Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Homeward Bound Part 8 - Thoughts on Moving

Moving sucks. Plain and simple. It sucks if it is your family, your friends, or your self moving. There....there are my thoughts on moving.

Anyway, Christmas has come and gone. I'm sad to see it go so soon. John's friends and family have hefted our furniture to the new place for us. We tried so hard not to bother people during the holidays to help us but it is unavoidable.

Having Bean run around makes it so that basically only one of us can do anything at a time. She's taking it all in stride. I'm sure things are confusing to her, seeing her bedroom in shambles and being emptied, but she's still her normal happy self. At one point she even tried to help us pack and put her huge blue ball in a box. SO CUTE!

Back to packing...John and I made about 1,000 trips back and forth with our cars filled to the brim with boxes. I'm sure that made it easier on the movers. Luckily the new apartment is a 1/2 mile from our condo.

I underestimated how much stuff we have. I bought 2 bundles of boxes from UHaul (foolishly) thinking we'd only use half...Ha! People have a lot of junk under their roof. But it isn't 'junk' in the sense that we can throw it out. It's just stuff that you need eventually. I'm not about to throw it out for the sake of convenience and then have to buy it again when eventually comes around because it always does.

You can tell when moving gets first I tried to carefully label boxes and neatly pack everything, but now that it is down to the wire I'm just throwing random things in a box. We'll sort it later. I'm over it.

So am I sad to see an empty-ish condo? Not really...I'm too busy to be sad.

What happens next? Well, we get settled into our new apartment and then start house shopping.

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Homeward Bound 7 - Preparing for the Move

So we have an apartment now. We have the keys. We have the new address. Now comes the hard part...planning everything out for a seamless transition. At least 'seamless' is my goal.

So much has to be timed properly.

Boxes have to be packed BEFORE our friends/movers arrive at the same time we are wrapping Christmas presents and finishing our shopping.

We only have 3 no-baby days between Christmas and New Year's that John and I can focus on getting things finished without a munchkin climbing our leg or into boxes or up the attic ladder. Daycare, sweet daycare!

Switching over the utilities while factoring in time needed to clean both. Fun fun.

Life keeps going = laundry, cooking, sleeping, bath time, work.

You know how people hire wedding planners? There should be a move planner.

You would think that as many times as I've moved in my life that I could orchestrate all of these details in my sleep. But I just remember that my mom did it all.

I want my mommy!!!!

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Homeward Bound Part 6 - Memories

Now that the contract is signed and the closing date draws near, reality is setting in.

I thought I would be thrilled at finally leaving this house that has suffocated me for the past two years. Unexpected is the rush of sadness as I take mental inventory of all the wonderful things that have happened here in this little condo.

~ Mom and I lived here together for a little stretch of time while I tried to sort out my life. I remember how on Friday nights we'd get a stack of movies from Blockbuster, ice cream, and a bag of peanut M&Ms. Good times.

~ My sister and I lived here together for about 2 years. I'm sure there were frustrating moments but right now all I remember is how much we laughed. I miss her a ton.

~ This was the first house I ever bought. I bought it from my mom back in 2002.

~ This is where John and I serendipitously ran into each other out in the parking lot. I was leaving from a visit with my mom and he was coming to visit a friend next door.

~ John and I lived here together after we got married in 2003.

~ I finished my degree in 2005, after many evenings spent studying and writing papers here within these walls.

~ Rocky, that little scamp, lived here for a long time. He was the first dog I ever owned as an adult. He might also be the last, but he's definitely worth remembering.

~ This is where we brought Brooklyn home from the hospital. Her first smile, word, step, bath, bump, bruise, tooth, Christmas, tear, giggle, all of it happened here. *sniff*

~ This is where friends and family warmed our hearts by coming through our front door. Some have passed on and some have moved on, but I remember them all.

Friday, December 17, 2010

Love this girl.

Went to the mall tonight for pictures with Santa. She fell in love with the fountain (Melbourne Mall for you locals who are wondering) and I got a lovely 2 minutes of stillness to just snap photos of her enjoying her surroundings.

Enjoying the Process

Have you ever wanted something so bad that you thought you might die if you had to wait one more day? And every day you had to wait you'd grow more cranky and grouchy, ostracizing your friends as you search for something or someone to pin your frustration on. You are so grotesque with impatience that women shield their babies from the horror that you've become. Until finally, you are shunned from the community like an old testament leper, with the life-sucking black hole as your only companion.

You've never felt this way? Weird.

Well that's what I felt like while on my "I need a new house NOOOOOOOW" tirade. Poor John. Poor Lisa. Poor friends & family. Poor grocery store cashier. I'm so sorry to have dragged you into my depravity.

But the dark clouds are starting to clear because, though the house hunt has been put off for a few months, I've learned what it means to enjoy the journey.

For example, it's actually fun to dream about what our next house might look like, what kind of people will fill the neighborhood, the different things we'll be able to remodel, the new memories we'll create. Sure, moving into a tiny apartment for a few months might suck at first but I'm looking forward to the coziness. And hey, having less to clean and repair is a huge bonus.

So yes, life is more enjoyable when you change your outlook. Hmmm, I wonder if this is part of why in Phillipians 4:8 God asks us to:

Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable--if anything is excellent or praiseworthy--think about such things.

Just sayin'.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Daddy's Shoes

Last night's entertainment included Brooklyn picking up her daddy's shoes, one at a time because they are very heavy, and heaving them to the kitchen. Why? I don't know. It's just one of those things that babies do I guess.

Then she would take them to daddy and struggle to put them on his feet. It didn't matter if he wanted them on or not. That's what she determined needed to happen at that time, and so it was. Then she would bring them back to the kitchen again and repeat the process.

It was so funny to watch her little body rush to get them from place to place.

Do you ever wonder about the thoughts babies think?

Visiting the Me from 2006

I found this list I wrote 4.5 years ago for the blog I had back then. Some of the things still apply. I've made corrections where needed. Check it....

~ (2010: Being a mommy!)
~ it when its 70 and sunny outside.
~ pedicures (2010: I love the outcome, not so much the process.)
~ memories of my childhood.
~ music. ALOT.
~ taking pictures.
~ color.
~ movies based on a true story.
~ beating the crowds to Olive Garden after church on Sunday.
~ movies that make me cry. (2010: Which is basically every movie.)
~ that my dad calls me all the time.
~ that I have 3 really good friends. (2010: Make that 5. Yay me!)
~ unity.
~ being a woman.

~ bad for gaining weight after I got married.
~ some people don't try hard enough to be good parents.
~ incredibly loved.

~ brunettes are prettier.
~ my husband is fantastic.
~ America is STILL a GREAT country. (2010: Despite the current administration.)
~ I wasted my youth.
~ I need to care more about my appearance health.
~ my mom did a great job raising me.
~ this should be a non-smoking planet.
~ men have it harder than women.
~ resisting change is stupid. (2010: But I still do it!)

~ to be a better wife.
~ to invent something.
~ my family to be closer.
~ my sisters to know how much I love them.
~ my in-laws to say they are sorry. (2010: They did, a long time ago. All is well.)
~ a more challenging job. (2010: Got it! Back in 2007.)
~ to read all the books I own before I buy any new ones.
~ to help abused women/children.
~ to be able to run 5 miles without stopping.
~ to redecorate my house. (2010: I will, starting with a new house!)
~ to learn another language. (2010: Eh, not really a priority.)

~ to grasp how much I need God daily.
~ to not schedule so many activities. (2010: I've gotten SO much better about this.)
~ to not hold grudges.
~ to just let go.
~ to use my passport. (2010: I did! in 2007 to go to the Bahamas and in 2008 to go to Jamaica!)
~ to learn discipline. (2010: Who doesn't??)
~ something from Starbucks right now. (2010: I'll settle for Dunkin'.)
~ to scrapbook more often. (2010: I'll settle for AT ALL.)

~ a Christian.
~ (2010: A mother, as of July 2009.)
~ happy to be a big sister.
~ thrilled to be married to John.
~ not sorry sometimes.
~ very sensitive.
~ a big fan of monkeys.
~ an artist.
~ optimistic. (2010: For the most part. But I have my moments.)
~ happy with my life.
~ not a good listener.

~ buying things and not using them.
~ forgetting.
~ man-bashers.
~ being hot.
~ not having room for all my stuff.
~ taking showers (2010: in the summer. No matter how cold the water is, showering still makes me hot.)
~ the word "surreal". (2010: Add also the word "fruition." Just sounds lame.)
~ eating when I'm not hungry.
~ running late.
~ political correctness.
~ having nothing to do. (2010: I actually LOVE not having anything to do now. It's a rare luxury!)

~ Adam Sandler.
~ racism.
~ grapes.
~ dirty jokes.
~ mosquitoes.

~ snakes.
~ having kids. (2010: But I did it anyway! Yay me!)
~ being in a car accident. (2010: Who doesn't??)

~ wearing sweatpants.
~ how my lips look in liner.
~ hard cover books.
~ yellow sponges with the scratchy green side.
~ people coming to me for help.
~ that puckery feeling you get when eating fresh pineapple.
~ apple martinis.
~ overhearing someone say something nice about you.
~ telling people thank you.
~ the idea of moving to a different state.
~ remembering my dreams.
~ letting people know how much they mean to me.
~ considerate drivers.
~ (2010: Watching Brooklyn sleep.)
~ (2010: Getting kisses, hugs, and snuggles from baby.)

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Do Less, Be More

This title was borrowed from a blog post I found on The Nester. Such a timely article for me right now.

It seems like every year I let myself get mentally overwhelmed with Christmas festivities, and apparently I'm that girl who doesn't learn because this year is no different.

With our focus being mostly on selling the condo and apartment searching, I haven't had two minutes to sit back and enjoy my most favorite time of the year. And I was starting to feel really sad that Christmas was coming and going without me. Rather than cry and whine, I've decided:

~ That I'm going to make the most of these last two weeks.
~ I will send out whatever handmade cards I have so far and use store bought cards for the rest. And it is totally okay if the recipients get them after Christmas.
~ I will put up 1 wreath instead of the normal 6.
~ We will decorate the small 6 foot tree with ONE box of ornaments and the rest can stay up in the attic.
~ To limit the inside decorations to holiday scented candles. Mmmm....evergreen.
~ I will back-burner my craft and baking ideas and instead hand them out as winter treats if I have time.
~ Rather than fret about all I didn't get done, I WILL watch at least 2 holiday movies between now and Christmas.
~ I will focus on doing meaningful things with John and my daughter. Pictures with Santa? Decorate cookies? Who knows. Now that I'm saying no to more, I have time to say yes to the things that matter.

Aaaaaaaaahhhh, I feel so much better already.

Homeward Bound 5 - Rental Setbacks and Successes

Okay, so we have to be out of our condo by Jan. 4th. Where do we go from here? We had 3 ideas of places to rent and all those doors have been shut.

I was starting to get nervous but then another random conversation lead to me signing a lease for an apartment in a nearby neighborhood that is everything I was looking for:

Bottom floor
Has all the appliances (our washer and dryer went toward the sale of our condo.)
Rent includes cable & water
Small security deposit (I got the security deposit WAVED!!)
Affordable rent
7 month lease

How's about ya now?

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Homeward Bound 4 - Houston, we have a contract.

Today was amazing. I can't believe how quickly this is all happening!

The New Jersey couple came to visit our condo on Monday. They would be in town for a few days so they figured they would order an inspection to be done on our place before they left. This happened yesterday. The inspection went really well and we only have a few minor things to fix. Yay!

So I have been scouring the web to find a real estate contract to use for this transaction. Not knowing the difference between a good one and a bad one, I decided to go see a real estate lawyer. He drafted one up for me in about 1.5 hours, I paid him an obscene amount of $$ for 1.5 hours worth of work ($250) and met the NJers at my house to go over the paper work.

I thought they'd want to take their copy of the contract back up north with them to look over it more closely but they signed right there and then! Oh happy day!

So we have, in less than two weeks and without a realtor, found buyers, gotten our asking price, gotten a signed contract & deposit, and established a closing date.


Monday, December 6, 2010

Homeward Bound 3 - They Like It!!

So the New Jersey couple came to see the condo today. They seemed to really like it. The only thing that is killing me is the constant haggling.

"Can you take $4,000 off your asking price?"

"No. I already told you our rock botton price."

"Can you throw in the washer and dryer?"


"We really like your bar stools."


We'll see what happens though. They want to come back by tomorrow or Wednesday for another look around.

Exciting but stressful.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Pictures from the day

We check on you every night before we head off to bed ourselves. This night you were such a little angel that I couldn't help but sneak a picture. I cannot believe the flash didn't wake you. Sweet dreams my little princess.

After work we headed to the mall to check out the decorations and Santa. I adore this angelic face!

When you saw the choo choo you just about lost your mind with glee!

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

How we manage until Daddy gets home...

We go to the park after work/daycare!