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Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Houseless!! We are now Full Time RVers!

The day has finally come!!!!

After only 30 days on the market, we had gotten a very good cash offer on our home by May 1.  We set up a long term closing date to July 31 to the benefit of both the buyers and for us, the sellers.  And yes, today the day has come!

In the middle of all this, the bothersome knee of Steve's that he had injured at work wayyy back in March has not gotten any better, so the MRI that workman's comp finally allowed him to have last week shows that he has a fracture!  After a ridiculous amount of paperwork snafus and mis-communication, they are finally going ahead with getting Steve some medical help but we are made to use our own insurance... Workman's comp will decide if they should pay our insurance back or not later.  Four months since the injury of course.  Go figger!  He has been working every day on a broken knee!!!!   He will be seeing the arthroscopic surgeon on Thursday.  Even the brace the doctor wanted for Steve to wear now immediately, he won't even get till Thursday because it needs to be ordered.  arggghhhh    So he keeps icing it up at night , and hobbling around on it during the day, working as hard as ever.  Poor guy!  

So the largest portion of the work on the house was done early in the year, now we just had to clear it all out and disperse the items among our kids and friends and family members.  The last few days we cleaned and scrubbed and packed and hauled and bagged and loaded and worked our butts off!  

On Saturday morning, we hauled all of these totes of weaving supplies and materials to our son's house for storage.  Each tote's contents was photographed and then listed on the outside with a corresponding number.   Then everything was shrink wrapped with pallet wrapping film.

Then my Treasure Chest of most valuable things was also wrapped up...  

We hauled it all down to Green Bay and stowed it away at our son Dan's.  Thank you soooo much Heather and Dan for letting me store these things, as they are all important supplies to get woven or knitted up over the next year and it's much easier to just pick up one tote at a time to use up it's contents.

Whew.......  Sunday we had our grandson Jameson's fourth birthday party at Bay Beach Amusement Park in Green Bay, so very little packing or cleaning got done on Sunday.  I will do a blog post later about the party.

Yesterday (Monday) while Steve was at work, I finished up all the final cleaning and clearing out...  It was horribly hot and humid and miserable.  Not a lick of breeze.  I sweated my way through it alland literally mopped my way out the door and locked it... DONE!  

The main level area was all glowing and pristine...  (I removed the excess stuff on the counter after this pic was taken)

We even left logs in the fireplace (and an ample supply of firewood down below on the rack) for them to make a fire in their new home.

None of our kids wanted the king-sized handcrafted headboard that Steve made... it has a pine tree cutout that matches the shutters on the house. So we left it for the buyers, and they were quite happy to accept it! 

We also left them a bottle of cherry wine, made from the very cherries off the tree in their new yard!

My loom room looked SO STRANGE with all the looms and cones of yarn gone...  it seemed HUGE!   Hard to believe I had seven or eight looms at a time here and plenty of yarn and tools and completed inventory all around too.
The carpeting in this large room was quite stained and worn from all the looms and work being done.  But the buyers knew this in advance and we didn't replace this room prior to selling.  It was a "working studio area", but future owners might want to turn it back into the two original bedrooms it once was, so there really wasn't any sense to recarpet this area.

 Even our storage room was soooo empty! 

But everything found a new home, and we were happy with what we had chosen to keep in the motorhome.  I am still sorting and repacking and reevaluating a few items, but we are mostly set up with what we need.   By Sunday night, we were both exhausted and done with making decisions.

On Monday, all Steve had to do was come home and hop in the motorhome to drive it to the nearby city campgrounds, as I followed in our extra car.   We were only 2 blocks from where the closing would take place on Tuesday (today)

We showed up at 5 minutes to 1:00 to find the buyers anxiously waiting for the closing to occur.  In 15 short minutes, we went from Homeowners with a mortgage and insurance and taxes and utilities and upkeep to Houseless Debt Free Full Time RVers!!!!!  

Hugs all around as we finished our deals, and everything was a win-win for both the buyers and sellers.  I just LOVED when that happened in all the real estate deals I had conducted back in my years as a broker.  It's even better when it happens when to ourselves with our own properties!

A quick trip to the bank to deposit our proceeds... and then a fun filled evening with some of the kids and grandkids stopping by to celebrate.

Yes.... SOLD! 

And now it's time for bed...
in our motorhome

with visions of open roads before us, 
dancing in our heads!


Sunday, July 29, 2012

Remembering our son Mike

Taking the time to remember our son Mike, 
who passed away six years ago.

We long for the wonderful man you had become, 
and maybe the wife and grandbabies 
and happiness your life would have brought to everyone.   

Missing you, Mike! 

Friday, July 27, 2012

Whirlwind Work and Wedding Week in Wisconsin!

I am so sorry, fellow blog readers, about ignoring you the last 7 days!   It's been exhausting with trying to get everything done with the horrible heat and humidity in Wisconsin (as is the rest the of the country, I know)  The house will be closing on Tuesday, July 31 at 1pm.   The heat has been taking it's toll on my health, and I am struggling to keep up with the rigorous schedule we have set for ourselves.  But the finish line is in view, and we will be crossing it on Tuesday at 1 p.m.!

Loads of furniture have gone off with our grown kids... each destined to be put into use again for a while with them.  I can not count the number of loads that have went to a foster family, the woman's shelter, the local St. Vinnies store, and of course, the DUMP!!!!   The house is now almost cleared out and only a few small things remain to be sorted and stashed away in the motorhome.

Everything going into the motorhome is now loaded and mostly stowed away.  I still have to hook up the mulitple DVD players and recorders, and the VHS tape player because I am still not done transferring over the rest of the family videos...   shame on me.

We tried to get as much done last week before the weekend--- because on Friday the 20th we left the house AND the motorhome behind, destined to head to Marquette Michigan to the Ramada Inn for my nephew's weddding!   We attended the rehersal dinner, and then on Saturday the 21st was the wedding.   Christopher and Lyndsay have been together for seven years and we are sooo happy to see them join together in marriage.

They had a lovely ceremony outdoors in Presque Isle Park, just north of Marquette, MI.  Lyndsay's 9 year old daughter, Allison, was an integral part of the ceremony.  Christopher pledged vows to both her mother AND then to her.  After presenting his wife with a ring, he also presented little Allison with a necklace and placed it around her neck.  He is now Her Daddy, through and through.   When they combined their colored sands into a vase as a sign of unity, little Allison had her own sand to add to the vase too. Their cup truly runneth over....

Christopher is the only child of my sister, Linda and her husband Mike (Fuzz) ...  Wow, my sister sure looked sexy hot momma in her fancy dress, and Fuzz looked dapper dandy do in his tux! 

Here are some links to more photos if you wish:

The reception was held at the Ramada in the banquet room...  after an elegant meal of carved roast beef and baked chicken, the party began!   During the garter tossing antics, the best man and ushers hauled out a mechanic's creeper and a toolbox!  (Christopher is very mechanical)  He proceeded to "get to work" under that dress and remove that garter!   What a hoot!!!!   

Dancing was next up on the order of things for the evening.  Little Chelsea and Jameson had a blast cutting up on the dance floor, and we sure enjoyed ourselves.  Little Clayton watched from his stroller for a while, and then dosed off, amid all the noise and lights and frivolity.

About 10 pm, the little ones were tuckering out... so now it was Granmuddah and Granfaddah's turn to take over.  We took them back up to our adjoining hotel rooms, and began the next phase, BABYSITTING!   That way the moms and dads could keep on dancing and partying well into the night (which was about 2-3 a.m.!)   We got in our jammies and cuddled up till they konked out... which was in about 2 minutes after we snapped this photo.  LOL

Of course, the next morning, the grandtots were wide awake early and ready to bounce off the walls.  Little Clayton woke up all revved up and ready to ramble in his portacrib.   We let them stand up on the air conditioner unit and look out from the 7th story window (closed) out over the city and out across Lake Superior as the sun rose.  They were amazed to be up so high, and even looked down on birds as they flew past underneath the window.

Then... then... of course.... Granfaddah started a PILLOW FIGHT!!!!

After breakfast, we all hopped into our swimming suits and spent a couple of hours in the pool at the hotel.  Even Granfaddah and Granmuddah.  Lots of good clean family fun!

After hotel checkout, we all loaded up into our cars and headed south - about 140 miles back to our homes in Wisconsin.

On the way we stopped near Wallace, Michigan at the Deyoung Family Zoo!  http://thedeyoungfamilyzoo.com

It's a wonderful privately owned zoo that depends on donations, and volunteers to help out.  The zoo gives an up close and personal look at over 400 animals.   Many times the zookeepers take various animals out of their cages and allow petting and close up contact with animals.  Here I am playing with a young wolf pup!!! Chelsea was amazed at how fast a big turtle can come when there is food put into his pen!  Jameson saw the black panther and said that he missed his kitty cats, which one is all black like the panther.

Many areas of the zoo are placed among the tall trees and rustic woods of the U.P. of Michigan.  The shady cool woods was a God-send because the heat and humidity was quite oppressive by mid afternoon.  I was fading fast and took some rest breaks on the benches and picnic tables scattered throughout the woods.

(The Locks-  Mark, Erin and grandtots Chelsea and Clayton)

The grandkids trooped along all the way through the zoo, and made it through more loops and animal areas than this Granmuddah did, that is for sure!

(The Wades- Jesse, Heather and grandtot Jameson) 

Towards the end of the zoo travels, there was a setup with a large petting zoo of domestic animals for the kids to feed.  The kids bought a bucket of feed and we were surrounded by hoards of hungry animals.  What fun!!!

 Little Clayton even thought this was great fun, from the shady position in his stroller.  

More zoo pics on this Facebook public link:

Our son and daughterinlaw, Dan and Heather with the grandtots Allegra and Mason were not able to attend the weekend. We sure missed them and will see them this upcoming Sunday at Jameson's birthday part at Bay Beach in Green Bay.

After we got home from the wedding and zoo, it was time to get more serious about moving out the rest of the things in the house.  Our bed, the livingroom furniture, and many other things went down the highway in Steve's brother's trailer towed behind our Tracker.

Yesterday, Steve had to go in for an MRI on his knee, he has a torn meniscus from a work-related injury, and is now going the route of workman's comp and gathering medical documentation.  He had already damaged the other knee some years back at work, so he knows the drill.  He is icing it up each night, and hobbling around work as best he can during the day. Standing upright is causing trouble, plus the bending up and down is the real killer on it.

Last night we hauled three tv's and my other kettles and kitchen utensils up to my dad's house and we got one set up for him where his older tv was not as nice.   That took up the whole evening to get up there and back, and we still got more things done last night before heading to bed. I think we collapsed in bed about 11pm.

I now have 10 totes of fibers stashed and photographed and labelled for storage and 4 totes for in the motorhome compartments.  Then I have 4 huge plastic garbage cans of loopers that will be stored for weaving more rugs.  This will all be hauled down to our son Dan's house on Saturday morning.   Then I can take a tote at a time to knit or weave up the contents before moving on to the next tote.  I will be working on socks and towels while staying in the motorhome, and later I will weave rugs again when I reassemble the rug loom at our next destination.

I finished weaving up 2 more rugs this week, and now I will be dismantling the rug loom today.  I have to ship out 2 other rugs for a customer today too.   Plus, I sold a bunch of stuff on Ebay and am shipping all those boxes out as the payments come in.

In between all of this, the car is over at the mechanic's shop for new tires and alignment today, so I am car-less till Steve gets home with the Tracker.  The trailer is loaded up to the hilt with stuff for the dump today--- and Steve is leaving work an hour early because the dump is only open till 4:15 and he usually gets home at 4.  This "should" be the last load!!!!

The week has already been a flurry of activity, and soon to wind up with a successful closing on the house in five days.  We have called and double checked and triple checked with the title company and the buyer... so all is set for a closing with hopefully NO glitches!

Then we will be moving our rig and all it's contents to it's new location till Steve is done with his work-a-day world and on to retirement!   More on that later.........

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Auntie Ann RIP - and more things going out of the house

Saturday we had the sad task of going to a funeral.  My father's older sister, Ann Luckow, passed away.  She always called my dad her "Baby Brother"  that is very hard to comprehend when I was a kid--  that my dad was a baby brother to someone?   My Auntie Ann was a unique person, and I really enjoyed the times we spent at their house.  She has five loving daughters who were all there at the funeral.  Though it was a sad occasion to gather and reconnect, it was good to hear the stories and laugh at the old photos of family through the years.

What I remember most was that she was a wonderful Avon lady, and always had a big bag of makeup, perfume samples, lipsticks and those ever-famous Avon cologne decanters!   My middle name was named after my Auntie Ann.  This is how I will always remember her.....

After the funeral, some of us gathered at the local bowling alley for a little luncheon and visiting among the family.  Auntie Ann was an avid bowler, so it seemed very fitting to have a gathering in their banquet room.   Some of these relatives I have not seen for 35+ years!  It was good to share and laugh a bit, and we all exchanged emails and facebook friend notices.  What a way to keep in touch now!  Technology, the ties that bind families together?

The weather was horribly hot again in Wisconsin, so when we got home from Michigan on Saturday night, we found it much easier to sleep out in the motorhome in the driveway with the AC on.  Sure beats the heat and humidity in the third floor loft bedroom of the house!

This morning we woke up early, and I whipped up some tuna noodle salad and some fruit salad before it got too hot.  That way it could chill in the fridge before lunch.  Our son Dan, his wife Heather, and our grandchildren Allegra and Mason came to haul home a load of stuff!!!!    And have lunch too, of course.   We made up sub sandwiches and all the fixens, along with the salads and a big ole watermelon for desert.

We grandparents got in our cuddles and hugs, and I fed Mason his bottle while Allegra kept us entertained. Granfaddah Pfun got both of these wiggly little stinkers on his lap for a quick second so I could snap a pic.  Allegra moves so fast, and little Mason who isn't even 4 months old yet, is rolling over the floor and trying to push himself along on his belly!

While we were playing with the grandtots, we had Heather and Dan going over piles of stuff on the kitchen counter and in a stack in the livingroom.  They were not allowed to leave until they filled up at least two baskets of items to take off our hands!  Plus they loaded up Great Grandma Wandry's table and chairs, our garden park bench, and a handcrafted side table that Steve had built.  They looked like the Beverly Hillbillies going down the road!  LOL

It was good to see all that stuff go, and the house is sounding more and more empty.  It ECHOES inside already...  

Now for each of the daughters Erin and Heather to come and get their loads out this week.  There shouldn't be much of anything left!!!!    15 more days till we are HOUSELESS!