Took some more photos today (really John? You're out there so infrequently!) with the carpet going in and the backsplash in the kitchen almost complete. Enjoy!
Family Room receives carpet
Dining room with carpet too!
Dining Room from above
Kitchen view showing nearly complete backsplash
Butler's Pantry Backsplash & cabinet Detail
Looking Toward The Future . . . . Reflecting On The PastSo I signed the documents for my new home today! We still won't close until sometime next week, but the paperwork is all out of the way. Now I just gotta write a big fat check to cover my 5% down payment and some various other closing costs. Fortunately I have it and it won't be a stretch to write it. But now that I've signed, it's really hitting home that I am actually buying a new home. It's an exciting and terrifying step in my life. Exciting because I've wanted this for so long. Teri and I started looking at new houses about a year before I was laid off from Adobe. We never stopped looking. We've known for awhile that our current home was way too small for the two of us and our jungle of cats and a dog. So it is definitely time. I'm excited to move in.
And terrifying . . . My self talk is going something fierce though with the new payment. Granted, it's only about $500.00 more per month than what I'm paying now and it's easily twice the home. So really I don't have a lot to worry about. But being self employed, there are no guarantees that your income will stay the same, or even increase. So who knows what the future will bring. I do believe the systems I'm putting in place now will carry me far into the future of my Real Estate career, regardless of market conditions. Save except maybe a total market collapse. I don't see that happening anytime soon, so I'm confident.
But I was sitting on the couch last night getting caught up on my favorite sick little indulgence, American Idol (GO SOUL PATROL!), and it occurred to me that I have lived in my home now for over 10 years. It is the first home I ever bought. I can still remember the binder I put together to take into the lender to get pre-approved for my home loan. I had all my bank statements, W-2's, letters of recommendation, etc. etc. The lender later used me as an anecdote to other clients "I had this one client, John, you should have seen the binder he had to get pre-approved . . . " My buddy Brandon and I were living in a crappy little duplex in University Place at the time and our landlord was a complete ass. When we moved in we noticed a soft spot in the floor of the bathroom. We kept on the landlord to fix it, so finally one day he came by in the dead of winter and tore out about 2/3 of the floor in the bathroom and left. He never came back to fix it. It was like that when we moved out. I was either going to buy a new car or a house, and the landlord sealed the deal on that. I didn't want to get stuck with another s***ty landlord, so I bought my house. The first 6 years or so that I lived there, Brandon was again my roommate. He paid me rent and we had an absolute blast during the time he was there. We met some really good friends in the neighborhood, most importantly my next door neighbor, Mike. Between the three of us, we had some seriously EPIC parties. Mike and I even built a gate in the fence between our two properties so when we had the two house house parties, it was easier for the patrons to go between the homes. The standard line was something like this: "In this house over here, we have burgers and brats on the BBQ, the hot tub is 104 degrees and we have croquet available in the lawn. In the other home, we have ribs and steaks on the BBQ, the hot tub is 102 degrees and volleyball is set up in the back" We would usually pass out in our respective homes (or closets) around 4:30 or 5 in the morning. The sun was too bright when we were that drunk.
My other neighbor and friend, Leo (previously mentioned in this blog for his memorial) was always the one watching out for the neighborhood. If you wanted to know anything about anyone, Leo was your guy. Just a kind man that would give you the shirt off his back . . . well if he ever wore a shirt that is . . . or shoes now that I think about it.
Brandon and I had a host of roommates through those years, Bob and Dave come to mind. So at any one time you really never knew who was going to be home when you got there, but there was always someone there. Always someone to talk to.
Mike moved on about the time I was laid off from Adobe. He and I still stay in contact as best we can. I still mean to make it down to California to hang out. (I promise Mike, I'm gonna make it) Brandon had moved out shortly before that and Teri had moved in. Leo passed away earlier this year. The neighborhood dynamics have definitely changed. Spanaway doesn't have the best reputation in the world, but our neighborhood has always been really decent. For the most part everyone takes good care of their homes, their land and each other. I'm going to be sad to leave it. Other than growing up in my parents home, this is the place I've called home the longest. I've put a lot of blood and sweat into making this home comfortable. I've still got a fair amount of work to finish before I'll feel comfortable handing the keys over to someone else. But in my heart I know it's time to move on. I briefly considered keeping the home and using it as a rental. I just honestly don't think I could. It's weird, it's only a home, an inanimate object. But all of the memories that are far from inanimate in my head keep me from wanting to hold on to it. It would just break my heart to have someone move in that trashed it and then left it for me to fix again. I just couldn't do it. I think my mom's method of dealing with moving is the best. Close and lock the door, drive away and never go back. Remember it how you loved it.
I'm thankful to my home for allowing me the opportunity to live in it. I just hope I've treated it as well as it's treated me. I never had to worry about staying warm or dry. I never felt insecure. I will miss it. I just hope I can find someone to love it as much as I have. (Go ahead and flame me for going off the deep end, it's OK. I'll understand)
Embarassed Really . . .
OK, I know it's been awhile since I've blogged, but I have been really busy. Mostly though I'm embarassed with myself and was avoiding coming clean here. After my Doctor told me my blood pressure actually increased after losing 13 pounds and quitting coke and ended up doubling up on one of my meds, I snapped. OK snapped is probably a bit harsh of a word, but I did revert to what I know best, food. I basically said f*** it . . . it's not worth it. So I've been going to the drive thru nearly every morning since (May 5th) . . . I've been drinking Coke (Thank me Coke, you should see a return to profitability this quarter) and I've been avoiding the gym. It's disgusting really. And I'm embarassed to have to put it down here, but that's the whole point of having this thing right? To purge. To come clean. To have a record of what works and what doesn't. I'll stop short of saying that I'm imparting some wisdom on future generations so they can learn from my mistakes. LOL! But yeah, I've been wallowing in my own brain for the last 3 weeks and not doing myself any good. I don't think anyone that isn't me really understands how much I beat myself up on a daily basis. How s***ty I talk to myself regularly. Recently overheard in my head "Hey dumb a** what were you thinking?" . . . "You lazy f***er get off your fat a** and do something about it" . . . it really is true, if you let other people talk to you the way you talk to yourself, you'd beat the crap outta em'. I'm mental, no doubt about it.
On the busy front . . . I feel like I'm being pulled in so many directions right now it isn't even funny. I've written a tremendous amount of business over the past 6 weeks, like $2M in sales. It's been awesome, but every one is a lot of work. In particular I have one set of clients that are driving me particularly batty. They call or e-mail nearly every day for an update. Honestly, I call them as soon as I know something. But that apparently isn't good enough. They wanna know when they're coming in to sign documents, have we gotten the appraisal back yet, do the buyer's want to move in early, etc. etc. Yesterday we shot literally like 6 e-mails back and forth and I just wanted to scream "DO YOU REALIZE THAT YOU ARE NOT MY ONLY CLIENT? DO YOU REALIZE IN ADDITION TO YOUR TRANSACTION, A) I HAVE MY OWN I'M TRYING TO GET CLOSED AS WELL AS LIKE 10 OTHERS?" But of course I couldn't do that. I learned a long time ago, any of my own business takes a back seat to my client's. Even on Sunday (my supposed day off) Teri and I were packing and some clients of mine had just gotten back into town. I had e-mailed them a home that I knew was just about perfect for them. Of course they wanted to see it and the only day they could see it was Sunday. So "Sorry Hon, I have to go show this house" Teri is a trooper, she understands. She doesn't like it, but she at least understands and puts up with it.
With all of that going on, there is the business of my house getting completed so we can move in. The builder assures me that we can close on or before the 25th of May. That's next Thursday folks. One week away. I'm going in to sign all my closing documents tomorrow morning. But there is a lot of work to do on the house. The painters finally "de-bagged" everything on Monday. Meaning they took off all the masking they had done to paint the millwork. The millwork looks amazing. The tile guys started yesterday working on the tile backsplash in the Kitchen (see pic below) and it's coming along nicely. They should just about finish it up today and start working on the fixes in the master bathroom we requested. In addition, the plumbers were in today getting all the sinks and toilets installed as well as the hot water heater. I'd guess they'll finish up tomorrow. The electricians should be back today or tomorrow to do their last bit of finish work. They have one more transformer to install for the under cabinet lighting we had installed, they'll trim out the backsplash, and hang our entry light. Also we found a dead short on the circuit that controls the master bathroom. My guess is it's just a bad ground in one of the light fixtures, so it'll be an easy fix. The carpet guys are in today (see pic below) getting the pad and tack strips installed and they'll do the carpet tomorrow. The drywall guys were also in today fixing all the minor imperfections on the walls that we blue taped yesterday. So we've got no less than 4 trades working on the house today, so they are definitely giving it the ol' college try.
They'll put the doors back on later this week and install all the door hardware. The closet guys have to come in and install all the closet shelving. The landscaper has to come out and spread our dirt out back. The appliances have to get hooked up and tested. The painters have to come back and do their touchups on the walls and paint our two accent walls and the front and back doors. The whole house has to get cleaned. We have to do our walkthrough. LOTS to do in 8 days.
This Saturday, we'll be having all our window blinds installed. Next Thursday we have some trees and some furniture delivered. Next Friday our POD gets delivered. My parents get into town on Tuesday. I'm stressed beyond belief. I even turned down the opportunity to work with a new client this week. I just knew I couldn't give them the attention they'd need over the next couple of weeks.
To quote Charlie Brown "AUUUUUUUGGGGGGGGGGGGGHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!"
Tile Backsplash in Kitchen with Copper Accents
Family Room showing carpet pad (no, that's not the color carpet we picked!) and the painted mantle. Also detailing drywall repairs.
My Blood is Boiling . . .
My heart is human, my blood is boiling, my brain I.B.M.
Not to steal lyrics from Styx or anything, but the day is just shaping up to be a crap day. The weather is beautiful here in the northwest, but I've been getting nothing but sh***y news all day! I know I get to choose whether or not to have a crappy day, but everyone else isn't making it easy on me to make a different choice!
So I started today off by going to the Doctor. One of my big goals this year is to reduce or eliminate my high blood pressure medication. Well after the nurse and the doctor both took my blood pressure, he increased one of my meds by 100%. Benicar . . . instead of 20mg per day now I'll be taking 40mg per day. I was so stoked to show him that I had lost 12 pounds, had virtually eliminated High Fructose Corn Syrup and Trans Fat from my diet and was working out 3 days a week. I thought for sure my BP would at least be somewhat normal. It wasn't overly high, 135/86 . . . but he increased the meds none the less. I did sucessfully lobby for: An MRI for my knee and shoulder, a sleep apnea test, and a trip to an allergist. These are all things I've been dealing with for years (well, I don't really know about the sleep apnea) and I'm tired of them and want them fixed. So it was a positive trip on that note. I'll be seeing him again in a month.
NEXT, I headed out to the house . . . again, it's looking fabulous, but we've had some lights that have been on back order for a few weeks now. They finally showed up and they ordered the wrong lights for the powder room and the master bathroom. So hopefully it won't take a LONG time to get the right ones out there again. I hear on Monday they'll be there. Keep your fingers crossed. They got the linoleum, formica and tile backsplashes done in the laundry room and the 2nd bath upstairs. Those look great. Then I went to check on the tile in the master bathroom. Everything was correct except the shower . . . (damn I sound like a whiner) . . . the shower was supposed to have 12 X 12 field tiles with four rows of 2 X 4 accent tile at eye level. Well they only put in one row of the 2 X 4 accent tile and it literally gets lost in with the rest of the tile. So I called the interior designer and he had written down one row not four. So he called the builder and the builder said "Give him what he wants, but I'm not paying for it" which I guess is the correct response. So the interior company is splitting the cost with me. I don't know yet what that cost is, but hadn't really intended to spend any more money.
NEXT, the builder calls me. He says "you know that 50 yards of dirt I let you put in the back yard? Well I doubt we can get a Certificate of Occupancy from the county until you have that dirt spread. The inspectors want to see the yard at final grade. Sorry, I didn't even think of that when I let you dump it back there. So can you make sure you get it spread before we close?" S**t! I wasn't planning on spreading it until I had a few assistants to help me get it done. Now I have to hire a landscape crew to come in and spread the dirt before we move in. More money.
NEXT, my lender calls . . . or rather I get an e-mail from one of his assistants. It says "Rate Lock Information" on the e-mail. Now I had asked my lender a couple months ago to lock my rate. He said "Don't worry about it, I got you covered". My rate was supposed to be 5.75% on the first mortgage. The e-mail shows 6.25%. The payments had gone up by $300.00/month. So I called him and he said they should have only gone up by $60.00 per month. I know rates have been rising. I know even the 6.25% rate is good today. But I was really looking forward to 5.75% and had even asked him to lock it. I love my lender, he's awesome. He does things not many lenders can do. But sometimes he's so busy some things slip through the cracks. Like this. I hate bugging him and I know he'll fix it. But this on top of the rest of the day just about sent me over the edge. UPDATE:
My lender just called, he was able to get me the 5.75% rate on my 1st mortgage. The day is a bit brighter!
So today, my blood is boiling. My brain feels like a TI 99/4a
, not I.B.M. If you don't get it, don't ask, it wouldn't be funny after I explained it anyway. Click on the link and you'll be enlightened.
I'm reminded of Jay's Rap from Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back
"F**k F**k F**k Mother Mother F**k Mother Mother F**k F**k . . . "
Hope you have a better day than I am!
So as to avoid being called a 'blog slacker' . . .
Here is my first blog post of the week. Teri and I had a good weekend. I took her to Twin Falls for some hiking. She missed the last hike because she was sick, so we went up there with just the two of us and hiked to the upper falls lookout and back. The hills still get my heart rate up, which is cool. Teri took a ton of photos, and so as to not be redundant, I won't show you a whole lot of photos of the falls, since I posted those last time. However, we did hike down to the lower falls lookout which is a cool outcropping that puts you right next to the falls. Teri was a trooper and went down and looked out. She has a paralyzing fear of heights, so it was really a challenge for her to go down there and look over. I'm proud that she did it. We'll conquer that fear yet. So here are a couple photos for you. One of Teri on the bridge and the other I took of the lower falls from the aforementioned outcropping. Cool how the mist hovers in the air . . .
[left] Lower Twin Falls from the Lower Outlook [right] Teri on the Twin Falls bridge
On Friday we both got massages at Massage Envy in Puyallup. I was in dire need of a massage, this whole house building process has gotten me pretty well stressed. The masseuse I had was far better than the last one I had there, but she still bruised my back a bit. I guess I was pretty tight. :-)
This week I've been an exercise slacker. I missed my workout on Monday, intended to make it up on Tuesday, but didn't. I did make my Wednesday workout today however, see exercise link on right. It was tough to drag myself to the gym, but I made it and I'm glad I did. My weights are still increasing, I guess I didn't have a real high opinion of how strong I was when I started. For example, I started with 115 lbs on the bench press and today I did 135 lbs. It was cool to put the 45 pound plates on the bar, made me feel like a manly man. (Insert Tim Allen grunting noises here). I am however getting to the point where the last of the sets is getting tough to do and I expect in the next week or so, I won't be able to complete the sets Men's Health prescribes for me.
The house is progressing nicely. The tile guys are there this week. The tile is in around the fireplace, the powder room, the mud room and they're finishing up the master bathroom today. The painters should be in later this week and early next week painting all the trim inside. Granite slab countertops get installed next Monday and carpet is the following Monday. I don't think we'll be moving in the weekend of the 19th - 21st, but maybe the following Tuesday/Wednesday ish. Here are some photos to keep you amused.
A couple photos of the home without cars in front, etc.
Slate Tile around Fireplace
Ceramic Tile on Master Vanity
[left] Ceramic Tile on Floor of Mudroom [right] Slate Tile on floor of Powder Room Downstairs
Have a great day! Enjoy the sunshine!
Exercise Log 5/3/06
Here is the gym workout I completed today:
|Barbell Bench Press||135 Lbs||8|
| ||135 Lbs||8|
| ||135 Lbs||8|
|Pec Deck Flyes||80 Lbs||11|
| ||80 Lbs||11|
|One Arm Dumbell Bent Over Rows||50 Lbs||8|
| ||50 Lbs||8|
| ||50 Lbs||8|
|Wide Grip Front Pull-Downs||125 Lbs||10|
| ||125 Lbs||10|
|Machine Low Back Extensions||170 Lbs||10|
|Stair Climbing Machine||2.10 Miles|