Archive for the 'House stuff' Category



Our house hunting days are over

I wish we had kept stats on our house hunting efforts. We started actively pursuing buying a house about 11 months ago. I can say we have literally viewed online 1,000+ houses. We could probably count on one hand the number of days we didn’t check out houses. We have visited in person probably 50+ houses. And during this time, there were three houses we really wanted.

House 1: A short-sale in the Maple Leaf area of Seattle. It was a slim chance this would work out – so we didn’t put an offer on it.

House 2: A beautiful house – also in the Maple Leaf area with amazing front windows. We did put an offer on this house. I was in Salt Lake at the time, so I never actually got to see the house – other than pictures. We didn’t get it.

House 3: BINGO! With only two days on the market, it had four offers. And with a little bit of luck (aka – working our numbers again), we got it!

Here are some basic details:

We are about ten or so miles northeast of downtown Seattle. It’s a BIG mid-century house – four bedrooms and two bathrooms. We move in a couple weeks!

Would you like to see some pictures? Warning – these are pics with the house all staged. It’s all smoke and mirrors.

House x 4

 

House x 4 -2

It’s not a fixer-upper by any means. But there is quite a bit of work to be done. The house is newer than most we had been looking at – but even still, we need right away – a new roof and windows. And we’ll be spending the summer painting the exterior and working on stuff in the inside.

If you want to see the rest of the rooms – I guess you’ll have to come over!

Not quite so fast

So just a couple days ago, I was sharing how we had less than two months left in our townhouse – as the owners were choosing to sell this place.

Well, we just heard from our landlord and she let us know the owners have decided to let us go month-to-month on our lease. YAY!!! That’s a huge relief. It buys us some time, but doesn’t mean they won’t change their mind.

So for now, we’ll keep on hardcore looking for a house – and not consider renting just yet. Come on house…where are you???!!!

On the move

The other day, we came home to find a note on our door. This note, for all intensive purposes, said GET LOST! We are getting the boot. Sayonara. We will have to vacate our townhouse rental by the end of April. Sad smile

The letter was actually a bit more professionally written, and granted, our landlords have been quite accommodating – allowing us to renew our lease for three month periods. And since we are still heavy in the hunt for a house, it’s been really great knowing we can keep living where we are and just renew for short periods of time.

Well, that time is over! The owners are selling this unit when our lease is up.

So that gives us essentially TWO months to either find a house, buy it, close, and move in. Or find a place to rent and potentially put house buying on hold for a little bit. Either way, we are hittin’ the road. And either way, we have to start packing!!

DSCN4436

Given the craziness that will ensure over the next couple of months – we have already started doing a bit of packing. We figure we’ll have to do it at some point and we might as well pack up the stuff we know we won’t have to use in the short term.

Ahh…I hate moving. We are hoping some amazing house comes onto the market in the next couple of weeks. We really would love moving…if it were into our house…that we bought! We have set our deadline…and if we find a house, GREAT…if not, then we rent. We absolutely don’t want to settle just because of our current situation. Wish us luck!!

Spreading a little Christmas love

As Micah and I still decide on what to get each other for Christmas (yes, I know this is true), we already decided on what to get a local Seattle family for Christmas.  This year, we decided to go through the Seattle YWCA to participate in their Adopt-A-Family program.

It’s very easy to do.  I found the contact of the person leading the program online and just emailed her.  In response, she supplied the info on how the program works. 

You get to decide the size of family you want to adopt, and then the YWCA gives you a list that includes the children’s’ names, ages, a few things they like, and a few things they’d like to get for Christmas.  They do ask that as a general rule you get each child two gifts that are roughly $25 in value.  In addition, you provide a $15 gift card for the adult to a store like Target or WalMart. 

Shop, wrap the gifts, and deliver them to the YWCA…and that’s all it takes to make a local family’s Christmas a little bit more special. 

The family we were given had three teenage children – two girls and one boy.  It was really fun to shop to find the perfect gifts for them.  It’s also a challenge since they don’t provide too much detail in things the kids like.  For instance, one of the girls likes “drawing” and doesn’t like pink.  I must admit, I did 99% of the shopping online!!!  But I feel that gave me a wider variety of gifts from which to choose, and I got to comparison shop.  We also included three stockings filled with tasty treats.

Micah helped me wrap up the gifts.  He’s actually quite a good wrapper.

I’m hoping this becomes a tradition we can continue on for Christmas’ to come. 

Snowman cake pops

We went to a holiday party last weekend.  And I saw a basket of these:

Look how adorable they are!!!

They are cake pops – made famous (in my opinion by the fabulous Bakerella blog).  

They are super easy to make – and this snowman twist is ridiculously cute.

My tasty change-up would be to make the snowman head out of Oreo Truffles instead of cake.  I’ve blogged about them before – and they are FABULOUS!  They’ve been my “go to” treat for holiday parties this year!

On the hunt

Micah and I have been going back and forth about what to do once our lease is up here in our rental townhouse.  Our lease expires in a month.  And we really aren’t big fans of packing and moving (really, who is?)

In the past couple years, we’ve moved four times(Granted two of those were to and from Korea).  Still, if we move again – we would like to make it more of a permanent thing.

So, fortunately for us, our landlords agreed to a five-month lease extension….which gives us ample (hopefully) enough time to buy a house!  We didn’t want to be rushed into buying a house…because of an expiring lease on our rental.  Not smart.

So we’ve been doing a bit of house-searching and a bit of property viewing – but no luck so far (pictures are seriously, SO deceptive).  We want to stay in Seattle – but you know…the good, fun, things to do, relatively easy access to freeways, area of Seattle (sorry Eastside).  Location, as we know, is the biggest factor.  Oh…and there’s the pesky thing called budget.  Boo!!!  Who’s with me?  Boo!!!!

We’ve gotten our pre-approval letter and have a $$$ in mind that Micah and I are comfortable with – so, now it’s about finding the right house.  We aren’t looking for perfect, but we have a few “really, really, really, would like to haves” – for example, a big kitchen, and double sinks in the bathroom. Smile

Will keep you posted on our hunt!

Tis the season for candy

Micah and I exchanged stockings last night (remember the oh so cute ones we made for each other?)  Mine was filled with lots of goodies, but mostly…candy.  Despite my attempts pleas to not give me sugary treats this year (ahem…I do need to squeeze myself into a wedding dress in less than 2 months from now), Micah knew I’d still appreciate some sugary Christmasy goodness.  And he was right. It’s been a test of willpower to not hoard my candy stash for breakfast!

Despite my best attempts to curtail my sugar indulgences, I stumbled upon this the other day at the grocery store.

Have you heard of such a thing?  I had to buy…and I did. 

It was quite tasty!  It makes me wonder if M&Ms is going the way of the Kit Kat and trying to break out into more interesting flavor combos.  In addition to their standard flavors: plain, peanut, almond, and peanut butter, I have also seen/tried: coconut, orange, the strawberry one pictured above, and they even have cordial cherry.  But my allegiance remains with Kit Kat. 

With that said, my favorite candy bar is, and will remain: TWIX! So, it was a no-brainer that for a cookie baking party with my friends Jessie and Katie, I was going to bake these:

Chunky Twix Cookies!!!  Click here for the recipe.

It’s basically a choc chip cookie dough, but replace choc chips with chopped up Twix bars.  It’s really easy to make, bake, and EAT!

My stash of Twix bars!  I suggest buying 5 packs…that’s enough for the recipe, with maybe one single stick for yourself.  You know…quality control.  Smile


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