Friday, July 1, 2016

Headed to NEW ORLEANS!

Following our NOLA

I can't believe we are actually moving to NEW ORLEANS! I have to put down in writing all my feelings about this, as this whole New Orleans job/opportunity came out of nowhere almost. It was REALLY weird, and I feel like it was inspired and we are meant to be headed there.

So, as some may know, Steve is 3 weeks away from finishing up his Pediatric Orthopedic Fellowship here in Denver, and we had been looking for our first post training job for a few months now. As you can imagine, there is a long process for a surgeon to find a position. The interviews are long, and the  job doesn't come as easy as applying to MONSTER.COM. I mean, its hard to figure things out! After being in school for 10 years, you have a plan for your career, but that doesn't always mean its going to materialize when its finally time to look for employment. For example, where we were hoping to go, isn't hiring right now, so we were left looking for other options. The biggest thing with our job search was definitely location. We wanted to go back to Dallas, or Texas and we knew that Steve wanted to work in a University/Academic setting and not in private practice. There are MANY reasons for this, but it comes down to preference.  Steve just really likes teaching and research, in fact he presented at a conference in Indiana a few months ago, as his paper was chosen to be published recently. Very proud of his hard work. :)

Ok, so back to the NOLA job. So, when looking for work, we knew we wanted to be in Texas or at least close to Dallas. We knew we could do neighboring states,  just as long as we were within a 5-7 hour drive from home. We were thinking, Oklahoma and Arkansas as options. NEVER DID WE THINK LOUISIANA.... until we went to Disney World! 

And this is how the New Orleans thing came about. Bare with me as this will sound pretty stupid/cheesy but it really all started from there. 

When we went to disney world, I reserved a hotel called Port Orleans Riverside. It's a newer resort, and it's all modeled after New Orleans/Princess and the Frog theme. I loved all the details of the hotel, even though we stayed in the SWAMP part of the hotel and not the French Quarter! haha, we are cheap! Anyway, while at the hotel I remembered that after hurricane Katrina, Steve went with our church to help clean up the city, so, while at the hotel, I began to ask Steve about what he remembers of New Orleans. At the time of the hurricane, Matthew was a baby so, I didn't really ask or knew too much about that mission trip, other than he and other members of our church went to help out one weekend. We started to talk about Louisiana, and Steve started to tell me about how hot and humid it was, and how it was total devastation. And that was that.

Days after getting back from Disney, there was a job posting in Lafayette, LA. Having been charmed by the hotel, I told Steve to apply to that job, as I thought it would be cool to live in a place with so much character and rich culture. Steve did apply for the job, but apparently the job posting was outdated and the job post was closed but had not been taken down. For some reason, I felt kind of bummed about that. I don't know why, but I did. So, that was that. 

But then a week or so later, there was a new job opening at Tulane University in NOLA, and Steve asked me if we should apply. I was thrilled! I really felt like I wanted him to apply to that job!
Steve was also interviewing in other places, but for some reason, I really, really wanted him to go to New Orleans and like it (mind you, I had never been, and I had no clue if I would even like the city) but one day as I was walking Riley (our dog), and with the stress of the job interviews, and my pregnancy hormones, I prayed about clarity in knowing where to go. For some reason, I always wanted New Orleans.

Steve was invited to interview, and he went, and liked the program, the city, and it just felt right.

Now, we just had to wait to see if we got a job offer. I wish I could say that I wasn't nervous, but I was. Job searching, interviewing, and where to go post training is no walk in the park. For us is a bigger deal, as we kind of don't have the luxury to move much anymore. Our kids are older, and they need stability. There were SO many decisions to make! I wish that I had been more patient, and in tune with what Heavenly Father was trying to tell us, because looking back, I could see so many signs that pointed to us going to New Orleans. Perhaps this won't be our forever home. Maybe we will be there a year or three, but i know that we are supposed to be there for now.

Also, when i talk about signs that lead us to New Orleans, there were MANY.  For example, Olivia started watching this movie called 'Invisible Sister' I remember she really wanted me to watch it, and when I finally sat down to watch, I realized it was set in New Orleans!

Then more signs!

Months after our Disney trip, we got an invitation to go back to the 'Bayou' in the mail, from our resort at Disney! Total disney marketing fluke, but I still think it was a sign to comfort my nervous heart at that time. Then, there was the nurse named 'Nolan' when I delivered Nolan! (we had accepted the job offer by then, but you never know, contracts can fall through etc.) She walked in, and said: "your baby and I are name twins!" She also had a fleur de lis necklace on, and I asked her if she was from New Orleans, and she said: "I'm from Mississippi, but I just got married in New Orleans 3 months ago, and my husband gifted me this necklace as a wedding present. But we both (her and her husband) go to New Orleans all the time! so weird! And finally, our baby's name sounds like NOLA. Crazy thing is, I always said, that if I had another kid and  it was a boy, I would name him Aaron, but then we actually got pregnant, and I remembered watching the movie 'Inception', and loving Christopher Nolan as the director, and I thought, I like that a lot! And now, we are moving to NOLA with a little boy named Nolan.

A few weeks ago when we went to look for a rental we really liked the vibe! This was the first time I had been to NOLA, and sure it was HELLA hot (didn't like that, much) but the hanging trees, the architecture, the FOOD! <--- the FOOD YALL! and the people (we have met some people from church and medical field already!) and it just feels good! We just need a REALLY good AC!

I forgot to mention, we watched Princess and the Frog a few days before going to New Orleans, and Olivia says: "let me get my frog prince!" I had forgotten that Olivia's crib bedding was 'Princess & the Frog' themed and she still kept her frog stuffed animal! and Princess and the Frog is set in New Orleans!... OK, that may be pushing it, but I still think it counts as a sign ;)

Proof below!

Here are some pictures we took of New Orleans when we went. I was so BLOWN away, and excited for our new city!

St Louis Cathedral was so pretty! And it felt like Mexico!

We enjoyed a 2 hour ride aboard the Natchez Steam boat! Even Nolan enjoyed it!

The French Quarter architecture is so dreamy, it felt like traveling abroad!

I love those cute hanging trees! ^ Don't even know what they are called, but I like them!

We ate po boys, chargrilled oysters, gumbo, and beignets! Olivia gladly tried it all!

^The street cars! They are just so cool! 

I want to ride a street car so I can feel like Tiana! ^

Can you tell I'm excited?!

So, what started as a random thought from a Disney hotel, has turned into a real place that we will call home soon! Some come August, visit us at the swamp! 



  1. You will bring rich treasures to NOLA in your wonderful family and diverse culture! Welcome to a great place that I call home.

  2. You will bring rich treasures to NOLA in your wonderful family and diverse culture! Welcome to a great place that I call home.