Wednesday, September 2, 2015

Moving Harry Back to ASU

Here are a few pictures of our weekend moving Harry back to ASU.  Hubby and Harry headed out a few days early to make the long drive back to Phoenix with the car loaded down again with all things necessary to make a dorm room feel like home for the next nine months. 

They stopped in El Paso for the night and managed to score tickets to the sold out Chihauhaus Minor League baseball game. Shocking, I know.  They also managed to catch a Arizona Cardinals NFL practice before they picked me and Chip up at the airport the next day.  

We stayed at the Westin in downtown Phoenix (which is right next door to Harry's dorm) and this was the view from our hotel room.  

Off to the left, the building with the green arches is Chase Field - home of the Arizona Diamondbacks baseball team.  The low white arena to the right side of the picture is the U.S. Airways Center (soon to be renamed Talking Stick Resort Arena) which is home to the NBA's Phoenix Suns.  No wonder this sports loving kid loves this town! 

Our first night in town, we hit up Oregano's pizza which is a family favorite.  This day was actually August 13th which was Hubby's birthday so it was nice that we were all together.  I will write a separate post about his birthday gift.  He loved it and it provided for some lively conversation during dinner!  

The next day, Harry was scheduled to move in at 12:00 noon.  It was looking to be a scorcher in Phoenix. 

My weather app showed a temp of 108 for our move in time - but let's get it documented right here that the high for that Friday hit 117 degrees.  It was some kind of Phoenix record that made the newspapers the next day!  A little warm.  I texted this photo to my family and got lots of comments about the dry heat not being as bad.  That is a crock.  It was hot!  

Thankfully, the crew at ASU have this moving in business down to a science. I was worried that we would be in line for a long time and the heat might play a factor, but it went so smoothly that we probably weren't outside for more than six minutes from backing into the parking spot, unloading the truck and rolling Harry's belongings into the lobby of the dorm.  Super efficient.  We were at his dorm room door within 15 minutes and ready to start the unpacking!  

This is the view from his eighth floor dorm room window. 

The downtown crew getting reunited.   Smiles all around! 

Within a half hour or so we had moved the furniture around to accommodate the set up the boys wanted for this year.  They are going to bunk together in one room of their dorm and set up a den in the other room for their entertainment area.  I think it is going to work out great.  After the unloading of the boxes we brought, we had some down time while we waited on the things Harry had stored in Phoenix for the summer.  The boys got out their baseball cards and started strategizing over which autographs they were going to try to get during spring training.  

It was so nice this year that they knew each other well, we knew the parents and it was comfortable just hanging out and visiting instead of the awkward first year when we were all strangers and so unsure of what was ahead.  We relived many of the funny stories about the boys freshman year had some great laughs. 

This is their sleeping side of the dorm.  I have seen some fabulous girl room dorms all decorated to the nines and then there is this.  Concrete walls - no pictures - no lights strung across the room.  No personality whatsoever.  Boys just do not care. Not even one tiny bit. 

Once the storage items arrived and were unpacked it was time to outfit the entertainment side of the dorm.  We were lucky that Phoenix has an IKEA because we found a great little couch that would work great in their room.  We were off to get that bad boy on Friday afternoon.  

It didn't seem so little when we loaded it into Harry's truck.  Starting to wonder if it is going to fit.  

As with most IKEA items, it had to be put together and it was all done with allen wrenches.  The Sweds hate screwdrivers!  It took a bit of doing but with a lot of patience, contorting and a little bit of swearing we got it done.  I wish we would have demonstrated the cool features of this couch, but I will just describe it to you.  The long chaise part of the couch lifts up and it is all storage.  Very smart.  Under the long side is a mattress that pops up to make this couch into a queen size bed.  All very easy to put up and take down.  We also grabbed a couple of $8 side tables at IKEA for drinks and whatnot.  The guys were happy! 

Then they started showing Chip the flashlight game they play late at night where they shine the strongest flashlight you have ever seen down on people walking on the street.  It was very funny and I think Chip could have played all night long.   It was a long afternoon and we wrapped up about 8:00 p.m. and everyone was starving.  We piled into cars and all went to Noodles and Company for a late dinner.  So nice to hang out and get to know these guys a little better.  Nice, nice kids.  

The next day we wanted to visit an ASU store and hit up a grocery store to stock Harry up on food! 

We went to the Marketplace and found a store to get some gear.  We are outfitted out! 

Next we went to the Target right near the Tempe campus and it was a complete zoo!  The line went all the way back to the frozen food and wrapped around to the left.  Seriously like 100 yard long line.  We opted to go to a Target a little closer to downtown and Harry's dorm. It was not bad and we were speed shopping like it was a team sport. 

We got all the goodies unloaded and hung up the ASU flag we purchased at the store.  
A tiny bit of decor.  

Chip tested out the couch again and it was still good. 

After that we were headed to a preseason Arizona Cardinals game.  Traffic was really bad, but we managed to get there before the kick off.  It was a pre-season game but it was very festive and the fans were totally into it.  

I can't remember the score, but most of the starters just played the first half of the first quarter and then it was all about the backups getting some snaps in.  We had a nice evening and then had to head back and drop Harry off for good.  We were flying out really early on Sunday, so we were planning on catching a cab to the airport.  I was up early and realized that Harry had left his toiletry bag in our hotel so I walked over to his parking lot to put it in his car.  

I took this picture in the wee hours of the morning.  Knowing my baby was asleep inside and this was his home for the next nine months made me kind of melancholy.  I will miss him terribly, but he is very happy here and that makes it hard to be sad.  Not that I wasn't sad, because I was.  I stayed in a funk for several days after getting home from Arizona.  I covered this building with prayer and asked God to put a bubble of protection around all of these kids.  Give them the opportunity to spread their wings, learn to be responsible adults, find their purpose and live their lives to their utmost potential. Put good people in their lives that will guide them, teach them, care for them and above all for God to pursue them.  To chase them down and teach them the enormity of His eternal love and grace - even if he has to whack them over the head a time or two!

So, he is there.  He is doing his classwork. He is hunting down sporting events.  He is back to late, late nights.  He is kicking off his sophomore year and it is going to be awesome!  Good luck Harry!  Call your mother!  Anytime!  All the time!  Not just when you are sick!  But also, you better call me when you are sick. Keep doing you…cause you are pretty special!   I love you kid and am so proud of you!  

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