Wednesday, October 23, 2019

We will be moving before Christmas - probably

The contract was accepted.  It should have - it was full price.  That was a big surprise to the owners I know because they had it "as is."  And that condition is meaning at least $10,000 in repairs.  The pool is in terrible condition, and we have the inspector going there today.

My daughter (and our realtor for that matter) wanted us to offer less.  And then the idea is that if the repairs are REALLY excessive, we modify the contract.  That was until yesterday when the loan officer said the best way to go is to negotiate closing costs.  So I will be talking to my agent today.

So the next step is to downsize our "stuff" which isn't going to easy thing to do.  G would just like to pitch everything - seriously.  If it hasn't been used in a week - pitch it.  Then we pack and move.  After that, I bring in our contractor and he will paint the house and then we will replace the carpets.

On the carpet - I was reading an article about making the house sell faster.  I knew most of them - they haven't changed from 30 years ago when I was in real estate with ONE exception.  They said rather than replacing the carpet - add hardwood flooring.  That is a big no.  If I put in hardwoods or any upscale flooring it would be in the one we are buying.  It is mostly carpet with new tile in the kitchen.  The baths have some wood looking flooring up to the 1970's terrazzo!  There is so little left I don't understand why they didn't go the extra 10 square feet with the "new flooring."  But I had terrazzo until two years ago, I can live with it again.

Now if I can just get all this out of my brain at night.  My insomnia is rampant.  When it gets dark and quiet, my brain is placing furniture and mourning lost possessions.

Monday, October 21, 2019

Not my dream house

The house we have put a contract on is most certainly NOT my dream house.  I am pretty much living in that one right now.  BUT it does have some nice things about it.  Number one IS location.  Next door to my daughter's family!

I don't know where the builder's head was, but he made some huge errors in that house.  All the bedrooms are BRIGHT.  The master has THREE windows.  One of the secondaries has two and is bright.  The living area has one tiny window.  I can't understand that.  There is a fireplace centered on the outside wall and that one little window is to the right.  There is an equal amount of space on the left - and it is a blank wall.

The backyard is beyond beautiful - but one of the main problems present that has made it "as-is" is the heater for the pool's hot tub is gone - taken out apparently AND the jets don't work.  We will have our pool company really look at that.  The pool needs to be replastered, but that is normal for a pool.  Ours has been done once (and probably could stand it again).

They first listed the area around the chimney as leaking when they did the listing on Thursday, but yesterday they did a second seller report and said the problem with the chimney is just grouting.  So another possible problem.

We gave a full price contract - before we read the report.  And that price is dependent on what amount the repairs on these things comes to what we will finally offer.  In the meantime, we have been approved for the loan, but now have to convince the underwriters we are not getting this as in investment property.  I don't know why that should bother them - the loan gets paid.

Now to get this house ready to put on the market.  We plan to move out, paint and carpet, then put it on the market.  Busy times ahead.

Saturday, October 19, 2019

Just WOW

It's been quite a while since I have been here.  And things have pretty much been status quo - until last night.

First, Katie has gone off to Poughkeepsie to college.  She LOVES it.  She flew home for a couple of days on their fall break, and we have been enjoying her so,  She is doing so well.  Her roommate is from Nigeria and they get along quite well.  Her training schedule for water polo has gone to 20 hours a week, and she is getting quite the work out from that.

The biggest thing that has me so torn is it looks like we will be moving from the home I love so and have lived in for 44 years. I dearly love this house, but...

G has convinced my daughter that we are infirm.  She is hell-bent on moving us in with them by some means - either by them selling and us selling and getting a larger home or them enlarging their garage and we live in the garage apartment. She even has thought of enclosing the game room they added upstairs where they would move up into for the master and we take the existing master.

None of these is a good option.  Not for either me nor G.  We are in 2600+ square feet.  We each are in a bedroom - he snores and I have bouts of insomnia.  Those two things don't mix.  One of us will be disturbed.

Anyway - the house next door to daughter has come on the market.  We looked at that house when it came up before and decided it most certainly wasn't our "dream home" nor was it one we really liked.  Well - I am looking at the handwriting on the wall, and this house has gotten too big for me to keep.  I don't do stairs well (I fell from the "killer step" a few months back). 

The one next door is 2000 square feet, so there is certainly enough room for us.  I don't like the boxiness - the kitchen is totally closed off from the den.  My current house is very open, and I love that about it.  BUT compared to my option - even going into the new independent living facilities - I don't like any of those.

So we are going to go look - again today.  We are ready to make an offer.  I am so conflicted.  Being close (really close - not one mile) from the grands will be great - even if Katie is in New York.  Leaving this house that is just the way I like it (not the clutter mind you - it has gotten the best me admittedly).  But there are changes coming one way or another and I want to be the master of those changes, not the recipient of those changes.

Keep me in your thoughts.

Wednesday, September 18, 2019

And of course - another venting session

Granddaughter Katie is off to college in Poughkeepsie - and LOVES it.  I think the fact that they all have I-phones and can do "face time" every day has helped, but she loves everything about it.  Now when winter comes, I don't know how this Southeast Texas girl is going to manage!!

Now the venting.  I have had sciatica for over 40 years.  Now add stenosis and arthritis, and I am usually in pain.  BUT I have managed.  We have vacationed and that includes a lot of walking. 

Why am I bringing this up - well, poor little G has sciatica now.  He is claiming it is debilitating pain.  He wants surgery.  Me, I think that is a BIG mistake.  I will (and did) have both knees replaced, a partial shoulder replacement.  I will do any surgery except my back.  Do. Not. Touch. My. Back. With. A. Scalpel. 

He also complained to my daughter saying that we just HAD to downsize.  That he almost fainted from the pain when he was moving the sprinkler in the front yard.  So now she is investigating moving us.  That means we would be leaving a 2700 square foot home and going into a 700 square foot garage conversion - or a single room if we were to sell BOTH houses and we all move into a totally different house where we would have "our own room." 

That solution isn't something I want.  We already sleep in separate rooms.  He snores and I have insomnia.  We are not compatible in the same room.  We have been married 51 years and this is our solution.

Plus, I have been thinking of all the things I have to give up.  I am not ready to do that.  I have my craft room - err rooms - upstairs.  That all would have to go.  Admittedly, I do not cook as I once did, but I have accumulated cooking items over the years.  They would go.

And on the cooking - if we moved in with my daughter, we wouldn't be eating the way we do now.  My SIL does cook OK - not as well as he THINKS, but pretty well.  I don't want to eat his cooking every day. 

Now there would be advantages to living with them.  I would be close to the children.  That would be nice - even though they are both teens (and I would be THERE when Katie comes home).  I would be closer to my daughter.  Even though we are only one mile away, I often go weeks without seeing any of them.

So I have vented now.  I could partially vent to daughter, but not all that I put here.  I don't want to vent to DIL  I don't want to vent to close friends - they live with family!!  So this is my outlet!

Thursday, May 30, 2019

Changes coming

The oldest grandchild graduated from high school last night.  That is the first of those graduations in a line of six!  In her family, there are great changes afoot.  She from high school, her brother from middle to high school, and little sister from elementary to middle!  In my son's family, there won't be a "graduation" from elementary for another year.

I was standing there as the high school graduates marched in (all 913 of them), and I couldn't control the tears.  This is the beginning of big changes in the family.  They are growing and leaving the nest.

I cried because she will be so far away from our little "hamlet" outside the greater Houston area.  She will be in New York at Marist College.  She has been to busy this year - and so have we in actuality -  that I haven't seen her that often.  She lives exactly one mile from me.  But I knew she was close and I could arrange to see her.  Now I will have to travel. 

She will be playing water polo for them - her dream for six years.  At Christmas time, or shortly after, the team plays in a tournament in HAWAII.  Guess I will have to save my pennies and head to Hawaii!!

Regardless - I am going to miss this girl greatly.  And wow - I am getting OLD!

Tuesday, May 28, 2019


After three weeks - my poor back has improved.  While still far from perfect, it is much better.  I would say I am back to where I was pre-fall.  And while that is not perfect, still is painful, and still debilitating at times, I can live with it.

G, on the other hand, is a wimp.  He has sciatica.  You would think it was a terminal illness.  He moans and groans - claims he cannot bend without support.  The problem is that he is SEVENTY-FIVE!  He cannot do the things he used to do.

He really doesn't help himself that much either.  Every afternoon is spent with his behind parked in a chair or on the sofa reading book after book.  I am not against reading, but ...

He will do his "PT" faithfully twice a day - and that is 10 minutes per session.  He will put out the sprinkler when needed and take the trash out once a week and recycling once a week, but other than that he is READING.

When we go to the SSB - for a WEEK - 75% of the time he is READING.  I know things have to be done.  But for him, it is either too hot or too cold all year.  So he is in the climate controlled environment on his rear READING.  And I am away from the things I need to do here.  We could get things done in a day and a half there  The excuse is that "traffic is too heavy Friday to Monday - so we have to stay over." 

So his solution to the sciatica problem - surgery.  I personally think he is going way over-board.  He is sounding like his mother.  She had not one but two surgeries and still was in pain.  Our tenant has had SEVERAL surgeries and is only hopeful this past one was her last.

OK - rant over.  Had to get it off my chest.  Me and surgery.  On my back - NOPE.  I will do the joints.  But I will NOT do my back - ever.

Sunday, May 19, 2019

Not "Golden Years!"

At our house, the bottom step of our staircase is known affectionately as the "killer step."  It gets this identifier because each and every one of us who has held residence in this house has fallen from this step - some more than once.

I joined that frequent "flyer" club a week and a half ago.  It has been a long time since I fell.  I diligently count the steps leading to the ground floor after the turn.  There are three.  The handrail goes right along with those three steps.  No more hand rail means you are safely on the ground floor.

I am paranoid about falling - anywhere but especially on those steps.  When I had my knees replaced the surgeon told me that I shouldn't kneel.  He said that the patella is just a thin bone which can be shattered when it is between a hard surface and the titanium replacement.  I don't know of any way for anyone let alone a 70+-year-old gets up without turning over to be on their knees!  So I try very hard to never fall.

But after not going upstairs to my beloved sewing/embroidery machines for two months post shoulder replacement the call of the crafting was too much.  I was working on a project for my granddaughter who is graduating from high school this year.  It was the end of a long day and I had a battery to be recycled so I was going to bring that and some tote bags to be used as grocery bags down with me. 

To help me down the stairs - I threw those bags with the battery down ahead of me.  One of the bags has very long straps.  They landed on the first landing.  I picked them up and was distracted by those straps - I didn't want (wait for it!!) to FALL after getting my foot tangled in those straps. 

That meant I didn't count.  I didn't pay attention to the handrail.  And before I knew it, was airborne.

I landed - hard - on my right butt.  That didn't hurt.  The small of my back was in immediate pain.  Knowing that my spine is narrowed, disintegrating and I have sciatica I was really scared - plus in a lot of pain.  I really was afraid I might have broken my hip.  But no - fortunately.

After several minutes I was able to think about how I was going to get up.  G asked what he could do and honestly, there was absolutely nothing.  Finally, got turned around so that I could push myself up on the killer step, use the handrail and get up.  That was a no go.  I still have tenderness and a lack of strength in the shoulder.  I just bit the bullet and figured that since I was on the et I would just get on my knees and get up.  It worked.

By that time my right buttock felt like there was a softball under the skin.  So I worried about what I had done there but it seems like that is inconsequential.  My back, however, is still killing me.  The left hip hurts - a lot!  Standing isn't pleasant.  I believe I will now have sciatica on the left side.

Since I am looking at a time lapse of two weeks on Wednesday, I am thinking this is as good as it is going to get.  I think I am going to have to get professional help.  I see the shoulder surgeon on Friday and have sent his office an email asking for his suggestion and I am waiting for a response.  I will ask him, but I believe I will be making an appointment with someone else - who is closer than 40 miles for this problem.

Just who says these are the "golden years?"  Obviously not someone who is in them or someone who has taken better care of themselves.  Two days before I fell, my SIL fell and suffered a spiral fracture of her right humerus.  A few days after my flight, an acquaintance from the SSB area fell and broke her leg - requiring surgery.