Wednesday, April 5, 2017

Sound Asssociation

I can still recall the nightmare I kept having in the latter stages of building our home.  We bought one of those Wagner power paint sprayers.  It worked well until either the bucket level dropped too low, or the sprayer experienced a change in paint viscosity.  When either occurred the sprayer would make loud, obnoxious belching sounds until we shut it off.  I had nightmares that sprayer was chasing me around the house, constantly making that bleaching noise.

Now my nightmares include the sound of packing tape as it's wrenched of the spool and applied onto a box.

Sunday, April 2, 2017

The Home Stretch

We're nearly done.  Whew.  All the outbuildings are now empty (thankbob) with the minor exception of my studio which still houses two partially dismantled floor looms.  The Habitat for Humanity folks will be here on Wednesday, and the furniture/loom movers will be here Thursday morning.  Since all our beds are heading for storage, we'll spend Thursday night in our travel trailer.

Today is the day to say farewell to my Spanky goat and all of G's chickens, including our gorgeous rooster, Captain Kool.  Thank goodness I don't have to say goodby to my Hunter cat as he's joining us down at the beach.

People have asked us why we're moving as we have such a nice place.  It is a nice place, we built all of it ourselves.  And if we could pick it all up and move the whole shebang, we would've.  This rural, higher elevation place has gotten to be too much for us.  And holy cow, it's been nice to destash a TON of crap(!). Even G was shocked at how much had accumulated.  I told him it felt like the super long, heavy chain of Marley's ghost.  Too weighty and smothering.  I'm fairly certain we shall be destashing more once we find our new home.

We continue to look for a new home....more are coming on the market now.....but few fit our criteria: two car garage, one main floor bedroom, and about 2200 sqft.  It's the bedroom situation that has been the main hurdle so far.

Also, it only just now occurred to me.....I'm wondering about all our belongings in storage...and insurance.  I hate to pay for insurance, but now I probably should look into that.

Sunday, March 26, 2017


My job title when I retired was "optimization & process control engineer".  The old adage of time being money in a manufacturing field was never more true.  It was, at times ridiculous.  That job will take too long, trim some of those steps down, do more overlap, yadda yadda yadda.....

This would invariably set us up for failure about 90% of the time.  It got very old, constantly getting beat up for not making schedule.  Or hey!  Making schedule but suffering rework due to poor first effort due to excessive speed.

Here we are moving under a tight timeline.  The process is at the point where the schedule can go sideways quickly, not unlike a paper machine outage schedule.  It's likely a common point in any schedule in which steps must be done in some semblance of order.  And the closer you are to projected completetion date/time, the faster the process moves.  I'm sure there is a name for that phenomenon.....

Thus the urge to rough out a gannt chart.  Yes, I began doing that this morning.  It's very helpful in mapping out process flow when you've got a shortage of time.  We've got a couple of beach runs to make, people picking up stuff, many tasks in progress simultaneously....all sorts of fragmented loose ends to tidy up.  I've learned if I don't map them out, I will discount how long they will take in my mind....and then it's a horrid scramble to the finish.

We can't afford a horrid scramble as we're both exhausted and not thinking as clearly as we can.

We are packing and hauling all the things to storage except the furniture.  Some of the furniture will be donated, and we will hire movers to move the rest.  And I'm totally thinking of hiring the final cleaning.

Thursday, March 23, 2017

My LYS(s)

i am quite fortunate to enjoy two wonderful LYSs (local yarn shops for you muggles out there).  One is located in downtown Kelso (LaFavorites), and the other currently resides in my garage in moving boxes and plastic tubs.  Holy moly do cones of weaving yarn weigh a ton(!).  Nothing like having reality smack you in the face.  And I'll just be brutally honest here and admit that packing it all away is giving me a minor amount of anxiety.

I hit a hard wall yesterday.  I've been super laser focused (soccer camp reference for my former workmates if any are reading this) and have been packing like a machine.  The stress is getting to me and I didn't sleep hardly at all Tues night.  By 1 pm yesterday I was a zombie, and I literally couldn't function with any brain power.  It was weird.  I'm waaaay ahead of Gary in packing duties so I took the afternoon off.  I tried to take a nap and failed, but I think just resting helped me a great deal.

I woke this morning feeling much better, ready to face the day and relocate my yarn shop.
This afternoon I've a local guild meeting to run.......

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Report Card

We received our home inspection list late last night.  Of the eleven really minor items on the list we are asked to complete three of them.  Some items were super nit picky, like a couple of loose siding nails.

In the end we have to caulk the top of the chimney edging, fix one strip of hanging insulation in the crawl space, and vent one exhaust fan to the outside. We have two bathrooms and both have exhaust fans that we DID vent to roof vents when we installed them.  I wonder if one came loose?  Guess we'll find out soon.

Then there are two ads-ones which were not code when we built our home: hurricane straps on the hot water heater and CO2 monitor.  Not sure why the CO2 monitors....

Also?  I'm finding this entire process moving at lightning speed.  I guess thats how cash sales work....

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Prep Work

This winter I went through several rooms in the house and did some major destashing.  It felt so cathartic!  And now I'm reaping the benefits....those areas are straightforward to pack up.  The areas that did not suffer a destashing are taking the longest to pack: the pumphouse, greenhouse, garage, and our third bedroom I refer to as "Gary's cave".  Ugh.

The inspection guy came yesterday morning, accompanied by the buyers realtor.  We had errands in town, so we left.  Who knows what he will find?  We're not expecting anything terribly bad, but you never know.  And gads, it's not like we have a ton of time to deal with much else right now....
That whole inspection thing feels weird.  I get it, and will expect the same when we are looking to purchase.  The buyers don't do email, so yet another thing to slow the process down.


Monday, March 20, 2017

Rolling, Rolling, Rolling

We are now packing.  The reality of our decision has smacked us in the face!
Selling a home on a deadline is sort of like a family reunion: you can plan the event to death, but once the process begins it takes on a life of its own.

The amount of packing materials one needs is staggering.  Thankfully we received a HUGE amount of boxes courtesy of our former employer and Gary's sons current employer.  Yet I needed a ton of smaller boxes.....we own an alarming amount of books.  So off to town for them.  And yes, I bought them at Home Despot before I was aware of all the political this point, I'm using them.

Yesterday I filled every one of those smaller boxes and relocated them to storage.  I think I packed most of the heaviest stuff yesterday.  I'm actually looking forward to packing the studio contents as those will be blissfully lighter boxes.

I was contemplating a fire sale for fiber I wish to downsize, and I will do that eventually.  It makes more sense to do that later rather than now.  So instead of packing my vendor booth in the truck for CO, we loaded it up for storage.  It will be in the verrrrrry back of our enormous unit until we have a home again.

Sunday, March 19, 2017

A Revolving Door, Offers, and a Sale

When we decided to put our home on the market, we did so with a fair amount of trepidation.  Our location is rural and the road, while paved and well maintained, is steep in a few places.  We knew that this would greatly reduce the pool of potential buyers.  And this did, indeed, prove to be somewhat guy who came and looked at the place gave us feedback that the road is too steep for his truck.  Ha ha, that did crack us up.  It is steep, but after driving around other neighborhoods, we've discovered it's no steeper than many others in this area.

We were not prepared for the volume of showings we received!  It's high mud season here, so that tends to reduce home buying traffic......but not this year.  We received our first offer after four days on the market (wow).  It was ok, but not acceptable so we soldiered on.  More showings!  A guy from CA who was unable to get up here timely sent his realtor up here to take a video of our place.

On day five a truck pulled into our driveway as many others had done.....yet rather than turn around, they continued to pull up in front of the garage.  I notice it was a nice truck, from CA.  The man got out and took a look around, so I went out on the porch and asked him if he needed any help (G was also home).  They were house hunting and wanted to know if our house was still for sale.  I said yes and invited him and his wife in to look at the place, notifying our realtor at the same time.

They visited with us as much as looking around our place.  They are both older than Gary and I.  They've sold their hasn't closed yet, but loan approved and their inspection it's pretty much a done deal.  Very nice people from a rural area in N CA looking for a rural WA home.  This was their fourth trip up were selling before they could drive up here(!). After looking all around, they begged us to sell them our place.  They've a realtor in town and I still wasn't certain how serious they were, so I asked them to get us an official offer through their realtor and back to town they went.  By late that evening we received a full price cash offer from them but they were really wanting to take possession on apr 10 when their sale closed.

Yikes(!). We were scheduled to travel down to CO at the end of March as I had a vending booth at YarnFest.  There was no way I could swing that and be out of a home we've lived in for the past 27 years.  So I was formulating a counteroffer in my head to recoup the lost $$$ I would incur by cancelling the CO trip.  We had to think about this a bit.

Mid day on day six we received an offer from the CA video man (as I had begun to call him).  It was ok, but the older couple's offer was still better.  And while we were waiting for the video offer, the older couple sweetened their offer quite a bit to entice us out by Apr 10.

The offer was sweet enough that we signed, on the spot.  Holy cow.  We did it!

Saturday, March 18, 2017

Hiding Out

What do you do when you are bombarded by frequent, but oddly spaced home showings and you live far from town?  You hide quietly in your travel trailer.  Totally not kidding.  It felt weird the first time I did it....slightly voyeuristic.  I didn't really overhear much as the trailer is quite always from the house.  We kept some snacks and some crossword puzzles down there to keep us occupied.  That system worked great!

Now when it's our turn to look at homes, I'll be looking closely at any RV on the property(!)

Friday, March 17, 2017

Resurrecting the old blog....with focus on moving out of Kelso

So here we are, our heads still reeling from the process of selling our Kelso home.

We decided to downsize and move off the mountain we've called home for the past 27 years.  A huge step!  The first step was to declutter and deep clean.  Our home had broken a basic law of physics: Newton's law.  For every item that was inserted into our home, there should've been an equal and opposite reaction (another item already in the home should fly out....or be removed).  Our home has a ridiculous amount of storage.....and all of it was full.  It was crazy!  I had just been surviving the last seven years of my career and the house truly reflected that.

Several trips to the dump and the local women's shelter thrift store resolved the clutter issue.  Deep cleaning (omg the carpal tunnel aches I gave myself) took a few days and the results were great!

Finally!  We were ready for our realtor and her camera.  We had our home on the market eight years ago, two different realtors.  Let me tell you, find one that not only knows the business and strategies necessary, but one who can take amazing photos!  Sherri Kingsley did an outstanding job with photos....and I had two previous sets to compare....and hers were way and above more pleasing.

The local real estate market is ultra crazy with too few homes on the market.  If you find the home of your dreams, you'd best be prepared to pull the trigger instantly. We had to make a decision: get a loan arranged ahead of time, set up a mortgage and then try to sell our house......or sell our house first, maybe move belongings twice, but will be ready for our new home with cash in hand.

Since our home is located in a very rural location, thereby automatically reducing the possible buyer pool, we elected to get our home on the market asap while the inventory is still quite low.  Less competition!

So we listed our home.  It took Zillow (for those of you still using that app), TWO days to find our listing.  That's two precious days, folks.  My preferred app is Redfin.  I receive instant email notifications whenever a home that fits my criteria comes on the market.