Monday, July 29, 2013

Change Is Never Easy!

Sprague Lake - Rocky Mountain National Park
June, 2011

It's hard to believe that less than one month ago, my plans had me likely taking in this very view (minus the snow) on Monday, July 29, 2013.  The Sprague Lake trail is an easy, flat one-mile trail around the lake just inside Rocky Mountain National Park.  It's a great way to start the altitude acclimation process while drinking in the incredible vista.  We have two regrets about having to postpone the Colorado trip.  The first being the chance to visit during wildflower season.  That will be easily remedied at another time.  The second regret, however, has some finality to it.  For the third time (2009, 2011, 2013), we had rented Riverbend Retreat in Estes Park for our two week stay.  This wonderful cabin just feet from the Thompson River and an easy walk into downtown Estes Park (yet far away from the crowds) became "home" to us and we looked forward to many visits over the years.  But we learned earlier this summer that the owners had made the decision to sell the cabin and it has been purchased by someone who plans to make it their permanent home.  Existing reservations were to be honored, but we knew when bought the condo and cancelled our Colorado trip reservations, that our days at Riverbend were now just memories.   We love Colorado and still have much to explore there, but not this year.  

Finding and purchasing the condo all happened so quickly, I think we are both still a tiny bit shell-shocked!  Don't get me wrong - there are absolutely NO regrets.  I'm not sure when either of us have felt so strongly that we'd made a great decision.  But in the midst of purging, packing, establishing the vision of what will go where and working out a plan to make it all go smoothly, yesterday we just needed a break!   Bill took a long, long nap and I spent the afternoon catching up on some much needed blog reading time.  We are so grateful for the gift of time in this move.  I have to be so very, very careful not to lift too many boxes or work to long at one interval or I pay dearly the next day either in the form of complete exhaustion or very painful joints.  I'm trying to pace myself and stagger the activity between packing boxes for awhile and then sitting at the desk handling the business part of moving which can be totally overwhelming all by itself!

So here is the moving schedule.   Closing is set for Thursday morning at 9:30.  The remainder of Thursday and part of Friday will be for painting, cleaning and carpet cleaning.  We will have Friday through Monday to move and hopefully put away the things we have chosen to move ourselves.  Electing to move dishes, hanging clothing, computer equipment/tv, pictures and lamps is saving us a bundle of money and I feel more comfortable moving those things myself anyway.  The movers will arrive bright and early on Tuesday, the 6th to move all the furniture.  We will then have one full week to get settled in before Bill returns to school on the 14th.  The timing could not have worked out any better and we are so, so grateful for that!

We have only encountered one glitch I was not expecting and that is the fact that our landline telephone number had to change.  I had my suspicions from the beginning because our landline prefix is associated with a particular area of town that is a long way from the area we are moving.  Yet I kept reading info saying that if you remained within the same area code, you should be able to keep the number.  But it was not to be....FCC just would not allow that number to port to the area we are moving.  We tried everything and I've accepted it, but you know how it is.  We've had this number since 1984 and it's going to be tough for this old bird to learn a new one.  Unfortunately, we just aren't quite ready to go the cell phone only route just yet.  So communicating my new address AND new phone number info to all our friends, family and business contacts should keep me at that desk for quite some time.  On the other hand, with a new number, maybe it'll take some of these goofball salespeople awhile to find me again!  Oddly enough, I actually LIKE the new number.  It's catchy and easy to remember!

It'll likely be a couple of weeks before you hear from me again.  Once all this gets underway, I may not even be able to FIND my computer, much less turn it on and have internet!    In the meantime, enjoy a couple of additional pictures of my new digs.

 From my sun porch looking to the left is a lovely forested area.  To the right is a large meadow that eventually slopes down to the road.  I like both vantage points and expect I'll be spending a good bit of time staring one way or the other!

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Moving Forward...Looking Backward!

Do You Like My new Digs???
July, 2013

Thanks so much for your support and feedback after my last post!  I was so excited to tell all my Blog Friends about our move.  I knew somewhere down the road I'd be writing that post, I just never imagined it would be this soon or would transpire in one week's time!  I can assure you that even though the reality of moving 14 years worth of "stuff" has set in, there has not been one single moment of buyer's remorse or doubt that we've made the right decision.  We are so excited and every time we drive by, we look forward even more to the day we move in.  Speaking of moving in, closing is still set for August 1 and we plan to move the following week.  Although the condo is move-in ready, we are going to paint the three bedrooms in colors more to our liking and why pass up that opportunity while the rooms are empty and nothing has to be moved or worked around.  

There is still the little matter of selling our current home.  We've had lots of interest and a successful open house was held this past weekend.  But it is an older home (73 years old) with the creaks and cracks inherent in purchasing an older home.  Since we didn't anticipate moving for at least five more years, we've kept it in the best shape we could and that should be to our advantage now.  It's just a matter of the perfect buyer coming around who wants this beautiful old Cape Cod just like we wanted it 14 years ago.  

It has surprised both of us that we aren't feeling a bit more nostalgic about leaving our house and yard, but we attribute that to the fact that we've changed along with our priorities and the joy derived from working in the yard and maintaining the house just isn't there anymore.  We'd rather be spending that time with friends, heading to the mountains or taking advantage of the many fun things to do in our community.  We see lots of weekend jaunts to explore nearby places in our future - time that has always been devoted to "house" things.  Perhaps in the back of our minds, we always felt that when Bill retired, we'd have time to do both.  But with retirement on the backburner for at least five more years, that plan went out the window.  It was one or the other and we choose travel/adventure over yard work/home projects!!

Did I mention my sun porch?

Storm door opens to a good-sized patio - door on the left goes into the breakfast room.

Do you like my kitchen?

Picture on the left is standing in the breakfast area.  There is a large pantry on the other side of the refrigerator and at the far end of the cabinets on the left is an entry into the dining room.  The door leads through the laundry area and into the garage.  This is at least twice the counter space I've EVER had and lots more cabinet space as well.  

As for the blog, please bear with me during this time both with posting updates and with commenting on your posts.  I seriously considered taking a "break" until we were moved, but just didn't want to.  The blog is important to me and I told myself I'd MAKE time to post something regularly.  Perhaps, I aimed too high.  I am simply exhausted most days purging, packing, dumping, recycling and taking care of the business details of moving.  So I read YOUR posts for awhile to stay in the loop, but do it quickly usually just staying in my reader so please know that I am here even if there isn't a comment from me on every post.  

As excited as I am about the move, I will admit there is a twinge of regret that I am not leaving this Friday on Summer Adventure (Part 2) which was a couple of weeks in Colorado.  This trip was totally planned and highly anticipated by both of us, but especially me as it was going to involve at least two visits with Blog Friends that were already confirmed.  I will miss that and hope to reschedule it soon.  And next time around, there will be no anxiety about who will mow the yard, water the plants and take care of the house while we meander around the country!  

Please tell me about the last time you moved.  Why?  When?  Local/long distance?  Would love to know your stories!

(If you'll share your stories, I've got a couple of really funny ones I'll share in my next post!)

Monday, July 1, 2013

IT'S OFFICIAL!! We're Moving!

One of the many Daylilies that bloomed in my backyard on Sunday!
June 30, 2013

Two weeks ago, if you had told me I'd be writing these words, I would've laughed at you.  Sure, we've talked off and on for a couple of years about moving into a condo closer to the college where Bill teaches.   We'd search for a while both online and by driving around.   We discovered that the complexes we liked never had anything for sale and the others held no appeal whatsoever.  We'd remind ourselves how much we loved our 73-year old Cape Cod plus all the hard work and love we've put into it over the last 14 years and convince ourselves to stay awhile longer.  We always knew we wouldn't stay forever.  As we grew older and closer to Bill's retirement, our priorities would change and we'd no longer want to have to worry with it while traveling.  We also knew that when the right time came, the perfect place would appear and everything would fall into place.  

And that's exactly what happened.  Two Saturday's ago, Bill very nearly cut off the tip end of his finger while trimming hedges on our front yard.  He was hot, frustrated and just flat didn't want to be doing that so he admits he was careless.  It was also the day we said to each other that we were tired of the whole home maintenance/gorgeous yard scene.  When he was out of school, we wanted to lock the door behind us and go, go go!  

A couple of days later, I did one of my random searches on the real estate web site,, for a condo within a four mile radius of Bill's college.  Up popped a new listing in a small complex I had NEVER seen before.  Looking at the pics, I surmised (correctly as it turns out) that the complex had been developed by the same builder as the one we'd had our eye on for a more than a year, but there had been not one single listing in all that time.  Later that afternoon, I did a drive-by and loved everything about the outside.  Bill drove by on his way home, we looked at it the next day, met with our realtor the next morning to see how she felt about selling our house, looked at the condo again the following day, made an offer that evening and our offer was accepted the next afternoon.  The whole thing happened in five days!!  Neither of us have had one minute of second-guessing or regret since then.  We are both totally convinced it's the right thing to do and the right place for us to go.

Bill's commute will go from 26 miles one way to less than 4 miles.  The small complex of 43 units was built in 2004 and most are still owned by their original owners.  Ours was available because the gentleman's wife died in January and although he tried living alone, just couldn't make it work.  His children have helped him move into a place where he will have some help.  To be honest, it looks brand new.  We plan to paint a couple of the rooms, but we could easily move in without doing one thing.  It is all on one level, three bedroom, two bath, huge great room, dining room, the biggest kitchen I've ever had, breakfast nook and a sunporch to die for!  Also, a covered front porch with rocking chairs that will stay!!  It is an end unit so we have a grassy area on one side and a patio that you access from the sunporch.  From the sunporch, looking to the left faces a wooded area and to the right an open field.  It gives the sense of being in a very rural area, but you are less than two miles from the largest shopping/restaurant/entertainment complex in our city.  

To say we are thrilled is putting it mildly.  I don't think either of us had realized how ready we really were.   I know I hadn't!  Please send prayers/good thoughts that our house will sell quickly.  It is a jewel and there is nothing wrong with it at all.  We just hope someone will buy it who appreciates an older home and will love it as much as we have all these years.  Our agent, who is the same agent who sold it to us 14 years ago, loved all the things we had done to it, and made the statement, "if I can't sell this, I need to get out of the real estate business!"  That was very encouraging, but also made us feel really, really good!

So that's our news!  We will close on the condo around August 1 once again reflecting perfect timing.  Bill finishes teaching his summer class on July 26 and does not report back for fall term until August 14.  We will have over two weeks while he is off to get moved.  

Obviously, Summer Adventure Part 2 has been cancelled.  One more example of how we feel so certain this was meant to be is that our offer for the condo was accepted on July 24.  We had paid in full reservations for our two cabins in Colorado both of which offered full refunds if cancelled more than 30 days out.  We made it by TWO days, so I was able to get all money back.  Amazing!

No pictures yet, but we are meeting the home inspector this afternoon, so I'll try and take some inside shots for you.  Then it's into "purge" mode for the next few weeks.  I refuse to move anything that hasn't been used in the last year!  

What does your week look like?