Settling In

Well, we’ve been in our permanent-temporary house for ten days and are settling in, re-baby proofing our lives.

The rent house is set up by our insurance – under the loss of use coverage – and furnished like a corporate apartment (they even made the beds after they set them up!).  They have a temporary relocation service that we worked with.  We asked for a house in our old neighborhood and that is what we have.  And while it is a bit Spartan, we have what we need and the simplicity is okay. 

We are still waiting on the insurance for the settlement numbers on the structure, which should come in a week or two.  Once we know what we are looking at we will better know whether we will rebuild on site or perhaps sell the land and buy something new to us.  There are LOTS of variables which we are weighing, none of which will be a “quick” solution, so we are planning to be in the rent house at least 6 months, but more practically a year – especially if we are building.

A week ago today I went to the restoration dry cleaners to check out progress on the “soft goods,” i.e., clothes, bedding, drapes, etc.  Thankfully the master closets were mostly smoke and water damage so we will be able to recover a good portion of our clothes and shoes, though there is still a lot that is just gone (everything on the 2nd floor).

Due to cost and skin sensitivity issues James stuff is gone, except for a handful of things that have sentimental value. Seeing it all laid out was really sad – he had LOTS of beautiful things that surely could’ve been used by another baby someday but…and all of his toys are gone too. Nothing with plastic is salvageable, and everything he touches must be lickable and chewable, so my standard is pretty high. On the plus side, his stuff is quickly being replaced.  Trust me, James wants for nothing 🙂 which is as it should be.

We even have a new crib already (repurchased the same one as before) – and he is sleeping in his new one as we speak (or not, as the case may be…but he is in it, nonetheless!).

As for other contents, lots of things (dishes, pictures, some furniture etc.) from the first floor were pulled out and are in various places for assessment, cleaning, repair, etc. though I think a lot of it is not salvageable.  Information on all that is coming in bits and pieces.  Friday we will go to the warehouse and check it all out and make more tough decisions.

I think someday it will be a bit like Christmas to see which nuggets survived.  

While all this is going on, we have been working through the inventory process, which is a separate coverage on the insurance. Payment is predicated obviously on what survives and what does not, so we will have a better sense Friday here too.

Finally, I heard from the computer folks today that the data from our hard drive – which looked in pitiful shape, as it was in the office near the fires origin – may be recoverable.  It will be 3-4 more weeks before we know for sure as they have a big backlog right now.  That would help us recover May 2009 to present I think…or maybe May 2010…it was a mothers day gift.  But it definitely has all our Little Man photos and videos as well as all of James, so that would be a huge blessing!! 

As it stands, we have all the best of Little Man, which I printed for his life book through Ritz Pix online and was able to download days before they launched their new site (and wiped the old one!). So even if it turns out that they can’t get the data, we have the best of LM and the best of James have been emailed or blogged.

As for the rest of our digital files (say 2000-2009), we are gathering things from emails and friends…and there is a remote chance that some data may be with a friend who resurrected one of our laptops about a year ago from the blue screen of death.  He is checking for us on his machines.  This is a remote possibility, but I love just the prospect that we have friends who are digital packrats just like me 🙂

So that is where we are at today.  And James is really over his new crib right now so I should go rescue the sweet boy!  Thanks for all your prayers and well wishes.  All things considered we are doing okay, and enjoying the beautiful fall weather which has finally arrived in Texas.

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2 thoughts on “Settling In

  1. Hillary October 25, 2011 / 11:52 am

    Mostly I lurk but I’m commenting today because I suspect that I’m one of the few people who’ve been just about exactly where you are now. In August 1997 I was just settling in to life with my husband and toddler daughter when our apartment building went up in flames. We lost most of our things and were displaced for quite a while. It was overwhelming and upsetting at the time but all these years later we look back in amazement. Hang in there.

    • Eileen October 25, 2011 / 2:24 pm

      Thanks for the encouragement Hillary. We have some friends locally who are Katrina refugees from New Orleans. They have said much the same. We’re taking it day by day, step by step and so far we are doing quite well, I think, all things considered.

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