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Posts tagged with: remodeling

House Hunters


I had absolutely nothing to do yesterday.  The kids went to their Dad’s house for the first time in a month and I had nothing to do.  I needed to clean my house but instead I watched television all day!  I did workout in the morning but was back home by 9 am and in pj’s for the DAY!  Wow.  I don’t know when I did that last!  It felt great.

I got sucked into a few television shows via Hulu and the internet.  Some were truly mind-numbing (did you know there’s a reality show called “Pregnant and Dating?”  Don’t judge me for watching that one!) while others were very informative!  I watched House Hunters (both domestic and international) as well as “Love It or List It.”  I think I’ve seen one episode of House Hunters before and “Love It or List It” was new for my TV watching list.  There were a couple that caught my attention but two stand out.  The first was the family from Houston who was transferred to Brussels for the husband’s job.  I tend to watch things now with a “pre-blog” and “post-blog” take.  I could relate to so many things about this family under my “pre-blog” brain.  They were trying to make Europe fit their very American (and dare I say very Texan) ways.  The wife kept saying she had a vision of what their European house would be like but then kept including very American aspects to that vision.  And they had SO MUCH STUFF that I don’t know how they walked around the final set up of their home.  The second episode was the single, female Dallas lawyer who up and moved to Rome.  She had a business idea it seemed for consulting on American legal issues for European businesses but the show didn’t go into exactly how that worked.  She had an $1,800 budget and decided on an apartment that wasn’t her top choice (the top choice was $2,400 per month) and she recognized that she could not overextend like that until the business was more stable.  I have a secret little dream that after my kids are grown and I retire, I will live at least part time in Europe–so it was fun to watch that one.

Then there was “Love It or List It.”  The premise of this one is a family’s home no longer meets their needs and one spouse wants to sell while the other wants to stay.  So the show brings in a design/remodeling team to convert the current home into what the couple says they need and also brings in a real estate agent to find the couple a new home to buy.  After all of the renovations are done and an available for purchase home is decided upon, the couple decides to “Love It or Leave It.”  This show is fascinating from a relationship perspective too.  The spouse who wanted to leave (in one episode the husband, in another the wife) really went to great lengths to not like their current home.  It was as though the designer  was dealing with children who did not like the clothes mom picked out and nothing was going to change their minds.  The wife even got hostile with the designer insisting on a wall coming down that the designer knew was going to take too much of the budget–but the wife was insistent.  In the end, both couples decided to “Love It” because the renovations were remarkable but it wasn’t without a lot of angst once they got a taste of the shiny new house.

It is neat to watch these things now with no envy or jealousy.  I used to watch those things and “ooooh “and “ahhh” and want the same.  I’d get the “design bug” and go do something random to my homes (when I owned my homes) just because I was sparked.  Completely impulsive behavior.  Now I still “oooh” and “ahhh” but the prominent thought in my mind is how much everything costs!  I did not walk away from this marathon television day and look at my little apartment with disappointment.  Instead I was grateful for what has become a simple life.

The Craigslist Trifecta…


There are three statements your like to hear buying Craigslist goods…

‘I’m remodeling’
‘I’m cleaning out my garage and don’t have room’
‘My wife isn’t home and I can’t remember how much she said to sell it for but I’m sure we’ll figure something out.’

I had been watching for deals on Craigslist for much needed baby supplies for a couple months but hadn’t found anything. I’m not picky… but I’m not particularly interested in your great aunt Myrtle’s crib that is ‘in great shape – but missing a few semi-important parts.’

Then, one lucky Thursday morning, I found ‘the one’. It was a crib in the perfect color, great condition, and offered at a reasonable price.

My husband and I went to take a look on Friday and the seller said, ‘I’m remodeling our home and I want to get rid of everything. I’m storing the remodeling supplies in my garage and don’t have room for all this baby stuff. My wife is not here, but I kinda remember how much she said she wanted.’

Cha-Ching! I hit the Craigslist trifecta.

He opened his sparkling clean garage and in a carefully covered corner was a stack of baby items.

The heavens opened and I heard the Hallelujah chorus.

The seller kept piling items into my husband’s truck until we had no more room. What did we escape with?

A travel system stroller, car seat, and base, nearly brand new with all the manuals and a note that read, ‘This car seat has never been in an accident, has not been recalled, and has never been placed in a shopping cart’ (Hmm. Someone is a little OCD like me!).
A heavy duty crib and a new mattress with the manuals and the orthopedic information on the mattress.
Adorable spotless bedding for a baby boy.
A medium duty stroller for when the travel system stroller gets too heavy.
A toddler car seat that read ‘This car seat has never been in an accident and has not been recalled’.
A Red Flyer wagon with off-road tires and wood siding straight from the box.

All for $170.

The wife called just before we left. From our end, we heard…

‘Yes. They decided to buy the crib and stroller.’
‘How much?’
‘ Oops. They already paid.’
‘I gave them the other stroller and toddler seat too.’
‘Oh. Well, it’s already in their car.’
‘No. That’s rude.’
‘Sorry. It’s gone honey.’
‘They are driving off right this second.’

He hung up. ‘Whelp. I’m in trouble. But it’s worth it. I’ve got space! Have a great day guys.’

And off we went.