Friday, December 3, 2010

House stuff.

So, I don't want to get too excited yet, but promising things are happening with the house.

About three weeks ago, my realtor called me out of the blue (we hadn't had anyone look at the apartment for at least a month). He wanted to let me know he wasn't giving up and eventually we would get our apartment sold. In that same phone conversation, he mentioned a house he just listed for someone that he thought we might like. He said it was extremely well cared for, reasonably priced, the right size for us and had a large lot.

I told him that I didn't want to look at any more houses until we had someone interested in our apartment, because we have technically lost two houses. The first in Warwood, where we had the contract, the close date, the inspection, appraisal, etc. I had even bought some new curtains. Then our buyer backed out. The second was not so involved. We made the offer, she accepted, and then changed her mind because she wasn't comfortable with the contingencies.

So, by complete coincidence, my realtor called again a few days later saying someone wanted to look at our apartment on Sunday. We said fine, if someone was looking at ours, we would look at a few as well. (We have looked at maybe 25 houses by now...)

Long story short, the first house we looked at that day, the house he had told me about, is, in a word, perfect. As soon as we got out of the car, Clint loved it, which is rather aggressive for Clint, as he is the mild mannered and reserved one of the two of us. It's a newer house, (built in 1969, which is about 50-60 years newer than houses I typically like) it's in North Park, where we have lived before (renting when we first got married), three bedrooms, two bathrooms, rec room/play room, remodled kitchen, two car garage, covered back porch, adjacent lot included in the purchase, beautiful refinished hardwood floors, lots of closet space, it's on a flat cul de sac with only two other houses, it has a large driveway, perfect for a basketball hoop in a few years... I think Clint was ready to sign that day. Of course, we were reserved, waiting to find out about our apartment.

Apparently, the couple looking at our apartment really liked what they saw, had spoken with the co-op president, and wanted to come back with their contractor to price a new kitchen. We were thrilled. It had been so long since anyone was interested, and this happens right out of the blue. So, they planned to come look at it again on Black Friday. The requested parking information, and the bylaws of the co-op association. They told my realtor they would get back to him soon. My realtor is convinced they are extremely serious. Which made me feel comfortable with the following.
Last Sunday, anticipating this couple making an offer on our house, and us wanting to make an offer on the North Park house, we drafted a contract to be submitted once we had an offer on the apartment. We wanted to be prepared, and catching us through the week can be tricky. Tuesday my realtor told me that someone had looked at the same house on Sunday and then were planning to go back Tuesday afternoon. We agreed we didn't want to take any risks, and were willing to lose the front end money over losing the house to someone else, this close to getting an offer on our apartment. I told my realtor to submit our offer, and then held my breath. The next day, he told me our offer was accepted. No counter offer or anything. He agreed to our terms, no questions asked. We have a close date at the end of January. I'm meeting with the bank people on Tuesday, have received preapproval and been provided a good faith estimate. Everything looks great.

Of course, we are still going crazy over whether or not these people are going to make an offer on our apartment. I think at this point, we will accept any offer within reason, as long as it covers our expenses of getting the new house (realtor fees, down payment, etc.). Like I said, my realtor is very confident, and he knows the seller pretty well. He said that if we needed to extend the close date, he feels confident that the seller would be comfortable with that. He feels the couple interested in our apartment is just taking their time (you mean people don't rush through buying a house?) and reviewing the bylaws and all that. My realtor said someone else contacted him about the apartment, someone moving to the area mid December (which is already very close).

We are still nervous as hell, but this all feels right. The house is literally perfect for us. The finance end of it looks good. I'm not going to worry yet.

Here's a couple of pictures from the realtor's website. Everyone cross your fingers and keep us in your prayers. We deserve a break!

Saturday, November 27, 2010

The missing months, in pictures.

Polar bear vest.
The Wares + bubbles.

Hiding behind Daddy.
My sister in law, Tricia.


Watching the big kids play.


The last warm day.

Big yawn.

Reading by himself in his room.

Giggle pants.

Hide and Seek with Daddy.
That's my phone charger.

Tickling the ivories.

I see you, Mama.

My favorite picture of him, ever.
He wanted his privacy.

Still my baby.

First Trick or Treat.

Jean jacket and my mom's siding.

Owen's girlfriend, Charlie.

The hubs.

Owey in the tub.

Good morning.

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Pittsburgh Zoo

We finally made it to the Pittsburgh Zoo yesterday and it was a great success. The zoo is clean and beautiful, and it wasn't even that big a deal that it was 90+ degrees. I think I want to go back in a couple of weeks with my mom, since Daddy is going back to work next week. YEA!

The sea lions were awesome. We liked listening to them bark. The baby sea lion came to check out the baby Owen. He actually got more from the animals this time. He was pointing at them and yelling. He "got it."
The kangaroos there were slightly less entertaining than the Kangaroo Senior Portraits at Oglebay, but still cool.

Elephants. There is a baby hiding under one of the bigger ones. It was so cute. They were throwing dirt on themselves to cool off because it was so hot. This silverback gorilla (behind the dude in the orange shirt) was just hanging out staring back at the people staring at him. It was pretty awesome, although the gorilla looks ticked.After an outfit change because it was so hot, we had a carousel ride and decided to head home.
It was necessary to stop at Sarris Chocolate Factory on the way home for a milkshake. Owen finally figured out how to use a straw, and he loved Mama's chocolate and banana shake.

The highlight of the trip, was very obviously the polar bear. We were walking under a glass tunnel looking at the sharks, when we realized we were now under the polar bear exhibit. Clint and I were quietly praying that the polar bear, Owen's favorite thing in the world, would make an appearance in the water. After only a couple minutes, he jumped down in the water and started swimming above us. It was so amazing. Owen immediately recognized what it was and started yelling at him and pointing. I managed to get a pretty decent video. This was a few minutes after he came down into the water. Owen is yelling at him and talking almost the entire time. And if you will notice, he's also holding HIS polar bear. I am pretty sure he loved it.

And the trip was all the more awesome because we went up in my new car! :) Last week, I ended up getting a 2010 graphite-colored 4-door Civic. It had 21 miles on it when I bought it. Now it has 350. I love it love it love it.

Monday, August 23, 2010

Great success!

Clint got the job in Washington!! It's for and he is super thrilled. He had the interview not this past Friday, but the Friday before. They told him they were doing interviews through Wednesday. They called him on Thursday and offered him the job!!! For the same schedule (m-f 8-5) and MORE money than he was making at Touchstone. Things are finally coming together! We are so excited!

And I get to get a new car soon, yeah!!!

Only one person looked at the house this week, but that's OK. We are going to take our time looking for a house (in a better price range!). And, if it takes a while for someone to buy our house, that will give us more time and options. There isn't a whole lot on the market right now.

But of course, as the trend with us has been lately, with the highs, there are also the lows. Last weekend I had a pretty sore throat. It kind of went away through the week, but I felt tired and sluggish all week. Wednesday, Owen had a 102 fever when he woke up. Clint gave him some Motrin to bring it down. It got higher. I called the doctor around 12:30, they got us in at 2:00pm (love the pediatricians). He has Hand, Foot and Mouth. If you don't know what that is, it's basically a children's virus that causes blisters to form in the throat, on the hands and feet, in addition to a steep fever and irritability. The virus has been running rampant recently in the Ohio Valley. The ped said a few weeks ago, probably 25 kids a day came in with it. The fever has passed. He still has some irritability, but his appetite has increased, so he must be feeling better.

SO... Sunday night at work, I'm trying to put it out of my mind that my sore throat has come back. Amy, my fellow supervisor tells me that Strep Throat is going around. I put it out of my head. Around 11:45pm, I start to ache. The whole night, I had been freezing. It's always cold in there anyway, but I mean freezing with a shirt and sweater on, with a small space heater pointing directly at me and FREEZING. I feel like I'm starting to check out. It was hard to focus, the aching was getting worse and I was starting to worry. I ended up going home around 1am, because I just wanted to lay down and sleep.

All night long, I tossed and turned, alternating between being so cold that I was shaking and sweating so much that my clothes were wet. My arms hurt. My legs hurt. My hips hurt. My shoulders hurt. My head was thumping. I felt like I was dying. Several times in the night I contemplated going to the emergency room, but settled for going to Med Express when they opened at 9am. The doctor initially thought I had Strep, but it ended up being negative. He says that I likely have a variation of the Hand Foot and Mouth virus. He gave me a really strong antibiotic and said I shouldn't be contagious in about 24 hours. I can't wait until I feel better, this is freaking miserable. I don't think I've ever felt worse.

And of course, my little monkey picks today to want to start kissing me unprovoked, when I can't kiss him. He was relentless though, and would not settle for my cheeks, so I had to tuck my lips into my mouth and let him give me a big smacker.

It's been such a shitty day. Thank God this happened before Clint went back to work, otherwise I would have needed some help today. Clint is so amazing in situations like this, taking care of Owen all by himself. He is such an amazing daddy.

Currently, it's 11:20pm, and I've been up for four hours. That's the longest stretch I have been awake and out of bed today. The chills/sweats is still annoyingly a major issue. I have taken two showers today and I think I will need to change my shirt before bed. Boo to being a sweaty disaster.

I have to start feeling better soon! I'm having Aunt Karen over for dinner on Wednesday!!! I'm making a delicious pork loin, couscous and steamed broccoli. Yum.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Some new little things, to distract us from the heavy stuff.

Some recent pictures:

Owey doesn't know what to do... He doesn't like to get his hands dirty.
First time with shaved ice... Don't let that face fool you, he loved it. He sad because I'm taking pictures, not feeding him.

Down at the waterfront.S.S. Volunteer.
In the park in Warwood. I played in this park as a first and second grader.Runnin'Thirsty at the Warwood Pool.
Last weekend, Owey got to have a hot date with his future wife Lily. Their time was spent snuggling on Virginia's lap, having a meal and dancing.

Actually, Lily did NOT want Owen sharing her mama's lap, they both scrambled to get their fair share of raisins, goldfish and a banana. The dancing part was all Lily.

Also, Clint and I made a deal that when he got a job, I could get a car. I wasn't exatly planning on a new car, more like a 3ish year old CRV. However, I went and test drove a brand spanking new Civic today and Mama Like. The payment would be the same for a brand new Civic as a 3-4 year old CRV. I need to figure out what I want.

The brand new Civic is very very very nice. But a CRV would have more space for Owen +1 in the back seat. Since we have no immediate plans to buy a house now, and since Clint is going to be working again, we really need to do this soon. Unless I want to be stuck at home, all day, every day. (no.)

I took a big walk with Owen today. I haven't walked in awhile, so it was good to go. Then after we walked for a half hour, we took a break to play on the mega-playground in downtown Wheeling. Owey liked.

Owen's bedtime! Peace out!

Ups and downs.

So, when one thing is going well in my life, something else will most certainly start to crap out.

As everyone knows, some dude made an offer on our apartment about a month ago. A week after that we put an offer on a house that we pretty much love. I get the mortgage set up... I set up the inspection. Pay for the appraisal. Drop a pretty penny on the earnest money for the house.

We found out today that the guy buying the apartment can't get his financing in order and cannot buy the apartment. Fortunately we set up a contingency clause in case something like this happened. I'm not going to be stuck with two mortgages or anything like that, but this still 100% sucks.

This means, the apartment goes back on the market. I have to get it ready to show again. We pray with all our hearts that we get another offer in time to close on the house by September 24 (or that we get a new buyer and the sellers on the house will give us an extension on the close...) OR, we totally lose the house.

I'm devestated by this. We got attached to that house, the neighborhood, the school district, the local park, the local pool, the walking trail, the pinkish pit bull in the yard next door, (I like to call her Pinky). The "dream" is gone.

I'm praying. I'm praying that if this is NOT our house, that the person who does eventually buy our apartment will do so at a time when OUR REAL HOUSE is on the market, at an affordable price, in a great location. It's just hard to accept that there is nothing I can do about it.

It felt like it was all too good to be true, because it was. Everything went so smoothly on my end. The offer and counter offer happened within hours of each other and we ended up settling way under what I thought we would be paying. The mortgage got set up without a hitch. The inspection was pretty decent. I'm counting on my faith and patience to take us through this. It could always be worse.

The good news... Clint finally got a job offer at a mental health facility in St. Clairsville, OH. He has accepted for now. Last friday he had two interviews, one at this job and another at a company in Washington, PA (about 30 minutes away) that would be almost his EXACT job from Touchstone, same salaray, same hours, everything. Perfect. He said the interview went very well, and they even said that if he wasn't selected for the job he was interviewed for, there was another position he could be considered for. Cross your fingers.

Maybe the reason this isn't working out is because Clint might get the job in Wash, PA and Warwood would be a little too far to drive every day. Maybe Elm Grove or Bethlehem would be a better fit for us. My friend Terry said to me today, "Just wait to see what God has in store for you."

So, the future is again uncertain. I'm just thankful the immediate future contains an employed husband. And extremely happy that Rpatz and Kstew were finally photographed kissing, in real life, in public, for real. THAT made my day.

And, I'm also very intrigued by Google Analytics. I can check to see who is actually looking at my blog. Meguro, Japan, Pelotas, Brazil, Bogota, Colombia, Brno, Czech Republic... I don't know who you are, but thanks for visiting! My blog has been visited by 16 countries and 21 states. I don't know who in Blairsville or Carnegie, PA is looking at the blog with such regularity. But I know those 20-some visits a month in Morgantown are from Virginia! And Mt. Vernon, IA is Krista K. So thanks friends, and loyal strangers! Identify yourselves and say hello!

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

More house pictures!

We went today for the inspection, which did not show anything major, so it looks like this is really happening! It should be official September 24~~!!

After the inspection, I snapped a bunch of pictures and measured all the windows so I can start buying window coverings!!! Upstairs hallway. Excuse the creepy guy to the right who didn't get out of the picture in time.Third bedroom, likely to be used as a spare bedroom/office area until the second and final baby shows up in a couple of years.
Staircase heading down.

Owen's room facing the back of the house.

Our bedroom.

Our bedroom door.

Living room to foyer <3

Kitchen into dining room.


Foyer into the other rooms.

Entrance to bathroom.

Dining room to kitchen.