We are in full pack & move mode. Over the course of two weeks have been able to pack up most things: items we don't use, out of season clothing, fragile items, T and I made the decision to pack the "good" dishes so we are now only using the melamine that we normally reserve for the kids and/or BBQs, larger cooking appliances etc....I've been able to pare down Crash's room to just a few things and maybe 10 books, which by the way she's had us read through a few times already. The boys room is another story. Their room will be a multi-step chore, yesterday was step 1: weeding through their things and generally cleaning their room. But yes, this is happening. We are now down to about 4 weeks!
I find the packing chore to both be exhausting and exhilarating. I love eliminating clutter and this is the perfect reason to do it! We have made so many runs to the Goodwill dropping things off, selling larger more "premium" items on Craigslist and even giving things away to friends who I think will enjoy and/or use the items. It's crazy to me that I can sell a bunch of bulky kids things on Craigs within 24-48 hours but I have a beautiful Crate & Barrel console table and nothing. Seriously its like a $400 table and its listed for $50. I honestly don't want to take it with me and i'd rather give it away then donate it.
I had found that besides my closet, dresser and coat closet I had about 3 large bins of clothes stored in the garage and downstairs storage! I went through them and got rid of so many clothes, this doesn't even count the gigantic box of clothes I had set aside for donation about a month or two ago! I really need to lay off on the shopping for a while - considering I don't go to an office it'll probably be much easier to not shop. I even donated shoes, something I rarely ever do yet I brought myself to do it. I still have a ton of shoes left and a pair of Prada mary janes I dont' even want but cannot bring myself to just donate - seems crazy to do so.
|Some shoes. That big box at the bottom that says "bamboo lamp" well, its not, its filled with T's shoes, many of the other boxes are my shoes and I still have more to pack!|
|A small corner of my garage. Yep moving is definitely going down in mi casa! Clothes in garbage bags (some habits die hard!)|
About a week ago we headed back up to Seattle. I had lined up some house appointments, actually 4 house appointments one of which we actually canceled the day of because we heard the neighborhood was super shitty! The first house we looked at, which was almost out of Seattles limits, was amazing. About 500 sq.ft smaller than the one we are in now (3500sq. ft) but it felt about a 1000 sq. ft larger. It backed up into a large park, lots of giant glass window, small, safe yard, and a bomb shelter. Yes, I meant to type that. A bomb shelter. This was not at the top of our list but on paper the house looked great and we thought maybe the house would outweigh some of our concerns. We were almost swayed but once we talked about the surrounding neighborhood and T's commute (of nearly an hour each way) we came to our census and decided not to go forward. Although we did apply for the house, we got approved along with the 3 other applicants and the owners, who are in Paris decided since all applicants were now seen as "equal" they'd be fair and pick the first ones.
Allow me to jump to the third house. This was one that looked perfect on paper, the square footage concerned me but since I couldn't visualize the size it was best to see it. This house was in West Seattle, which I had never been to. It's actually very nice and the house is walkable to a few restaurants and a cute little bakery. We got to the house and were a bit disappointed to find that the street is kind of busy, the house looked nice but once inside you immediately felt like you were in a small house. Granted the main living space is totally open and the kitchen gorgeously updated it was small. The kitchen, dining space and living room could seriously fit into my current living room. This wasn't looking good. The rest of the house was nice but disappointing for our use. The ad said 4 bedrooms which it was but they had also staged the 4th bedroom as a living room so we through there was a living and family room which there is not. I don't think our furniture would even fit into the house. We applied anyway, just in case and figured we would make due if it came down to it.
The second house we looked at. Oh this house looked awesome. Mid-century modern like our current house but way more....hmmm....."cool," "kitsch" I dont' know it had a much more hip vibe to it. Anyway this house is in the Magnolia area of Seattle. Close to many fantastic neighborhoods, restaurants, and even downtown. When we first saw the flyer for this house we fell in love and when we pulled up to the house we fell in love even more so. Again, its smaller than our current place but not so much that concerned us greatly. The layout is nice and open, the kitchen is pretty amazing! There's a great deck upstairs and a tiny yard and covered patio area. side note: yesterday Donx decided to complain about the size of the yard saying there is no room for him to play, which we quickly laughed because we have about 10,000 sq. ft of outside space now and we have to practically yell at him to go outside to play and then he 99% of the time chooses the driveway. But it's 4 bedrooms, living room, family room, lots of storage, big laundry room (yeah! I have that now and would hate to lose that) and a wet bar! Really, a wet bar!! (which is making me contemplate a wine chiller/fridge). Our realtor was great and there was another applicant who was approved but did not want to put a deposit down. We were worried and offered to put that deposit down to secure the house before anyone else could. Ultimately WE GOT THE HOUSE! I'd post a pic but I only have pics from the flyer and I don't like the furniture in it. Once we're moved in you better believe I'll post pics.
But this was the biggest weight on our shoulders. Now that we have the house we can pack in confidence knowing we have a place to send everything. I'm glad the kids were with us when we checked out houses. They did not see our Portland house until we physically got to the city and it was surprising for the kids. But now knowing the house and visualizing it they seem good with it. We still have some occasional tears about moving or having to sell their gigantic play structures but slowly they are coming around. They've asked that we register them for soccer in the fall, and to look for some afterschool/weekend classes. Life will need to be readjusted for the boys but they'll be okay and we've been explaining that they will quickly make new friends. But slowly they are getting excited about it and that makes me happy.
Still, we have lots of packing to do and lots of cleaning. This is far from over but there is only 4 weeks left and we need to manage our time wisely!