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Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Suppose You Had an Open House...

...and nobody showed up! 
That's exactly what has happend.  Last Sunday while we were in South Carolina for Owie's birthday, our realtors held an open house for realtors and potential buyers.  Marti and I had cleaned, polished and arranged everything so the house was picture perfect.  The realtors sat and twiddled their thumbs for four hours.  Not even a curious (or a nosey) neighbor! :c(

This house selling business is a new game for us, so far, since we've listed three weeks ago, we've had just one realtor visit and one couple wander by to look at the back yard. So it is going to be a bit of a wait.

In the mean time, just down the road a bit there are new houses going up like wildfire.  Somebody is buying.

So we're starting to formulate "Plan B",  just in case.   

Thanks for visitng and feel free to leave a comment.

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Birthday Boy

Hi, this is Owie writing tonight.  Pa said he's so tired from working on his house that he'd let me take over and give him a break.

Mimi and Pa drove down to my house in South Carolina for the weekend.  Today is Saturday, it is my birthday and I'm four years old.  Pa said that Mimi was getting a little worried about if it was the right thing for them to sell their house after all the work they've done on it.  Mimi wondered if living in their motorhome was a wise choice. They discussed the pros and cons, whatever they are, for a lot of their eight hour drive to my house.

But once they got here on Friday and I jumped in Mimi's arms, she knew it was the right choice.  She'll be able to visit me anytime and stay around as long as they want.


 

There is nothing better than a Mimi hug (except my Mommy's hugs)!

So today we had a very busy day.  It started with my favorite breakfast, pancakes made by Daddy.  I had a special pancake, it had a birthday candle in it.


After breakfast, I opened some presents from my family.



I got some neat things.  One was a telescope but I had a hard time seeing through it until I figured out a way to close my one eye.


Mommy dressed me in a new outfit that was one of my presents and we went to watch my big brother Andrew play in a baseball game.



Andrew got up twice and got on base both times.  He even scored a run!


After the game, I had a birthday party at our community pool.  Lots of my friends came and we had pizza.


I swam a lot in the pool and played with Pa.  He was able to throw me high up in the air and then I'd come down with a big splash!



The pizza was good but I liked the cupcakes the best!


After the party, we came home for a while and I played with some of my new toys.  Before I knew it, it was suppertime so we went to my favorite place to eat, the Japanese restaurant near my house.  The cook made an onion volcano right in front of me.


Mommy told the server it was my birthday and I got a candle in my sherbet desert.  I blew it out on my first try!


When you eat at this Japanese restaurant on your birthday, you get to hit the birthday gong. It's supposed to give you good luck.  I hit it so fast Pa said his camera couldn't keep up with my swing.


We still had things to do today, so after dinner we went to the movies and saw the new Disney film Cars 2.


It was really good and we all laughed a lot. 

It was a fun day, but I'm glad birthdays only come once a year, 'cause it wore me out!


Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Marti's Musings: A weekend away and settling in

As Paul posted, we spent Father's Day weekend with our good friends Mike and Terri.  We had a great time with them - good food, good fellowship!

But, I must admit something....

Remember we have been cleaning/sorting/selling/trashing our 'stuff'?  And remember that we have made several trips to the RV for stuff to use on the road? 

Yeah, well - I was dreading leaving our now gorgeously clean/organized/beautiful home for the RV that had: both couches, the seats at the table, and stuff in the 'toad' - all to be ........... sorted/organized/trashed (yup, the first culling out of the RV stuff) .....  After a typically long week at work, facing the RV without so much as a place to sit... ugh ugh ugh.  Does it never end?

We arrived (late, thanks to me leaving work late having 2 reports due) and headed out to eat with Mike and Terri to their favorite local Mexican restaraunt.  yumm!  After dinner, we chatted (in their rig, of course!) and by the time we headed back to our rig, it was time to hit the sack.  Saturday morning I hit the chores hard, and voila! We had our couches back, our dining seats, a load of wash in (fresh sheets, of course!) - and a huge feeling of relief and success!

Of course, I am not the photographer, so I forgot to take before/after pics.  But suffice it to say, the Journey is now:  clean/organized/sorted and gorgeous!  woo hoo!

Admittedly, it didn't take nearly as long as I thought it would.  The hardest part was finding places for my craft supplies (a goal of mine is to return to crafting!) - we do need to work on a safe place for the electronics (laptops, cameras, video cameras) but all in all - this is NOTHING compared to what we just went through the past several months.

Sure can't wait til we are able to stay in the rig and not have to bounce back and forth between two lives/homes!  We have had 2 nibbles on the home, with the open house scheduled next weekend.  Hopefully we will get a bite, as nibbles are mere teases!

~Marti

Monday, June 20, 2011

You Know Who Your Friends Are

Especially when you come to visit and they've baked you your favorite pie...Cherry!


Marti and I have pretty much finished everything major on our house prep.  A few really small things remain, but we're taking care of them every day, a few minutes here and a few minutes there.  We've listed the house as of June 14.  So now it's the waiting game and relying on our realtors to work their magic.  If you're interested, you can view our listing here.

We needed a break, so we loaded up the Journey and headed on down to the Ashland, VA KOA and set up.


We normally don't use KOA's because they are so expensive, but this was a special visit.  Our good friends and RV-Dreams buddies, Mike and Terri are staying here (at a very good monthly rate) while waiting for their nearby house to close, yep, they've got a buyer! 


Terri worked her magic with her convection oven in their Excel fifth wheel and baked us a delicious cherry pie.  Now we'll have to visit more often.

We had a great weekend talking RV, comparing notes and sharing suggestions on fulltime issues.  Plus we had some great meals together.  It was a real shot in the arm for us, they've been such an encouragement to us as we follow them in transitioning to the fulltime life.

One other important note, this was the first trip in the Journey for our new traveling companion, who we have named "Tag", in honor of the tag sewn on his bottom (with the washing instructions).

He sat quietly on the dash and behaved so well we almost forgot he was there.  We're looking forward to many happy miles with Tag in the Journey as we travel the country. ;c)


Thanks for visiting and feel free to leave a comment.


Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Marti's Musings: Countdown!

3 days til we are "officially" listed

2 days to get those 'last minute' things done

1 day til the photographer arrives to take the house pictures

Y.I.K.E.S.

(But the house sure looks pretty!)

Marti

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Our New Traveling Companion

You remember a month or so ago we lost Zoe, the Wonder Dog to cancer.  She traveled all over the place with us in the Journey, every time I brought it to the house to load up for a trip, she sat by the front door waiting for her chance to run out and climb aboard.

She loved to sit up front between me and Marti and look out the Journey's windshield.


Even though she sometimes could drive us crazy and make us wonder what she would get into next, she was a fixture in the Journey.  Now we felt empty.

So, we decided that it was time to move on and get a new traveling companion.


Umm, not this guy...this little guy!


We're not sure what breed he is, he has some pug in him.  But those eyes, one look and we knew he'd have to come home with us.


We're sure he's going to be a great companion for us and we won't have as many issues with him like we did with Zoe.  Remember the baths I had to give Zoe when she'd roll in "things" while we were out camping?


We know we won't have those kind of problems with our new little guy because...


...the tag on his bottom says he can be machine washed on the gentle cycle.

So, anybody have a good name for our new little friend?

Thanks for visiting and feel free to leave a comment.


Friday, June 10, 2011

I'm Sick of Pink!

Lowe's advertises they have a paint that will cover any darker color in one coat.  Don't believe it.  It doesn't work.

How do I know?  I tried it.

Let me 'splain (to quote Ricky Ricardo).

In our master bedroom, we had trim and the three windows and frames painted pink.  It was that way when we bought the house.  I never minded it, I actually thought it looked fine.  (I guess I must be in touch with my feminine side - lol).  The previous homeowner must have painted it pink.

Well, my realtor didn't like it at all.  He made quite a fuss over it.  Actually, he hated it. (He's of the generation that never heard of a guy's feminine side).  He insisted it had to be neutral white colors.  So I took his suggestion (marching orders) and got busy.

Of course, we just had the carpet replaced in the entire house, including the master bedroom.  I had moved all the furniture out to do that job and reinstalled it.  Guess what had to be moved to paint the trim?  Plus with the new carpet, I had to be extra (EXTRA) careful not to get paint on it.  I used painters tape and a putty knife to tuck the tape under the trim to ensure no paint got on the new carpet.

Then the fun began.  It took not one, not two but three coats of paint to cover the pink (and it wasn't even hot pink).  I spent one whole day just painting the trim along the floor, over the entry door, the two closets and the door to the bathroom.  By the time I was done with all that, my knees were rubbed raw from crawling around (note to self: don't wear shorts when crawling around on the floor all day).

It took another whole day to tape and paint the windows and window frames, all three coats.  I spent two hours in my garage painting the wooden window inserts ( that make the windows look like they are made up of many small panes of glass) in over 100 degree heat.  It was so hot my paint brush dried out and I had to get a new one to finish that part of the job.


Lastly, the original pink window shades had to go.  Off to Lowe's, of course the shades were not normal size but had to be specially cut to fit.  I took two of the three shades (different sizes) to match up, the Lowe's window covering lady took one look and told me they didn't carry pink, to which I replied, "Thank Heaven!"

A mere $70 later, I had new WHITE shades custom made and quickly installed them.  I stepped back to admire my work and thought it looked pretty good, maybe the realtor knew what he's talking about.
Hopefully, no matter how much I may be in touch with my feminine side, I never, ever have to paint over pink again!

I also realized that the money we've spent at Lowe's is fast approaching what we spent to buy the Journey...

Thanks for visiting and feel free to leave a comment.

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Marti's Musings: the race is on!

Not much to report, except that Paul and Mr. Paintbrush are at it again.  Of course, painting trim leads to moving furniture - so Paul hit the hay early as he is plum tired.

We are at T minus 10 days till the house gets listed.  Next week the photographer comes to shoot photos for the MLS listing. 

The race is on - and then it is in God's hands!  Thanks for visiting, and feel free to leave a comment.

~Marti

Saturday, June 4, 2011

Sometimes Things Work Out For The Best

Back in January, we started on the road to putting the house on the market.  Marti and I met with our Realtor friends, the market was "iffy" (read dead) at best due to the economy and real estate troubles.

In our discussions, we took our Realtor's advice and started the painting, de-cluttering and repairs and hoped that not only would we be able to sell the house, but hoped to get somewhat of a profit on our investment.  Our target date for putting the house on the market was mid-March.

Well, if you've been following our adventures, you remember that Marti broke her ankle around the end of January and our house upgrades slowed to a crawl.

As we've talked about before, we've been working hard lately, with our efforts in overdrive to get caught up, trying to get on the curve of the springtime housing sales.  There were some delays, the counter top material being back ordered for several weeks along with trying to juggle house upgrades and careers.

The last major project was to get the kitchen floor redone.  The old linoleum had to go.



We picked out new laminate flooring at, where else?  Lowe's and had it installed this past week.


We have now just about wrapped everything up so we had the Realtors come over again to get the paperwork started for putting the house on the market.  They were very impressed with everything we've done, including the new flooring.  With their Realtor's eye, they pointed out a couple of items we'll need to address, yes, they require more painting. 

However, the real estate market has picked up in our area, houses are moving pretty well.  The best part is our house will go on the market on Friday, 17 June and will list for much more than if we had put it up for sale back last March like we originally planned to do.  With that extra cash, we might be able to fill the Journey with diesel maybe two or three times... ;c)

Sometimes things work out for the best, for that kind of additional profit, I'd do the painting all over again! (must be the paint fumes talking).

Tomorrow we're taking the day off.  We need a breather before I pick up the paintbrush one more time.

Thanks for visiting and feel free to leave a comment.


Thursday, June 2, 2011

Marti's Musings: The list is getting shorter!

After the wonderful break last weekend, we have been able to knock more items off the 'to do' list.  Our kitchen floor has been installed - worth the wait - it looks great! 

Unfortunately, Paul's camera case is still, umm, well - missing...  in it is his battery charger. (we think the case got sent to the RV)  He purchased a universal battery charger - yeah, right.  Don't believe everything they tell you... now the camera doesn't recognize the battery.  *sigh*  My lap top memory is nearly done, so I can't load pics from mine til I figure out how to free up some memory.  (read: transfer the pictures to a thumb drive or similar).  So, pictures may be few and far between for a while.

Living in this semi-moving state is already getting old.  We had fresh corn on the cob for dinner (yum!) and when Paul went to get the ear holder-thingies - well, they are - umm, well packed and in the RV.  Along with the grilling spatula that we replaced last week.  Wonder what else we will find 'missing' in this state of limbo we are in?

Ah, but I digress.  Also crossed off the 'to do' list:  removed the large entertainment center, replaced by a smaller, and matching TV stand.  That serves 2 purposes - the wood matches the fireplace mantel and the plantation blinds on the window, and makes the room appear larger.  A few more paint touch-ups have been done.  Our CD's have been sorted and moved from the stack of cases to the zippered holder, which is a huge space saver for the RV. 

Saturday we will have our walk through with the realtor, so we hope all the final little things will be done, so the house will look 'staged'.  There will be a some final sorting, runs to storage (and now probably to the RV) - and then we will know more after meeting with them.  Tomorrow night and Saturday morning will be crazy busy as our meeting is set for 1pm.

Wish us luck - that light at the end of the tunnel is getting brighter!!  We'll keep you posted!     ~Marti