Thursday, September 18, 2014

Movin' on up

Listen!  Do you hear it?  It's the angels; they're singing!
Have you ever seen such a beautiful thing?

That, my friends, is a fully executed contract for the sale of our house!  That's right, you heard me, we're under contract!

But let's talk pros and cons...

I spent several nights of laying in bed staring at the ceiling going What have we done?  This was the stupidest thing we could have done, this is going to bite us in the ass so hard, why did we do this, holy shit I'm scared, can we back out?  How much money will we lose if we walk away now?

You see, we took a HEE-YOOGE risk and bought a house in Raleigh before we sold our house in Reading.  Last time, it took us ten months to sell the house in Texas and we were apart for nearly that entire time, with Drew going back and forth from Dallas to Reading.  It was terrible and I didn't want a repeat of that.  However, I also didn't want the nightmare of a double mortgage with a vacant house in another state.  I had nightmares of the pipes freezing and bursting and no one knowing about it until it was too late, I was worried about vandals and squatters destroying our house because isn't that a thing?  Leave your house vacant and the squatters will come?  Anyway, I was sure that would happen to us and I was terrified.  I had wanted to wait to look for a house until we actually sold but Drew was not on board with that idea.  

We went down to Raleigh once, supposedly to get to know the city and don't you know we found a house.  I knew that was going to happen and that was the main reason why I didn't want to even go down there.  Now we were in the position of having to decide between getting it right then or being okay with losing it if we waited.  Drew was not okay with losing it and neither of us was really okay with being apart for a long time if the house in Reading didn't sell.  There were so many late night conversations, so much back and forth and in the end we pulled the trigger and commenced to biting our nails and second guessing ourselves.

The whole double mortgage thing aside, I wasn't sure even I even wanted this new house.  For one thing, I like old houses.  Our first house was built in the 20s, with all kinds of charm and character.
Hi there, Old House.
We sure do miss you.

You were good to us, Second House.
You've served us well.

And then there's this guy.
The Beast.
The Behemoth.
The House on the Hill.

This house is roughly three times the size of our current house; it's kind of obscene and I won't lie, I had misgivings about it.  I felt like it was too big, that we were biting off more than we could chew, that we don't need a house that big, I'm not a suburb type person, I want a yard with giant mature trees, subdivisions are so cold and soulless, I'm better suited to quirky small older homes, new houses have no charm, they have no story, I want a house with a story and character and past and what the hell am I going to do with all that space?

Then Drew started talking.  For all my romanticizing of old homes, they're not without their issues.  Old homes have teeny bathrooms and teeny closets.  In both of our houses, the 'master' bathroom was barely big enough for a toilet, tiny sink and shower stall.  Both of us couldn't be in the bathroom at the same time without somebody hitting some body part on something hard and cursing about it.  Forget having two small kids and a giant dog in there at once, except I can't forget it because that's how I go to the bathroom every day of my life.  Why everyone has to watch me pee is beyond me, but that's how it is.

Old homes are also rarely energy efficient.  Even though our house has all new windows, you could tell in the winter where seals weren't especially tight and our utility bill reflected that.  We also have creaky floors which are a nuisance when I'm walking the halls trying to get Andrea to sleep without waking everyone else.

Old houses almost always need fixing up.  I actually love that about old houses; I love the refinishing and the painting and uncovering something cool, but again that's me romanticizing things.  The reality of fixing up a house is chaos.
The reality is having your entire kitchen on your dining room table
for weeks on end.

Additionally, unless you're independently wealthy, which we aren't, and have loads of cash laying around, which we don't, the reality is you're fixing up your house with your own two hands on nights and weekends a little bit at a time for a very very VERY long time.  That was the nail in the old house coffin.  Drew looked at me and said "I don't want to spend my free time fixing up a house.  I want to spend my free time with my kids."

Ugh.  Way to play the kid card dude.  What the hell can I say to that?

Because that's the reality.  Drew has a very demanding full-time job that is NOT bringing my design ideas to life (as much as I wish it were.)  He just got another promotion and I'm insanely proud of him, but that means he'll be even busier at work, with even less time for us, much less having any time to hammer and nail stuff.

And I have my hands more than full with both my kids, so as much as I want to pick up the nail gun and nail some boards to walls, the reality is I just don't have that kind of time anymore.  Case in point, I'm blogging at one in the morning because that's the only time I get to myself anymore.

Now, at the risk of sounding like someone you want to punch in the face, living in an ugly house was not an option either.  I love old houses but I love pretty old houses, not the ones with peeling paint and rickety porches and bats and cobwebs. Our house in Texas was gorgeous and perfect and our house in Reading was freshly redone, so even though they were older, they were not falling down fixer-uppers.  

Therefore, all signs pointed to new construction, so begrudgingly, kicking rocks, I decided to give the Beast a chance.  I know, punch me in the face for not being falling down grateful for a brand new house.

Just don't punch me too hard, because I'm there now.  I'm incredibly thankful that we are fortunate enough to have choices.  I know just how blessed we are that we won't have to carry a double mortgage and picking out the finishes for the house *was* pretty cool.

In fact, I'll be right back with all the insanely fun stuff that is designing our new house.  But I'll leave you with this breakdancing bear, because



Monday, September 8, 2014

I know what you did this summer

...Is what you'll be able to say when you finish this post!  Oh yeah, it's me, I'm back, corny jokes and all.  But seriously, I think fall is upon us.  School has started for almost everybody and up here, that means the turning leaves and cooler temperatures are just around the corner.  Of course, this fall is going to be different in that we're getting out of here and heading south before it gets nasty cold (thank the baby Jesus) so why not take a moment to look back on this past summer?  

Without further ado, "What I did this summer" in pictures, by Desiree.

While technically not summer, this was the start of warmer weather and we celebrated by having a homemade Easter egg hunt at the playground in my girlfriend's subdivision.  The dads went down and hid the eggs and we had so much fun.  Last Easter it was too cold to do anything outside, so this was a real treat.

Checking out her haul with Daddy.

We took the kids to Sesame Place, and you talk about a production!
This is how it is everywhere we go.
Sofia absolutely loved it and didn't stop talking about it for days.

Aimee held the baby and I even got to ride a couple of rides with Sofia!

There was a trip to the Philly Zoo.
The big kids were obviously thrilled about having to indulge
their mothers and take a picture.

We spent some time at the Please Touch museum.

She was all about the carousel and just couldn't understand why we couldn't spend the entire day just riding around and around.

We went out to the Trexlertown Zoo as well.
Of course, Sofia didn't want to feed the cows and insisted 
that I do it.  Letting a cow lick my hand for my daughter?  That's love, people.

One of the coolest parts about the zoo is that there's an ankle deep river (creek?) right next to the zoo and the kids had a blast throwing rocks and splashing around.

I put on my water sling and the baby and I got in there too!

Actually, that was a really awesome day.  
Probably one of my favorites this summer.

We also went to Kansas for a week for my high school reunion
and to get some Grandma time.  She was over the moon to see them.

Andrea is named for my cousin and
it was high time the two of them met.

 Snuggles from Tia.

Then there was the one time this summer that I got dressed up, 
put on heels and partied out for my 20-year high school reunion.

It was so much fun and there was much dancing and drinking
and for one night I wasn't a nearly 40 year old mother of two.
I need more nights like that.  I mean, I don't need the drinking (I won't lie, it was fun though) but I sure did like getting out and having fun just for me, you know?

The next day, it was back to being a mom
and back to the farm.
I went with a friend from high school and we took our kids
to the Deanna Rose farm where Sofia got to feed
baby goats.  It was quite possibly the cutest thing I'd ever seen.

We also took a trip to Raleigh to look for a house,
which I NEED to blog about.
and it was so cool.
They had this walking path with all these dinosaurs and I called
myself trying to get on the dinosaur for a picture.
It didn't work.

Then we found a house and I got to pick out all the stuff that's going in it.
This is going to be my kitchen and I seriously hope it ends up looking good.

It was a super last minute trip and Drew's company would only pay for 
plant tickets for Drew and me so for the second time ever, we left Sofia with
friends for two nights.  It was so hard but I knew she was in good hands
and picking out house stuff went so much more smoothly without a busy little 
girl running around touching everything.

It was such a great summer; we hung out at the pool, we had lots of playdates at our friend's houses, we ate lots of ice cream, we caught fireflies, we stayed up late, we slept in, we watched movies and ate popcorn, went to birthday parties and tons of other stuff in between.  

That's what we did this summer!  Now, we're gearing up for our next adventure in our move down to Raleigh.  The movers have been tentatively scheduled and we have a closing date on the new house.  Now all we have to do is go under contract on the house here and things will be perfect.  I'm still crossing my fingers on that one.  Cross your fingers with me, my friends!


Sunday, September 7, 2014

When they're in high school

That's when I'll get to blog again.  Sofia and Andrea sleep in shifts all night long.  It's like they have a pact to make sure I never sleep again.

I have a lot to share and I'm sure they'll be in high school before I get to share it.  
We bought a house in Raleigh.  
It's new.  It's big. 

I've never lived in a brand new house.  I wish I could share all my thoughts and questions; someone please tell my kids to sleep so I can blog.

My baby started her second year of preschool last week.
I made a sign.
She's growing way too fast.

Baby Sister's growing like a weed too.
She can sit up by herself, she's eating solid food,
and I'm pretty sure crawling is just around the corner.

I have so much more to share, but it'll have to be later.  I swear, if I set an alarm to wake up early, the kids wake up fifteen minutes before the alarm, no matter how early.  If I try to put them in bed at a decent hour, they fight until midnight only to wake up a couple hours later.  As it is, I feel guilty because I had just started this post when Andrea woke up and I'm nursing her by the light of my keyboard and I really should shut it down so she can sleep because I'm sure the sound of me typing isn't helping things.

Oh well.  

I'm hoping it's not another month before I can get back here.  If you care about that sort of thing, I'm on Instagram a lot as it's quite conducive to the ten-second posts.  I'm daydreamer411, if you're so inclined.

I sure miss blogging though.  It's a perfect creative outlet and I miss you, my friends.  

I hope you're well and I hope to be back soon.



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