Q: So how are you liking Vegas? How is your house?
A: So far so good. We are struggling a little bit to find family friend activities at the moment. Since starting work last week, I have been asking around for different things to do around town that DON'T include one of the following: a bar, a show, a casino, or shopping. The other problem is that there definitely are family activities, but a lot of them are for kids that are a little more independent and abstract thinking than Avery is at the moment. So far I've gotten a recommendations for an outdoor theater, an aquarium (Avery is obsessed with fish right now), a children's museum, and hiking. We have definitely been hiking. We've up to Mt. Charleston to hike almost every weekend since we've been here. Mostly because it's still too hot to do anything outside in town. It's 20 degrees cooler up there. SO nice. And Avery loves being outside. And I'm enjoying it MUCH more than our first time up there.
The house is great. We are still struggling with some of the "last minute" things. We still have stacks of pictures leaned up against the wall. Troy is struggling to go through some of his stuff from high school and college, so there are a few boxes sitting around. We haven't unpacked and organized the office, which is located in the room on our master bedroom. So I have to look at that mess every morning when I open my eyes. The upstairs guest room is pretty much a hot mess. The curtain isn't hung, or the curtain rod. No pictures are hung. There are power tools on the beds. We know we are going to use them soon. Well soon-ish. Whenever we get around to it. So we just haven't put them away yet.
But we are loving it. It is so much better than TLF. We have a TON of space. The backyard should be done in the next week, so we will be able to hang out in the yard. Which will be great because (from what people tell us) it should start to cool down soon and feel like fall. We are looking forward to it. APPARENTLY October and November are absolutely gorgeous. We will see and I'll let you know. I'm skeptical.
Q: How is Troy liking his job?
A: WELL he just got assigned to a team, which designates what team he is on. Troy is currently on day shift for the next 6 weeks. He is going to be working from 8-4 which about a 40 minute commute on each end. Swing shift is from 4-12 midnight and mids is from 12 midnight to 8 in the morning. Troy will go to swing shift right before Thanksgiving. I think swing shift is going to suck the most. The days that I work, I won't see Troy AT ALL. Because he will be at work when I am getting home from work. Mids won't be too bad because on days that I work, he will be sleeping while I am at work OR he'll be awake for a bit and then asleep from like 10 to 6 so that he can have dinner with us and hang out with me before I go to bed and he goes to work.
So far, he is really liking it. While we were in Alamogordo, we were having SERIOUS doubts about Troy's decision to cross-train from Logistics. We were just not sure if it was a good idea. Troy can't really tell me the details, but some of the people he's met since we have been here have really helped to validate his decision and make him feel better about it. So really, if he's happy, I'm happy.
Q: How are you liking your job?
A: So far, so good. When we moved here, I was pretty set on not working until January. YEAH RIGHT! Troy called it 6 months ago. Our house got mostly set up and then I was like, "ugh, I am not stay at home mom material." Troy and I are both happier when I am working. I think of all these fake problems and obsess about things to fight with Troy about so that I can get some adult interaction. It's really not good. I feel like Troy gets to "escape" when he goes to work and I'm "stuck" at home with Avery. Which is terrible. I know.
But I know that while I am working, when I am home, I am engaged with her and happy to read the same book 10 times because I haven't seen her all day rather than feel like I've been stuck at home with her. But anyway...the JOB is great. From the time I decided I needed to work until the day I started, it was a little more than 3 weeks. I am working on a rehab unit (and am going to start floating to acute inpatient) right now. It's a 42 bed unit (which is huge) and it's awesome. I am working 3 full 8 hour days a week, and sometimes 10 hour days depending on Troy's schedule and nanny availability. They hired me knowing that I wanted to do my own schedule so that I could be off on days that Troy was off. They were agreeable. YAY!
I had 3 interviews and 3 offers. 2 of the jobs were close. 1 was far. Like down on the strip. The one on the strip got GOOD cases. Like the shootings, like the people who played slots for 48 hours straight and stroked out or fell on their way out of a casino. Or people who were visiting from Japan. Or New York. So far, about 30% of the patients are visiting Las Vegas and end up in the ER. So discharge planning is interesting. Another 50% are from the states around Nevada. A TON of people from Arizona and California. The other 2 jobs sent all of their exciting cases down to the other hospital. Those 2 jobs would be mostly joint replacements and debility. No thanks. Needless to say, I took the job with the further commute on the strip with the more exciting and interesting cases.
Not gonna lie, so far, the commute sucks. But I had also worked everyday last week. So I had to do the commute everyday. In reality, I'll only do it 3 times a week. I've been using the commute to drink coffee, listen to music, make phone calls to family, and relax. It's really not comparable to DC traffic. DC traffic is WAY worse. So I just try to use the time away from Avery to do things that I wouldn't be able to do at home because Avery would be screaming for breakfast or to read a book. It's been good.
Q: How did you find your nanny? How is Avery doing with her?
A: We used care.com to find a nanny. I placed an ad on monday and had 13 responses by tuesday night. I responded to all of them and based on their responses, set up 5 interviews for saturday. Troy did not want to know ANYTHING about who I "had a feeling about" or what their profiles were like online. He wanted to go into the interviews completely blind and knew that I wouldn't ask someone for an interview if I didn't think they might be a fit.
We interviewed a couple different kinds of people. There was a lady who was in her late 60's, a couple of stay at home moms looking for some extra cash, and a girl in her early 20's who was in college. We ended up going with a stay at home mom who has a 20 month old little girl. We were debating on going with an in home day care because we wanted Avery to have some interaction with other kids to learn about sharing and being patient, etc.
When it came down to it, I leave for work about 7 and didn't want to drag Avery out of bed and spend an extra 30 minutes (so I'd leave at 630) in the car/getting her settled in child care, and I really wanted to have someone come to the house. So when Carolyn said that she had a 20 month old AND she would come to us, I was like, WIN! I had a feeling she was "the one" based on our emails back and forth before the interview on saturday. We had a whole list of interview questions and ended up not using it with her because the conversation flowed so naturally and she was able to answer our questions without a structured interview. And she was bringing her daughter so that Avery could get that interaction Troy and I wanted her to have.
When she left, Troy was like, "Ok, call the other people, she's the one. You can tell them not to come!" I didn't do that and we interviewed everyone, but we did end up extending an offer to her, which she took. And in the process of all the interviews, we found 2 people additional people to put on our babysitter list for date nights. Which was perfect because Carolyn wasn't available to start on my first day of work. Avery went to one of the their houses for monday and tuesday of my first week and it worked out great. Overall, we had a GREAT experience with care.com and would recommend it to anyone. Even if you are just looking for an occasional sitter.
So far, so good. Avery just loves her. She loves having another kid to play with. And she loves how happy her mommy is to see her when she comes home from work. Win all around.
Q: When are you coming back to the east coast?
A: Troy's schedule is crazy. The next time we will be on the east coast as a family will be in April for my sister Lindsey's wedding. We are going to Ft. Walton Beach. The next time I am coming back will be in January for Lindsey's bachelorette weekend in Savannah, GA. I'm pretty excited because Avery isn't coming, so that will be an adult weekend trip for me :) We will be using Carolyn to supplement child care while I am gone because there is no way that Troy will be approved for 4 days off in a row. Especially since the squadron is already scheduling leave for March. Ouch.