Tuesday, June 30, 2009


Last night we returned from our wonderful California vacation, and as lovely as the trip was, we were so glad to be home with our dogs! Since our house needed to be empty while we were away (for the appraisal and inspection), Hope and Fresco stayed at Home Sweet Home doggy daycare and Celtic (who turned 12 while we were away) stayed at my mom's. Knowing that they weren't in the comfort of our own home made us much more anxious about leaving them, but thankfully they all survived the six days without us.

I'm excited to share the pictures of our trip and am loading them onto the computer as I type, but I'm sure it will be quite a while before I can get them organized and find the time to blog about everything. This week is going to be busy! Tonight I watched Chad play in two softball games and the next two nights we have houseguests--hooray for Jake and Amber's visit! We're so excited to see them as well as our friends James and Beth, who will be here on Thursday! Hopefully I'll get back to blogging on Friday when we have the day off! :)

Tuesday, June 23, 2009


Our lives have been so busy with house issues the last few months I haven't even had the chance to mention that we're leaving for vacation tomorrow morning--just another reason the house contract came at such a divinely perfect time! While it's not exactly ideal that we're gone this week while we should be meeting with inspectors and lenders, we planned this trip quite some time ago in conjunction with my friend Leigh Ann's wedding, which will be Friday night at her uncle's house in Sonoma county. We thought as long as we're going to the San Fran area, we should make a vacation out of it! I'm really excited!

In honor of our trip, I decided to actually post the final set of pictures from our San Francisco visit last year. In the back of my mind I knew I'd never finished blogging about our vacation, but I just couldn't seem to find the time to do it! Today I actually went through that last group of pics and put captions with them, so hopefully that's almost as good as actually blogging about our activities during those last days of our trip! Enjoy!!

Monday, June 22, 2009

Day 16

As of our open house on Saturday, our home had been on the market 16 days. Those 2+ weeks seriously felt like an eternity. I don't mean to be a whiner, but I had no idea how exhausting and stressful showing the house would be. Not only did we have to keep the house clean enough to be ready for a showing with an hour's notice, but for almost every appointment I had to leave work and come pick up the dogs, drive them around for about an hour, and then drop them off back at home before heading back to work. It was craziness, and Chad and I kept saying that we weren't sure how long we could keep it up.

Throughout this whole house buying/selling process, we've done a lot of praying. Obviously our desire was to move into a newer and nicer home, but we truly wanted to make sure this was God's desire for us as well. We always try to be good stewards of what God has blessed us with, so we wanted to make sure we were making a good financial investment and weren't just being selfish and materialistic. So while we were hopeful that a buyer for our house would come along, we weren't entirely sure if it would be part of His ultimate plan.

After the first week our house being on the market, it became very clear that what we really needed to be praying for was patience. We were having the hardest time concentrating on anything besides the house sale and showings and phone calls from our Realtor. Along with patience, during that second week we really began praying for peace as well. We really wanted to be content with the home that we have, just in case it wasn't part of God's plan for us to move. As the second week went on, as I drove randomly around town killing time with the dogs during showings, I drove through many different neighborhoods of Lawrence. I think it was during these drives that God really provided that peace that I'd been praying for. As I drove by other people's homes I was continually reminded that our current home and current neighborhood are more than adequate and much more desirable (to us) than at least half of the homes in our city. I began to feel very blessed and very thankful for what we have.

So on day 16 of being on the market, as Chad and I both began to feel more at peace with the idea of staying here should our house not sell, we got a very late call from our agent. We received an offer from a couple who had seen the house at the first open house. They hadn't made an offer the first week since their townhome was still on the market, but their house went under contract during the week and they were ready to buy by the weekend. We negotiated yesterday and signed the contract today. We're optimistically hopeful, but because there are three houses in the transaction chain, and therefore three inspections and three appraisals, there are certainly a lot of pieces of the puzzle that still need to fall into place. If one domino falls, the whole house deal could come crashing down, so we're trying not to count our chickens just yet. However, if everything goes our way, we will close on our house on July 16. We are so thankful and we think God's timing is pretty darn perfect.

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Father's Day Gift

Can't think of anything to get your dad for Father's Day? Here's a great idea!!!

Probably the most random thing about this video is where I first saw it: at church this morning! It really had nothing to do with the sermon (although the message was most certainly about being a great father), but just for fun they showed a slightly edited version (minus the urinal cake and burrito fart flavors) of this "commercial" before the morning announcements. I was laughing so hard--maybe it was partially because it was such a random thing to show at church!

Happy Father's Day--to my dad and all the the other wonderful fathers out there!

Saturday, June 20, 2009

Open Again

Last night we spent our evening running errands and cleaning, preparing for today's open house--our second open house in 6 days. The open last Sunday went pretty well--we had 7 families/couples come through, which was more than we expected. Our Realtor said that all of the people who came had very positive comments and several seemed interested, but none were quite ready for buying. We had another showing on Tuesday with a family who was apparently TOO ready for buying. They ended up making an offer on another house because it was empty and they needed to move in almost immediately. We were a little bummed, especially because they chose a house that was $35,000 more expensive than ours, and in our opinion, not nearly as nice!

Even before this potential buyer fell off our short list, our agent had scheduled today's open house. Thankfully, there wasn't a lot to do to prepare, but we did have to go out last night and buy curtains for our bedroom. We actually had curtains last week, but last Saturday evening I decided to throw them in the laundry so that they'd be nice and fresh for the open on Sunday afternoon. I pulled them out of the washing machine on Sunday morning after I got out of the shower, and this was the result.

Uh, yeah. Apparently there was a tiny tear in one of the curtains, because just one of them came out this way--completely shredded! Since our open house was just a few hours away, I was a little sad, to say the least. After church I rushed out to Target, picked out a pair of curtains that were the right size, and then rushed home to throw them into the wash to get the wrinkles out. Unfortunately, when the new curtains came out of the dryer, they'd shrunk at least 3 inches and were way too short for the window!!

At this point, the open house was less than 30 minutes away, so there was really nothing we could do. We just took the curtains down and hoped that people wouldn't think it was too weird that we had no treatments in our bedroom!

Last night when we got the new curtains, even though they said they were washer/dryer safe (as did the first ones), I wasn't going to take any chances--I chose to iron out the wrinkles instead. Hopefully our bedroom looked a little more normal at today's open house!

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Chef Me

As a result of our crazy house hunting, house prepping, and house showing schedule of the last few weeks, our eating habits have not been especially good. We've eaten out entirely too much, with the excuse of being tired after long hours of working hard on home projects. When we have actually prepared something at home, the meals have been incredibly simple. Whatever has dirtied the fewest dishes is basically what we've done, which means we've been eating entirely too many frozen pizzas.

Besides keeping the kitchen clean, my other goal at mealtime is to use up something that has been in our pantry for entirely too long. I'm thinking that if and when we actually do move, every random can of something in the back of the cupboard that's gone is one less thing we'll have to pack! So tonight while Chad was out playing golf with his buddies, I took it upon myself to create a dinner even though we hadn't been grocery shopping in a couple of weeks. There was no milk for cereal (or else I most likely would have eaten that for dinner), but I did have a leftover chicken sausage from a cookout on Sunday, one green pepper, and a small can of chunk pineapple. With those three items, I stir fried myself this lovely concoction!

Doesn't that look yummy? I was clearly quite proud of myself, considering I rarely cook--especially when there is only me to cook for. It was quite tasty, although I will admit that the tastiness was mostly due to the fact that this chicken sausage we've been buying is flipping amazing! I can't remember what brand they are, but they have buffalo wing flavor (looks like a brat, tastes like a wing!), apple sausage flavor and roasted red pepper and something flavor, which is what I had tonight. Next time we get them I'll write down the brand so I can blog about these things properly! Good stuff!

A Little Landscaping

Although we only found a house we liked a few weeks ago, we actually started our home improvement projects much earlier since we knew we'd eventually put our house on the market. Back in the middle of May, we spent a couple of lovely weekends digging, planting and mulching all around the house. We'd had several specific landscaping projects in mind for the last couple of years, and since the weather was nice and we were feeling super motivated, we decided to knock them all out in a couple of weeks. Although we're certainly not professionals when it comes to landscape design, we were pretty pleased with how everything turned out! I busted out the good camera to capture the finished products.

The boy dogs in our family are also particularly happy about these new plantings--so many new things to pee on!

Saturday, June 13, 2009

Patience on a Roller Coaster

This week has definitely had its ups and downs. After having showings of our house the first two days it was on the market, we had a couple of days with no appointments, and we were totally bummed about it. Then on Tuesday, we had two showings and a Realtor walk through, so we were super excited! Then on Wednesday, some of the people who saw the house on Tuesday wanted to come back for a second showing, so we were downright elated! We were so hopeful that they would make an offer on the house on Thursday, but alas--no offer came. Our Realtor never heard from theirs, so we're guessing they decided this wasn't the house for them. Our roller coaster plummeted.

So today, we spent the whole day getting ready for tomorrow, which will be our first (and hopefully only) open house. We did yard work, touched up paint, bought new kitchen rugs and doormats, and finished up a few other random projects here and there. One of the areas I worked on was the basement stairwell, which I actually touched up the first time last week. It looked so spotty and splotchy after I just painted the dings and spots, I wasn't happy with the result at all, so today I ended up painting everything from the railing down. It looks much better now, no thanks to my little helper Fresco, who insisted on coming downstairs with me when I was at the bottom of the stairs, and running back up the stairs as soon as I got near the top. He's such a sweet little boy who wants to be near us at all times, but when we're in the midst of painting projects, that's not always the most helpful thing in the world.

Later in the afternoon, we were all sitting on the patio enjoying the beautiful weather, when we noticed something a little odd.

In case you don't notice anything unusual, let me give you a close up.

Uh, yeah. I guess on one of those trips down the stairs, our little helper got a little too close to the wall. :)

Thursday, June 11, 2009

An Evening of Favorites

This evening was a good one. I enjoyed a whole lot of favorites.

1. Watching some of my favorite KU basketball players (Big W, DJ, BT and Russ Rob) play in a benefit basketball game, which involved absolutely no defense but a ton of dunks, threes and showboating.

2. Hanging with friends from our church small group (although we missed you Pat and Kristin!).

3. Going out to eat after the game, where I had pizza, one of my two favorite foods, covered in three different kinds of olives (YUM!), supplemented by a few of Chad's french fries, the other of my two favorite foods.

4. Getting home and watching an all new episode of Burn Notice. Love it. I heart Michael Westen.

Tuesday, June 09, 2009

Out of Sorts

As I mentioned a few posts ago, we got our upstairs carpets cleaned on our workiversary last week. Prior to the cleaning, Chad moved almost every piece of furniture from the living room into our eat-in kitchen, so our tiny little dining area looked like this.

Every other room in the house looked pretty much the same, as we were determined to get the maximum amount of carpet cleanage for our money. The change of scenery turned out to be a pretty big deal to our little weird one, who tends to be a crazy creature of habit who just doesn't adjust well to change. Oh yeah--and she's incredibly spoiled. She just couldn't stand it that she wasn't allowed to sleep on our bed all day long like she does every other day of the week.

So most of the day the dogs had to hang out with us outside (their life is so rough), but the second we walked in the door, Hope was ready to be in with us.

Once the cleaners were gone, we blocked off the kitchen area with various pieces of furniture so that the dogs could come inside without being free to tromp all over the wet carpet. Even though one of the pieces of furniture was a loveseat, and therefore just as soft and comfy as our bed she sleeps on every day, Hope just couldn't seem to relax enough to take a nap in this unusual location.

She would lay there for a few minutes, but then jump up and start pacing around the kitchen, trying to find a break in the barricade where she could sneak through to get to the bedroom. Eventually, she got her chance. I stepped out onto the patio for a moment, and when I turned back around to come in Hope was making a break for it--jumping over the back of the loveseat and sprinting down the hall to the bedroom.

When I went to the bedroom to retrieve her, it was obvious she knew she'd made a serious error in judgment, since when she got there, the bed was also covered in furniture. The sheepish look on her face completely cracked me up!

We headed back to the kitchen, where Hope finally gave in and laid down on the dog bed we'd placed there for them. She was so tired from missing her normal all day nap, but she still refused to let herself sleep while out of her normal routine.

After dozing off repeatedly, Hope finally gave in and collapsed, exhausted. Our workiversary was apparently very hard work for her as well!

Sunday, June 07, 2009

If That Phone Don't Ring One More Time

I have to say that today was a little depressing. I know our house has only been on the market for three full days, but we got a little spoiled after having showings those first two days. When our agent didn't call today to schedule another appointment or give us feedback about yesterday's showing, I was totally bummed. I seriously spent half my day checking email and checking for phone messages and even just staring a my phone. I'm having such a hard time being patient. I have to keep telling myself that God's timing is perfect, and if and when He wants us to move, He'll send a buyer our way! I'm just praying for patience during the wait!

Friday, June 05, 2009

Nice Lawrence Kansas Home for Sale

If the title of tonight's post sounds like an advertisement, that's because it is. I'm trying to pick up any people out there who might be searching the Internets for homes in our area. So, this post will be just like the one I did a couple of months ago, except this time, I'm serious! Our home is for sale and we had our first showing today at noon, with another showing scheduled tomorrow morning. Hopefully the interest continues!

So if you want to pass along the info about our house to all your friends, coworkers, family members, neighbors (only the ones you want to get rid of) and complete strangers who you think might be interested, here are the details:

*3 bedrooms and 2 baths with finished basement and 4th non-conforming bedroom
*Built in 1992 with newer roof, flooring, fixtures, siding, A/C, fridge, dishwasher, basement carpet
*Vaulted ceilings, fireplace, eat-in kitchen and 2-car garage
*Huge fenced yard with basketball court
*Safe and friendly Deerfield neighborhood
*Easy access for I-70 commuters

I realize this isn't a very professional way to market your home, but hey, every little bit helps! Our professional listing is actually here, so please visit and pass it along! Our real estate agent and one of her colleagues put together a wonderful virtual tour, I think! Check it out...and then send it to everyone you know! ;)

Thursday, June 04, 2009

Happy Workiversary to Us

I coined a new word! It's what you call your wedding anniversary when you actually spend it working instead of celebrating. :)

Today Chad and I took the day off together to celebrate 15 wonderful years of marriage, but our day off together turned into a day of work: moving furniture for carpet cleaning/stretching (although I will admit that Chad did pretty much all the moving), mulching/watering/mowing, caulking/painting, sod cutting and teak oiling. For our anniversary present to each other, we are having a radon mitigation system installed--very romantic, I know. Don't be too jealous. All of these projects might seems a little (okay a lot) lame for such an important anniversary, but it was pretty crucial that they all get done today because of this.

Yes, that is our house, and that is the sign that arrived at our house earlier today. It's official! Our house is now on the market and our first showing is tomorrow!

Oh yeah, and I forgot the other gift we might have gotten each other today--a new house! In between all of our work projects, today we spent lots of time negotiating through our real estate agent on the price of the house we would like to buy. After several counter offers by both sides, we are very close to settling on a price we are happy with. Once the contract is signed, it will be contingent on the sale of OUR house within the next 6o days--which means we need to find a buyer super quick! If another buyer comes along with a cash offer during that time, the deal will fall through and we'll be back to square one. The timing will have to be darn near perfect, but if it does work out it will be a lovely anniversary present! :)

Tuesday, June 02, 2009

Crazy For The Hoff

A Facebook friend of mine posted this video today and I just couldn't resist sharing it tonight. I've posted some awful music videos before, but this just might take the cake. Oh wait, it might not be quite as bad as Apache, but it's still flipping terrible. Make sure you watch (or fast forward if you can't stand anymore) up until 2:27 or so, because at that point the "plot" goes to a whole new ridiculous level.

Does anyone else hear another much more famous song very clearly in the chorus, or is it just me?

Monday, June 01, 2009

What Did That Bird Eat?

This is pretty gross, but it's also quite fascinating in the sense that it completely defies the laws of physics. The other day we went to open a window in the kitchen, and this is what we saw when we pulled up the shade:

I mean holy cow, that is the biggest splattering of bird poop I've ever seen! Not only that, but the bulk of it is inside of the screen. Here's another angle where you can see the point of entry.

I mean seriously, how is this even possible? At what angle and at what velocity does a bird have to be flying in order to poop in a way that it goes through the screen and splats all over the window like this? I almost wish I could have seen it (I said almost), because I really just don't understand how this happened. And seriously, what in the world did that bird have for breakfast!?