Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Steak Night (and stuff)

We bought our grill yesterday. Hallelujah!

For anyone who knows us, you know we usually have "steak night" once a week - kind of our version of date night, I suppose, where we make steak and drink a (big) bottle of wine and talk and watch some half-hour TV show (used to be "House Hunters" though now our needs have changed, it's more likely to be "Renovation Realities" or similar) where it takes us two hours to watch it because we pause and chat so often.

Therefore, we've enjoyed steak made on the grill... two nights in a row! I know, sacrilege. Don't judge our red-meat tendencies. Please, don't.

My mom is coming tomorrow and we're off for lots of shopping, mainly for the guest room & bathroom. We need to buy bedding, a shower curtain and towels - we must buy these otherwise she has to do without. We should have lots of girly fun.

Also, we got our bed frame delivered today, and tomorrow our guest bed is coming, along with our new oven. Thursday it's our couch that's coming. It's definitely a busy week here - and, though I'm not giving too much away, I have two important things this week. Tomorrow I meet with a woman at UMass Amherst about finishing my Graduate degree and getting certified to teach in Mass, and Thursday... I have another appointment that I'll discuss later.

Anyway, it's getting later as I write and I'm beat (must be that half giant bottle of wine getting to me)...

more later! Have a good night!

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

House pictures & Boston!

Okay! For all the exciting moments of our first week and a half in our new house captured on film (well, my digital camera) AND a quick trip to Boston on Saturday, click here.

And for just a glimpse of dusk from our back deck, here's a quick video to give you and idea of the surroundings. We love it!

video

Monday, June 22, 2009

New House Stuff

I am so exhausted from painting and cleaning (still) that I can't really think of a halfway interesting or intelligent title for this post. If you've come here for the complete entertainment experience, my apologies.

I am desperately trying to post pictures from our first week and a half in the house online and provide a link, but I think the Charter internet makes is difficult. Or it's Facebook, which is where I create my photo albums.

Soon I'll write more and show off all the cleaning/black ant/oven-smoking fun.

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Finally, The Truth!

(UPDATE: I think embedding the video slowed down my blog and stopped a lot of pics from loading, so I've removed the original post and now just put up the link to the video.)

Lauren Conrad from "The Hills" (in case you live in a cave) came clean on "The View" about Spencer's apology, basically saying everything is staged! Ah ha!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NF84yVrvfp8

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Lions and Tigers and BEARS?! Oh My!

We met the next door neighbor today.

She told us there's wild turkeys, foxes, coy dogs (whatever the HELL those are) and BEARS here. Sometimes you see them in the front yard.

what the HELL.

Monday, June 15, 2009

Great Looks

If you've been paying attention, you know that my mind is in overdrive with decorating this new home. I want clean, calm, organized but warm...I want colors and patterns but nothing too busy but instead all cohesive and beautiful... yada yada yada.

I'm inspired by Parisian apartments, French Country, Victorian (especially because of the exterior of the house) and am working with a lot of inherited old wood American furniture.

Here's some great sites I frequently drool over that definitely inspire me and keep my eyes on the prize (and remind me that there's so much more out there than Ikea or Pottery Barn!). Check them out! The last one is great for DIY stuff and clean, organizational ideas (their place is sooo clean looking, especially their kitchen!)
La Maison Bohéme
The Paris Apartment
Southern Hospitality
The Inspired Room
This Young House

Here's some pictures that I've found online that are also inspirational for colors I'd like to use (rich cream, soft lavender, grey-green, sunny yellow, pale and deep blue).


I'm a Homeowner - Get Me Out of Here!

No, actually, I love it...

But for the record...

96 Hours in our new house and so far:

- Slugs (outside, thankfully, but still - ew!)
- Dead critter in the pool
- Discovered water in the basement after a major downpour (above the foundation, thankfully)
- Discovered a leak in the ceiling of the guest bedroom
- Pretty sure the house was hit by lightning today while we were painting (flash, boom, buzz, electricity out momentarily)

And finally, an hour ago...

- The oven caught on fire. On the inside. And smoked the whole house up. We moved it out, aimed the fire extinguisher and had at it (pictures to follow). It's sitting in the backyard now, and I'm about to search online for a new one.

I've always been terrified that bad things happen to good people. Or that there be balance in the world. Or whatever. I just hope this whole house thing works out...

Monday, June 8, 2009

Closing on our House

We did it!

After years and years...

and years...

...of dreaming and planning, we finally have a house. It's weird and crazy and didn't go quite as smoothly as we'd wanted (nothing ever does, right?).

The original plan was that we were supposed to close at 11am with a final walk-through beforehand at 9:45am.

But, last week we were told that the seller had movers coming at 8am today, and probably wouldn't be done in time. (Hey - I bet I know what you're thinking... you're wondering why wouldn't the seller move out any day OTHER than the day of closing? Hm. Good question!)

So we changed the closing time to 1pm with a final walk-through of 12. Of course at 11:45 today our real estate agent called to let us know that the seller was still at the house, along with lots of his things, a storage pod and a big garbage container (like, you know, for construction projects?). They'd be all moved out by three o'clock. ANGER!

But we knew we couldn't do anything. So we walked-through, we went and closed but withheld some money till the seller left, signed our names and initialed tons of papers, and finally went back to the house. At 3pm. And hung out there while the seller continued to move...

til 5 o'clock!

But he's gone. So is the trash container, his pod of stuff, and everything. We have moved some stuff in there, and now, sadly, are back in Pittsfield till Wednesday. Then we move some more things from the condo to the house, go to New Paltz, and meet the movers at the storage space there the next morning.

And, finally, by Thursday evening, we'll be home sweet home.

Finally!

Friday, June 5, 2009

SO Frustrating!

What's frustrating, you ask? Trying to set up utilities for the new house (which, in case you're counting, we close on in 3 days!) and being told I can't set up an account or appointment for my cable and internet until the current owner of the house JUST MAKES THE CALL to disconnect his account.

Just call. He can schedule it for anytime, but he just needs to MAKE THE CALL!

But, no. I've been passing the message through my agent to his, to him since Tuesday. Just called, thinking, surely it's Friday, he's SURELY gotten his act together by now...

But no. Still has an account. Hasn't made the call.

Frustration.

Monday, June 1, 2009

Home Decor for Moi?

As I've mentioned, I'm a little stylistically challenged. I've got lots of great ideas, and my heart is always in the right place as the creative being I am...

...but I get lazy.

My big fear is that I'll start out with great plans and the right intentions, and end up buying everything at Crate and Barrel. Or Pottery Barn. Or something like that. (Not that there's anything necessarily wrong with these places for the occasional odd or end...I just don't want my home to look like everyone else's.)

That said, I'm trying not to get overwhelmed by the prospect of visiting friends this summer, and am swearing to myself I will not let this rush me into buying a bunch of crap for my home.

So, I'm taking it slow and doing my research. I want so many things in this house... I want it to be classy but also reflect me and my many loves: art, travel, family...other stuff (is there more? that's the question).

I want it to be clean and organized, not cluttered... but not modern and cold... I want romance and soft colors, and comfort and homeyness...

I don't want sterile, I don't want generic... and I don't want stuffy or old ladyishness...

So now it's just a matter of putting it all together and praying that I can find some way of making it look, well, put together, and not like a psychopath lives there.

From my research on the internet, reading books about home decorating and watching HGTV 24/7, I think my first step is to decide on a color palette for each room...

Preparing for The Big Move


We close on our house in one week. From today. Oh, goodness.

Next Monday we will, presumably, do the final walk-through, sign lots and lots of papers which basically promises we'll never be able to afford to eat out again (or for at least 30 years), and then get the keys to our new place.

I say this is all "presumably" taking place because although we were pre-approved for the mortgage, we are still technically in the process of getting the whole thing tied up because of little details here and there, as well as a delay with some underwriting something that had nothing to do with us...all of which is causing things to be just a little less than definite for my liking.

But, everyone involved assures us everything is normal and set and we've got our plans for next Monday, so we are under the impression that the show will go on next Monday, as planned.

It's really a wild thought that we'll soon be in a house at all, much less our own house. Living in apartments all these years has felt to me to be temporary, and then this past year has been made up of living in even more temporary places... it's amazing to think that in a week I can unpack my things and find places for them, and not have to consider packing them up any time soon. It's completely surreal.

More on relocating plans later... have to go call cable companies and set up an appointment!