Sunday, July 31, 2016

This evening I had a church friend stop in to give me a fresh perspective walking through the house.  She noticed a few minor things and made her suggestions.  Well, I guess she also took note of the need to redo the caulk in the apartment because she came back later with her husband (another church friend) who got to work there recaulking and removing the awful fish stickers from the bottom of the tub while she fashioned new window coverings for one upstairs room.  How's that for love?

Of course in the midst of working in the apartment bathroom the faucet in the tub stopped turning off completely.  *sigh*  It's only been empty for a month but things are already breaking.  As an added dose of blessing he'll be back tomorrow (after the stores are open) to help make that repair as well.  In the mean time, things are turned off in the basement leading over there.
Three dog food bags full of pine cones.  One raw thenar space.  My poor hands are made for typing, not manual labor.  It's pretty darn warm working out there too, so it feels good to be back inside and relaxing on the couch with cold water.  Of course, while I was outside laboring some-fuzzy-body popped the bedroom door and made themselves comfortable on my bed.  Jerks.

I've been starting to ponder what else I should do "around here" to help perk it up.  Maybe repaint the basement floor?  Rip down the wood paneling in the apartment and replace it with drywall or paint the wood paneling?  Update the tub and surround in the apartment?  Ugh.  All of it sounds like large endeavors in time or money.   I wonder what it would cost to get one or the other outsourced.  If I were sticking around I'd dive into the kitchen/hall/bath tile and upgrade it to ceramic.

Saturday, July 30, 2016

I'm glad I got my butt in gear a little last night and went out to scoop poop, pull weeds, and pull the gladiolus bulbs.  The heavy rain today definitely would have halted any of that progress.  Of course it's heavy/windy rain too, so my windows are going to need recleaned up on the outside before the Monday showing (and my DirecTV is out).  Things have cooled down a good bit, so that's a plus.  It almost feels like  I should be baking, but I guess we're still two months before that season and feeling really should set in.

What to do what to do.

Thursday, July 28, 2016

I've been trying to whittle down my options - and managed to eliminate one due to the way pricing works out when compared to other/better options that end up being around the same payment.  It is still remaining a futile question because there are bigger issues a foot.  I've turned to others I care about for opinions and I keep hearing the same comments/hints, (some more blunt than others).

Then tonight I had an epiphany:  for once, I am the girl in the relationship.  All of those times back when I was nagged for 'status talks' that I cringed.  Of course I knew what it was, they wanted that because they could sense exactly where they stood - they were in deeper than I was.  So what does that tell me?

I can't just stand still and wait to be forced out and the only other option is to commit to a direction that forces other things.  I also can't sit on a house w/ half of it sitting empty indefinitely.  Thirdly, my other wants are kind of screwed either way.  I know some things aren't in the cards for some people, but it doesn't make me any happier for the whole thing.

Wednesday, July 27, 2016

When you force answers on questions... you get answers that leave you less than content.  I remember a time in the past when "if" was the norm - long before it became "when".  I don't know that I want to relive any of that.

I'm now even more confused than I was - and now on multiple decisions.

Monday, July 25, 2016

I headed to my Favorite Egg's on Friday.  Sure, he had to work all day, but I got busy with house hunting related activities.  I started at a builder's place in the area I was liking... and while they said they could do something in a range I'm comfortable with the number went up too fast once I said it was weird to have a house with the 2nd/3rd bedroom in the basement.  Then we caught up with the agent to see a few houses.  Once was nice, but had a less than awesome kitchen and was too close to a loud/busy road for my liking.

Saturday we were up to meet her once again to see other places.  On this run I found two places that were quite nice - viable options!  I really liked the one, feeling the only thing it was missing from my want list was a walkout from the basement to the back yard.  It would require the addition of a fence too.  It had a great view, which didn't involve a ton of other houses, so that was a plus, and a great space for a home office ... or more formal dining room down the road.  The other I had written off because it more pricey - but after we discussed that it's really about the same price once you'd add a nice roof over the deck and a fence.  This one was a bit bigger too, but it had the garage in the basement.  Neither one has the finishes I really would prefer... but...

Sunday I returned to both of the aforementioned homes to reassess fully, and to take more pictures and video.   The second place couldn't get me in until later, so I wasn't home until later and I had to be here without the girls last night.  Tonight it's just good to be home and able to sit, but I'm hoping for a conversation to try and give me some clarity (or more confusion is more likely).

... It doesn't matter at the moment however, because I'm not sure what to do.  I know I can't sit on my thumbs if I'm interested or they'll be gone.  I don't feel like I have a win right now, unfortunately - and it's so much money to commit to due to uncertainties of any kind.  *sigh*

Feedback on this house continues to say that it is nice but not for them.  Better than feedback could be, but still disappointing.  It's still new on the market really, so I am not complaining.  It will happen and soon enough.

Friday, July 22, 2016

I nailed down my hours ahead of time, so I am OFF today!  It felt so good last night to know I didn't have to get up and go into work.  Of course, I still woke at 7am, but that's okay.  Lots of activity planned throughout the weekend - just as soon as I finish this coffee.

Wednesday, July 20, 2016

Two negatory responses on yesterday's showings and another scheduled for Thursday.  I had my review today and know what my raise will be for the year.  I'm grateful that we're not under a pay freeze, that's for sure, but I am still not in a celebrating type of mood.

When I got home I had mail from the lawyer tending to Mum's estate.  Sounds like a couple more months worth of wait given that there is now ANOTHER step and then another wait for something else to file.  This is beyond obscene at this point.  They want us all to file amended returns for 2015.  Why?  I didn't get a penny in 2015 (frankly I'll be surprised if I get a penny in 2016 at this point).  Her estate wasn't big enough for the IRS to care about and the PA taxes should already be removed before a penny of it comes my way.  So... wth.  Go ahead and try to read up on these forms and/or processes on your own, I dare you.  I wonder how much it's going to cost me to get my stuff amended.  The best part is they said "we told you that taxes should be done after x and y are done".  Seriously, it's July.  You wanted us to not do my taxes?  You know April 15th is the deadline, right?  When did you try to tell us this little "fact"?  Like a month ago.  You're an idiot.  Despite all of this you get to steal 10% of everything someone worked their whole life for.

If you're in need of a lawyer in Blair county let me know, I'll tell you who doesn't do anything without being nagged and just allows things to linger for months at a time.
Can't sleep. Just realized I neglected to put the trash out, so I got up and did that. Two more showings this evening and final word received to the negatory from Friday's showings.

Speaking of Friday, it certainly doesn't feel like "only" Tuesday.  *sigh* Need sleep. What a long week.

Monday, July 18, 2016

Yesterday I scored quality time with Beff. She joined me on a drive out towards my Favorite Egg's place where we met him for a brief lunch before splitting off to go to open houses. I made the drive mainly due to one house that went up just over a week ago that announced an open house. It was a good trip, but disappointing at the same time.

I saw one place that was really nice - loved the fenced yard and all inside, but it was pretty pricy especially since they skipped some of the higher end finishes (it was a wood deck, not trex; standard kitchen counters, not solid surface, etc). Another was ok but not my favorite layout - it too had a nice fenced yard ready to roll and some lower end finishes. Then a couple that were scratched pretty quick as they weren't really what I want, but for the lower price and open house I forced myself to consider.

Before these last two we went to the house I came for. There was a piece of paper on the door noting that the open house was cancelled. We happened into another open house that we hadn't planned on hitting because we saw signs. In talking with that agent, it turns out my worst fear - his clients put a bid in on that house. So it's under contract, gone, I didn't even get to see it and talk myself out of it for some reason. Driving that neighborhood we saw a lot of houses with wavy looking siding, so I'm trying to tell myself the builder wasn't up to par.

Speaking of builders, I also drove Beff by some of the other places I had contemplated. As we drove past the one complex I saw the sign noting an open house on some of the current builds, so we stopped in and I got to meet the folks I have emailed with and see a couple of their in progress builds. It would be at the tippy top of my personally imposed budget, but I'd love to consider a new place. Of course, that would mean a 6-7 month wait for it be built.

On that front, it looks like I'd have the time... no word on the showings from last week at this time. It is a very different market here vs there, that's for sure.

Saturday, July 16, 2016

For the first time ever (first time for Danika and first time since I was in North Carolina) I found what I think was a tick on Danika's elbow but it was larger than I'd expect.  The ticks I was forced to deal with in NC were soft bodied ticks - they were pretty darn big when "full".  It was dead however and pulled out easily, leaving a little bit of blood.  I bathed her today (mostly because she was due and I need to expedite all of this shedding) and sprayed my natural preventative on her, but I'm thinking I may need to use the biospot.  Like I said - the summer of all bugs/plagues.

I ran to the mall today too so I could use my Vicky's card for the first time in a year and a half and get my birthday discount.  Of course, while there I had to pick up my free goo from Bath and Body Works too.  I also made a Perkin's stop to cash in my free birthday Magnificent Seven breakfast.  Birthdays may not be my favorite, but at least I get free stuff.

Friday, July 15, 2016

Second day back on the market... and two showings (to the same family unit) down.  I am not going to lie, this excites me greatly and I'm hopeful.  Ultimately, even if an offer does not come I can't help but see God in all of this showing me how powerfully he can move.  I've doubted.  I've feared.  I've tried to hold close.  This is truly his moving and I'm grateful for the hope and light in this tunnel.  To think I may need to panic instead saying "I need to find a place pronto!"

I missed out on the group's trip to Shakespeare in the park this evening in order to get the dogs out, but I am thinking it was worth missing out on some quality time.

I celebrated by allowing myself to download a few songs I had saved on my Amazon wishlist... in particular, this one.  I can't wait to sit on a cruise ship balcony listening to this one.  Enjoy.

In the eye of the storm, you remain in control.  In the middle of the war, you guard my soul.  You alone are the anchor when when my sails are torn.  Your love surrounds me, in the eye of the storm.

Wednesday, July 13, 2016

All of the garbage went this morning (at 4:30am).  This is a very very good thing.  It also means that we're good for the house to get uploaded tonight and go live.  Again begins my living in a state of constant readiness.  I guess we'll see what happens.

Monday, July 11, 2016

Just two weeks ago there was a dead squirrel.  Today it was a dead baby skunk, right up against my back fence.  It was NOT there at lunch time, but when I came home it was there stiff, white crud dried at its mouth, with flies all around.  All I can say is if there is someone in the neighborhood poisoning "nuisance" animals, what with the risk of said poisoned animals getting into areas where they could poison pets?!... I'm going to stop right there.

The good news is the garbage people never took my trash last week, so there were plenty of bags in which it could be placed/tied off for disposal.
I still lay in bed feeling like my skin is crawling for a while each night.  Last night it was well past 1am before I finally crashed, which is pretty impressive considering by 3pm I was wanting a nap.  I was woken by the sound of a garbage truck around 4am, but it was not my providers.  (I guess I should try contacting them - again - today since they never responded to me this past Friday.)  I also still woke up before the alarm went off.

Lack of sleep does not work well for me.  It makes me cranky and removes what intellect I do normally have.  I just need to get through all of this a little while longer, right?

I had yet another headache last night, so walking off without my glasses this morning, which I stupidly wore home on Friday, is not a good thing.  I'm sure my eyes will be on fire come 5pm.

Saturday, July 09, 2016

My eyes popped open in the middle of the night again.  This needs to stop.  I need to get through the current state of things and get back into a settled world.

I did still get moving this morning, pulling out the pressure washer.  The siding looks much nicer as a result, as does the apartment deck and garage door.  Of course, while out there I saw even more ants and another wasp climbing under a spot - so the pest people need to come back again without doubt (since they came to retreat for ants yesterday without calling me, like I asked them to do so I could meet them here).  As always, while crossing off one I think I noticed other things.

I wanted to turn over the little garden area too, and pull the weeds out of there, since I'm not growing in it, but I think I'll wait for some rain to soften all of that up.  I didn't think about it until after I put away the hose/pressure washer, or I would have doused it myself.

The garbage people never came this week, so that's just perfect given how much needs to go (which will likely require a couple of weeks worth of them taking the max) and the desire to get it gone so the listing can go live again.  I picked up a good dozen cigarette butts out there along my driveway too.  *grr*

Before I get on to other tasks that need crossed off this weekend I'm going to sit and watch the last episode from the latest season of Orange is the New Black.

Thursday, July 07, 2016

Of course, as soon as I start to dig in, asking for disclosures etc the agent for the one house I was warming up to writes my agent to tell her they're expecting an offer soon on it.  It's been on the market for 6 months, but because I gave it a second glance it is a hot commodity now. *sigh* It's okay, it was more than I want to spend and not quite everything I wanted, but it does make me sad when I see some I earmarked sell.  On the other hand if it was an attempt to press me to make an offer (which is what I thought the one a while back was doing when the agent was an ass - refusing to add photos to the listing because they were expecting an offer - and then it sat listed for another couple of months), then you've failed miserably, as it instead made me simply put this on my list of places to keep an eye on to see how long before it shows a sold price.

In other news, I have been monitoring a bump on Saffy's nose for the past couple of months.  It looked like it grew a little more, so I called and got us into the vet today.  He didn't want to take a needle to it to take a sample to know for sure what it is but he did say it does not look like the equivalent of a dog wart, instead it's something (can't remember what he called it) that comes in three 'levels' - only one of which is a concern, and it's a concern even if you remove it - the other two aren't worries, but if it becomes larger it would warrant anesthesia and removal.  So we're monitoring for additional growth.  Ultimately, he wasn't overly concerned, so I am not either.  But please do offer up a prayer for my baby.

In the mean time I had read about using castor oil to eliminate growths on dogs.  I don't have any castor oil - and isn't that the stuff people used to make themselves puke?  Doesn't seem like something I want where she could potentially lick at it or wipe at it.  I kept reading and found that some people claim vitamin E can help.  THAT I have... so we put our first application on this evening.

Wednesday, July 06, 2016

I'm feeling super blessed.  Turns out it was just the power supply.  I tried another one after work today and things started right up.  I'm so so so glad it wasn't something that involved needing to take the computer apart and tinker about in any way or slave the hard drive to pull my data.  Fortunately, I wasn't at the complete freakout mode over that (yet), but I was getting anxious to get home today and see if my debugging options were all for not.
Last night I got straight to work in the apartment. All is inventoried, the carpets are vacuumed, the bathroom is clean(er), the counters are wiped down, the floor is scrubbed, and everything is out to the curb in the hopes that they'll take more than I think tomorrow. After starting a load of laundry and a hot shower to avoid feeling skeevy after I headed to treat my hard work to some sushi.

When I got home I discovered that my computer is dead. Won't start. Light flashes once. Removing power/battery and trying to force/hard reboot nothing. Likely either the power supply or the motherboard. I'm not happy. It was one year old in June. I'm trying not to freak out. I'm going to take home another power supply as one last debug, but beyond that I'm at a loss. Thanks Dell (and Obama). I guess my hardware failure today wasn't as bad as the one that took down the office I connect to for a majority of my work.

For whatever reason the Mon-Tuesdays after a long weekend always suck extra hard.

Tuesday, July 05, 2016

I'm so cranky. I slept well this weekend at my Favorite Egg's, but not at all here at home. It isn't the safe sanctuary it once was to me. I didn't fall asleep as fast and my eyes popped open at 5am this morning. I tried to fall back asleep but instead I sat there running through my head all of the things I need to hurry up and get done so the house is showable again. I eventually got up and put the new covers on the mattress and box springs. That is no fun task when it is you vs a queen sized bed. But it kept me busy until it was time that I could pick up the dogs from camp. As I went to leave I saw that a-hole robin sitting at my front window. It made me want to cry - even if I scrub all of his sh*t away he's just going to crap everything back up - including the chairs once I remove the covers.

We did have a decent weekend though. The realtor I had been working with was not available, so on Friday I met the listing realtor for a home that had intrigued me for a while. The house itself was pretty neat, but the location really blew it for me. It is right by trailer pads that the owner's mother owns (she lives next door). It is up a bit of a hill too making the yard a bit less appealing. The driveway is also tended to in the winter by the mother as an easement to the trailers. So what happens when the Mom is no longer around? I'm out. Saturday I met another realtor that my Favorite Egg had met at an open house and she took us around to a few other places. All were nice enough - the one stand out was one that wasn't strong on my list initially - and kind of got added because I wanted to see the house next door. It had a great finished basement and would be a very viable option - if the price were lower. I am not a fan of the white kitchen that is there. It also had the water run off catchment behind it, which didn't leave me feeling great. Either way, it was at the top of my self-imposed spending limit. No HOA, but they say they have "protected covenants" on the deeds. What exactly does THAT mean? I did really like the general area that this and the one on Friday night were located in.

Sunday we headed to visit with his parents before splitting apart so us gals could attend his cousin's baby shower. Then we went to his high school friends' place for game night. Monday there was a bit more driving past some places that are listed to get vibes on communities.