Sunday, June 29, 2008

Still Sans House

Alas, still no house for the Ritter clan. The one we were looking at fell through. We got into a sort of "bidding war" with another couple and they were willing to go with a 2-year lease and we weren't. Classic bait and switch and probably totally unethical. We are not dealing with that rental company anymore. We started looking on base at housing. One is available but is, at this point, an absolute last resort. It is a bit on the snug side and the wife would have a killer commute everyday to take the kids to school. We're holding out for a house on Fox Island that definitely looks promising. It's going to mean a 40-45 minute commute each way to work for me, but I told the wife that "I'd do it for her and the kids." Made some MAJOR points there. In actuality, the house is huge on a corner lot with a nice view of the Puget Sound. There's also a hottub on the back porch. Last time we drove through the neighborhood there was a doe with her young fawn munching on a neighbor's bushes. My older boys immediately mentioned the possibility of "front porch hunting." Aspiring rednecks...

We will hopefully hear something later this week about whether we can have the house or not. Keep us in your prayers. The walls are really closing in on us in our billeting room.

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Possible Home...Stay on Target...Stay on Target...

Drove around yesterday looking at more rental homes. We found one that all of us fell in love with. We've attempted contact with the owners to start working things out but have yet to get a response. This is the maddening part of it all, when you find something only to have it dance just outside your reach. It's in the right area with the right schools and is close to the water. The main question right now is price and if they allow pets. It's a little older, so hopefully they will allow pets as that, per my kids, is a deal breaker.

I've also been drawn to another home that has a hot tub in the back yard. All of Martha's stories of relaxing dips after a hard day of work have my interest piqued. The yard at this house looks like some sort of English gardener's psychedelic fantasy trip. Different, to be sure, but I can put up with quite a bit. My wife...well, that's a different story.

The search continues. Keep us in your prayers. The walls in our billeting room are starting to close in. In know they are...I've measured the distance. Spikes are starting to come out of the ceiling and floor as well.

Saturday, June 14, 2008

Searching for a House

Arlene and the kids made it in fine on 1 June. Since then we've been busting out tails trying to find a place to live. The only breaks have been my usual 10+ hour workdays. I did get to fly last week, a hectic 6-hour airdrop requalification ride that left me quite spent. I took the family into Seattle for a much-deserved break last Sunday. It was a beautiful day and the wife and kids had a nice time checking out the fish market at Pike's Place and all the souvenir shops. My daughter said she thinks Seattle is a beautiful town and it reminds her of "Yu Nork City."

Back to the rental websites. Must...find...home. Can't...stop...until....find....home....

Sunday, June 1, 2008

Back in the NW

Got back from my trip down South last night. Spending the night in an airport is not recommended. I didn't sleep worth a hoot and was a mental wreck for most of the next day. Got into San Antonio just a tad late and met up with the family at the RV camp they were staying at. This was my first experience RV'ing and, much to my surprise, I found it rather enjoyable. Kind of like upscale camping. More cozy and rustic than a hotel room yet more civilized than a tent.

The highlight of my trip to San Antonio was walking over my land. I didn't even recognize it and my wife and I drove right past it. The area has grown up in the 5 years since I've seen it. It's a great plot that will make a fine place to build a retirement home. The weather was hot, though, and my wife started having her doubts about South Texas. Coming from Germany, Texas looks hot, rocky, and a bit under-forested. I reminded her of how we'll be wearing shorts at Christmas, never having to worry about being snowed in ever again. That perked her right up. She made me promise we'll find some place up North where we can spend the hot summers. Perhaps Northern Idaho or Western Montana. Need to check it out.

I officiated my wife's stepfather's retirement on Friday. It is a very moving thing to watch someone retire from the Air Force after 22 years of service. They had the grandkids sing the National Anthem at the start...not a dry eye in the place. My 6-year-old daughter joined her older cousins in the rendition and sang all of the words flawlessly. She's very talented--gets that from her mother. I was very honored to do the ceremony for him and found myself thinking ahead to my own. I've got 6 more years before that day comes.