Last week, we drove into Manhattan, Kansas, on Wednesday evening about a day ahead of schedule. We traveled eight hours on our first day to get to Boise, then drove to the Denver area on the second day, and then on to Kansas on day three. All together, we were in the car for about 28–30 hours for this trip.
Because we were racing some weather in the Salt Lake City area and in Wyoming, we decided to push through with longer days so that we could avoid any hazardous weather conditions.
Ironically, about 24 hours after we arrived, Manhattan experienced an ice storm, but we were tucked into our new house by then. (As I write this, we’re having our second ice storm within the week, so we’re getting used to Kansas winters already!)
So far, we’ve spent our first week in Manhattan doing our best to settle in as quickly as possible while we wait for the rest of our stuff to arrive (hopefully in the next day or so, weather permitting). For my partner and I, settling in has looked like:
- Meeting with our lender to close on our house and officially moving in. Although our moving truck hasn’t arrived, about a week ago we closed on our house and were able to move our car load of stuff inside. Having a home base to shower, do laundry, cook basic meals, and access the internet has been really nice even without the majority of our stuff here. And, being without all of our furniture has given us some good thinking time to decide where we want everything to go since our new house has an abundance of storage with its five bedrooms.
- Doing lots of driving around to familiarize ourselves with the area. We want to make sure we know all the main roads and the quickest ways to get to our most frequent stops (like the grocery store and my campus office), so we’ve spent a good deal of time in the car. Our house is about a 10-minute drive from central Manhattan, so it’s easy to pop into town several times a day to run errands as needed.
- Getting to know our closest grocery stores (and finding the best local Thai food). Since my partner and I both have dietary restrictions, knowing where we can find food that works for us is an important part of getting to know any new area. So far, we’ve found the store with the best “natural foods” section where we can find lots of vegan and gluten-free options and we’ve been able to stock our fridge and pantry with a lot of items that are familiar to us. We’ve also tried a couple different Thai places in the area and found our local Chipotle and Qdoba, so it feels more like home already!
- Finalizing all the hiring paperwork for my new job. I stopped by K-State’s campus earlier this week to make sure that I’ll be ready to be in the office full time in early February. I was able to see my office layout (there’s a big whiteboard!), get all my hiring paperwork signed and submitted, and meet the administrative team that will be helping me with my orientation to campus. My calendar is already filling up with lots of meetings and I can’t wait to get started.
- Dropping off paperwork with our lawyer to finalize the transition of our LLC to a new state (and meeting with our local banker, realtor, and insurance agent). If you’ve ever moved, you know it can involve a LOT of paperwork, so that’s taken up a good deal of time since we arrived. We’re fortunate to have moved to a small enough town where there are strong networks and where we can get to know the professionals who provide services for us. Everyone has been really kind with our realtor lending us inflatable mattresses and our banker gifting us camping chairs until our furniture arrives. We also applied for our new Kansas driver’s licenses yesterday, and navigating the DMV felt like a big accomplishment!
- Getting my local library card. You know reading is a big part of my life, so I went to my local library and got my new library card as soon as I had my proof of address paperwork! I’ve already spent time browsing the shelves and picking out several books to read in the coming weeks.
- Continuing work as usual. Even though I’m not in the office yet for my full-time job, I’ve continued working with my clients in the side business as best I can during this transition. That has meant lots of coaching meetings, getting some administrative tasks completed after pausing them to move the business to a new state (hello, tax paperwork and January invoicing!), and printing and mailing off coach training guides for the first session starting next week. It’s actually been really nice to have my coaching work as a familiar touchstone during the move since it’s made the transition feel a little easier.
As you can see, our first week in Kansas has been a bit of a whirlwind! Here’s what is next for us:
- Unpack all of our stuff once it arrives. We expect our moving truck to get here at some point this weekend, so there will be a lot to do once that happens. My priorities with unpacking are (1) the bedroom (we miss our bed and I’m looking forward to getting all of our clothes unpacked), (2) the kitchen (I’d love to get everything washed and put away asap), and (3) my home office (I need to get back to podcast recording for next week’s episode!).
- Complete a few home-related projects. Our house is new construction, so it doesn’t need any adjusting in terms of aesthetics or design — we love it so far and it’s a great fit for our needs. That said, there are just a few small infrastructure projects that we’re wanting to complete right away to help it feel more like home: (1) adjusting some wiring downstairs to get our television set up and to improve our internet access around the whole house, (2) installing nest thermostats to enhance our energy efficiency, (3) installing an instant hot water dispenser (for tea, oatmeal, etc.) and a water filtration system at our kitchen sink, and (4) purchasing a few furniture items like a dining room table and some seating since we now have a larger house than we did previously.
- Finish any remaining move-related tasks. We’ve gotten a TON done in the last week or so, but we still have a few outstanding miscellaneous tasks to complete like: (1) getting our car registered in Kansas, (2) finalizing paperwork for my new retirement account with K-State, and (3) enrolling in our new healthcare plan.
- Start my new job! I’m really fortunate to have a few weeks to get settled before I’m in the office full time, and I’m also looking forward to getting into a consistent and established routine with my work days. My first few weeks on the job are packed with orientation meetings since I have a team of nine people and I also need to get to know a bunch of campus stakeholders. I’m sure that I’m going to feel pretty overwhelmed, so I’m grateful for the time to check off a lot of the tasks with our house and move now.
So that’s the latest with our move! We’re getting settled in and are thankful for our new house, my new job, and all that we’re learning about our new town.
I’d love to hear your strategies for getting started in a new environment — what tips do you have as I launch into my new job?