitar teacher, Curtis, and his band, Mangoseason . We were only there about 10 minutes. We raced through my two songs. It went ok. I was very nervous. It's tough playing with people you don't know, at first, but fun. Great to play with a live band again! I saw his wife again, too, and she's very nice. I picked up some flyers to post for our concert. David was kind enough to come with me and carry my guitar both ways.

I was so tired the rest of the day. We walked 3 miles! I think he walked 6 total since he usually does his morning weekend walk of 3 miles as well.

I've been slowly unpacking, doing laundry etc. The worst part about moving is trying to co-ordinate everything.

I posted around about needing boxes for moving, so hopefully we can get some. Otherwise I'll have to buy them. I probably need about 100. I hate all these little details. I keep thinking that I'm forgetting something...

We just ate dinner at home. I'm on an early schedule and hoping to stay that way.

This Wednesday will be ONE MONTH LEFT IN HAWAII! I've never lived in a place I love as much as this one. I hope the next one will be great, too.

Don't forget to also check out my TV Blog!

This page updated 3/24/17

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