Monday, October 7, 2013

Its really happening!!

We are actually doing this! We are really moving!
(I've been in this kinda denial world of waiting where I thought time might stop and I'd be stuck far from family forever.) But it looks like clocks are still ticking, it looks like I'll make it back home soon!

We just did a whirl wind house shopping venture last week.

Blake was going to be back in Illinois to do a class for one day. And I suddenly realized that we need to take advantage of that and I should look at a ton of houses before he got there so I could take him to the good ones while he was able to look with me! (Otherwise it would have been just me looking, and I wanted him to have the chance to pick with me!)
So we kinda sprung that on our realtors with about a half's week notice. I emailed her like 400 houses I might like maybe. (Not really that many, but definitely a ton!) But I can't tell online what kind of neighborhood the are in and what they are really like so I told her to rule some out.
I kinda think she left them all in and added some!
(I found it hilarious because the day before I went looking I was nervous she was only gonna show me like two.)
I drove to my mom's alone with the girls the Saturday before last. I was nervous (the last time I did it the drove home was literally 8 hours of screaming.) But Blake wore them out at a park for me and they slept basically the whole way. Sooo blessed!

Monday me, my mom and the girls drove the hour and a half to look at houses. Had I been wiser it would have been good to just go by myself and not bring the girls -- its not a small people kind of venture. But they did surprisingly well. After the first house we figured out to just leave them in the car with my mom and a movie, and then if I liked the house I'd trade spots so my mom could go see the house.
It was a LONG day. I was enjoying it. But it was a lot to take in. Thankfully I didn't let my emotions start up (like is this my "home?" What would "life" be like here? bla bla. I just stayed neutral),  it just was basically a lot of visual-mental simulation. And a lot to mentally juggle for me with the girls nearby.

After that day there were two I liked.
One was already made over and beautifully done. The other was a fixer upper that would be worth more in the long run, but needs LOVE, lots of love. Its livable, but dated.
I already was pretty sold on the fixer uper. But I liked having a back up plan. And the other one was a beautiful back up plan.

Well about 3 hours later my realtor texted me that the beautiful house went pending. Sheesh! That was fast. But it was so pretty I almost expected it.
But at that moment my emotions woke up and I wanted to sit down alone for a while and calm down. Only problem....I was in a kiddy play place with the girls so they could unleash after a day in the car, and my mom had ran into a store. I had a hard time not freaking out.
The ride home was hard for me because I was just worried. Worried I was gonna end up in a place I didn't want to live.

On Wednesday I got to go look at houses with Blake. We made some judgement calls on locations and then went to see three houses I hadn't seen yet along with my favorite from before.
It stayed my favorite. And I felt better because a couple other houses I could see us in, even if I wasn't excited about it. They would work. So I didn't feel panic stricken anymore.

That day was kinda out of control. Ruby woke me up at 5am. Blake and I left (to drive that hour and a half) at 7am to see houses.  Looked at houses, had delicious food we really missed, drove to our rented out old house to fix something for our renters, drove back to my parents and picked up the girls, so we could drive seven hours back to Iowa. I had like 6 cups of coffee that day!

My eyes by the end of the long day!

Anyway, after I walked through my favorite house again, I started to fall hard for it. I started to see its little details and started to know what I would do with it and I started to get attached. It freaked me out because I got attached to a house before this trip and it didn't work out so I was trying to stay unattached. Falling in love was unnerving.
But since this house needs love, no one else but us even looked at it. (which surprises me, but hey -- makes me happy.) Its been on the market so long the price got lowered a ton since it listed.  But it needs a new roof and was still listed outside our budget.

So our realtors got a roofing estimate and we came up with a price based on that and the fact that we need to do some other things. And we made an offer and included a letter to the owner about who we are, how much we love the house and why we are offering less.
They counter offered at a price we were happy with (and our realtor was surprised they came down to) and so right now we have a signed price contract on a house!

We are hoping to close mid November and get to work.
The house had been rented to someone who brought in gross dogs (that weren't supposed to be there) and they RUINED the carpets. Jasmine is allergic to dogs so the carpets HAVE to go before we move in.
Upstairs is hardwood floors underneath, so we'll refinish those.
Downstairs I am assuming is just plywood under the carpets (not sure, but kinda sure. I'd be excited to find wood plank subfloor instead....we'll see.) So to save money and to make sure I have time to know what kinda of flooring I really want, we are planning on doing some painting to the subfloor as a temporary solution. (You may have wondered why I was pinning weird flooring ideas...there ya go.) I'm kinda excited about the concept. I think I'm just weird. But I like the idea more than if I was just gonna pick something and put it there. It works for me.

(P.S. if you are following me in Pinterest: First of all, buckle your seatbelt, I'm going all out pinning! Second of all, don't fear for me, I don't pin things I'm really planning on pulling of "as is", I pin things as inspiration. And some things I pin might be for like one tiny thing I thought of because I saw that picture. I work by seeing and extrapolating. So I'm collecting my thoughts via pinterest. Third: I don't expect to get almost anything done at all initially. Just the floors because we have to. I have my head on straight. I just need to work towards an end game. Fourth: If my pinning is outing the stuff you'd rather be seeing in your feed, no hard feelings if you want to unfollow all or some of my boards. I totally get that. But if you want TONS of house stuff coming your way -- you know where to find me!)

as for blogging.
I am trying to work on the last couple posts I had in mind (c-section kindness post) and if I have time a couple others. I'm nervous I'm not gonna get to it all. I have soo much ahead of me with this move. But then I bet this blog is gonna turn into "Young House Love" Lydia style. Just because I've been cooped up in a 700 sq ft house I couldn't paint for two years -- my real me (decor lover  of intense proportions) has been longing for freedom.
The blogging will happen, that is, if I can figure out how to make the time.
I'm gonna be BUSY!
I feel like I got hired for a dream job or something.
I'm ecstatic!

I'll show you some pictures of the house.
I'm not sure what you'll see when you look, because I already see it all changed up in my head! But here ya go. Its gonna be GOOD!

(I'm writing this during nap time -- so in no order and not too much description)
(Also I'm TOTALLY aware that this is gonna be years and years worth of projects. And I LOVE it!! I'm so not lying. I love to work on this kinda stuff. So I promise no instant gratifications.)

I'm currently thinking rip those bushes out, add some window boxes up stairs, go with a different shutter color.

This is bedroom upstairs...get ready for hardwood!

This is what they called a breakfast nook into the kitchen, we want to open these rooms up to each other and make a bigger eat in kitchen.

More kitchen.
Don't have a vision yet. First will be the "make it work" (maybe an eclectic messy on purpose mix and match thing?) , years and years later maybe a reno.

The Entry way
At the moment, I'm thinking of going dark with the paint.

The back family room.

Front Living room. This is where you can expect to see painted plywood floors for now.

Dining Room between kitchen and living room. Not sure its gonna stay a dining room. We are talking "reading nook/room"

The main bathroom upstairs in the middle of everything.
I'm thinking wide grey and white painted stripes.

Bathroom in the master.
Wallpaper has to go. No big visions here yet. Just know it involves paint.
If anyone has any magical thought on how I can get a bathtub in here in the long term reno land, let me know! I LOVE baths!

Powder Room Downstairs.

I think all the bathrooms are visually salvageable with paint and creativity for now. And maybe down the road they will earn a reno?

Don't immediately have plans for this bad boy... but I'm excited that its there!

This is the back sun room. I can't wait to spend a rainy day in there. sigh.
(The carpets gotta go here too. I don't know whats under there? Cement? ...Paint that too?)

A window. I didn't notice how romantic they are until our second walk through. They are just really pretty windows.

The yard is so serene. You can't get the full vibe from here, but...

It needs TONS of love too. I just find something about it magical regardless.

I CANNOT WAIT to get my hands on this place!!! eeee!!!


  1. 1) PM and tell me where! 2) call me if you need help before (and after) you move in with demo. Demo takes man power where the new step up usually takes the patience of the person who has the vision. 3) come tell me what colors I need to paint my house, Mkay? 4) seriously call us for demo, I love demo! :) and moving and everything including you guys! Oh bathroom, I may have a thought not that, it's hard to explain: but what's behind the towel bar (closet, walls, outside?) next to the shower door?? I've seen baths that are hidden patchily by a wall. Sooooooo excited for you guys!!!

  2. In house hunting, it’s always better to stay neutral with all the houses you visit. It may be difficult, because one house can really stand out from the rest. But this can be helpful to avoid being disappointed when you end up not get it. But then again, thankfully that wasn't the case for you. So, how's the decorating going for you?

    Sean McCrory @ Graham Commercial Real Estate


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