Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Mr. Colin

Last week Chad took Colin to the Scout Office to purchase his scout uniform. He is soooo proud! Yesterday I was out mowing and I saw, out of the corner of my eye, Colin come out of the house all decked out, walk partway into the street, turn to our neighbors flag, and give this salute. It just tickled me to see that. He is going to be a terrific scout! Some of his favorite songs are those about our country.
Tonight's Pack Meeting, and he was so looking forward to it (he gets to lead in the flag salute), he insisted on wearing his uniform to school (there are other boys who do, too).
Our boy in his tennis class. He just loves it and told me that he would give me lessons this summer. Lol.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

The Tutu Girlies

Hashbrown Quiche

Here's a great recipe that uses simple ingredients you might already have in your house. Made it last night and it was good. (I'm thinking of you, Amber!)

3 c frozen hashbrowns
1/3 c butter, melted

*let hashbrowns thaw and remove extra moisture with paper towels, if needed. Press into bottom of 9" pie pan, drizzle butter over top. Bake at 425 for 25 minutes.

Then sprinkle on top of hashbrowns:
1c diced ham, bacon bits, or other meat of choice (I think I'd prefer the ham!)
1c shredded cheese
green onions, diced (optional)

Beat together:
3 eggs
1/2 c milk
1/2 t salt
1/4 t pepper

Pour over top of dish. Bake at 350 for 30 minutes. Let stand 10 minutes before serving. A dollop of sour cream on top is most excellent, if you ask me!

So All We Could Do Was to Sit, Sit, Sit Sit

...And we did not like it, not one little bit!

Could we please get some traffic through our home? Please?

The tulips are bursting, the grass is as green as it will ever be, and the leaves on our 6 big trees are about to leaf out. It's the perfect time for this house to be seen! I know I'm overly anxious, but I just want to get this show on the road. It's the uncertainty that I'm having a hard time with.

I've decided to relax on the upkeep of the house. For about a week there, I was trying to keep the house standing at attention in case someone came through at any moment. But we are always given at least 2 hours' notice, so what's the use? It takes off a lot of stress not to be so uptight about the house.

I got to talk to Doug today and he reminded me of a useful bit of information from our beloved Dave Ramsey. When your home is priced competitively and is still having trouble selling, you can offer the buying realtor say, $1,500 to bring someone through who purchases by a certain date. That way, realtors are more inclined to bring potential buyers through. You get more traffic, and it ups your chance of getting the property sold. I know, I know, we're not 2 weeks into this, officially. I'm putting the cart before the horse. But it's something to keep in mind.

On a side note, today the girls wanted to wear their leotards and tutu's outside and to the gym. Who am I to say no? I do it all day long on a million other issues, so why not? They looked so stinking adorable and it brings a smile to people's faces. They love to wear their Cinderella dresses out and about and I could care less. They love it and they're covered, right?

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Difficult Decisions!

Here are some pics from one of our favorite homes we saw:

Chad and I went out yesterday looking at several homes in the South Jordan area. There were two, in particular, that really caught our attention. One had an absolutely rockin' backyard: huge lot (1/2 acre), beautifully landscaped, fire pit, gazebo for a jacuzzi, covered patio, etc. The home itself was big as well. Very open, spacious...nice. The 2 big downsides are that the laaaarge basement was unfinished, and the home is a short sale. I don't really understand short sales, but from what I've learned, there's no set time frame as to when you'll find out if your offer was accepted. That is a problem!

The second great house is a good-sized home. The backyard is a little smaller than we'd like, but there's still room for a play set, tramp, and room to run and kick a ball. There are pretty shade trees growing back there as well. The inside of the home is just beautiful. It's a '97 with updated kitchen, new carpet and paint. The living space upstairs is open and really nice looking. All the bedrooms are good sizes and the basement is finished (minus 1 room). There's lots of storage. And it's not a short sale! Just a block away is a terrific park/playground. Nice location. (Pictures above are of this home.)

The pictures for our home have been uploaded. The virtual tour should be done this week. Here is where you can view our home: http://www.utahrealestate.com/877382

They also posted our home on KSL.com and have made a cute little video, apparently for youtube and email: http://animoto.com/play/TcND86eyJ5tufKCsl9eQWQ

Monday, April 13, 2009

Easter 2009

A couple of days before Easter, the kids and I colored eggs. Mira was certainly in her element with that. There is nothing she loves more than watercolors, and this was right up there. The vibrant colors were really pretty, and the kids were proud of their creations.
After having the eggs in the fridge and getting a whiff of them everytime the fridge was opened, I had no desire to make egg salad sandwiches, potato salad, or anything having to do with them. But they worked for our Easter egg hunt. We did that Saturday at my parent's and it was so cute. Mom wishes we'd caught Mira's reaction on tape to finding a candy-filled plastic egg. Her eyes got big, she did a big intake of air, and exclaimed, "Num-nums!!"
Chad and Colin chillin' and visiting.

The kids thrilled over their baskets. We hid them throughout the house (oops, I mean the Easter Bunny did!) and they love the hunt. There wasn't much to them, but they were happy with what they got!

The painting...it's art! And they're looking so cute in Chad's painting shirts.

Sunday, we went to Mom and Dad Barnett's for a lovely Easter dinner. The kids have no problem making themselves right at home, digging into toys, air hockey,and food. It was a nice time.

Thursday, April 9, 2009

This Will Be a Journey

Our house-hunting excursion yesterday was a bit of a disappointment. We saw homes in Draper, Riverton, South Jordan, and Herriman. Herriman is officially 'out'. It would take Chad (on a good day) 20 minutes to drive to work. All the newest homes are out there, but it's simply not worth it.

Draper is still in the running because of it's proximity to I-15. The home we saw there had a rockin' basement. However, the back yard was a joke. Terraced so there was almost no room to run around. There was a trampoline positioned right next to the top terrace so that one bad jump and our kids fall 10 feet to the rocky ground below. One thing I did take away from this home was that I love venetian plaster!! They had it colored this gorgeous buttery/brown color with European dark wood doors and it was amazing. So if we ever have to finish a basement or room, that's what I'm going for.

This was a learning experience. I now know that I'm looking for a home that has privacy inside and in the backyard. I don't want people across the street to be able to see me in my house through windows near my front door. And I don't want to stand in my backyard and see all my neighbors. Privacy is essential. And a great backyard for kids.

There was one home that was the best one, in my opinion. It was built in 1992. Chad is having a hard time wrapping his head around buying a home not built after 2000. But this home backed to a farm. And I'll be upfront and say I do not mind having cows as my neighbors. I don't even mind the smell. It wasn't super-impressive with all the junk all over. Apparently, the owner thought we weren't coming until the next day. So it wasn't in shape to show. Toys and stuff all over. Looked like the kids ruled the roost, for sure. But I think it would look a lot different if she and all her stuff were out of there. It was at the end of a cul-de-sac and I thought it was a nice possibility.

But I still have this nagging feeling that the home for us is still out there, waiting to be found. It's going to take a lot of looking. I'm hoping, with spring coming, a lot of homes will pop up and we'll find some good possibilities.

Monday, April 6, 2009

Hope the Cake Doesn't Catch Fire!

My parents came over on my birthday to celebrate. I made dinner, they brought a most delicious Baskin Robbins ice cream cake. (Yum, that's all I can say to that.) Here are a few snapshots from the evening:
Micah and Colin thoroughly enjoying themselves.
The wonderful people who made me!

Awww, with Micah's little noggin poking in the shot.
The girls. Mira prepped for cake-eating!
Many hands make light work! And, these days, we're needing more hands to get all my candles on the cake! 34, baby, yeah!
Uh, right. Nice photo of me.

The lighting of the cake. We had the fire extinguisher in hand j.i.c. Micah is mesmerized!

Friday, April 3, 2009

When It Rains...

I have to start by saying it could have been sooo much worse, I realize. But this was 'one of those days':

1: Coming back from picking up kids from school find storm door locked (I have no key to that) and garage door opener refuses to work. Try all doors and some windows. All locked.

2: Oops. I forgot to take my cell phone with me. It's still in the house.

3: Take starving kids to Wendy's. Then to store to pick up new battery for garage door opener. Come back home to try opener now. It still doesn't work.

4: Head to friend, Jennette's house, to call locksmith.

5: On way back home, notice the tire seems to have problem.

6: Arrive home and, sure enough, a bolt is lodged in tire. Locksmith having trouble getting storm door unlocked.

7: Discover that my bathroom window is unlocked. Micah shimmies through, unlocks front door and scares locksmith half to death.

8: Pay locksmith $30 for service call.

9: Off to Les Schwabb to fix tire.

10: Home at last! Garage door opener still needs servicing.

11: And I've got a headache from looking at a bazillion houses online.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

The Realtor's Visit

We have found great realtors. Kerry and Keith Hill. They came today to walk through the house and go over information and such. I am really impressed by them and I know they will work hard for us.

Our home is ever so close to being ready. They did have several items for us to fix up before it's complete, though. Paint the master bath ceiling. Touch up shelves in the pantry. Repaint the wood trim around the front and garage doors. Replace outside light fixtures. Clean windows and screens. Etc. It was good to get the list, but slightly disheartening. I was really hoping they'd say it was good to go! But Chad and I are on top of it and we're going to "get 'er done!".

We've got a plan to go out with them Wednesday to walk through several homes in order to get a better idea of what we're looking for. At first, I was thinking putting an offer on a home with the contingency that we sell ours first would be a good idea. Apparently not. They said once we've got the house completed and have people actively coming through, then we'll be hitting the pavement seriously.

With regards to price, we looked at a few comparables and they all price anywhere from around $195,000 to $220,000. We don't want to sit long on this. We want to price it aggressively get it sold. It's stressful enough just keeping the house in shape for people to walk through. I don't want to do this indefinitely!! Get it done!