charleston, sc

and so, the grand adventure begins! R and I left for charleston this past week. we are on a house-hunting/daycare-hunting/life-hunting trip, hoping to make heads or tails of our soon-to-be new home. it is still difficult to think through the fact that R and I will be making this move. we keep thinking someone is going to come by, pinch the both of us awake, and then laugh in our faces for being delusional.

but I digress.

the drive from kc took about two days. please note, that as I am writing this, I am 32 weeks pregnant. talk about your potty breaks! regardless, we got our trusty civic loaded up, dropped S off with granny, grandma, and M&M, and much like the currently running iPhone commercial, we instructed siri to guide us eastward. throughout our times in kc, we have suffered from outsiders of the midwest comment on how “boring” and “flat” and “ugly” missouri and kansas are, both to live in and drive through. R and I have fought valiantly against such comments for years, insisting that kc has much to offer in culture, aesthetics, surroundings, etc. I’m not taking those comments back as much as realizing that clearly others have had more time on the road and had an opportunity to experience more in terms of travel.

our ideas were seriously put to the test when we drove through tennessee. and north carolina. and south carolina. shoot, even illionis and kentucky were pretty! and, guess what, they all had better roads. [on a total side note, perhaps the toll on I-70 should go through – I’m telling ya, there were zero potholes in the other states].

then, we rolled into downtown charleston and saw where we’d be shopping, eating, and working for the foreseeable future.

just one of the many houses that have been converted into office buildings for the faculty - impressive, no? this is one of the historical homes that is a part of the comm studies dept.

this is the second office building - the comms dept is rather large with about two dozen faculty members. R will be housed in one of these two houses. awesome!

just one of the many beautiful sites on campus. this is the heart of the campus, called Greens Way. the student center is nearby, as well as the library. the dorms aren't too far off, and as the campus is in downtown, no one is far away from coffee, bookstores, or awesome restaurants

the famous clock, located in Greens Way

offices located in Greens Way - R will walk by this as he goes to teach. or have meetings. or hold office hours. or do any of those real grown-up, adult things he's been hired to do

are you drooling yet? I ask because I was. and honestly, still am

lovin' the wrought iron. and the Spanish moss. and the architecture. and everything about it.

are you freakin' kidding me? it reminds me so much of New Orleans. and then I had to remind myself that I can go see this house whenever I want. crazy.

the porch! (ahh, porches! these folks know how to do it right!) this is the front of the faculty house where they housed R on his interview. there is a coffee club for the faculty, umbrellas available for the occasional rain shower, and a view of the garden where the azaleas are currently blooming

this arbor blew me away. I'm not sure if this gets picked up with the photo, but ... the trees have grown around the foundation and up into the beams, which are filled with those beautiful flowers. whichever sorority lives there is one lucky set of women

just revel in this for a moment. close your eyes, imagine the waves, and allow yourself to be taken away. this is a shot of Sullivan's Island, which is inside of Charleston Harbor. some faculty members took us out to dinner while we were out, and we paused for a moment to take in the view. ah-ma-zing!

here are some of the homes that line the beach front - I will never be in their income-bracket, that's for sure. but, beautiful homes certainly lined a beautiful beach.

we’ve now seen a good portion of the area, and are close to making as informed of a decision as I think we’ll be able to before we officially move. the faculty has been beyond helpful, literally driving us all over the islands and peninsula to show off their favorite areas and preferred eating spots. we headed back in james island and folly beach today, so more photos should follow shortly.

as we have taken in the area, and have allowed the realization to overtake us about we have been given, we are overwhelmed. a beautiful downtown, gorgeous beaches, awesome schools for our kids, and a great department for R for be apart of as he launches his academic career. we are blessed.

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the park!

this is not news to anyone, but this winter has been extremely mild. weather in the 70’s and 80’s, little to no snow and sunny days make for an early spring. all of this means the kids are itching to be outdoors. M & I decided to take the kiddos to the park a few days ago, as we were all eager to get our daily dose of vitamin D!

 

oh yeah - we're rockin' the sunglasses, going for the power slide

N was very impressed with all that penguin park had to offer - even if he was a smidge too young for some of slides. i believe the wide eyes say it all.

I mean, come on! look at how tall that kangaroo is! N can't climb that all by himself, man - no matter how hard he may try

S loved the playground! between the stairs, the slide, the monkey bars, the spider monkey, and fire truck, she was wore out

which then sets up the desire to buy a bomb-pop. S was more than excited to use my money to buy her treat. i joke. but that is essentially what occurred.

N got a strawberry shortcake bar, which was not eaten very quickly and therefore was all over N - and therefore M, as well

 

 

they were tired. shoot, the moms were tired. but what is the point of the park if you don’t come home covered in dirt, sand, and ice cream dribble? heck if i know.

just hangin’ out

S has a great time knocking out the art projects, including finger paints. it’s also a nice treat when the cousin is laying down, keeping her entertained, and him asleep for a bit longer. it’s a win/win/win!

I think most of the time S is more interested in getting her hands covered than creating anything. which, if you were a three year old, isn't that your goal, too?

welcome

we’re moving. the milner family is making a gigantic move, one that is so big it’s almost difficult to comprehend. R and I may not have been born within the limits of kansas city, but it most certainly is our home. [dang it if we weren’t both born in wichita – go figure on that one]. we met in kansas city north; we dated and were married with all of our family and friends from in town joining in the celebration; we have lived out our entire married lives in the kansas city metro, and have had the joy of raising our daughter here in town with family surrounding us every step of the way. almost every consequential moment in our lives, whether independent or separate, has occurred in this lovely midwestern town.

and now, due to job placement, we are out of here. wow. in a matter of mere months, we will be living in the south. as in, the ‘for real, deep south’, where every kid says ‘yes, ma’am’ and you don’t have to ask for sugar in your tea. for those of you who know us well, that in and of itself is a major cultural change. [no worries; our liberal views concerning public policy and eating habits will most likely transfer as well – maybe. we hear they’re so darn polite, we just might end up shifting our ways!] we are leaving behind so much. a wonderful family that has enjoyed their time with our kiddo; awesome friends who have grown with us from awkward adolescents into professional, sometimes mature, adults; an absolutely fabulous church community who welcomed us with open arms when we were hurting from church in-fighting and politics and have continued to love us in spite of ourselves.

no longer will we have monday night dinners with my parents; spontaneous hang-out time beloved sister & bro-in-law, M & M, and their kiddo, N; the occasional jaunt down to westport for book hunting and coffee; or the commiserating of how awful our local sports teams are [because, god love ’em, they are]. I will have to cook dinner every night for my family, find new baby-sitters who are not family, and raise my kids without the built-in support of encouraging family and friends. that alone is enough to knock the wind out of a person. then add 1100 miles to the equation, and it just starts to get expensive. especially if all I want is for someone to make me dinner. perhaps R will brush up on his culinary skills and help me out every now and again.

as all of this is circling around in my head, a few additional thoughts have crept in. one, we are moving to a town of transplants. given R’s profession, we will always be with people who are not living in their hometown either and are apparently very eager to give advice and help out in this massive transition. two, the Father will always provide. ironically, He is providing by opening the door for this job, which we have eagerly hoped for ever since R started job hunting. this has been a rather anxious year, full of our home [finally] being sold, finding out we were expecting baby #2, and wondering throughout when and where we would find out about a job. and now that it’s here, it’s a little scary. being 1100 miles away is a bit nerve wracking. but the Father is providing and will continue to provide, financially, emotionally, and physically. and three, apparently the town we’re moving to is the nicest town in the country. that’s no joke.

I wouldn’t change it for the world. R found a fabulous job that fits both his professional mold and personality. the city is apparently gorgeous, with many opportunities for our kiddos as they grow. oh, and did I mention there are beaches? not 20 min from almost any location? therefore, my intent is to keep contact with the family and friends back home, complete with photos and videos, through this blog. and yes, I plan on keeping an air mattress handy for the constant string of guests that will be flowing through our rented abode. in fact, I relish the thought.