Thursday, July 19, 2012

Thankful Thursday and an Update

Well, Team Preston has been settling in to the small town life. It has its own unique challenges (I dare you to try to find a one-hour photo within 30 minutes that also has a working machine), but we are handling each obstacle with as much calm and grace as possible. We are finishing the unpacking process and finally hanging curtains and pictures on the wall. Our cozy home is starting to feel more like that - home!

So, this Thursday, I am thankful for:

My pressure canner and a husband who helped me can some food.

A bike that was stolen (whoever stole it is in for a laugh... the handlebars were broken!).

New Coastie wives who have been so helpful and reached out to me as the new girl.

My Coastie. Enough said.

Homemade tortillas. Yum!

The organic grocery 4 blocks from my house.


Our cute yard.

Challenges. Yes, I am thankful for these challenges. They help me grow and who doesn't want to be a better person than they are today??

UPDATE: Here's a quick update on some of our adventures.

This is our cute, cozy, modest new-to-us house.

For Independence Day, we ventured down to the outdoor celebration hosted by Morro Bay. It was SO SO SO tiny and cute. It had about 4 food vendors, one tiny stage, four ponies for the kids, and "games" including the three-legged race and sack races. People brought tents, blankets, and grills to make it a whole day of festivities!

Later that evening, we met up with some other Coasties at the station for a "dependents' cruise." All this means is that the families were allowed on one of the boats. We pulled the boat out into the harbor to watch the firework show. It was chilly on the water, but so much fun!!

The 47' MLB: this is what can flip over in 30 foot waves and still be able to rescue people.

The station! Tee-tiny!

Classic photo of Team Preston.

They made us wear these super-awesome life vests. Gotta be safe when you're with the CG!

Ready to watch some fireworks!

Finally, the Coastie is settling into his new job and role at the station. The best part so far? This awesome outfit he let me play dress up in:

I am now fully prepared to do some cold ocean water rescues!

Be thankful this week and every day!

Thursday, July 5, 2012

Acting out "Semper Paratus"

We have encountered some pretty sizable roadblocks and obstacles in this new life. If you've gotten one of my panicked text messages or phone calls, you know what I'm talking about in this post. However, the Coastie and I have been a perfect balance of panic and optimism. When I am panicked or distressed, he is positive. When he is down and out, I am the encourager (believe it or not since I am so easily negative!).

No matter what, we have each other. We are learning to live a simple, simple life while we have no belongings, no television to distract us, no internet to claim our minds... We have only each other, the outdoors, and our laughter to entertain us.

We heard a great quote that keep echoing in my head during these not-so-easy times. We heard it from a poet at a poetry slam/jam.

"Sometimes the shit comes at you so fast that you have to shovel it over your shoulder and just keep going."

So, we just keep going. We are Semper Paratus - "Always Ready." We are ready for whatever sh*t comes our way next. We'll face it head on and high five after we conquer it.

Team Preston!!!

Monday, July 2, 2012

Our first week as California hippies

We have been in California almost a whole week. What we have been able and blessed to accomplish is incredible! We have found a home to rent, done a short hike, explored our new town, made new Coastie friends, visited a church, and found a free outdoor concert. Whew! I am tired just remembering it all!!!

First, house hunting is way harder than I anticipated. As a homeowner, shopping for a new home is all fine and dandy when you are already living somewhere. I was totally unprepared for house hunting while living in a motel. The rush, the pressure, the time constraints... it is so overwhelming. We didn't get exactly what we want and/or are used to, but we found a modest duplex only a few blocks from Josh's work. He can walk or jog or ride a bike to work, which means that remaining a one-car family will continue to work well for us.

After we got the phone call that we were the chosen renters for the unit, we celebrated by going into S.L.O. to the free outdoor concert in the main downtown area. It was like a cute, smaller, but free-spirited Sundown in the City (if you are familiar with a former Knoxville summer highlight). They had a local brewery supply some awesome microbrews and local wine. The best part was seeing so many of the 40-70 years old out dancing in front of the stage; the band played a lot of James Brown covers. It was a family-friendly, relaxed, casual event. We instantly fell in love with the town and the vibe!!

We've also managed to do one short hike thus far. The weather is cool, foggy, and misty here most of the day. They call it the "June gloom." I'm hoping July will bring more sunshine! Anyways, we did go on an early morning hike to Black Hill which is one of the "Nine Sisters" that are natural volcanic plugs left over from active volcanoes millions of years ago. Morro Rock is another of the "Nine Sisters." The hike took us through Morro State Park, past a huge water resevoir for the park, and showed us a great view of the estuary (wetlands) and the little towns in the valley below.


Sometimes the fog was so thick, that water droplets would be caught on the needles of the evergreens.

Our view was frequently obscured by the fog/mist, but we still enjoyed a quick rest at the summit. It is so chilly in the fog/mist that we were layered up. Layers would come off or go back on depending on altitude and amount of fog. Overall, we enjoyed the hike but can't wait for more!!! The area is so beautiful and diverse that we should be able to keep busy with finding a new hike or place to climb as often as we can. Plus, the hikes aren't too hard, so I'm sure family and friends that visit will also be able to enjoy. If I can handle the hike, ANYONE can. I am a weenie.

We also visited our first church in the area. We were invited by another Coastie couple, and we are so glad to have such welcoming, nice people who are giving up tips and tricks to adjusting to the area. We are so blessed!!!

We just have a few more hurdles to overcome as we move into the home and then I can begin some serious job hunting! It will be a process here, but I'm willing to do whatever it takes so that I can continue to do what I do - go to work and help someone else.