Friday, March 16, 2012

If I Only Had a Brain...a Xanax...a Paper Bag

(Sung to the tune of "If I Only Had a Brain, a Heart, the Nerve" from The Wizard of Oz)

Well, I guess, I technically have a brain.  And I could probably round up a paper bag.  And I think there's a guy on my street who sells black tar heroine, which should work just like xanax, right?  What I meant was, I wish that I had a brain that worked more like other people's brain's seem to.

At least I don't think that living a mundane life like mine makes other people want to punch strangers in the face, scream obscenities at dogs that walk too slowly across the road (well, OK, maybe everyone does that), wake up to pee in the middle of the night only to be unable to go back to sleep haunted by endless possibilities, biting the inside of their mouths bloody while they rock back and forth furiously flipping through color coded and tabbed notebooks of information. 

 OK, maybe some of that was slightly exaggerated.  I'll let you guess which parts. (hint: it's not the part about the heroine, that stuff's great)

Why the heck is a stay at home mom so stressed out, apart from the fact that I am clearly bat-poo crazy?  Because of the up-coming move to Minnesota of course!  After 4 months, I am sure you are sick of hearing me complain about moving to MN.  I am certainly sick of THINKING about it, much less hearing myself complain about it!  WHY won't you turn off brain?!!  Anyway, in just over 4 months, we will be gone, and instead of hearing me complain about having to move, you will get to hear me complain about how cold it is, how I don't know anyone, how Matt is gone all the time, how I don't like sausage (cause I know they put it in everything over there), how they do weird things in the mid-west like sculpt cheese, etc.  So don't worry.  I am sure that my whining heart will find something to moan about, and at first I am sure you will be grateful for the change from the "moving complaints".

I think that the problem is just that 8 months is a LONG loooong time for a super planner/over thinker like me to know that you are making a cross country move.  Much, much too long.  Matt's solution:  "Just don't think about it for a few months". DO NORMAL PEOPLE'S BRAIN'S REALLY WORK LIKE THIS?  Should I be able to do this?  I mean I am excellent at repressing horrible things that I have to block out.  Like super good.  But at just temporarily forgetting important things that I need to remember later and not worrying about them until an appropriate time?  I am simply not capable.  I try.  And sometimes I am moderately successful.  The problem is that I am a HUGE daydreamer.  Have been my whole life, and I am always thinking about the future and mapping out how I am going to make it better (chalk it up to a scarred childhood), and that is not something I can change.  I find myself doing it before I can stop myself, and when I have no clear picture of the future, just a little black hole, super amounts of stress and anxiety set in.  OK, this just got WAY deeper than I intended it to.  I will get off the couch, so I don't have to pay you for a therapy session, and get back to the intended blogging for the day.

Anyway, here are a few things I have been doing that can be done 4.5 months out of a move.
  • Figuring out how to pay for it all, applying for loans, FAFSA, shuffling savings accounts, looking into health insurance, figuring out our essential expenses etc.  The program is 30 months.  Tuition isn't that expensive, only like $15 grand, but Matt can't work at all during the program, so all of our living expenses for 2.5 years are going to have to be loans/savings.  Plus there are other things, books, a program specific laptop and other equipment, etc that will have to be paid for, not to mention the cross country move.
  • Figuring out which school districts we are willing to live in!  We have never had to worry about this before, but Lily will start Kindergarten next year, so while looking for a place to live, we are going to have to be very aware of the different school districts.  There are about 17 Elementary Schools in the Rochester area, so I have had to look into them and see which ones are an option.  This will limit our housing options, but what are you gonna do?
  • Getting an idea of what rental costs are.  What types of options are available, locations, what its going to cost us, etc.
  • Figuring out the cost/options of actually physically moving, IE truck options, flying kids out VS making them drive with us cross country, etc. 
  • Planning a trip to go out and house hunt prior to the big move
  • I got bored halfway through typing this list and decided to go ahead and quit here, so it you are still reading props to you...
We are STILL waiting on some information from Mayo, that SHOULD help us make some big decisions.  I think.  Hard to say 'til we actually see the information, but here's hoping.  We were initially told the info packet would be here in Feb.,  but they have yet to send it.  Which is part of the desire for face punching as afore mentioned.  However, look how pretty Mayo is. 

And here are some nice city views of Rochester in case you are wondering what it looks like.

I got to chat on the phone this week with a very nice woman from the PHX valley who is currently living in Rochester while her husband does his general surgery residency at Mayo.  She was awesome, and talking to her was great and made me more excited to get out there.


Anyway, every March residents are "Matched" and lots of new Dr's move out of Rochester to do their residencies all over the country at the end of May/beginning of June.  This means that this is when a lot of properties are listed.  Granted most of them are for sell, and I am pretty sure that we are just interested in renting and not buying (that is a whole other debate for another time.  Why is it that paying a mortgage is $400/month or more cheaper that rent? grrr)

Anyway, we don't actually NEED a house until August.  But I am nervous that if I wait until then there won't be very much available, remember its a city of about 110,000 people so it's not like our options are limitless.  So my question is, do I find a house early, like one that will be vacated in June when this year's batch of residents leave and start paying rent a month or two early to secure a good rental, or do I sit tight, be patient and wait for the right time/until we really need a place.  Will I just be throwing away a month or two's worth of rent (which could be like $1000/mo remember) when we could possibly find another place just as good?  Is it the early bird gets the worm, or good things come to those who wait?


Dandi said...

Oh, I love you! I have no answers for you. Good luck on everything.

Tavia said...

You make me laugh out loud! I enjoy your ranting and raving. :) And I know that you are so incredibly capable as a mother and wife that, although you are stressing like crazy, you are going to ROCK this move. I have so much love in my heart for you, Jennie Jenn!

Heather said...

Ok, first of all you are awesome and I adore you.

Now - I totally hear you on the over-planning/over-thinking thing. I am the same way. If it was me, I would keep an eye on places and what's available maybe even starting now. That way you can get a feel for what prices are, what you can get for your money over there, and you'll be able to better tell when you find a bargain come renting time. You'll also be able to tell what you should budget for as far as rent goes, although I would be surprised if this isn't stuff you have already done. Then when June/July comes, I would look being open to renting at that time, but try not to pressure yourself to find a place. If you find the perfect place at a good price that you feel is worth an extra month or two in rent, jump on it. If you don't, try not to worry too much and have faith that the right place will come up eventually. And if the "perfect" place doesn't come up by the time you have to move, then you can just find a place that works for the time being and not have to think "what if we rented in June/July??" because you did look and didn't find the perfect place then either. Oh, and also if you find a good place earlier, you can always check to see if the landlord is willing to hold it a month or two with a deposit and not require you pay those months in rent (or maybe even one month or so less in rent?). Although it probably isn't likely they'd comply if that's when everyone else is renting, it never hurts to ask. My mother-in-law owns a bunch of property and is a landlord and often wants the "right" tenant and not just a body to fill the place, so if she finds tenants who she feels really good about, who she thinks might stay awhile, will pay the rent on time and all that, she is much much more likely to make concessions on stuff like holding it because it will end up worth it in the long run.

Ok, ok, I am (of course!) rambling on and on so I will stop. I'm not even sure that everything I've said makes sense and is accurately communicating my point of view but hopefully you get the gist. Feel free to call if you want...I'm always opinionated. :)

Oh! And I said I was gonna stop but I remembered something else I wanted to say. As I was reading this post I kept thinking (quite strongly, actually) that I need to come out and visit you once you get to Minnesota. I can help you get things more settled, or come at a time when you're feeling lonely or homesick, or when you want help with the kids or just whenever. We shall have to plan it out, but for sure I want to make myself available to help you at a time you feel you could use it.

Katie said...

Ok, I've thought about this for a couple days. What I think... and I'm not one who's super cheap when it comes to experiences (if that makes sense). I would move early. Before Matt has to be in school. That way you can get settled together and explore the new place together. If you move in time for him to start school you're having to be a single mom, in a new place and that's no fun. So yeah, you'll have to pay a couple months of rent out there when you can have it free here but the time you have together as a family before the craziness hits would be worth it (to me). Plus you'd get to enjoy a summer out there before the midwest winter hits (I'm sure autumn is to die for though).

Anyway, those are my thoughts. We're moving back to Colorado the end of April so we need to get together to say goodbye cause who knows when I'll see you again! (I wonder how far Fort Collins is from your little town? You could totally come hang with us!)

russandkatie said...

I have a friend who moved from Rochester recently. I can ask her about schools if you want.

Charlie said...

1) Breathe. 2) Think about how awesome it will be to watch Harry Potter and The Nightmare Before Christmas around Halloween when there are actual LEAVES outside that are COLORFUL and, in fact, fall-like. A light blanket, a cup of tea, a working TV and DVD player... These are all things that you can easily make happen. The rest is trivial. 3) Breathe again. But not too much. Phoenix air is toxic for human life. Both literally and figuratively.

The LaLa said...

I think it's awesome that you've connected with Phil and his wife. I used to teach Philip in Sem back in the day! (not so many years ago) I think buying a house is exciting for you, and your reasons are sound. Use your best instincts, and call up HGTV to put you on House Hunters! Hey, I would watch that episode. Sooo proud of you both. Good luck with your surgery Thursday, Jenn!