Wednesday, August 23, 2017

its a Done Deal

It must be a dream!
The papers have all been signed. The money has been wired to our account. We no longer are home owners. It is a very strange feeling, but I’m thinking it might grow on me! This afternoon we came back to the motorhome and I had the chance to do something I have not done in weeks. I sat down and relaxed. Truly relaxed. I had nothing to do: no packing, no cleaning, no sorting, no gardening. Nothing. What an unusual feeling. Closing day was about as nerve wracking as they come. After the last week of getting a new roof, having the roofers damage the hot tub cover and a solar light and then having the movers come, then cleaners and carpet folks, and the walk through with the new owner, I thought things would slow down and we could sail into closing. It was not meant to be. We went back to the house one more time in the morning before closing. We had some bits of this and that to collect, some garbage and some things that could be given to charity. We had to sweep out the garage and take my car up to storage. Mr. Dreamy stepped inside to wash his hands and discovered we had no water. None. Zip. Zero. He called the well people and their two crews were already out on jobs, far out, but they would call when a crew could come. After fretting and pacing, and fretting some more we received a call, they had pulled a crew off of one job to attend to our problem. The crew would arrive in 20 minutes. Hallelujah! We might make the 1:30 closing after all. It turns out that the bladder in the pressure tank had finally given up the ghost. (It had been acting up recently, cycling on and off at more frequent intervals.) A new tank was on its way, and while waiting the 30 minutes for it to arrive the guys drained the old tank… the bladder had collapsed over the drain so they had no recourse but drill holes to release the 40 gallons of water! Within a short period of time the new tank was in place and water was flowing throughout our house. Phew! We made it to closing and that proceeded without a hitch. We are now homeless. Perhaps in a more positive way I could say we are “full-timers”. Onward…keeping the wheels between the lines.

Tuesday, August 22, 2017

Looking Up

This is out of sequence, but might be interesting to read later on.
We had an adjuster from the insurance company inspect our roof. We were not exactly happy with his report. Oh, yes. Look. There is hail damage on the hot tub cover., he reported. But... oh, no... there is no evidence of hail damage on the roof. All he saw up there was normal wear and tear. BS! But, he knew we were moving and why should the insurance company pony up for something that we won't enjoy. We objected and asked for another inspection. Sadly, they could not get an inspector here in time to get the roof replaced before closing. We did not want to extend closing, so.... $$$$ We'd rather spend some of the profit from the sale of the house to have it sold than to wait and perhaps have something happen to the deal.

On Wednesday the truck rolled in with the materials:

I wouldn't want to be a shingle delivery person. They off-loaded each and every square by hand.

We were intrigued by the process of estimating the material requirements. Our roofer has a program that downloads a satellite image of the house. He can then plug in information about the pitch of the roof, dormers, etc and it yields the number of squares of shingles he needs for the roof. 

On Thursday the roofers woke us shortly after 6 AM as they walked around the house and put tarps down. The dogs were caught napping! They didn't bark until they heard voices outside the window!

The roofers made quick work of stripping the old shingles off of the roof. I worried about their slipping and falling as our roof is rather steep. My worry monitor was in high gear anyway as when I stuck my head out the back door first thing in the morning a roofer, on his way up the ladder, had the ladder slip and he fell off, landing half on and half off the concrete walkway. He lay writhing on the ground until a fellow worker helped him up. I have to give the guy credit. After about an hour of relaxing he was back on the job. Ouch!

We had a crew of 6 laborers. It seems that our roofer has connections with a fellow who manages several crews of roofers. Each crew has one worker, at minimum, who speaks English. Our crew had another fellow who spoke and understood a bit. The guys worked until 8 PM Thursday evening and finished the back half of the roof.

Friday was a bit hotter and the roofers found they had to take a few more breaks under the trees, so they needed to come back on Saturday morning to finish. 

There were nails and bits of shingles all over the place. Not to mention bottle caps, food wrappers and food. Gypsy scarfed up all of the food! She was in seventh heaven! The guys picked up most of the detritus that was left, but I find bits of things each time I step out into the yard.

We now have a new roof to enjoy for a few days as we move the last bit of stuff and clean up the empty house. Oh, and the new owner will enjoy a new hot tub cover! This was one of the rips on the hot tub cover from shingles hitting it, or being pulled off of it. The roofing company is making the arrangements to get a new one. However, the crew will end up buying it. They weren't exactly happy, but they might have felt a bit better when Mr. Dreamy later proffered an unopened bottle of Tequila he found in the back of the liquor cabinet!

Other collateral damage included a broken "lens" for the upstairs bathroom light and fan. I guess some of the thumps and hammering wiggled it loose and it fell on the tile. A replacement will be on its way soon. The shingles also smashed a solar post light we had on the banister for the front stairs. And wouldn't you know, I just figured out how to get those lights to work?! Well, that will be replaced, too, but the new owner may have to paint and install it. 

Monday, August 21, 2017

It's Moving Day

The song for today is sung to the tune of "Closing Time"...

Moving day
Time to let the packers take over the job for me.
Moving day
Hope they pack it all up and nothing is left to see.
Moving day
Walk through the house that is now just an empty shell.
Moving day
When will I see my things again only time will tell.

I know it is time to move on.
I know it is time to move on.
I know it is time to move on.
Time to move on...

Scenes from the day:

Sunday, August 20, 2017

3 - 2 - 1.... Lift Off

We have two one nights left in our house. Two One nights! Our decor consists of boxes, rug pads and a bit of furniture. There are still some things to pack, but we did pay for the moving company to pack some of our stuff. I think they are getting a good deal as I continued to pack up things after the estimate - you might say it became an obsession!

Tomorrow Today we must get everything on the motorhome that we plan to carry with us. If it doesn't fit we need to be able to go to plan B and have it go in the moving van, store it and collect it later.

As far as "what's next?", we have all but 2 days accounted for from Monday, August 21 until Monday, October 1. We have reservations at a number of campgrounds north and a bit east of Oakland. We also signed up for a Fantasy RV Tour Rally in the San Francisco area. It was a "while we are there" sort of thing!

Mr. Dreamy pulled all of the liquor out of the cabinet. That cabinet is kinda like the fridge. Things get pushed to the back and forgotten. He sorted good stuff and not-so-good stuff. This morning, a helluva time to do this, we opened questionable bottles of wine, took a taste and poured them down the drain.

We tossed 20 or so empty bottles into the roofer's dumpster. Someone may wonder about our roofers! (But, maybe they should wonder since they damaged our hot tub cover and a solar light at our entry!)

Our "To Do" lists include taking stuff to a charity (towels and blankets went to the Humane Society today), taking papers to be shredded (we had a truck come to shred 5 boxes of papers.... but found more!), getting the Mini to storage (and maybe storing a few things with her), and lots of other last minute stuff that I haven't thought of yet!

This is totally unbelievable!

Friday, August 18, 2017

Adventures Await

I could begin another countdown... only X days until we pull out on our motorhome. However, I'll spare you, because, truthfully.... it scares me!

I have made reservations at Cherry Creek State Park, which is 11.8 miles from our home. We will pull out on packing day, August 21. If things go as I imagine they should, the moving crew will box everything we have not packed, and load it and our furniture into a truck. Then we will all leave. Our belongings will go to storage, and we Dreamers will head to the park.

The next day we Dreamers will return to help clean the house, barns, garage and grounds. I have arranged for the carpets to be cleaned and for a few cleaning gals to help us clean inside.

On August 23 we are slated to close. I assume that after all the paper work is completed we will come back to the property for a walk-through, where we will share as much as we can with the new owner in a short period of time.  We will head to our home on wheels and begin our trek to California the following morning.

I have reservations at several campgrounds between here and there. Nothing is an extreme drive. I've come close to sticking to the "330" rule: drive no more that 330 miles or drive until 3:30 PM, whichever comes first.

I wonder how long it will take my head to wrangle with the reality that I won't be returning to my Colorado home?!

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Hoofing It

A farmer traveling with his load
Picked up a horseshoe on the road 
And nailed it fast to his barn door,
That luck might down upon him pour;
That every blessing known in life
Might crown his homestead and his wife,
And never any kind of harm, 
Descend upon his growing farm. 

- from the Internet

While cleaning out the garage at the barn I stumbled upon this relic (not in the Ecclesiastical sense of the word). Do you see it? At the back of the barn? Pippin was wearing this shoe when I bought him. He had suffered a terrible case of founder a few months before the sale, and apparently an Amish farmer had crafted this shoe to support Pippin's damaged hoof. 

Here's a close-up of the hand-crafted orthopedic shoe:

Pippin's hoof was in such bad shape that shortly after I brought him home to my barn the farrier had to build up and supplement the hoof wall with epoxy. 

Seeing the shoe makes me sad. It reminds me of what an amazing guy Pippin was. I can only begin to imagine the pain he went through, and how strong he was to endure it, and come out the other side with such a spirited personality - or should I say, horsonality! In some ways the shoe represents my dream of living in Colorado and having horses in my back yard. I no longer have the horses and in just a short time I will no longer have my back yard, but I have so many wonderful memories. I placed the shoe by the tree where Pippin & Doc would stand on warm, sunny days. It's a tribute to my horses, and to my dream.... fulfilled.

Sunday, August 13, 2017


Two weeks from today we will be pulling into a campground in Napa, CA. Oh. My! We will be "there". I have had to look back at the calendar several times to count the days to see if this could possibly be true! I have a funny feeling that 14 days is going to go by faster than I can imagine.

There is little left for me to do. Ha! What a joke! I don't have to pack any more, as the company we hired will finish that and load everything on a truck on the 21st. But, I have a few other things to attend to..... just a few!

I've sorted most everything and I've begun to take things out to the motorhome. We will be carrying more than we usually do, so finding a space for everything and keeping everything in its place will be a challenge.

I'm to the point where I don't know what to do with much of what is left. Even though I've been sifting and sorting, there is still a lot of junk: pens, paper clips, note pads, scissors, cleaning products, aerosol paint, boxes of screws, old computers....

We have been keeping up with the yard work. It has been a challenge since we have had so many afternoon rains the grass has been growing like crazy. Weeds are going mad, too, but I haven't gotten into the gardens to take care of those recently. Well, except in the vegetable garden. It is the prettiest garden I have every had... and it is so orderly! I fertilized a few weeks ago and the plants have responded beautifully. My spaghetti squash is loving life on a trellis... but I'm running out of space! My pole beans like their trellis too, but they want to grow higher! The leaves on my squash plants are twice the size of dinner plates, and we are enjoying squash. Sadly, the wind from yesterday's storm broke the stem of three squash plants that had grown together into one huge stem. That's alright, we have more!

I put a few more things on Craig's List. I guess we will bundle up anything that is left on our "clean up" day, and take it to charity... or to the dump. There are things we can't list until the end, like our shop vac and lawn mowers. However, the new owner has mentioned he would like to know how much we want for our tractor and riding mower, so maybe we won't have to get rid of them.

We have a rug cleaning company coming to take out our wool rugs for cleaning. We have another insurance adjuster coming to check the roof. We are scheduled to have a new roof installed, maybe even by the end of the week if we can get an adjuster to come earlier. I have arranged for storage for my car, and we need to take it up to the facility later this week, we both have Doctor and Dentist appointments and we have friends to visit and hug good-bye. Yes, I think the next 14 days will be a blur!

Thursday, August 10, 2017

The Grass is Always Greener Over the Septic Tank

Septic tanks have to be emptied and inspected before a house can be sold. During our inspection it was discovered that a pipe leading into the tank had sunk, allowing roots to invade. This morning the septic company came to make the repair.

I was fascinated by how the big Bobcat made its way down the steep bank. The driver teetered on the edge of the bank, then put the shovel down to stabilize the machine.

The Bobcat dug out the area in short order.

The pipe was replaced, and the areas was filled in.

The Bobcat made its way up the bank. The driver turned the cab around so he could again use the shovel to stabilize the machine on the incline. 

From start to finish the repair took about an hour.

Monday, August 7, 2017

I Like to Move It

Welcome to the "I Like to Move It" exercise and weight loss program!

If I made a video to this music it would show me carrying boxes to the right, then carrying boxes to the left, all in time to the music.
I Like to move it, move it. 
Some shots would show me reaching up to shelves to get things off, and then bending down to put them in packing cartons. Repeat. 
I Like to move it, move it.
Climb up the stairs, carrying a box. Climb down the stairs, carrying another. 
I Like to move it, move it.
Pick the box up. Put the box down. Pick up another box. Twist to the right. Lift it high. Put it down. 
I Like to move it, move it.

Getting ready to sell the house and move has had some unintended outcomes. Our belongings are not the only things that have been downsized!

May 27, 2017

July 11, 2017

Since the July pictures I've lost a few more pounds. In total I've lost almost 20 pounds!

But to be honest... I don't like to move it! I am tired of moving it! I HATE to move it. I can't wait until this move is complete!

Saturday, August 5, 2017

Let the Chips Fall Where They May

Most of you know that we have sold our house. It has been a long 10+ weeks of getting ready. First we had to sort through our things for an estate sale. Then we had to sort through our things and decide what we are going to keep, what we are going to give away, what we are going to take to our RV lot at RiverBend in Florida, and what will go into storage pending the location of a home with a craft place for me and a workshop space for the Mr. In addition to the sorting and packing, we had to fix things. We have had paint cans all around. We have been busy with screwdrivers and hammers. We have hired helpers for inside and outside. Life has been crazy. 

Now that the house is sold and the inspection is past (although we have not passed), we have a bit of a lull before movers arrive on August 21. I have had a chance to attack the "Do Not Sell" shelves and weed out things that were stored there very carefully in the beginning, and then not so carefully, and then things that were just chucked into the corner. As I was once again sorting I came across my paint chips! Oh, yeah. I am supposed to be doing something creative with some sort of medium using these colors predominately. 

As a member (and I think I agreed to be Vice President) of the RiverBend Creations Guild I came up with the brilliant idea to have an art show. I dubbed it the PaintChip Challenge. It sounded like a wonderful idea in the coming of spring and all of the new-found energy that comes with that change of weather. It still sounds like fun, but it is also sounding like work!

So, the idea of the challenge is that folks go to a store with Glidden paints and select the called upon paint chips. (Dapper Tan 10YY 55/163, Racy Red 64RR 12/436, Luscious Moss 70GY 27/154, Gold Strike 20YY 46/425) Then, using whatever their choice of artsy stuff is, they are to come up with a piece for our show in January. 

Since I was sorting through things that go to 'wherever we land', and things that need to go to Florida, I thought to myself, "Self, it might be a good idea to find some fabrics in your bins that are destined to go 'wherever we land' and pick out the colors that closely match the paint chips. so you can have them with you in Florida."  I looked in this bin and found some pinky-reds. I looked in another bin and found some greens, and so forth. I ran down to the local quilting shop to pick up something that was "Dapper Tan". 

Ta-Da.....  here are the results 

Now, what to make of it? I'll have miles and miles to imagine and sketch ideas and dream about this project as we head towards 'Wherever we land'. And, of course, I will do a show and tell whenever I finish my project. And, of course, you will hear all about the PaintChip Challenge at RiverBend, and how all of that works out.

Thursday, August 3, 2017

Without a Roof Over Our Heads

The dreaded day for inspection came. We stayed out of the way, hanging out in the RV and making phone calls and dealing with stuff. We'd occasionally make a foray into the house. We had to get a charger for the phone. We needed a bite to eat. We had to use the bathroom (yes, the motorhome does have a potty but we don't have a way to dump the tanks, so we prefer not to use it). We would catch snippets of what was going on inside.

Mr. Dreamer heard the buyer-to-be planning where to put furniture in the living room. He wants to be able to see the fireplace, the TV and the barn from where he sits! I understand. I love looking out and seeing the yard and the barn, too. I also love NOT seeing a house right next to me. That's going to be a difficult part of the move. Wherever we end up, we will have neighbors close by. We certainly aren't used to that.

The inspector seemed to be very thorough. When I came in to grab something for lunch he was sitting on the floor by the kitchen sink talking about the reverse osmosis filter, and inspecting the hoses. He had hot water in the sink, presumably seeing if the stopper stops water; the stove was warm and the dishwasher was running. Then he moved on to the dining room. He pulled up both of the floor vents and used a nifty mirror/light combo to look in the ducts. OMG I bet he found a kitten (or two) equivalent of dog hair!!

We were both dreading the report. We didn't want anything wrong with the house that would queer the deal. The last time we had a house inspection for a move the prospective owner had a list off 20-some things from the report that they wanted addressed. Luckily, their realtor was much more reasonable and told the woman to pick 5.

Within 24 hours of the inspection we heard from our Realtor. There were 3 things on the list. But, oh... they are big things! Oh, and there were a few little things that they didn't ask us to fix, like a slightly wobbly toilet upstairs, an uncapped gas line in the basement and a slightly sagging piece of sheetrock in the garage, to name a few. But the biggies....
  • The roof needs to be replaced. 
  • We need a bunch of GFCI circuits installed
  • The septic system needs to be repaired - we already knew about that, and it is scheduled for next week.
The roof has hail damage. I was beating myself up over not washing out the little bits of stone from the shingles that had collected in the gutters. We had a roofer stop by that day to give us an estimate. He took great photos of the hail damage. It is more than the little bits of stone. When large hail hits a roof it leaves a small, sunken divot on the roof. In the beginning it is black, over time it oxidizes and turns grey or white. The area under the divot is compressed and compromised and might begin to leak in 10 years or so.  So, not unreasonable for someone to want a house with a roof that does not have damage. We made a claim with our insurance and the adjuster will meet with the roofer next week. They have hail maps, showing when hail has impacted specific areas. Yes, we have had hail this year, but will any of the recent damage show? Regardless, we will pony up and pay for the new roof. If we were the buyer we would expect the same.

Likewise, we will make an adjustment to cover the estimated cost of the electrician. We were aware of some wonky wiring, but not everything the inspector found. I don't totally agree that we need GFCI circuits down in the barn where the outlets are nowhere near the water.... but, if it means selling the house or not selling the house... let's just give them the money.

As I discussed in a previous post, we were aware of the need for the repair of the septic system and that repair is scheduled. There are a few other things on the inspection report, but nothing that the prospective owner wants addressed by us. Maybe he felt that if he asked for too much we'd tell him to forget it! We know the prospective owner really, really, really wants this house!

So... onward we go. The earnest money has been sent to the title company. The buyer is serious about buying. We are serious about selling....

I think!