Tuesday, November 4

One Month To Go

We have one month to go before we move.  We take possession of the new house Nov 28th, but it's Dec 3rd that the move is happening.  So one month from today I'll be unpacking.

There are pro's and con's to a long closing date when buying a house.

Pro's
  • Obviously, time.
    • Paperwork - lawyers, mortgage
    • Packing
    • Planning the move
  • Ability to live a little prior to leaving.  We're still hosting house concerts, Thanksgiving dinner, having friends over.
  • We can say "good bye" to things that make this neighbourhood great, but won't be so easy in the new house.  Things like our favourite restaurants.  I know I could always go back, but it's not going to be convenient and we'll have new favourite spots in the new community.
  • Using up food in the fridge, freezer and pantry, kind of highlighted how much of a food hoarder I can be.  We have a lot of roast beef to eat.
Con's
  • Everyone thinks I've already moved.  It's weird the number of people who think I'm already there and asking how the new commute/neighbours/etc are.  Mr. Lina's manager asked if he was going to vote on his lunch time last week.  Um, no, not driving 70 km to vote and turn around to go back to work for the afternoon...
  • I'm in a limbo of not wanting ANYTHING coming into the house - food, books, movies, STUFF.  If it can't be consumed in 30 days, then it's just another thing that needs packing and unpacking and is likely to get lost.
  • I sure hope none of the appliances break as we would have to replace them.
  • The excitement of the new house has become less tangible.  
  • I feel sad that I'll be saying good bye to this house and neighbourhood.
  • Limbo extends to hobbies.  I have a fairly empty sewing room, but no table to work on and most of my fabric is in storage and I don't want to make a mess.
Mr. Lina has been changing our address with, well, everyone.  Utility companies, Canada Post, banks and ID, on and on.  It's good, but getting the update of every single one is actually stressing me out a little.  Because I'm not ready to do that and I have ID that I have to change myself.  The things that I'd change easily don't seem to want 4 weeks notice.

I need to find some of the excitement again.  It is looking like we'll be going to the new house on Sunday to get quotes for finishing the basement.  Hopefully that kick starts the "ohboyohboyohboy" feeling that will make address changing and packing more exciting and less... scary.  


Tuesday, October 14

Happy Thanksgiving!

This past weekend was Thanksgiving in Canada.  It's not quite the big holiday that it seems to be in the US, but I'm in favour of a 3 day weekend that is full of turkey dinners.  We hosted our traditional friends Thanksgiving on Saturday night, then my family had dinner on Monday.

After a weekend with a few late nights and lazy mornings, today sucked.  I'm still not feeling awake.  So let's see what I have to be thankful for...

  • Health, generally, I'm good.  That rash has cleared up, no idea why or what caused it but I sure am thankful that it's gone.
  • Mr. Lina - we're in a pretty good lovey dovey stage at the moment.  All this change feels exciting, so glad to have him in my life.  His attention for detail is coming in handy as he takes care of a lot of the details with our lawyer, mortgage broker and scheduling movers.
  • Finances - sure, it would be nice to win the lottery, but I'm appreciating that I have enough.  There is lots of food to go around, a big roof over our head and while money seems to be slipping through our hands because of the move (7 weeks away now), it's all okay, there is enough.
  • Friends - a big pillar in our our lives, having 18 adults, 5 kids, 2 babies for Thanksgiving sure did make me feel well loved.   We'll be moving about a 15 min walk from friends of ours and it was pretty cool to hear their 8 year old daughter say how happy she was about that.  You know I'm going to be really close to her school.  
  • Family - gosh I love my niece and nephews.   My niece is a chatty 2 year old, loves imaginative play and silliness.  One nephew has figured out how to crawl like a marine under barbed wire and the other is ridiculously chubby cheeked and loves to kick everything and anything.  He also seems to have good "timing" causing me to need to change my shirt (and his outfit) and then getting me again with a leaky diaper.  No one else was puked on.  Honestly...
  • I figured out this week I still have 5 vacation days to use this year.  That's going to help me stay sane while we move.
I think I covered all the big pillars there.  

We're going to be hosting David Bradstreet on Monday.  The guy has won Junos, a Gemini, produced for lots of other artists who are far better known than he is.  I'm excited to host someone with this kind of Canadian pedigree but I'm getting worried it's going to be another small audience.  Hopefully I get a few RSVP's this week.  Anyone local is welcome to come, I'll send details by email if you'd like.  Have a listen.


Tuesday, October 7

Falling Apart

Now don't take this too dramatically, but do you ever have little physical issues come up and feel like you're falling apart?

Last week, I had a bit of vertigo.  My blood pressure is generally low so it's not uncommon for me to need to touch things for a bit of balance when I get up in the morning.  Usually by the time I'm brushing my teeth I'm good.  I'll feel some momentary dizziness if I've been bent over (say cleaning the bathtub) and stand up quickly.  But Thursday it just wasn't going away so I took the day off.  It certainly wasn't as debilitating as what my mom has described as her vertigo, but it was enough I didn't want to drive.

Side note to taking a sick day.  I'm used to going through my "personal days" like popcorn at a movie theatre from fertility treatments that I was surprised to see I'd only used 2 this year.  Unbelievable.  That sealed the deal on not even trying to work from home.  Good thing too, it took three tries to find the word "cream cheese" at lunch, Mr. Lina was looking at me like I had 3 heads.

We had a great weekend.  Mr. Lina's birthday on Friday, spent Saturday with my niece, nephews, brother and SIL at a conservation area, Sunday was a charity smoker competition at Steamwhistle brewery in Toronto...  It was busy and a lot of time outside in a not so warm fall weekend.  Getting up on Monday morning sucked.  I guess I wasn't hiding that so well.   My manager and I were in one half hour meeting together and touched base maybe twice yesterday.  First thing this morning he said he was too busy yesterday to ask but I didn't seem like myself, was I okay?  

Last night Mr. Lina and I were relaxing.  Had some steak for dinner, a bit of red wine, it was nice to just be on the couch together.  And then I looked at my arm and noticed it was textured.  Like red and somewhat raised, a rash over both forearms.  I took an antihistamine, stopped drinking wine and mostly ignored it.  Well, it's still there this afternoon and now it's on my neck, chest, and chin and more annoying because it's a little itchy.  Based on the itch, I suspect it's in my scalp too.

I'm also realizing how much proof reading I need to do because I'm not functioning on all cylinders.  We have a house concert coming up, David Bradstreet on Monday October 20th.  I sent out a note to our mailing list last night about the show.  
  1. I wrote November in the body of the email,  but it says October in the subject line.
  2. Today I noticed that, sent out another email saying whoops, it's October.
  3. Then I noticed that the subject line in both emails said October 18th.  Not 20th.  The wrong day is probably a bigger problem than one mention of the wrong month.  
  4. Sigh.
Again, it's all just little annoyances, but I'd like all of them to go away and feel like myself again.  A less itchy, brain foggy, well balanced version of me.  

Monday, September 22

Misplaced

Moving has this odd mix of packed and not packed.

You would think what I've packed are things I don't need.

I look around the house and wonder why I didn't pack certain things (although the answer to that might be that they should be pitched).

And yet...

  • Not sure where my secondary wallet is.  This sounds worse than it is.  When I switched my wallet to a new one, I left some less important things in the other wallet.  At the time, I was trying to cut back on buying fabric.  Guess where my Fabricland card is?
  • I packed both my blender and my hand blender.  Soup making will be chunky until December.
  • I packed the coffee bean grinder, I mean, the coffee maker has a grinder built in.  Then Mr. Lina went to make his fancy pork recipe that requires grinding annato seeds and asked where the coffee grinder was.  
  • He bought a new one.
  • I'd like to make some panties, my cheeky lace ones, but I packed those too.  Hence the need for the Fabricland card.
  • Mr. Lina gave me flowers and I had to put them in a plastic spaghetti container because the vases are all packed.
Sigh...

Tuesday, September 9

The Good Kind of Change

I've been living in some surreal world the past month.  After so much time of talking and planning and thinking and packing but accomplishing nothing... stuff happened.  Lots of stuff.  Life changing stuff.

And boy it sure feels good.

Every time I tell another friend or coworker about the house selling or the house we will be moving to, I feel a glow.  A smile I can't remove, a sparkle in my eyes and face that hasn't always been there.  A smile that isn't a fake it 'till you make it kind of smile that doesn't reach your eyes.

Building on the changes, yesterday I called Children's Aid in the region we're moving to.  A university friend of mine works there and she discreetly asked her adoption coworkers the best avenue for me to proceed and they recommended calling to let us know we were coming.  It's nothing too formal, but now we're on their radar.

It was a good conversation mostly about us - who we are, where we are at mentally, emotionally, how stable our life is  (well, the move is the definition of lack of stability but past that nothing is changing), what we're looking for, etc.  The application package is in the mail.  I felt like I had a good rapport with the social worker.  Typically the worker who takes your call is assigned your case, I am hoping that is the case because I think it's a good fit.  I am glad we took the PRIDE training already.  I had much better answers to his questions and perspective on the intention of the question than I would have without it.  From his perspective, we are seen as a more attractive potential parent because that step is already done.

It seems like a good time in my life for the song "Happy" to be played damn near everywhere.  I saw this video of it on the weekend and it is so powerful to me.  It's from Deaf Film Camp - Camp Mark Seven - and it's all in American Sign Language with subtitles.  I hope you enjoy it as much as I did.


Sunday, September 7

Sold!

Everything went pretty much as our real estate agent suggested.  We'd list, let people see the house and "accept offers" at 6pm on the Saturday.

Sure enough, we listed Tuesday, 20 or so people came to see the house, and last night 5 people made offers on it.  The offer we took didn't have any conditions so as of 8pm last night, our house is sold.  Enough over listing value to fund most of the basement renovations on the new house.  :)  I must say I like that part.

It's so nice to have that done.  I don't think it could have gone any better.

We've spent the whole day in the house.  I think after spending every night out, eating out every night, it's good to just be in the house and make our own food.  We can enjoy life again until it's time to move in December.

Wednesday, September 3

It's Up

The sign is in the lawn and the listing is publicly available on Realtor.ca.  Did you ever think my sewing room would ever look like this?


Hard to believe this is the same room...


I didn't think those threads would ever come out of the carpet.  Not to say it's perfect, but it is pretty impressive how few are left.

We've got viewings booked for tonight, so we are off to a good start.  We're going to see Guardians of the Galaxy while they tour the house.  I foresee popcorn for dinner.  :)

Tuesday, September 2

Happy...

Birthday to me!

Yep, it's that time of year again, another year has passed. Did you know I started kindergarten on my birthday?  I was so excited, school was going to be awesome.  How much better could a birthday be than starting school?  And then I was told you could bring in a bag of cookies on your birthday.  But it WAS my birthday and I didn't have ANY cookies.

Very disappointing.

It's okay, we evened things out by taking cookies on the last day of school which happened to be when my youngest brother was born.

Anyhoo... today is full of cookies for not-5-year-old me.  :)

  • My house is listing today, the sign should be in the yard when I get home.
  • It really does look good.  I'm quite pleased with our efforts.
  • We'll be going out for dinner tonight, my favorite seafood place, Lucy's
  • Hopefully people will be looking at the house while we're eating  :)
  • I am at work but you know, that just means more people get to say happy birthday to me
  • Although really, Facebook is kind of exploding with birthday wishes
  • I am having an "I look fabulous" kind of day.
Yay birthdays!

I will leave you with the short video that my team mate in Quebec sent me.  

Wednesday, August 27

Almost there

My goodness Mr. Lina and I have been working our asses off.

Tomorrow the photographer is coming to take pictures of our house which (if all goes as planned) will be listed for sale on Tuesday, Sept 2nd.  We've moved:

  • two book shelves
  • one wardrobe
  • one expidit desk (the kind that attaches to the shelves)
  • a crapton of boxes
  • $11 worth of empty beer/liquor bottles
  • multiple bags of garbage (which is challenging with a 2 bag limit)
  • multiple boxes/bags of recycling (which is fortunately not limited)
  • multiple bags of clothing and stuff to Goodwill
What furniture has been left has largely been moved around to make the house look bigger.  

It works, it does look bigger.  More like the mansion I thought I was moving into compared to our 1 bedroom apartment.  It's not quite done and I'm rather sure the agent and photographer are going to do more moving of stuff, but I am pleased with what we've done.  I really hope that after all this effort the house sells fairly quickly.  

I have been thinking at times about pitching things as a skill set.  One I sadly lack.  I'm still probably packing stuff that I should be pitching, but I'd like to think that at least I'm feeling more positive about it.  I think less and pitch faster and honestly feel better.  The overwhelmed feeling is gone because I can see what's already been done.  That's something for me to remember.

Possibly related to that is that I am still a bit forgetful but not teary and I've managed to keep my purse and phone with me all this week.  Shiny gold star.

I also had a conversation with my manager about my career and what my work arrangement will be like when we move further from the office.  Our house will now be a full 100 km from my employer and while my current client is closer, 78 km isn't exactly close.  As I have pointed out to my newest team mate, being an "on site" analyst means you actually go to the client office.  That means less flexibility for working from home.  And I'm bored.  I am dragging my feet on a lot of projects and I think it's because I'm just not interested in doing the same thing over and over.  So we're going to change that.  Not today, this is a domino that will impact others, but it's also good for my manager as he can offload more responsibilities on me.  Win-win.  I felt a bit scared asking for what I want, I've just bobbed along with my career so far, but it felt pretty good.  

Okay, time to get going on that last bit of decluttering.  Time to be sure every flat surface is empty... 

Tuesday, August 19

Dot the I's and Cross the T's

The home inspection was yesterday and for a 29 year old house, it's in great shape.  A few things need dealing with, some sooner than others, but nothing is really all that bad.  All of our conditions on sale have now been met so the house is definitively ours on the 28th of November.

One odd thing the home inspection pointed out is that there isn't a heat vent into my sewing room.  It wouldn't be hard to add one because the furnace is on the other side of the wall.  I am not all that concerned.  I can leave the door open (there is a vent just outside the room) for air to circulate and once the iron is turned on, the room will warm up enough.  How often have I ended up sewing nearly naked with my hair pulled up because I was too hot?

Lately I am quick to tear up and terribly forgetful (like not taking sleeping bags, pillows, chairs or Mr.Lina's camera with us for Summerfolk).  Some of it is probably because this is a lot of change all at once.  Some of it is because I'm tired.  I didn't realize we would be buying a car and house when we got tickets for the Argo game and our usual Summerfolk weekend.  Some of the tears make complete sense, but it's still flowing a little easier than it should.

Small picture hides the slightly puffy eyes.
We bought a new (to us) car last week, 2012 Nissan Murano.  We bought it on Saturday after seeing our house the first time, picked it up on Thursday.  I loved my old Alero.  12 years and 341,000 km of memories.  It was the first car I purchased, 100% mine.  Mr. Lina was with me when I bought it, but he had no involvement in payments or picking it out.  I was either the driver or in the car for more than 300,000 km.  As excited as I was to buy a new car, it was hard leaving the Alero behind and I cried at the dealership (which shouldn't surprise me, I cried when I signed the purchasing papers for the Alero).  I forgot to bring my cheque book which made making the down payment more difficult than it needed to be.  Let's just say that I was a bit of a mess and the dealership probably thinks I'm a complete flake.  Even driving away, the Murano felt foreign, rather than exciting new, I felt insecure initially and resistant to the changes.

It crossed my mind as my eyes were welling up and spilling over about how hard any change is and that this is a moment to remember when I adopt.  When I am matched with my kids, it's going to be such a happy event for Mr. Lina and I.  But it's not quite the same happy event for the kids, it's just one more change in a life of uncertainty.  I don't think they are going to believe us (or the social workers) when we say it is their forever home, that kind of trust and attachment takes time.  The happy part of being told they will live with us will likely be a suspicious happy.  It is okay to be sad about the good byes, good even.  If I'm confused enough to have tears and complicated feelings over a car, imagine how hard that turmoil is to express when you are 6, or 4 or 2.  I'm not sure there is enough crayons out there to express and explore those complicated feelings - where to put the sad part while everyone around you seems to be so very happy and appear to expect you to be happy too.

Now for more change.  It's time to do the last bit of work to list our house.