Our official moving adventure began on the morning of June 26th. Andrew and I picked up our 22′ Penske moving truck with car trailer at 10 am. We had lots of moving help from family, a neighbor, and my good friend (who is basically family minus the blood connection) making it possible for us to load the truck and have a completely clean apartment by 4pm that day. There is no way in this world that Andrew and I would have gotten moved out in a reasonable amount of time without all of the help.
We spent Wednesday night at Andrew’s family’s home and all of Thursday there. Andrew finished up some last minute things we needed to do before we moved while I recovered from the previous days work. We also saw “Man of Steel” which we both really enjoyed, and it was a fun little way for us to celebrate Andrew’s birthday. That evening we went with Andrew’s parents for an official birthday dinner at Market Street Grill.
Friday morning we woke up at 5:30 am and were driving our truck out by 6:15. I was really nervous with the big truck we had to drive across the country, but after a couple of hours we both got the hang of it and were able to switch off every couple of hours. The truck was not meant for someone my size. Look at Andrew’s nicely bent arms, then compare with mine which are almost completely straight. Needless to say it wasn’t the most comfortable position, but thanks to good air conditioning my comfort priorities were completely taken care of!
After Andrew took my picture he said that I looked like what he pictured a trucker to look like. I couldn’t imagine why; the explanation was my belly, which fortunately is its size because of a baby and not beer and junk food. We made this journey at the end of 25 weeks and beginning of 26.
On the first day we drove all the way to Ogallala, NE – it took a solid 12 hours. The road started at its hardest as we went through Parley’s canyon and by the time we had gotten through Wyoming the road was flat, although it was really windy which brought a few challenging driving moments. We were really grateful for the perfect weather and that everything ran smoothly with the truck.
Saturday morning we also got up at 5:30, and left by 6:30, but within an hour of driving we had switched to the central time zone so it was more like we left at 7:30. I started out the first two hours and loved the Nebraska landscape. With all the rain in the midwest this summer, Nebraska was very green and it was my favorite state to drive through on this trip.
We made a discovery from day one that made day two go even better. We started with a full tank of gas and then made a point to only pull off at the rest stops and go into cities only when we needed to fill up. This made for a guaranteed truck size parking space and a very quick exit/entrance back onto I-80.
Andrew drove through two short Iowa rainstorms! There wasn’t thunder or lightning, but the wind was pretty strong and the rain came down hard and fast. He did great – especially after we figured out how to turn on the windshield wipers!
We arrived at my family’s home in Iowa at 7:30 pm. We were welcomed with a homemade lasagna and pumpkin muffins. After an delicious family meal my dad, brother, Andrew, and three men from our church loaded my family’s upright piano onto our moving truck. That’s right – I HAVE A PIANO! Best addition to our home EVER (at least until this baby girl comes)!
Sunday we took the day off from driving and spent time with my family. We also celebrated Andrew’s birthday the Moose family way. This includes homemade ice cream cake and my brother’s candle bonfire creation. If there is any doubt, this guy is more than officially 24!
Monday morning Andrew and I got on the road around 6:45. We decided to take I-74 and some smaller farm roads and highways to avoid the tolls and Chicago traffic along I-80. We were amazed at how quickly 5 hours in the truck goes after our 12 hour marathons! We each drove for just over two hours and then, ta-daa!, we arrived in our new home.
This cornfield is just minutes away from our apartment. In fact, we are surrounded by beautiful farms for miles and miles and miles. From about an hour left in Illinois and all of Indiana to West Lafayette, there was nothing but farms. We were a little surprised, but I really love all the greenery and trees. Andrew says it reminds him of his mission in Tennessee, which makes sense because we are only 5 hours away from Nashville.
We got here about 1 pm in the eastern time zone. We got keys to our apartment and checked out where we would be living. I was a little surprised and a tiny bit disappointed, but after 2 days it is growing on me. My mom and sister drove out separately and arrived around 2:40 and helped us quickly clean the floors before we moved in our things. Andrew went to back our moving truck into a spot right in front of our door about the same time the Fedex truck drove up. The man hopped out and asked Andrew where he wanted it and said he would do it for us. In just a minute he had perfectly parked our large vehicle! Four men from our church arrived around 3 to help us move in and they had our truck unloaded within 1 1/2 hours. They were so kind and we are excited to get to know them and their families better!
We have no idea what life in Indiana will be like, but we are excited to be starting this new adventure together!