Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Uncluttering all the clutter

I'm not sure if it's the fact that I'm sitting here waiting for new furniture or perhaps just a winter itch but I'm really trying to pare things down both in my mind and my life.

I recently decided I was more or less done with facebook. I had over three hundered friends, I think, and every day I felt like I had to read my "wall", I got to thinking "Is it really important to know what a friend of a friend that I met once is up to?", no not really. But I realized it was more about giving up people than giving up facebook. I purged my facebook friends, gone are the friends of friends, the friends I haven't spoken to in years, the "friends" that have not kept in touch and have left me feeling burned, and remind me of such each time I see them on my "wall". Now, all that is left are my real friends, those that I still keep in touch with and most that I see on a monthly basis, though really I'd like to up that to a bi-weekly basis. As well as family, though family for me is extended because my immediate family is so small.

My family has always been more about my extended family than anything. My parents each only have one brother and I have one cousin, that's it. But, my parent's each have many aunts and uncles and to many cousins to count, who of course have kids, who are starting to have kids. Growing up we spent one holiday a year with my dad's dad's side, and even less with his mom's side. I'd like to change that. It seems we only see each other at funerals and it would be nice to actually get to know these people that are linked to my past. We shall see.

As for stuff, my fiance has moved a chunk of his stuff from his parents house into our house. He hasn't seen or dealt with some of this stuff in close to ten years I'd bet, and it would be nice to have him purge a bit. He and I are both huge book fans and seeing my mothers house, also a book lover, I'm trying to keep my house differently. Books can be found in every one of my parents rooms, it's starting to be that way in my own home as well. I think it might be nice just to have one room devoted to books, sadly with three rooms currently housing us that's not an option. I've thrown around the idea of making a wall of bookcases in our bedroom, and as I type, I'm starting to think that perhaps our living room is where it's at. Seeing as how we really don't read in the bedroom aside from before bed. Hmmm, an idea to throw around. We also have a ton of cd's and dvd's and I don't remember the last time we watched any of them or even listened to the cd's. I would like to spend more time with the things we have, or what is the point of having them right?

We sit in front of the television every night watching something or other, it's mindless really I don't mind in the moment but whenever I think about it, about how much television we watch, about how little we get done around the house because of our lack of doing anything but tv watching, it upsets me. We only just moved into our condo and I have so many projects I would love to tackle. But when you get home and plop in front of the couch it's impossible to get them done. I'd love to get my fiance on board but I'm not sure that's possible. I know he wants me to think he's not lazy but in reality, well, I'm not so sure. Last week I caught him coming home, turning on the tv in the living room and immediately going into the kitchen. Now, if he just went into the kitchen to put things on the kitchen table, or get a snack that would be fine, but often times I'm noticing the television on with no one in front of it. That's not how I want to live my life and that's definitely not how I want to raise my children. My parents spend their nights in front of the television, as do his parents, and I want something more for us. Projects don't need to be relegated to the weekends. Weekends should be for fun, not just chores. I could live with enjoying one show a night the problem is by the time we get home, make dinner, and sit in front of the tv to eat while we watch said show, when the show's over it's time for bed. I'm not much better I have more time at home during the week than he does and could very well work on all kinds of projects while I'm home. I feel like, and perhaps this is simply an excuse, I wouldn't be surprised, but I feel like I need his okay on things. I don't much want to surprise him with a brown wall when he comes home. Is this silly? Perhaps, I should probably bring this up with him. Another issue I have is our furniture. We have these two unweildy, ugly ass pieces of crap wooden boxes that I now wish I had never picked off the side of the road. They have become our go to furniture and my heart aches for real furniture.

I am in awe of the fact that in only a few hours time I will have real live furniture, furniture no one else has owned before but me. Furniture that doesn't need to be slipcovered. Sure, I didn't find it on the side of the road, but you know what I don't care.

Back to my wooden boxes. One holds our tv on top and our games, both board and video underneath. Our board games have begun to overflow and I would love to get rid of some. I have a few in mind however, they are games that my Nana bought and were given to me shortly after she passed and though I haven't played them, never knew of them before I got them, I am still finding it hard to part with them. I think that's true of everything. If it has any sort of sentimentality to it I can't seem to part with it. I hate that.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Amazing Happy Day

Ever have one of those days where you can't stop smiling and you are giddy for no good reason? Well I just had one, god I don't remember the last time I had one. It almost feels wrong really. Considering that just a few short days ago I said my last goodbyes to my beloved gram. She was one of the three most important women in my life and saying goodbye was extra hard on me. The day after she passed I went in to work and changed my desktop to a picture of her. There were some days when it was hard to see her but I always felt the need to have her close by. Today I kept smiling whenever I came across her picture on my computer. Hmmm, I wonder, I'm not much for religon and I'm not quite sure what I feel happens after we leave this life but I'd like to think my gram had something to do with my happy day today. My fiance kept trying to get me to focus on the fact that she was with my grandfather again, she hadn't seen him in almost 23 years since he passed. I'm thinking perhaps she stuck around here for a bit after she passed, just to say goodbye to my sister and my sister's son, her one and only great-grandson, they live in Michigan and weren't able to make it out before she passed. Maybe she finally got through the long line leading up to the pearly gates and was telling me today that she made it and she's with my grandpa and their friends. It's odd though work went great. I felt like a million bucks and now that I'm home I'm not quite sure how to feel. Perhaps it's due to the fact that about half way through work I realized I was coming down with a cold. My throat hurts, and I can tell that in a day or two my sinuses will be all stuffed up, just in time right? But oh well. I just wish I knew how to replicate this feeling. And another thing, it's been so long since I knew how I wanted to waste time. Finally today I started remembering. Usually I just play computer games or read other people's blogs. It sure doesn't feed the soul. But I've been more and more aware of what I'm doing and the mere fact that I want to get away from that. I picked up a few books this weekend that I think, I hope, will help me find the true me. I want to find a new job but I don't know what I want to do. It's slowly coming to me, bits and pieces. Not neccessarily a job description more like things I want in my job. I am a pretty goofy happy person and I need a job that lets that shine through. I also am finding that I thrive on music, I'd love a job where I can listen to music all day every day. Perhaps that is why I especially enjoyed doing truck at BABW. I got to work by myself with my music on and got to sing along a bit under my breath and just laugh at myself. i know that is so important but when you work under people that don't laugh at you it's hard to laugh at yourself. Another thing I realized is a better way to explain away some work issues I've had in the past. I normally get along great with my co-workers and enjoy the jobs I have. However, I have had two jobs where I have left because of tensions between co-workers and I. Today I realized it really just boils down to what Aretha Franklin always says R-E-S-P-E-C-T. The three people I dealt with at my last two jobs really held no respect for me and in turn it was hard to respect them and so we just couldn't get along. I feel much more comfortable now going into a job interview being able to bring up the issue of respect. The guys I work with now hold me in the highest of respect and I them as well, hmmm, all except my boss perhaps. We both know that we would jump in front of a "bus" for the other. At my past jobs I often times felt like I was being thrown under the bus, not a fun feeling let me tell you. I need to remember to ask about the work environment, how respectful the employees are of each other. I don't mind if you aren't willing to jump in front of a bus for me, as long as you don't throw me in front of it in your place.

Friday, October 29, 2010

Fun Weekend Ahead

Looking forward to what should be a fun weekend ahead. Hopefully babysitting my fiance's godson, moving the rest of our stuff to the new place, putting a deposit down for our wedding local, putting together two kick ass halloween costumes, then trying those costumes out at a friend's party. I'll try and remember to take lots of pictures. I'd really like to start taking more pictures. I bought a great film camera a while back and I haven't even finished up the second roll yet. I also have a digital though that I really need to use more often. Hope you all have an awesome weekend!

Monday, October 25, 2010

The culmination of Three Months of Waiting

Well, Thursday we finally got the all clear to close on the condo. I never thought it would happen. What with the bank dragging their feet like they were, and the seller being very antsy to sell. But, it did and here we are. Friday morning we did some running around to get everything set and ready for closing. We had to pick up a bank check and pick up a condo form. Then we went and signed all the closing paperwork, got our keys, and waited...they told us once the sale was on record we could move in. However, that meant we had to wait for the fire inspection at 2 that afternoon and then wait some more for them to call us. Luckily around 3:30 they called us. We went and got a UHaul, made some phone calls to friends, and started packing up. We headed out about 6:30 or 7 I think and the unpacking was ten times easier, I think the time helped, we had more people there to unpack us, including a friend that was easily carrying two and sometimes three boxes a trip, he even brought our tv in for us by himself, and that is not a light tv. Pizzas and beers were gotten and we reveled in the fact that we were homeowners. We returned the truck around midnight and fell exhausted into bed. It had been a long day of mostly waiting, surprise surprise.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

The real hunt begins

Once we realized that condo's were really what we needed to focus on our search got easier. No longer were we looking at spending money to buy something that we would have to spend money on, aka, a money pit, love the movie, not so sure I like living in one. Instead we were looking at a mix of updated beautiful condo's in our price range and ugly, never been updated since they were built in the seventies, condo's that we would be able to play with as we pleased. Paint and some minor kitchen/bathroom improvements don't scare me, maybe because I work for a place that specializes in both. The scarier stuff is tearing down walls and putting new ones in their place. Condo's I realized were doable. We went out once with our new favorite realtor and came across a lot of nice ones, and some scary ones. After a few more days of looking we found one that my bub and I both agreed was something we wanted. The seller was asking $90,000 but seeing as how nothing in the area was going for anywhere near that, condo's at least. We decided on offering $75,000 with $4,000 back at closing. Needless to say they balked at that number. Suffice it to say, we walked away. On a sidenote they recently dropped the price of said $100. It's laughable really what some people think their homes are worth, but ah well. Luckily for us though we wound up finding another condo in the same complex asking exactly what we had offered the last seller. Upon a quick peek we immediatly knew we wanted to put an offer on this one as well. Sadly, our realtor was out of the state for vacation so we worked with a colleague of hers, who really only made us love our realtor all the more. We put an offer in on the condo on July 15th, then we went to Revere for their amazing sand castle competition. Thankfully, we received a phone call before we got back telling us our offer had been accepted. It wouldn't be long I thought before we'd be out of our tiny apartment and into our very own condo. It's now October 17th and we are still in our tiny apartment and still waiting, hoping, and though we aren't religious, praying for this condo to become ours sooner rather than later. But that's another story for another day.

The house hunt really begins

Once we had the real estate agent from heaven we really began our house hunting in stride. We looked at TONS of houses, or at least it felt that way. We both were trying to stay away from condo's, I think on my end I felt like buying a condo was just like buying an apartment and really was that a step up or just sideways? We found one huge beautiful old house that we fell in love with. It even had a closet inside a walk in closet, how cool is that? Sadly though, when I brought my parents to show them the house they talked some sense in to us. My dad said that even he wouldn't take on a project like the house, and my gram cried when my parents bought their house, it was that bad. So, we sadly walked away and began looking again. Our realtor realizing that we were wanting a house kept suggesting a nearby city for us to look at. However, neither one of us was really keen on that. And, eventually we both made peace with the idea that perhaps a condo was where we had to look.

Our Knight in Shining Armor

My fiance signed up to receive e-mails with houses in our price range in our area on a local real estate website. Here and there he saw things he liked and would e-mail them off to our realtor. Then our knight in shining armor came to our rescue. She was a realtor working for the company that was e-mailing my fiance. She asked him if what he was getting were things he was interested in or if she should tweek things as all and told him to let her know if she could help in any way. Well, we immediatly jumped and said "yes, please!" Our first meeting with her was amazing. She suggested we meet on Saturday morning at a local coffee place for drinks and a chat about what we wanted. From there she brought us, in her own car, to see some places we had sent her. Before with the old realtor we had always met her places and she had never met with us to see what our thoughts and needs were. This new way of thinking was a breath of fresh air. It was also a breath of fresh air that first day when her gps sent us a bit off track and she didn't seem fazed at all, she was more concerned with us and our finding a home than anything else. Though in hindsight part of this was also the fact that her husband and son were away for the summer, and so she had no one to worry about but herself. We were so glad we finally found someone we enjoyed working with and really worked for us.

Next Step Houses

So, after the mobile home issues we decided houses were the only way to go. This was also when we finally started working with a real estate agent. The woman we started working with wasn't quite to our liking. We felt rushed most of the time and we felt like we were always the one showing her houses we wanted to see and always thought it was supposed to be the other way around. She was giving us 15 minutes to view each house and seeing as how our price range was around the $100,000 mark most of the houses we were looking at were going to need repairs, and well, 15 minutes just isn't enough time to decide what those repairs might be and if it's worth a second look. Sometimes though that 15 minutes was plenty. Like for example the time we couldn't even get into the main part of the house but instead saw a section of the garage, or the house that was in the process of being re-done with no walls and barely floors in some rooms. We didn't really see any other way but luckily that would soon change.

Friday, July 9, 2010

Our Mobile Home Travails

Our next step in the mobile home buying came in finding a lawyer to write up a contract. I had nannied for a lawyer and got in touch with the law firm she worked for. She was no longer there but her boss was happy to work with us. We gave him all the information and that's when we found out banks don't like mobile homes, or more importantly, banks don't like lending money so that you can buy a mobile home. My first stop in the mortgage process was Sovereign, they had a list of three or four questions about the mobile home and when "our" mobile home failed the test we went looking elsewhere. I swear we contacted every bank in middlesex county. The banks told us one of two things,either no, or give us your first born, your life savings, and half of your pay for the next year and we'll think about lending to you. This would only be our first heartbreak.

House Hunting Here we Come

Looking back I'm not quite sure what we were thinking when we dove head first into house buying. We contemplated mortgages and decided on Sovereign Bank. I went to get us pre-approved and while my credit is rather stellar, sadly Marc's is not. Thankfully, I could still get a fairly decent mortgage on my own. The gentleman I spoke with told me I could be approved for $140,000(remember this number it will become important later). Not knowing any better I took his word and we began the house hunt...on our own. Why we didn't immediately try and get help I'm not sure. I got pre-qualified(We have since figured out this is the word to use, not pre-approved as I would have though) in November of last year and we began scanning craigslist and the those little house magazines you get for free at the supermarket. We hemmed and hawed and finally decided perhaps a mobile home was the way to go, again, not sure why. We found a few we liked and fell in love with the first one we saw. Sadly though, the mortgage plus the park fee's were out of our range so we continued looking. Marc smartly decided one day that we should take a drive through the park his cousin lives in. We found a cute little home that was for sale by owner, got in touch with him, and looked at it the next weekend. We immediately fell in love with it, and began the home buying process...or so we thought.

Some background...

Up until the age of 18 the farthest I had moved was the next room over. Then came college and after that I began bouncing from one apartment to the next, five apartments in the past five years to be exact, along with a short stint back at my parents house in the middle of it all. I never quite realized how much I moved until just now. In fact I think I've been in my current apartment the longest of any, that's simply because I don't want to move again, my next move will hopefully be my last for a few years. In pretty much every apartment I was in I knew it wasn't a long term thing and so I never was inclined to ask about painting or re-decorating in any way, I just lived with the way my apartment looked. But I'm getting tired of that. I look at paint colors longingly hoping one day to be able to paint my own bedroom a color of my choosing. I use to look at the ugly carpet and wish for hardwoods, and now that I have them part of me wishes for carpet again. I guess that's why when it came time to consider where my fiance and I would live when our lease was up it only made sense to both of us to purchase something and quit renting.