It feels like the night before Christmas only with a bittersweet twist. I've been dreaming of and planning for a move for many years. Now that the time has come it is full of emotions I didn't - but should have - anticipated.
The best decision I made was to take the entire day off of work. I was able to start the day slow and get some more last minute packing and cleaning taken care of. I also scheduled my last hair cut with Zoe at Juut Salon Spa at the Gaviidae in Minneapolis. She has been my stylist for five years and though I've had some great cuts in my lifetime, she tops the list for knowing how to work with my thick, course, wavy/colicky hair. This has nothing to do with my move - it is just a coincidence that Zoe is also moving. She has a fantastic career opportunity with Juut and will be in California. So, we've been trading moving/career change stories for the past couple of months.
The afternoon was spent boxing up our electronics which we will be moving ourselves - along with 125 bottles of Scott's home brew. I do not watch a lot of TV these days but it is strange not to have the option - even if it is only for 24 hours.
In the afternoon we had our final walk-through of our new home. It was gray and dreary so it was the first time seeing the home when the lights needed to be turned on. The weather and bad lighting seemed to also darken my mood. I was suddenly seeing flaws and things I'd want to change whereas the other previous visits left me feeling like we'd hardly have to lift a finger after moving. I shuffled from room to room in a daze and became overwhelmed. I'll also admit to feeling sad and scared. Did we make the right decision? Why are we leaving a home that has three recently remodeled rooms? Why didn't I realize that the office doesn't have a door? Why doesn't this original 1950's bathroom seem charming today?
It didn't help that the seller and his team of buddy movers were there. I wanted to take my time going from room to room snapping photos and imagining our own furniture and belongings in each space. That romantic vision was not to be. That said, the seller was very nice and showed us how we can make use of the built-in speakers on the main-floor. He lived in the home for 17 years and highlighted all of the benefits of the neighborhood and the excitement I've had since finding our home returned.
After we were done with the walk-through we ran over the details of the closings with Brian. We are closing on our current home at 9:00 AM and using the proceeds of the sale towards the down payment of our new home which we close on at 10:30 AM the same day. Brian decided to make our afternoon extra fun (read: stressful) by mentioning that if the final numbers are off that we'd need a cashier's check from our bank. The title company will only accept a personal check up to $2,000 and while I was confident the proceeds from our current home would be more than enough at closing, I live by the motto "it is better to be safe than sorry" so off to the bank we went.
On to the next stressful task - picking up the UHaul cargo van. It actually ended up being a quick and pain-free experience so we were in and out of there in no time. We returned home to pack the van with our electronics, computers, cleaning supplies and beer. Originally we were going to use the van as a way to save street space for our movers but at our walk-through we realized that was a horrible idea. Scott backed the van up to our garage so you can't get the back doors open and then parked his car next to the side doors so you can't get those open. We also left our garage security lights on.
Soon after we finished loading the van, I got a call from our mortgage guy and he went through the settlement statement (HUD documents). It was a huge relief to know that instead of having to write a check to Title, they will be writing us a check! Time to celebrate.
We went to the only place that made sense for the last night living in Armatage - we had to go to Pizzeria Lola. We had a lot of fun and it was great to decompress before heading back to our empty home. Our neighbor Karen graciously agreed to take care of Stewie during our actual move so he is having a sleep-over at her house. She has a new dog, Louie so hopefully they're either getting along or ignoring each other.
I wish I would have been able to sleep through the night but much like the night before Christmas it is impossible.
I'm testing the Weebly iPhone app for this post. I could see this being quite useful when I'm onthe bus or on vacation.
On my mind today is the remaining tasks on the moving to-do list.
Tonight I'm donating our refrigerator and freezer food to a Co-op on campus. I had great intentions of using it all in creative recipes but of course decided Gandhi Mahal take-out was a much better plan.
I'llalso bring our remaining boxes to the garage and clean.
I'll probably also manage to drive by our new house for the hundredth time...
Packed boxes have taken over our house.
We started the packing process when we decided to sell our home so it feels like this move is never ending. We have packed up the majority of our belongings with the exception of essential day-to-day items.
Speaking of essential, over the past two months we have made five trips to Arc Value Village with loads of household goods no longer deemed necessary. I am the opposite of a hoarder in that I start tweaking when I am surrounded by too much stuff. I have to actively resist the temptation to call 1-800-Got-Junk and have them take everything.
As I go through each room I assess if we've used an item over the past year. If we haven't and it doesn't hold sentimental value, it was donated or recycled. The hardest items to part with were related to Scottoberfest - an annual party we held for eight years in the backyard of our current home. We are downsizing our garage space from 2 1/2 to 1 stall so we had to make the tough decision to get rid of most of the party supplies (100 bowls and spoons for chili and more than 100 tasting glasses for the beer). We haven't decided what to do with the tables yet - they were expensive so I'm hesitant to just give them away.
I am doing my best to get rid of stuff safely. We recycled old paint and other remodeling materials at the Hennepin County drop off facility for household hazardous waste and recycling. I've also learned how to safely dispose of medications - again through Hennepin County at their medicine drop off sites.
When I'm not packing, it seems i'm busy mentally decorating our new home. I have an on-again, off-again relationship with Pinterest and right now I've taken our relationship to a new level nearing obsession. It's gotten so bad that I want to pin real-life objects and when I see things I like I immediately know which board it belongs on. Pathetic. That said, I am noticing patterns in what I like which I am not sure I'd see if I didn't use Pinterest. I'm hoping to enlist the help of friends and possibly a professional as we decorate this new home. Stay tuned!
For years, Scott and I have gone back and forth on whether or not to move. Since the home was purchased near the height of the housing market, there were several years in which we wouldn't have been able to sell it even if we tried. During those years, we kept ourselves busy with making home improvements. Recently the thought of moving started nagging at me again and after a false start this spring, we finally listed our home on August 15, 2012. Five days later, after only one open house, we had our first offer - which we accepted.
The process of getting our home "show ready" made us fall more in love with it and surprisingly made the hunt for our new home more of a challenge. After looking at 50+ houses all over south/southwest Minneapolis, St. Louis Park, Edina and Golden Valley, we have found our next home. It is a mere 1.5 miles away from our current home and is in one of my favorite spots in Minneapolis.
We close on both properties on October 19 - a day that is guaranteed to be insane. Before that crazy day arrives, I'll take a look back on our time in my little green house and document our transition into our new home.
The Nivens Family