Thursday, October 19, 2006

T - 3 days

The move date approaches ever nearer. I'm afraid the blog hasn't been very interesting lately, as I've been rather preoccupied with the whole moving thing.

The floor is nearly finished. The hardwood part seems to be completely done - they just need to do the tiling in the foyer and put the baseboards on. They've got 2 full days to do it before we move in on Sunday. I'm extremely paranoid that we or the movers will manage to scratch the brand new floor when we move in - hopefully I will be proven wrong! I got some good tips on avoiding scratches so I'm trying to be optimistic.

I promise once we've moved and unpacked, I'll start taking some pictures again. Actually, I think I'll take some with my cellphone just for fun (please excuse the poor picture quality).

I have been knitting in the meantime, but haven't been photographing or posting about it. I joined the Monthly Dishcloths KAL group, and knitted the "early October" dishcloth. Amusingly, it turned out to be a pattern of a cat, which is identical (or near enough) to the cloth my secret pal sent me in the Summer Fling swap. Now my only two hand-knitted cloths are matching. I think of hers as a facecloth, though, because it's so soft and nice. Mine was knitted out of crappy Michael's cotton (Bernat Handicrafter) which isn't so soft, so I think of it as a dishcloth.

I'm also still working away at my fleet of shopping bags. I now have five (or I thought I had 5, till I tried to photograph them, and found only 4). They evolve a little bit each time I make a new one. I think it's almost down to a science now. For my next one, I'm going to try using lace-weight cotton, to see if I can create a strong, large shopping bag that will nonetheless be able to fit easily into my purse and extracted when required. In theory I think it should work. The handles may be uncomfortable, though. In this pic they're arrange top-to-bottom in order of making. The bi-coloured one is my first attempt, and the one on the bottom right is my latest. The pattern calls for making an I-cord shoulder strap, but I wanted bags for grocery shopping, so I modified it to I-cord handles on the first two attempts. It was annoying to do, and looked kinda ugly, so on my latest attempts I've been casting off a few stitches (10-12, not sure exactly, I just cast off till it fits my hand), and then casting them back on during the next row. That's much easier, and I think it makes a nicer looking handle, too.

My cat seems to like them, anyways. (And here you also get a good view of the unassembled boxes I have yet to fill.)

And my never-ending Branching Rib pullover is still in process. I'm now about 6 inches into the second sleeve, so the end is in sight. I'd like to finish it by mid-November, so that it gets finished within a year of starting it. That would be good.

Friday, October 13, 2006

I now own two houses

For the next week and a half, anyways. We got the keys to the new place today! Very exciting. The floor guy is supposed to be bringing the flooring over tonight so it can acclimatize to the house.

I have to admit, I'm having a little bit of fear that we won't like it there. That our stuff won't fit into the house the way we expect it to. That the floor we're getting installed will be ugly. You name it, I fear it. And to add to the fear, we closed the deal on Friday the 13th.

We had a little excitement with the closing, because part of the conditions of our offer was that the old people would remove a bunch of broken-down old appliances from the basement. Our real estate agent went to check yesterday, and they were gone - along with the dryer we'd been expecting them to leave! And the washer, which apparently we didn't include in the contract, and our agent assures us was a broken-down old thing we wouldn't want anyways. So they're paying us the price for a bottom-of-the-line dryer, and we have to go out and pick out new appliances. On the upside, it will be great to have new appliances, but on the downside, we're kinda busy with all this packing and stuff - and now we have to go appliance shopping too?

Luckily our agent is giving us $1500 to spend on appliances, so we should be able to easily pick up a washer/dryer for that.

Tuesday, October 03, 2006

If you need me, I'll be in my cave

As of Friday, our house is officially sold. While this is great news (and believe me, it is!), it leads to a whole new set of stresses. We're now closing on our new house on October 13, which is less than two weeks away. Our real estate agent is away on a cruise this week. I'm trying to arrange for a mortgage, movers, insurance, new floor installation, etc, etc, and all of it needs to be done ASAP. Not to mention we need to pack.

On the upside, we don't need to move out of our old house till Oct 25 (that's the closing date). We're tentatively planning a move date of Oct 22. The in-between time when we own both houses is to give the floor guy time to do his magic, and also to give us a little buffer on moving.

Last time we moved, we hired Two Small Men with Big Hearts. We liked the company name - they just *sound* trustworthy, don't they? Well. We had them booked to arrive at 3pm, if I remember correctly. By 9pm they still hadn't arrived and we'd made several calls to the office, and had done lots of freaking out. At about 9:15pm (I should note here that this was the last day of our lease in the apartment) they arrived at our door. We were so relieved. They then told us that since the elevator was no longer on service (the super stops work at 7pm and won't put the elevator on service after that), they couldn't move us. We told them that we would hold the elevator doors and make sure everything went smoothly. They said "We just need to go check with our driver", and left. After waiting about 10 minutes for them to come back from "checking with their driver" I went downstairs to look for them. Gone. Vanished. No more.

We ended up the next morning frantically calling rental truck places, rented a van for a half day, and moved ourselves. Money saving? Yup. Stress reducing? Not at all.

So my only experience with professional movers hasn't exactly been stellar. But, we have lots of furniture, including a king bed that needs to come down a fairly steep/cramped staircase, so we're going to try it again. Hopefully it'll work out better this time. I can tell you right now who we *won't* be using!

The title of this post refers to how I feel right now. I wish I could just crawl into a cave and hide there till after the move is done. I'm a massive bundle of stress. Don't expect many blog posts this month!