Tuesday, February 14, 2012

An announcement

Sometimes, when I run into people from the past, they'll say something to the effect of "I follow your blog and I know you live in Pennsylvania -- but what are you doing there?" And since I started this blog after we moved here and never really gave an explanation as to why we came, I figured now was as good as time as any to give the people what they wanted -- but the readers digest version.

One day, 6 or so years ago, Brad came home from his "great" job to our newly purchased home in SLC and mentioned that he was toying with the idea of going back to school. To get a PhD. As in a 5-year-long PhD. Given the said great job, the newly purchased home (2 miles from my parents), and our very new baby boy in the next room, I was quick to nix the idea. And for the next 8 months we fought. But when Brad started leaving for work before Nick got up in the morning and coming home after he was in bed (and with his bosses working more hours than this) and with Brad alluring me with the lifestyle of a finance professor, I gave in. Okay, there might have been A LOT of prayer and fasting going on as well. Needless to say, we applied to a dozen Financial Economic PhD programs, picked one, sold our house at just the right time, and when I was 16 weeks pregnant with Chase, we moved ourselves across the country. That was the beginning.

And today we came to an end, of sorts.

For those of you who might be wondering how a PhD program works (as I had no idea when we began), let me break it down for you:

Years 1 and 2: Brad took classes and worked on research in financial economics. He took and passed a candidacy exam and comps.

Years 3 and 4: Classes were over with and Brad worked on several different research projects, including his dissertation, which I don't completely understand but I know if has something to do with hedge funds.

Year 5 (which we're in right now): Brad has done nothing but apply and interview for jobs, perfecting his dissertation and a different paper in his "spare time."


After applying to 60 schools (Brad is going to be a finance professor):
Having 30 first interviews:
10 second interviews
3 heart breaks (Brad came in second place at our top 3 choices):
and 4 job offers...

(not to mention 5 years and 2 additional children)

Let's just say I need to buy myself a pair of these:

Because we're moving to KANSAS.

Yes that's right, Kansas. Now, I know what you might be thinking. "Kansas? You really want to live in Kansas? Haven't you ever heard of tornado's? You really want to be a mid-westerner?" And I know that's what you're thinking because that's what I thought. And still sometimes think. Because I am deathly afraid of all natural disasters. And because it's, well, Kansas. And the only visual I have in my head of Kansas is from "The Wizard of Oz" which, yes, I realize was filmed on set. But in my head, Kansas is brown, flat, and has devastating tornado's. But in my research I have been pleasantly surprised to find pictures like these of my new town:

 Clinton Lake, right outside of Lawrence

 KU's campus

And there are many people here in my beloved central Pennsylvania town that are from there, or went to school there, or lived there from some reason or another, and I have heard nothing but great things about it.  So I'm starting to feel excited. We love college towns. And we love that we'll be 40 minutes from an airport and a temple (two things that we are currently 3 and 4 hours away from). Traveling to see my family will be much easier. And for those of you who belong to the same church I do, all of the mid-west church sites are within and hour or two (except for Nauvoo, which is about 5 hours away). So you have a free place to stay when you come to see those. We're prepared to love it!

And go KU!!

Monday, February 6, 2012

Well folks, it's official. My kids are adorable. And Katie does a great job at making them look that way. These are from the photo shoot she did while we were in UT in December. What started as "Will you take Cora's 1 year old photos?" turned in to "Will you take all the kids photos and go shopping with me and pick out 3 different outfits per child for them to wear in the photos and then design a Christmas card turned New Years card all in the space of 3 days?" And of course she said "yes" because, well, she's my sister...in-law.

In other news, we are 95% sure of where we will be living in less than five months. Stay tuned for the official announcement...