Population 7,360

As we were pulling into the town we’d call home for the next few months, we passed the welcome sign with a “population 7,360” stamped on it.  I tried not to psych myself out because we are familiar with small towns, we’ve been living in one for the last four years together.  NBD, right?  Right.  So I looked up the last town we lived in to compare it’s population.  At the 2010 census, our former city’s population was 25,484–practically 3.5 times the size of this northern Cali town..  I instantly felt claustrophobic, no exaggeration.  I’m such a baby.
As a background, for those who don’t know me well or don’t know me at all, I grew up mostly in Houston, TX.  My family moved there when I was ten, and I left for college in Idaho a few weeks before my 18th birthday.  My parents still live in Houston and don’t have any plans to move, ever.  To give you an idea of Houston’s size, it is the 5th largest metropolitan area in the United States.  As of a year ago, it had a population of 6.08 million people.  The city of Houston alone is more populated than the state of Utah and Idaho combined (1.5 times more populated to be exact).  And to get more personal, there were 1,200 students in my HS graduating class alone.  My point is, I did a little adjusting when I moved to Idaho for college.  I truly loved my time there and felt grateful and [somewhat] relieved to experience the ‘small town feel’, but it was a change nonetheless.
To temporarily live in an even smaller town is no doubt an adjustment, but it’s a fun adventure.  I’m all about rounding out my edges and experiencing new things.  Zuriel is distracted all day by his internship so he doesn’t get the full effect, but me and teeny dog get to have the real-deal experience.
Just picked up his ‘gear’ from work for his first day
Still no place to live = no kitchen = always eating out = don’t feel as healthy = need to run more
After passing through the mountains to get here, we’ve finally reached sea level…or, below sea level..
The open pastures and farmlands with cows throughout remind me of Idaho
Just dropped the hubby off at work
Incredibly good local mexican food with yummy salsa and horchata
We live right on the San Francisco river, about 0.3 miles away

One of the things I do to keep myself busy is take myself on dates.
They often include lunch–this time it was at Panera.
One of my runs, just exploring the city.  And you thought Cali was only beaches, palm trees, style, and celebrities.  Come to our neck of the woods, we’ll show you another side.
Right after her haircut.  Loved the bandana they put on her, ha.
Another run.  From this picture you may think I get to run with a river or ocean by my side at all times, but this only lasted a half mile or so, no need to get jealous.
Another run, this time with Z on his day off.
He said we could only take a pic of us together if the windmills were in the background…fine.
 Later that day we went to see a movie.  We had about 30 minutes before it would start so we walked around and found a sushi place.  After the first bite, we decided we’d a) always see a movie at this theater and to b) grab a sushi roll either before and/or after the movie.
This about sums up our first week in Norcal.  After five days of being here we moved into an apartment [finally] that was in the process–literally–of being remodeled.  After four days of being in the apartment, the kitchen was finally completed and we had a fridge, but had to wait a few more days for a stove, meaning we still had to eat out a lot.  Our stomachs and wallets had had enough of this nonsense…give me home-cooked meals!

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