Sunday, April 28, 2013

Back in Time

I have a little catch-up to do on the blog.  With the excitement of the buying house, I wanted to keep that relatively up to date, so a couple of things took the back burner.  Maybe I'll be all caught up by the end of the week.

On we go.  The first part of April (can you believe April is almost DONE? My girls turn S-I-X this week!) Clark had a recorder concert at school.  Lee worked the night of the concert, but the rest of us went.  I love that the school is so close.  And since the weather was nice that night, we rode bikes over.
April 10 2013 Clark recorder performance, 4th grade

April 10 2013 Clark recorder performance, 4th grade (3)

April 10 2013 Clark recorder performance, 4th grade (4)

Afterwards Cal showed me a dragon project of his hanging in the hallway.  I enjoy the different hallway displays around the school.  I seriously love this elementary school.  So amazing.
April 10 2013 Cal

The chunk of the move to the "new" house took place on a Friday night and then the following Saturday morning.  Lee and I were up till 1am Friday night moving things across the street in preparation for the help we would receive the following morning.  Sounds slightly counterproductive--moving stuff BEFORE help came--but we wanted people to come and move big stuff.  Not things like our food storage, for example.  Lee was awesome and moved our three-month food supply items off of our two big utility shelves in our bedroom in our rental and then put the stuff back on the shelves in the new house, also in our bedroom. We need to build up the three-month supply of food.  It has dwindled since we used up a lot of it when we first moved here.  Pardon the slightly messy shelves.
April 28 2013

We moved things till about 11:30 or so on Saturday and that afternoon we went out to eat.  Our kids were pretty surprised and happy as it's been about a year since we last went out to eat as a family.  The thought of cooking something did not appeal to me or Lee.  It was a fun break. We went to our local Mexican restaurant....SO YUMMY!  Of course my kids ordered non-Mexican food. 
April 13 2013 El Paso Clark Cal

April 13 2013 El Paso Clark Lee

April 13 2013 El Paso Elden

April 13 2013 El Paso Haley

April 13 2013 El Paso Ruth Cal

April 13 2013 El Paso Shanna (2)

April 13 2013 El Paso Shanna Elden


Thursday, April 25, 2013

Our House

We did it!  We bought our very first house!

I am finally posting pictures of our house. If you read my blog you know this has been in the works for some time now--buying a house and all.  I didn't want to post pictures in case something fell through. I wasn't even sure if we would be able to get a loan at first because Lee has been self-employed for fewer than two years. Everything did go through and now we are in more debt than ever, ha ha. Here's hoping becoming a true home "owner" comes sooner than later. I am happy with the house though and am excited to fix it up. As most of you know, funny enough this house is right across the street from our old rental!  Moving was pretty easy!
101 Jackson Ave

101 Jackson Ave (4)

Nice shot, huh.
101 Jackson Ave (2)

This is house is a mirror image of the rental we were in.  Except for two rooms.  This is one of them.  It is a great family room!
101 Jackson Ave (5)

101 Jackson Ave (7)

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Some staging...not our stuff.

101 Jackson Ave (9)

The beast of the oven will be leaving us soon.  The propane guy came and did a gas leak check and found a leak. He wasn't quite sure where it was though.  He capped off the propane line to the stove, and the leak stopped showing up.  So now we can't use it at all, which I am sure is a good thing. Hopefully the new stove will be up and running in about a week....or so.....
101 Jackson Ave (13)

101 Jackson Ave (15)

We have some plans for you, lovely kitchen.  And the green curtains are in the garbage pile.
101 Jackson Ave (14)

Here is the other bonus room: a sun room.  In our rental the washer and dryer were on the other end of our kitchen.  In this house they're in the sun room!  Right now it's serving as a storage type room.  We put our chest freezer in's nice not having it in our bedroom anymore!
101 Jackson Ave (12)

101 Jackson Ave (16)

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Now on to upstairs....
The half bath is at the top of the stairs.
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101 Jackson Ave (26)

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101 Jackson Ave (30)

101 Jackson Ave (30)

It was so gross cleaning the toilets for the first time. Mainly because my cleaning gloves had small holes in them and dirty water was leaking in. I bought new gloves soon thereafter! I did a heavy duty second cleaning on the downstairs toilet.  Yuck.
101 Jackson Ave (32)

And one more of the front of the house.  I think it's cute.  The yard is actually REALLY small and doesn't have a single tree! (Which is sad...I like trees.) One of our friends is actually giving us a tree as a house warming gift!  It's not my dream home or in the ideal location, but it will be a good house for us right now.  I love this quote from the recent general conference for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.  Elder Stanley Ellis said: Brothers and sisters, do we really think the critical factor in the salvation of our children is the neighborhood where we live? The apostles and prophets have often taught that what happens inside the home is far more important than what our children encounter outside. How we raise our children is more important than where we raise them. Love that quote! Check out the other great talks here:
101 Jackson Ave

Now for the renovations!  We have lots of work ahead of us. 

Wednesday, April 24, 2013


It actually happened; today even!  We CLOSED on our FIRST house!  This morning Lee and I wired the money to the law firm who handled the closing.  Thankfully that all went through. It's great to have "control" back over our bank account now! I didn't hear anything about missing paperwork so I am assuming it was all there! Closing was great.  I was really excited about it and it didn't take much time.  Elden surprisingly fell asleep while we were signing papers and I just held him.  I thought we'd be signing papers for a long time but we started at 1:10-1:15, were out to the van by about 1:55.  If you include all the chit chat and questions, maybe it took about 20 minutes, max 30 minutes, to sign papers.

It was fun walking into the house for the first time as an "owner". Tonight Lee carried me over the threshold too. He didn't whack my head in the doorway Sam.  Yesterday I had the kids gather-round for a prayer to ask Heavenly Father to bless us to close on Wednesday.  Today I had them round up again to offer a prayer of thanks that it all worked out.  We are very blessed.  

Before Elden went in to closing.
April 24 2013 Elden

After...we're homeowners!  Though, I'll feel more like a "homeowner" when we actually have it paid off and "own" it!  Sheldon, the Italy tie made it to closing! And it's funny how my handbag matches Lee's outfit so well!
April 24 2013 Lee Ruth Elden

To celebrate we stopped for shakes.  We're big spenders!  After wiring all that money this morning, we probably should have just enjoyed a glass of water from our tap at home, ha ha.  At least we left more than $13 in our we did when we paid off Lee's last student loan.
April 24 2013 Lee

April 24 2013 Ruth

April 24 2013 Elden Ruth

Lee sent me these cute flowers with a thoughtful note.  One of Lee's team members got us this fun cake too!
April 24 2013 (15)

With all the tears and frustration, closing was great ending. (Yes, I cried a few times about it!)
Now on to renovations! Look out soon for the pictures of the house!
April 24 2013 (5)

Tuesday, April 23, 2013


Hello all.  I haven't posted in a little while and mainly for good reason.  I have so many things to post about too, but probably won't bore you all with the boring details.  (Or maybe I just will!)

For a very shortened version, we moved, we moved in, had guests spend the night, hosted a potluck for our friends, were escorts for said friends for their temple endowment and sealing, handed over our rental keys to Freddie Mac, and helped get things finalized to close on the house.

Over a week ago my realtor brought me an addendum to our original contract stating that our closing date would now be April 26th.  (We put in our offer February 22, with a closing date of March 30th.  Yeah, I've been frustrated!) So Monday morning I emailed a couple of people stating that since closing is this Friday, can we set a time as Lee already has patients and needs to re-schedule them.  I then get an email back stating we cannot close Friday because people will be out of town.  Um, not happy! Not only can we not close Friday, but the following Monday was also out of the question.  I am wondering who picked the closing date.  Aside from that, since we took early possession of the house, if we close after the 26th, we'll have to pay "rent" at the house we are "buying".  Oh but there's more.  Monday the 29th our rate expires.  Starting Tuesday morning we have to pay an extension fee....yes WE have to pay.....we who did nothing to hold up the whole process could potentially get stuck with a fee for something we didn't do.  I wanted to close the first part of April!

Anyway, I asked about closing on Wednesday, in two days.  Thus far things have worked out well and everything is lined up for tomorrow!  All of the documents are FINALLY ready, except one.  It's supposed to arrive tomorrow morning.  There are four sellers and one of them is in Nebraska. That person overnighted that document this afternoon.  As long as it comes in tomorrow morning...we're good to go!  We are going to wire the down payment and closing cost monies first thing in the morning.  I am praying that the paper arrives tomorrow.  Despite the frustration it's been for me in getting a loan (that's one reason right there why one should pay cash!) I am actually getting excited about closing tomorrow.  I am not nervous and I don't feel like I am signing my life away.  Which really, on a side note, it seems scary that anyone would feel like that when they buy a house...don't you agree?  Maybe it's just more of an expression of the excitement and commitment in buying house?  If I felt like I was signing my life away, I think I would be too terrified to go through with it.

Okay, so you did get some details.  And to throw in some pictures, Shanna brought a "dog" home from school.  She had to record what she did with the dog.  Haley had the same activity last week, but sadly I kept forgetting about it and the next morning Haley had nothing to record.  Haley told me her teacher had her just write something at school. It helped that we had FHE when Shanna brought her dog home and last week for Haley it was a Wednesday night when we had to go into church and had a busy afternoon.  Oh well.

Can't remember the dog's name.  But it had FHE with us, and treat.
April 8 2013 Shanna and Titus

April 8 2013 Titus

Shanna dressed it up for bed and slept with it. 
April 8 2013 Shanna and Titus (2)

So, maybe tomorrow, if I have time, I'll finally post those pictures I've been holding back of the house! (AND if we close.  I hope, I hope!)