Saturday, April 21, 2012

The Trellis

Everything is a go for my move to Virginia in less than a month! I'm more excited than I can put into words. I'm just waiting for a call from Busch Gardens HR to set up a drug test and park orientation, and an e-mail from my apartment complex with contact info to turn on utilities and everything. It's coming up quickly!

My weekend apartment hunt with my mom in Williamsburg was an adventure in itself. She's a nervous passenger and a total backseat driver. Just driving around Williamsburg and Newport News was stressful enough. The drive home was even worse. We missed a turn at one point and ended up in the heart of Washington D.C. The gps kept telling me to go where there was no road, and getting us even more lost. Eventually my mom got out a map and we found roads that we knew and just navigated ourselves home. Some free advice... avoid Interstate 95/295/395/495 on the way to/from Williamsburg. The Route 15/17 way may not be as fast, but at least you know you won't end up lost in D.C.

Anyway, while I was down there, I looked at 3 apartment complexes, and drove through a fourth. The fourth didn't have office hours on the weekend, but the shingles were all falling off of the buildings and it looked a little sketchy, so I wouldn't have wanted a tour anyway. The first place we toured had great amenities - a huge gym, a huge indoor pool with a hot tub and sauna, beautiful grounds... but the whole apartment was about the size of my current living room. I would have lived there if it was super cheap, or my only option, but it wasn't. It ended up being my third choice out of the three that I saw.

The one that my mom and I both fell in love with was gorgeous on the outside, about 2 miles from Busch Gardens, great spacious apartments, and had a pool, basketball courts, and barbeque picnic area. But... it would have been almost $1000/month after rent and utilities and everything. For that, I might as well just move to NYC.

The apartment that I decided to go with is at a place called The Trellis at Lee's Mill.

It looks nice and well-kept on the outside, and it's in a good neighborhood. It's about 8 miles from the employee entrance to Busch Gardens, and accessible to everything. There's a nice big outdoor pool and a couple of community grills if I'm ever craving a flame-grilled burger. The apartment is actually the biggest of the ones I saw, square foot-wise. And most importantly, it's half an hour from Buckroe Beach in Hampton, VA; an hour from Virginia Beach; and 2 hours from the Outer Banks. I plan on turning into a total beach bum.

I took some pictures of the empty unit that we saw, but it's not the unit I'll be living in. Mine wasn't vacated yet.

It's completely remodeled, new appliances, stackable washer and dryer. It has about 10 times the cabinet/storage space as my house in SC. I might be able to bake a thing or two here.

Dining room:
Space for my table and chairs, extra cabinets and storage because of the remodel, and a ceiling fan! (Not sure why I'm so excited about a ceiling fan since it has central air. It just seems like people in the south should have ceiling fans.)

Nothing spectacular, but it's about twice the size of my bathroom in SC, if you can believe that!

Master bedroom: 
There's second smaller bedroom, too. I can have guests! (hint, hint)

Living room/entrance:
Big enough for my furniture, and since I'll have an upstairs unit (this one is downstairs), I'll have an extra closet off the living room for more storage.

So two bedrooms, bathroom, kitchen, dining room, living room, 4 closets. I think I could live there awhile. Hopefully everything works out at Busch Gardens after my contract is up, and I get rehired for next season. There are also several large performing arts centers and theatres in Newport News that I want to check out. Maybe I can get a foot in the door at one of those! I know I love the area, and I feel like there are lots of opportunities in my field. This is a good match, and I know now that I made the right decision when I turned down the Wisconsin job and kept interviewing. It all worked out!

Now on this end I just have to get everything sorted out and packed, possibly have a yard sale, and finish up work at the Campus. On the VA end, I have to get my utilities set up, find someone to give me renter's insurance, and set up some new bank accounts (sadly, there are no Susquehanna Banks in VA). Hopefully everything works out and goes smoothly, and in 28 days I'll finally be on my own again, living in Virginia and getting ready to start my first real job in my field! Look at me, I'm an adult!


  1. In my defense, I thought I was a pretty good passenger :-)

  2. Looks like things are falling into place. If the unit you're in and the one you took pictures of are basically the same, then it looks like it's a pretty nice place.

    You can probably get renter's insurance through whoever you have your car insurance through.

    And screw banks. Join a credit union. That being said, I still highly recommend PerkStreet :-)


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