Moving to Arizona

Moving is nothing new to Katie and I. Since graduation, some six years ago, we've lived in five different houses. Going from Houghton to the Fox Cities was a big deal, hauling down all of our belongings between two vans and a car, and since then we've mostly hopped from one Appleton rental to the next within a twenty mile radius. And now we've moved to Phoenix, AZ.

Moving across country was surprisingly easy. It took us a few days to get fully packed, one long weekend and a few afternoons. We ended up using a moving company to get our stuff down here (they were cheaper than any of the rental trucks I could find) so all we had to do was box things up. I drove the 1900 miles with our dogs over two days and Katie flew Noah and the cats down. Within four days of the movers packing up the house we were all in Arizona, four more days and the movers dropped our stuff here, and another week and we were unpacked. Three weeks from start to finish and only one day taken off from work.

The front of our new place

The front of our new place

Our new place is huge compared to our rental in Menasha. We now have three bedrooms (for the expected new addition to our family in January) and a living room the size of our old house. Noah loves it. He has a corner with his toys and uses that as a base, frequently walking/running out across the wide expanse of carpet to climb on a couch or just stretch his legs. He's taken to the larger space with gusto, spreading his range across the entire place like an uncaged animal.

We are located far enough away from Phoenix to avoid the worst of city living. We're right on the southern fringe of Gilbert, maybe two miles from where the San Tan Mountains rise to halt the city growth. From here its a good twenty minute drive to the Phoenix zoo, which is located on our side of downtown. There's some residential traffic - we live in a land of suburbs - that follows the ebb and flow of daily commutes. Otherwise the neighborhood feels the same as Wisconsin. Lot of families nearby, a few yappy dogs, nearby playground, etc.

The heat isn't bad. It's snowing right now back in the Midwest and I miss it terribly. Sounds like the Upper Peninsula got dumped on. Right now in Arizona the temperature drifts between highs of 80 and lows of 50 overnight. We keep the windows open in the morning until noon, then AC through the afternoons. I've gotten used to the warmer temperatures (who wouldn't) though it does get tiresome. Same temperature all the time, no real bite to the air or front coming in to change things up for a few days. Minor complaint compared to the wet slush that's up north right now.

Dogs love the change, surprising given how thick their coats are. German Shepherds seem to be built for cooler climates. They play more now, and spend hours outside on the patio. I haven't taken them out for a hike yet to see how they handle the different vegetation. Soon, probably.

Oh yeah, the bugs. We've seen some bugs. When I first arrived there were numerous black widows clustered around the base of the outside walls, a shocking sight. I contacted an exterminator immediately and now all the spiders are done. We haven't seen a live black widow or scorpion since they sprayed. Its not like they would try to hunt us down or anything, but with two little ones the thought of an accidental bite is terrifying.

And that about covers the move. It's been hectic lately, hard to keep up with this blog and everything, trying to settle down and figure out our new lives. Plus I built a wall with Katie's brother, Chris, for my new home office. I've already been out on a few hikes and hope to share those soon. Especially the ones with my new hiking partner, Noah.