Queen City

oops

Oops I did it again… 

Yup, another giant adventure. New Orleans was making me melt, so it was time to venture back up north towards the family.

But in all honesty, one of my teammates vacated his North Carolina position and I jumped at the opportunity to be a quick 6 hours from home instead of 17. No more missed birthdays, buying flights for holidays or trying to figure out appropriate vacation time.

So after a few back and forths for details, I was offered the same position I’m currently holding, just for North & South Carolina! It was a busy, hectic, and stressful few weeks trying to finish up regular work while also needing to fly up to find a suitable new apartment, pack my tiny 1 bedroom in New Orleans, move it all up to Charlotte, NC

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I took a few days back in March to do the apartment searching. And because work has conditioned me so well, I plugged the few places I had in mind into mapquest route planner and scheduled out 6 visits in about 4 hours 🙂

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Luckily my teammate and I are good friends and I was able to arrange a private tour of my new city with him and his wife and indulge in some North Carolina BBQ for dinner. Because I came in on a weekend, I was able to knock out about 3 more locations on Sunday and had one last one to see Monday before a flight back to NOLA on Tuesday afternoon. I figured 4 days would be decent since that’s what dad and I took to find my NOLA apartment but found it on day 1. I have another friend (former Redskins coworker) in the area too so it was nice to be able to have someone with me for a few of the places.

It came down to 2 locations on Monday – a third floor 1 bedroom 1 bathroom with sunroom (for my office), but no elevators or washer & dryer in unit, or a 4th floor, 2 bedroom, 2 bathrooom with everything but a little more than what I was already paying. Guess which one I chose…

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Yup, welcome to the 2 bedroom life!! It was really going to suck having to lug suitcases up and down 3 flights of stairs… I pay for convenience.  Now I have a dedicated office AND a guest bedroom!! All I had left to do was pack up my New Orleans apartment, find movers, and get on the road…. crap.

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How the hell am I going to pack all this junk into appropriate boxes and where the hell am I going to put it when I get there?

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Packing your entire life in 672 sq feet while also trying to keep life normal is very difficult. I took my mother’s advice and packed a few boxes every night for a week or two until I didn’t have any more space to put boxes, suitcases, etc. in my living room.

While trying to keep up with that “normal” life idea I tried to keep work as fluid as possible while also saying see ya later to the friends I made in the Big Easy. Luckily those friends are lifelong ones and made sure to give me the proper sendoff with  all-you-can-eat Crawfish, booze, baseball and Beauty & the Beast on my final weekend.

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I also got some help from our Junior in Atlanta who drove all the way down to clean out my storage unit. Since the process of hiring my replacement is ongoing we wanted that BDM to be able to start fresh with a new storage unit – meaning it was up to us to completely clean it out and ship back whatever wasn’t taken/recycled. We loaded & unloaded the car 3 times, returned my corporate vehicle, and FedEx’d stuff to corporate all in one day. It was only fair that I introduce him to Crawfish and Bourbon Street. We celebrated hard on Bourbon Street – go big or go home right?!

Go big we did. I’m pretty sure I was still inebriated when I woke up before the movers arrived… It was a rough morning trying to pack the rest of my crap. I had to be careful not to stand up too quickly and rehydrate. By the time the movers got there and started taking the pre-packed boxes, I was just shoving the rest of it in garbage bags going “I’ll figure out what’s in what when I get there”. It took them about 3/3.5 hours to load everything and off they went. By the way, Abba Movers, a local business in New Orleans was AMAZING. I liked the idea of not having my stuff thrown in a storage unit somewhere to await another 18wheeler loaded with random people’s belongings and then maybe being delivered the next 7-10 days…. These guys assured me they would load everything securely, drive to Charlotte, and unload all within 3 days. Yes please!

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Once the big stuff was out, it was just the little stuff and cleaning left before I closed the door on my NOLA life. Sir Quilliam Thatcher was the last thing in the car before heading out to return my Cox router for the 5.5 hour drive to Auburn.

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We were loaded down and ready for the next road trip adventure! I arrived to Auburn around 10:30 that evening, threw myself in the shower and flopped into bed. I don’t have a large travel home for Quilliam yet, so I set him up in the spacious jacuzzi tub of the hotel. image-20170405_230438.jpg

Because hedgehogs are nocturnal, he decided that 4am was a good time to throw all the plastic pieces/toys around which got him locked back in hedgie jail.

Thursday we loaded back into the car and continued through Atlanta to our new home and upon arrival, I had already forgotten how big the new space was. I spent that evening locating an air mattress for myself to sleep on and sitting on the floor in the middle of the giant living room just appreciating the quiet.

The movers weren’t due to arrive till 10am on Friday but I got a call asking if they could move it up to 9am… ummm ABSOLUTELY. And at 8:45am they arrived ready to unload and while I worked my way through e-mails and created a newsletter, they unloaded everything into my new 1,187 sq foot space, not one thing missing or broken! That’s a LOT more space than I realized and all my furniture looked too small… Good thing Mom & Dad were on their way down to help me organize, decorate and check out some new furniture!

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The super clutch piece to the whole weekend was the flatbed cart the apartment complex had available to help me move everything in and out. The only casualty of the entire move was a small hair I found wrapped around poor Quilliam’s tiny foot, luckily my bff is a vet with vet friends all over the place and she was able to find me a local team that see’s exotics.

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Once the parental support arrived we unpacked the essentials, picked up an aggrivated Quilly, and shopped around until my hangriness got out of hand and we had to check out the restaurant downstairs.

Saturday morning we’d hit the ground running for some big girl furniture. I initially saw this fantastic looking white buffet piece to put my TV on at the Value City Furniture store. I found it in my original apartment search trip, went back to look at it when I arrived Thursday and this was my 3rd trip to the store to confirm I liked it. While I did like it, I was annoyed I couldn’t take it home with me immediately. So after declining to wait for it to be delivered, because I am impatient (and the Kitchen table we were looking at was sold right underneath our noses) I did some googling to find top rated furniture stores in Charlotte.

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Welcome to Nadeau! Furniture with my soul captured as soon as I crossed the front door threshold. I was entranced. It was almost an antique setup store with furniture piled on top of each other and on my treasure hunt I went. We were overwhelmed by the amount of quality looking pieces in there, I wanted everything. And after much deliberation between pieces, what I wanted my apartment to look like, the ideas that had been stored in my brain for years and checking prices, I left with 3 items purchased.

We were able to load the small table and the bench into mom’s new car at once, but the buffet would be trip #2. As we excitedly got the pieces into the space I could see it all coming together. I was still bummed about missing out on the other table and was deciding which style I wanted for my very first kitchen table. Circle?! Square?! Rectangle!? If I get a circle farm style table I’d want to move this light a foot over, can maintenance do that? But what if I get a rectangle table? I could slide this bench over and not have to buy chairs? WHY IS ADULTING SO HARD?!

Once I decided on the colors of the first 3 pieces, I knew the style I was looking for but still hadn’t decided on shape. We went back to pick up the buffett and took another look around at the tables and there it was. A beautiful Mango wood rectangular table. I’ve never been more in love with a piece of wood… I’m hoping it lasts me a while. And my jaw about hit the floor when the sales kid told me it was only $289…. I just looked at dad with the most surprised expression while dollar signs flashed in my eyes. Yup. Mine.

We stopped at Home Depot after loading the last 2 pieces and then dad got to work attaching the legs… funny, I’m pretty sure I have the same photo of him putting together my desk 2.5 years ago 🙂 (except this time we didn’t have to load & unload it all ourselves!! WIN!)

Now that I had some new furnishings, it was time to really make this apartment home. On to the decorating we went!

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My mind is still boggled by how much space I have. I’m used to living on top of all my posessions. Here, everything is put away. It’s clean, it doesn’t look cluttered, it’s so zen!

Because I have 2 giant walk-in closets, I no longer needed my homemade garment rack, Mom and I decided to turn it into a display/headboard piece for the spare room/office. Yes the air mattress is currently in there until I find a new sectional sofa and move this tiny/semi-broken one in there.

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The spare room now is not only my office, but also a reminder of all the fun things I’ve done so far. Mardi Gras items, signed sports stuff, my favorite books, etc.

The last piece of the puzzle was my master bedroom suite. I’m pretty excited to have my bathroom right in my bedroom actually. Again, because of all the space my bedroom is quite empty now that I’ve put everything away. There’s no longer a bike or grill next to my bed, clothes out in the open or crafting flowers laying around.

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I legitimately don’t know what to do with myself…. Maybe I’ll add a really cool & fun chair somewhere. I also needed a little extra storage space in my bathroom so I found a cabinet unit at WalMart and put it together after Mom & Dad hit the road.

My first dinner at my very own kitchen table was a turkey sandwich, as was my first lunch. I’ll get to cooking eventually 🙂

I spent my office day for work on our normal conference call which was very odd because I’m used to waking up and having to get right on the call since I was an hour behind the rest of the team. It’ll take some getting used to having a whole hour before the call now. I actually had time to make coffee!! I set up my office space as well, and started planning out some sales calls for my first few days after I pick up the company car and check out the storage unit.

I’ll make the first 6 hour drive home this weekend for Nugget’s 3rd birthday and Easter. I’m super excited to be back within driving distance from the family. Can’t wait to see what this new adventure brings!

That’s enough adulting for now. I’m tired.

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