It's official! We live in LA. Even if it did take me three months to update this blasted thing, I'm proud of myself because a whole lot has happened and thinking about blogging all of it gave me a headache.
Here we go...
After a super long drive in a packed to the T car with a restless 50 lbs dog in the front seat, we're here. Sometimes it still feels like we are on a weird vacation and we're going head back to Utah soon but then it hits me that we're here to stay.
First off, lets talk about the drive. Never one to do something the "normal" way, Dave decided that in order to save some money, we should pack our car with everything that we need for the next 6 weeks and wait for the rest of our stuff to come with my brother and his family when they come to LA for a family vacation at the end of July. They have a SUV that can tow a trailer so they were kind enough to agree to bring our stuff with them when they come. Once we got the car stuffed (minus a ton of my shoes because they weren't "A" items), all I had to do was take my final and we would get on the road.
I had such a fun time getting to know the girls in my class and also our wonderful instructor Krystal. The ten weeks flew by and I was actually sad to be done. After we were done (and we all passed), we all went to Krystal's for pizza and a good time. We had a little party full of laughter, awkward poses, and a frisky game of Spot It. She even gave us all a sweet gift of really nice resume paper to celebrate graduating. I am going to miss the girls so much...
I almost forgot to mention that a few days before we left Utah, my dear friend Summer threw us a going away party. It was so thoughtful of her to take the time to contact our friends and to give us another chance to say goodbye. I don't know what I'll do without her.
So anyway, after the party I went from Krystal's to go pick and Indy and we left to go catch up with Dave. He was on his other motorcycle so he got a head start and we ended up meeting in St. George and I followed him the rest of the way. We drove through the night and I had some close calls with death when Indy decided that he would rather lay on my lap and block my view instead of sitting in the passenger seat. Other than that, the drive was smooth thanks to my trusty 5-Hour Energy shot. I take that back...
So I've always heard that LA traffic is infamous for being, well terrible. I had NO idea. Not only did we hit some major traffic but it was fast moving, bumper to bumper, weaving in and out, about to die at any moment traffic. On top of that, I was trying to follow Dave who was from the looks of it having trouble figuring out where he was himself. So here I was with a phone about to die, freaked out about getting lost in LA, following a lost maniac on a motorcycle, and with a dog walking all over me. I found myself screaming at the top of my lungs, cursing at Dave and the other crazy drivers because I was trying to follow him and people kept squeezing in between us. The worse part is that the car was jam packed so I had a million blind spots and whenever I would follow Dave into another lane, I had to just pray that I didn't get hit and killed. Now come to think of it, I was probably the worse driver on the freeway that day... After what seemed like forever, we got to our destination which was Dave's brother's apartment since we hadn't signed on our place yet. When the car was parked and the ordeal was over, I had a total meltdown. It was possibly a combination of the sleep deprivation, caffeine overdose, migraine, and PMS that set me off but I just let it all go. At one point, I even called my dad to "tell" on Dave for being a meanie. We all had a good laugh later (much later).
We found an apartment!
A couple weeks earlier Dave had gone to LA to look for a place but nothing seemed quite right. When he got home, we found a cute place online so we called the landlord up and sent him a deposit. We felt okay about it because he told us that if we got there and didn't like it, he would give us a full refund. When we got there, I fell in love. It was a adorable one bedroom, one bathroom apartment in a sixplex right in the Arts District. The floors had been freshly refinished, everything repainted, new appliances installed and was the only unit in the complex with a balcony. I was sold, Dave was not...He felt the the rent was too high and convinced me that we need to keep looking. After A LOT of pouting, like a good husband, he gave in.
Since the floors has just been refinished, we couldn't move in right away. As luck would have it, my wonderful friend Molly whom I have been close with since junior high was visiting her aunt and uncle in Valencia at the time of our move. They were so gracious to let us stay there for a few days and it was even greater that I got to spend a little time with Molly since she lives on the east coast and I don't get to see her much. I got to meet her boyfriend and we all had dinner together, saw Prometheus and even got a swimming day with them before they had to fly back. It was an awesome time but far too short.
After a few days, we finally got to move in. This cute little apartment has some surprises in store for us...
Here are some of the issues we've dealt with so far:
-the floors wouldn't dry because of the weird finish that was used so they had to be redone
-4 days of no hot water and a weird faucet that wouldn't work right
-the fuse kept blowing whenever the air conditioning unit was going at the same time as the microwave
-there was no hot air in the dryer so it would take HOURS to dry anything
Despite all the things that were going wrong, I still love the apartment and as soon as the kinks were straightened out, everything was fine.
The Job Situation:
So here's the part of the settling in process that had been the biggest problem but the biggest blessing. After finishing the dental assisting program, I was a little worried about finding a job once we moved to California. Not because of my knowledge or abilities, but due to the different state laws, my certification and X-ray license were not exactly valid California which I didn't know at the time of signing up for the classes. I was encouraged however from many assistants and my instructor that that shouldn't be a problem and getting the proper licensing would just come as I worked. So I decided to stop being the usual pessimistic person that I am and start applying for jobs.
I started with Craigslist and attacked it with my resume. Surprisingly I got my first call back just a few hours after sending out my resume to a handful of dental offices. The doctor who called asked where I lived and when I told her North Hollywood, she gasped and said that their location was too far for me to drive. But I was too eager to let it go that easy. I told her that I will come in for the interview and see how the drive would be. She was excited to hear me offer to come so we set up the interview for the next day. I woke up early in the morning to give myself enough time to drive to wait for it... San Juan Capistrano. Yup talk about eagerness for a job, ANY JOB. Anyway, I got there after an hour thinking it wasn't so bad and finally met the doctor. She seemed young and nice and after a few questions she asked if I could start that day. I was thrilled to say the least. She wanted me to be an assistant part time and front desk the other half so I would be able to experience both. The pay wasn't great but I figured I should take what I get since she was willing to train me and give me time to get the proper certifications. When I got home, I was excited to tell David. He was less excited to hear that I took the job. After a deflating conversation about how low the pay was and how far I would have to drive each day, I finally convinced him that I should give it a try. But before consenting (like I need it ;) ) he warned me that since I was going to my real first day tomorrow in real rush hour traffic, I should leave early. Traffic schmaffic no big deal, I'll just leave a little earlier I thought.
HOLY MOSES LOS ANGELES TRAFFIC!!! Apparently I totally forgot about my ordeal from a week ago.
To make a long story short, three days and six hours of driving later, I told the nice doctor it wasn't going to work out. And Dave was even nice enough to not say "I told you so."
Back on the hunt. Even after the turned down job opportunity I tried to keep my spirits up. After all it was on the same day that I posted my resume that I got a call back so I figured there are people out there willing the take a chance on me. Sure enough, Heavenly Father was watching out for me because a couple of days later, I got a call from an office manager in a Beverly Hills dental office asking if I were interested in working the front desk there. Even though it wasn't assisting, I figured a front desk billing/scheduling position can still give me a lot of great experience in a dental office and I can get my foot in the door so if I want to assist in the future, I'll have more clout in my resume.
When I got to Beverly Hills, it was everything I thought it would be. Palm trees everywhere, obscenely huge mansion lining the streets, and cars that make my 2008 Honda look despicable. When I met office manager and we had our interview, I was surprisingly very comfortable. The office was small but nice and all the other employees had warm smiles on their faces and the doctor seemed very laid back and friendly. It felt right. When she asked me to come back for a working interview, I began to get my hopes up. I knew they were interviewing others so I tried my best not to place all my eggs in one designer labeled basket. But the fact that working interview went very well didn't help me to not imagine working there. The manager said that she would call me the next day so I eagerly waited. No call. The next day, sad and disappointed, I decided to call her to get the closure that they didn't hire me. When I called, she confirmed my fears and told me that it had been a tough choice but they went with another person. I spent the rest of the afternoon eating my feelings and laying around watching sad movies and telling myself that even though I was unemployed, I deserved a day of vegging out and feeling sorry for myself. Around 3:00 I got a phone call from the office. Confused, I answered and it was the office manager. She apologized for yanking me around and asked if I was still interested in the job since apparently the girl they hired wasn't a good fit. I accepted and waited till we hung up to scream with joy. What a great blessing. At a time when so many are unemployed and jobs are scarce, I managed to land a great job in less than two weeks. Did I mention they are paying me much better than the job I quit, the drive is only 30 mins versus 2 hours, and I also get to meet some pretty well known people on a regular basis? Well I do :)
So here's the scoop on the haps of this summer thus far:
The biggest event of the summer or even of this year was that my mom's family from Japan come to visit the US for the first time. They stayed for two weeks but sadly Dave and I were only able to spend of week of that with them since I just got the new job. It was still amazing and so much fun. Here are some of the things we did...
We went to Disneyland and California Adventure
San Diego Zoo
And beautiful Yosemite.
It was a GREAT week. Not at all relaxing and more chaotic than anything but soooo much fun. I'm so grateful to have been able to spend that time with my aunts, uncle, and sweet cousins and I will never forget the memories we made. I really hope that they can come back soon, or Dave and I can at least make a trip to Japan in the near future. Family really is everything.
Other fun things:
Our wonderful friends the Chadburn's came to visit! Since we had a extra day left on our Disneyland tickets, we used those and a couple of my family's leftover tickets and took them to the Happiest Place on Earth. Despite the relentless heat, we had a lot of fun and I may even be good to not go back for a few years... We also went to the beach, ate some sushi and just enjoyed the time with familiar faces.
And just last week, I had Krystal come visit. She had never been to California or even seen the ocean in her entire life so we had a blast. I took her to Beverly Hills, Hollywood, Santa Monica and Venice. My only regret is that I wish the waves at the beach weren't so huge so that we could have been able to swim instead of just being tossed around like rag dolls. But we did get some tans! Even if they are now peeling off...We also went to the sideshow in Venice and checked out the Greystone Mansion where they filmed Spiderman, X-Men, Ghostbusters, There Will Be Blood and a ton more. Good times :)
Seeing the ocean for the first time in Santa Monica
Santa Monica Pier
We went to the boardwalk Sideshow and I met one of the "Wolf Boys"
It was a fun Labor Day weekend with her and it was so nice to get some quality girl time in.
So far, life in LA has been an adventure as I expected it to be. There have been bumps in the road of course but I feel like Dave and I have been so blessed in so many ways and have had so much fun that I really can't complain. I do have my moments where I miss Utah terribly and wish we had more family and friends close by but it just makes for more quality time when we do see them.
Sorry for such a long post. Now that we have internet in the apartment, I really am going to try harder to stay up to date on the blog thing. Until next time folks!
I'll leave you with some pictures of summer beach days since those are the days we've enjoyed the most!