Phase 1: Steal the Underpants

Tonight is Nicole’s last night in New York.
To pull off this move, we’re doing it in 3 phases.

Phase 1 kicks off tomorrow. We’ll move Nicole, Ben, Abi, my computer, clothes and bedding, toys and entertainment enough for all of them for a month. They’ll be moving into Nicole’s parents place for that month, where Nicole will start the leg work to set us up in Canada. I’ll do my best to give her a head start while I’m there with her this weekend.
Our combined task list includes: setting up the computer and the bed’s for both our children, obtaining a cell phone with a Canadian phone number, meeting the real estate agent, meeting the mortgage broker, and making sure there’s working capital in the Canadian bank account.

As soon as I leave her jobs are to: submit the paperwork for our kid’s Canadian citizenship (kicking off the 3 month wait before they’re eligible for Ontario healthcare), finding a storage facility to move our furniture into, arranging the details for the apartment we’re moving into for the summer, then starting the house hunt for a more permanent place to live.

Phase 2 starts May 19 when the movers come. My job is to get us ready for that. Our remaining possessions need to be boxed, indexed and inventoried, our heavy furniture needs to be sold and moved out, the rooms we painted need to be painted over in “apartment white,” and the carpets need to be steam cleaned (two babies and a cat practically guarantees there’s a poop stain hidden somewhere!) I’ll over-see the loading up of our possessions, and the closing up of our US bills and accounts, then get in the car and drive back to Ontario, carrying enough of our stuff to get us through another 2 months of squatting in a temporary residence. We’ll move into that place as soon as we can, so I can resume work.

Phase 3… well we don’t have a date for Phase 3 yet — or even a destination. This phase comes when we’ve found and purchased a house, had the services turned on, and can get our stuff out of storage and do our final move into our new Canadian home. Our drop-dead date is mid-August, when the students from whom we’re renting our temporary apartment will likely want to be moving in. That leaves us a little over 3 months to finish this move.

In short, this is going to be a challenging summer — especially with two babies in tow. May will probably be the hardest, because we won’t have each other for encouragement (and/or bickering). Fortunately, God has quite literally gone ahead of us…

Our dear friends, Mark and Elisabeth, are moving their own family into the same town on May 2nd. God’s set them up with a new ministry, and a beautiful new home (with a pool!) They recently adopted a two year-old boy, and we’re looking forward to spending some time with them again, helping out their ministry, and watching our kids grow up together.

Also in town is my mom, followed not long after by my dad. They’ve both been in Asia for over a year now, having a blast over there, and we wouldn’t wish for them to move back to boring, bland North America. But we are glad that they’re going to be around over the summer to help out, and to see their grandkids (and babysit them for us.)

And of course, Nic’s family is there, and I’ll finally be out of hot water for moving Nicole to another country. When Nic’s parents were here visiting after Abi was born, it was amazing to be able to leave the kids with them and go out to a movie. We have wonderful friends here who have been very supportive and helpful — Ben has a great babysitter that he’s in love with (and we like her a fair bit too :o), Jason and Brooke have gone above and beyond to help us adjust to Abi’s arrival, the Matula clan has literally showered us with love as we’ve prepared to leave, and of course there were all the friends bringing meals for nearly 2 weeks straight — but nothing beats having grandparents and aunts and uncles around.

We even have a new home church to crash land at — where we already know people!

It’s going to be a grueling couple months that will test our stamina and our relationship and probably our faith. But its going to be worth it when its all over. In fact, we’re kind of looking forward to it.

As I mentioned, I will not have a computer once Nic is gone. I’ll have my iPhone for Facebook/e-mail/Digg and the XBox for MSN, and there’s the ridiculously slow and filtered Internet at work. But my connectivity, and thus posting, will obviously be limited. We’ll do our best to keep you updated, and we’ll look forward to seeing our Canadian friends in person really soon!

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