new digs

This is our new house. Yes, it is the aforementioned house. We settle mid-July. It’s going to be a crazy few months. To the Lake for the 4th, settling on both houses (on the same day), and then to California for vacation in August. My bro is moving, too. His move is much bigger; he’s moving to Portland. His company is moving most of its operations out West. They leave the end of the month. I’m totally jealous, of course.

on the hunt

Friday afternoon, we went and looked at a couple of houses. Of the three, there’s only one possible contender. It’s a four bedroom, two and a half bath with almost a quarter acre yard. There is a garage AND a shed. Hardwood floors, and a finished basement. Bren and I have started calling it the "Jesus House."

Now, we were both raised in Roman Catholic households, and if we were going to go to church, we’d go to a Catholic one; however, neither of us have ever seen a house so full of Catholicism. There were photos of Pope John Paul all over, and one of Benedict by the front door. And pictures of Jesus everywhere else. Crucifixes in all the bedrooms. All the books we saw had to do with religion. There were little fonts of Holy Water by every light switch (like these). Everyone was home while we were walking through. Dad and the kids were outside, trying to stay out of our way. Mom was in the kitchen and adjoining family room making coffee cake or some such thing. Brendan said (and I didn’t see this, but I believe it) that she sat down at her desk and started reading the Bible.

My grandparents had a photo of the Pope in their house, but only one, probably a single crucifix somewhere, and a "painting" of the Last Supper in the dining room. This house was just over the top, full of Catholic paraphernalia. It beat you over the head.

But the house was really quite good. Some old tiling in the bathrooms, but it was in good shape; and some older kitchen cabinets. It’s a strong contender at the moment. They did have an open house on Sunday, so it could be gone by now. It has been on the market for 60 days which is a really long time, even out in Prince William County. Someone might have scooped it up over the weekend.

i’m going nuts

I’m at home at the moment, waiting for the repairman. He was supposed to be here at 9, called to say he’d be a half an hour late, and now it’s 955. He’ll be here sometime, I’m sure.

However, work is a bit insane this week, and I should try and get in at a reasonable time today. Plus, we might be going to look at a few houses tonight. I feel like my body is firing on 8 cylinders, and it could really use another one. Everything’s going at hyper-speed. And I’m not sure that’s such a good thing.

9:58, thought I saw repairman’s truck. Turns out I was wrong.

10:00, repairman here. It was his truck.

Everyone needs something from me. Two projects at work are going full speed, and there didn’t seem to be enough time in the day yesterday to get everything sorted. One’s settled a bit this morning, but it’s likely to just be a lull, and not a full stop. The other, will go and go until August. Good times.

Hopefully I’ll make it through everything in one piece.

one step closer

We came home from our weekend to a contract on the house. Thankfully. It was the most excruciating week. Hopefully it will go smoothly. Now, the search for the new house can really get started. There are a few we’ve got our eye on. We’ll see.


I am going crazy. Who knew putting the house on the market was going to turn me into a more insane person than I already am. We’ve had at least two dozen people through to look at it in the three and a half days that it’s been up, but no bites yet. It’s starting to get frustrating. And it hasn’t even been four days yet.

finishing line

The house is cleaner than it ever has been before. Glen just finished up steam cleaning the upstairs carpet. Even the wax ring stain from when Brendan put the toilet down on the carpet came up! Amazing. Even the 20 year old carpet looks decent. The kitchen is more streamlined than it has been since we moved in. It even looks spacious. Now, all we have to do is wait. We hit the market tomorrow.


Spring is moving in fast.

Both the lilac

and the snowball are starting to bloom. It amazes me every year that they are still alive. I am not the best with plants.

the state of things

This is the time of year when realtors are heavily courting people in our neighborhood. We get postcards with latest sales, little calendars, magnets, flyers… A whole lot of crap. Today, we got one in the mail from a real estate agency which shall remain nameless. I looked at it (the house was our model) and thought, "Only $300,000*? We won’t be using them!"

One house on our cul-de-sac (also our model) without a basement, sold a few weeks ago for $317,250. And one down the street just sold for $350,000! Keep in mind our townhouse is small, and only has 2 bedrooms and one full and one half baths. Nothing special. Not to mention HOA fees. It’s insane.

While it seems like we could make a killing if we sold now, where would we go? To get a single family, in a neighborhood we would want you’ve got to drop three-quarters of a million. Brendan always talks about selling, paying off our student loans, car payments and credit cards, and buying the best trailer we can find and being the envy of the trailer park.

* A little math question for everyone… If we bought our house at a price of $145,000 what is the percent increase if we sold it with the sucky realtors for $300,000? First one with the right answer wins.


The basement is slowly being "renovated". It’s was already semi-finished when we moved in. There was dry wall, and some peel and stick parquet flooring down; however, the dry wall wasn’t done very well, and Brendan isn’t a big fan of the floor. We’ve finally had the time to paint (with a texture to hide some of the shoddy work), put in a heating vent, and just the other day we ordered carpet. Once that is in we can move the big ass TV down there and make use of the space.

Today, I put a coat of paint on the downstairs bathroom. I only had a quart of the paint that I wanted, and according to my calculations, a quart should have been able to cover it. We’ve got about 130 square feet of wall space, and a gallon does 400 – 450. It was a bit of a stretch, and I’ll probably have to go to the store and get another quart to fill in some spots. This paint was a reject from back when I painted our bedroom. Damn. I really wanted to get it done without going to the store. Again. For the millionth time this week.


Brendan joined the party on January 2, 2004. He's cool now.

Jessica has never been cool. She is OK with that.

And just so everyone is clear, what we say here is not endorsed by either of our employers.