The Beginning of our Michigan Adventure

The last few weeks have been a whirlwind of activity.  My last day of work in Virginia was June 2nd.  We left for Michigan on the fourth driving straight through.  This would be Annelise’s move to Michigan and I tried to take as much of her things as possible.  On Friday the fifth I was scheduled to have physicals with both of the hospitals I will be working for here in Michigan.  So the day was spent driving from one doctor’s office to another and being poked numerous times.  On Saturday I attempted to get Annelise’s things situated in her room and the play area my parents had designated for her.

On Sunday we had a brief celebration of my birthday.  Monday it was back to the doctor’s office to have TB tests read and then on to Human Resources at each hospital, one in Holland and one in Grand Rapids, to sign all the hiring paperwork.  On Tuesday the 9th I headed back to Virginia with my dad.  Wednesday and Thursday were spent packing and loading the Uhaul which my Dad drove back to Michigan leaving on Thursday afternoon.  I finished everything up on Friday and headed out myself Friday evening.  I had hoped to get an early start and drive straight through, but due to the late start we stopped in Ohio and finally got into Michigan in time for the Asparagus parade on Saturday.

After watching the parade we unloaded the truck into a storage space.  On Sunday I got a brief break before starting work on Monday.  I’ve sort of hit the ground running.  Last week I started with Holland Hospital.  Two days of orientation and two days working in the lab.  This week I started with Mercy St. Mary’s with two days of orientation and then yesterday I was in the lab.  Tonight I start my night shifts with Holland and next week I start on nights with Mercy.

It’s been an interesting experience starting with two different hospitals and going through two different orientations at the same time.  It’s been exhausting, and a little overwhelming at times.  A lot of new information and things to remember.  I was beginning to wonder if it would have been better to just get a full time job with one of the hospitals instead of splitting my time between the two.  But I think in the long run having the flexibility of being part time and per Diem is going to be worth it.

It’s been hard being away from Annelise so much.  Leaving her here while I went back to Virginia to pack was the first time we’d been apart for that long.  And working days for the past two weeks has made me really appreciate the extra time I have with her when I work nights (although not the lack of sleep).  Since we are staying up in Hart I have more than an hour commute to both Holland and Grand Rapids.  So I’ve been up each morning in order to make 7:30 am and 7:45 am start times.  In the evenings I’m not getting home until supper time and then it’s pretty much bath and then bed.  I miss so much of her day.  I find myself looking forward to being back on nights and also not working so many days each week.

The drive hasn’t been too bad.  At times it was a little rough because I was commuting with rush hour traffic.  When I’m travelling at off hours its not so bad.  I kind of like having work so far away and having this nice break between it and home.

Annelise seems to be settling in well.  I think its starting to sink in that we have moved and that we are not just visiting Grandma and Grandpa.  She still talks about her Roanoke friends like she’s going to see them next week.  She mentioned school the other day and I told her I would try to find something for her here and she said, “No mom, my Roanoke school.”  And when we were talking about finding a place of our own she said, “How about a house in Roanoke?”  Having cousins around to play with has been a good distraction.  She’s spent a day with Aunt Bethany, and cousins Henry and Miles each week.  And she gets to see cousin Lincoln frequently.  The other night we attended cousin Max’s baseball game and now Annelise wants to play baseball.  So maybe T-ball next year?  Aunt Sheri and cousin Ben stopped by one night and she started showing off.  And this weekend more cousins will be here.  Trying to explain all the family connections is sometimes a challenge.

She hasn’t been too happy about my working days.  After two days she asked me what we were doing the next day and when I explained I had to work and she was going to stay with Grandma she looked at me and said, “AGAIN! You’ve got to be kidding me!!”  I could almost hear echos of my dad in that statement.  She’s also started talking to firefighters on her play phone.  “To see if they went to the fire.” she tells me.  On a cute little side note, her play phone has several canned messages and when it said “Hi Cutie Pie!” She said, “Don’t call me Cutie Pie I’m trying to talk to you!”

Izzy and Kikapu seem to be adjusting to our new home but for all I know they think were just on vacation.  I was worried about Izzy for awhile.  She did the entire Virginia to Michigan back to Virginia and return to Michigan trip.  Kikapu stayed in Michigan with my Mom and Annelise, but I thought Izzy might be too much so I kept her with me.  Of course I couldn’t explain anything to her so she was a nervous wreck the entire time.  She always gets nervous when I start packing things so watching us pack up EVERYTHING had to be very traumatizing.  On our final trip to Michigan she shook the entire trip.  I think I stopped that night because she needed a break as much as I did.  The first few days here she was glued to me, but now she starting to relax.

I’m adjusting as well as can be expected I guess.  I’m getting use to sharing space with my parents.  I still feel like everything is haphazard.  I didn’t have much time to settle before starting work and I’ve been too exhausted to do much in the evenings.  I can find my clothes and that’s about it.  I feel scattered and very disorganized.  I have belongings here, two different storage spaces and even some things (including all my bikes but the crossbike) in a friend’s garage back in Virginia.  It will probably be awhile until I feel settled.

Some pictures from the last couple of weeks.

Annelise napping in her bed a few days before the move.  Notice the chain on the wall so she can count down the days.2015-06-01 17.32.21

The birthday cake she made for me.

2015-06-07 12.32.26

Back in VA packing up the house.  All the stickers from her weekly photo shoot during her first year.  After the picture I would peel them off her shirt and stick them to the wall.  Felt a little sad taking them down.

2015-06-11 19.32.05

Last one out of the house…


Watching the Asparagus Parade with Lincoln.

Our first Sunday we attended the Asparagus Festival’s Fly In Pancake Breakfast.

Annelise and Lincoln riding the plane train.


Posing by a plane with cousins.


What I said good-bye to every morning before heading off to work.  Hated not being there when she woke up.