Things are starting to normalize.
The kitchen is mostly put away. We may shift things around a bit more but all the essentials are in place.
Most of the essential bathroom things have been put away, although we need to install a medicine cabinet in the master bath and figure out a few minor storage solutions for the time being. But we are able to do the necessaries and can mostly find what we need.
Our offices are functional (mostly) and the living room is also functional, although most things are still in boxes because we will be painting all the living/dining walls within 2 weeks; not worth unpacking decor and other non-essentials quite yet.
The other non-essentials, all art/decor and the garages are still pretty much in total disarray, mostly because we need to paint every room rather sooner than later, so it doesn’t make sense to unpack totally yet. Also, three of the rooms will be shifting responsibilities within the next 6-8 months (hopefully) so things are a bit tentative. My office is currently my office + guest room but will become my office + creative space, and Keith’s art room will become the guest room + sewing/other project room, and the attached garage will become his art studio + utility room as soon as we can get some work done on it. The big garage/barn will be storage, gym, workshop and large-project space. So… lots of work to be done.
But the routines are coming back, and I am cooking again, and we are able to take time to relax and enjoy our new home now and again.
Still, there is a lot of adjusting and fixing that needs to be done. Yesterday we noticed that the lights were flickering rather a lot, so we called the power company. Someone arrived towards the end of the day, only to discover that a connection in the outdoor breaker box was arcing and very dangerous. Thank goodness we called! Super scary. Turns out that the guy who came out is a neighbor, just a few houses down (actually quite a bit down the road because there aren’t many houses out here, but he still counts as a neighbor). He was extremely nice and stayed until 7:30 pm to fix the problem, even running to his own workshop and the hardware store to get tools and do what needed to be done. I will be making some kind of treat this weekend to bring over for sure! Small-town life.
But, we are getting on with things. This weekend I am taking a wooden spoon carving class at the local art center. I am actually very excited about this because I had the opportunity to do this in college but was being treated for a hand injury at the time and couldn’t complete that portion of the class, so I missed out on this project. I’ve always sort of wished that I had been able to do that, so this is my way of finally completing that project. I’m also starting up my ceramics class again in a few weeks, and am looking forward to a woodworking class this fall, plus a mediation training (both for work & life, I’m not sure where it will go but it sounds interesting). I am looking forward to building or installing our chicken coop, our bee hives, and thinking about a duck area as well (just a couple duckies…). And of course, a lot of house projects. Fun, busy times ahead.
I am reading two books right now. The first is the second Russell & Holmes book which I have been waiting for, literally for months (from the library). I love it and all I want to do is read it. The second is this home-decorating book that I got for $1 at OSUsed (ongoing university-sponsored used-stuff junk sale) that was published in 1992. I got it because I thought it was going to be mostly about cottage decorating, and because it doesn’t have any photographs (my thought was that it wouldn’t be as dated). I don’t know, it was chatty and I liked what I read while standing in line, and I generally like home-making books of just about any kind. It is about decorating a cottage (it says it’s for any home but it’s really about comfy-cottage style), but also about how to bring your own personality into your home, plus a lot about how to organize rooms, which is interesting and timely. It does have some funny bits, mostly about how “men really do care about how their homes look!” (really, 1990s?) and God shows up in some odd places, but I’m enjoying it and it’s the perfect before-Holmes warm-up book when I get into bed at the end of the day. A few pages of charming, sort-of dated decor advice… then off to London circa 1920 with Mary Russell and Sherlock Holmes. Why did I not know about these books before Shea told me about them last year? They’ve been out since the mid-90s!
Our real estate agent came over today for a brief tour of the new house (she had not seen it before, we did For Sale By Owner on the new house and only needed help with occasional paperwork). She liked the new house a lot (hard to tell with agents but I think she genuinely liked it?) and also filled us in on the close call we had with the house we just sold. The first offer we accepted on our house felt really bad for a lot of reasons and it wasn’t going super smoothly, and we just felt like it as a disaster waiting to happen, so when they missed the deadline for the earnest money, we took the opportunity to cancel the agreement. The other agent is known locally to be “a shark” (as many people nicely characterized her) and although we did hear a little of the fuss at the time, after a few days we didn’t hear anything more and moved on with the second offer we accepted. However, apparently behind the scenes, it was a big huge mess and there were threats of litigation, etc. Our agent very kindly did not tell us any of this, knowing that we were on solid legal ground with our cancellation, but apparently she suffered several sleepless nights worrying about whether we’d get notice of any litigation against our house, which would have impeded our being able to purchase THIS house. Anyway, it all ended well, the buyer was able to get a different house that she loves, the reviewing board threw out the “case” since we were entirely within our rights to cancel the contract, and everything closed smoothly and no harm done. But… I did feel much better about the real estate agent fee… she earned it by getting us out of that!
Anyway. Things are going well. I am looking forward to 1 year from now when the house is all painted, unpacked, repaired and we can continue with our updates at a leisurely pace.