Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Easter Bucket Fun

Count me in for a couple of these absolutely adorable Easter buckets from my friend Hazel. She is an incredibly talented artist. I was thrilled to see that she is going to be selling these cute buckets at her Etsy shop starting Friday afternoon and for only $25. How sweet would these look with your little chickadee's monogram? No doubt, these buckets would have tons of uses far beyond holding the Easter Bunny's goodies. I know that we'll be waking up on Easter morning to a couple of these brimming with fun.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Not Counting My Chickens Yet, but...

It appears the luck of the Irish has come our way, and we have a signed contract on our house!!! While I'm hesitant to get overly excited, this does look like the real deal and we should close on our house the last week of April. Believe it or not, we had a semi-bidding war going on, and I'm happy to say the really nice people "won out." Of course, we would have loved to have made more money on the sale, but given the state of the economy we are thrilled to have sold it and made any money at all.

We'll continue to keep our fingers crossed until we sign on that final dotted line and have a happy little check in our hands. Now we can begin to focus on the remodel and all the financing fun that involves.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Keeping the Faith

Oh, how I wish our house would sell. I keep telling myself that when the time is right it will and my prayer continues to be for patience and faith in God's plan. Last week, we were sure we were on the road to a sale. The buyer "loved" our house and was anxious to write an offer...well, thanks, but no thanks...I'm not sure you could even call what they made "an offer." It was incredibly low and they would not even negotiate. Even our realtor who is super conservative and very realistic was dumbfounded by the offer, not to mention the unkind demeanor of the buyer's agent (who just so happens dates the man who was making the offer). Anyway, we started last weekend with high hopes and those were quickly dashed by Sunday evening.

Meanwhile, our design plans for our current home are moving along and I'm so excited with what we are coming up with. We are so blessed to be working with such a neat group of guys who "totally get" what we want. We're meeting again tomorrow and I can't wait to see what more they have come up with. It's so fun to go to their offices and see the 3-D presentation of the plans. I feel like I'm on HGTV. Honestly, the firm we're using should have their own show ~ the guys have such personality and are so fun to be around. I've learned how important the relationship is between the design/builder and client. I feel so comfortable letting them know if I don't like something, and they don't even hurt my feelings when they tell me one of my ideas won't work.

So for now, we'll keep plugging along with the design and praying that our Texas house sells soon. Our realtor called this morning to say that another buyer was planning to write an offer this weekend, but that it might be a "low ball" offer as well. So we'll see.......

Monday, February 16, 2009

First Things First

As excited and anxious as we are to get started on our remodeling, there's one little detail that needs to be taken care of first. Our house in Houston still needs to sell. It's been on the market since mid-October and while we've had several interested families, they need to sell their homes, too. Go figure, we'd try and sell our house in these weird economic times. So if by chance, you know of anyone looking for a house in the northwest suburbs of Houston, here's the link for all the details.

We're hopeful that something will happen soon. We've buried not one, but two, St. Joseph statues and trust that when the time is right it will sell. In the meantime, our architects have begun the design process and I'm having fun flipping through magazines getting ideas.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Trading Spaces

In December we said "so long" to warm winter days in the Lone Star State and "hello" to frigid arctic temps in the Land of 10,000 Lakes. Our move from Houston to Minneapolis would bring many changes, no doubt. None more dramatic than our "new" house. We were going from a newly built, 4600 square foot, 4 bedroom home with a pool to a circa 1941 cottage complete with one bathroom and 1300 finished square feet. Our house is in a perfect location ~ a charming neighborhood where we can walk everywhere: school, the bank, post office, grocery store, parks and ice rinks. While we love our "little house" we knew it might cramp our lifestyle a bit. All five of us ~ dad, mom, big sis (14), big bro (11) and little sis (5)~ one big happy (most of the time) family.

How could we survive in such tight cozy quarters? It's not easy...a teenage daughter and one bathroom...need I say more??? Fortunately, this is only temporary as we have just begun the process of a home (and lifestyle) renovation. Although challenging, I must admit this "exercise" in "not so big house" living is teaching us a lot and giving us a real sense of our true needs (like a really big mudroom with benches to sit and take your wet, snowy boots off).

As we embark on this journey, I thought it would be great to keep family and friends updated on the ups & downs and ins & outs of managing a major home renovation all while trying to lead a somewhat "normal" lifestyle. Should be interesting?!?!?!