The Reality of Moving

It’s been a while since my last post, so I apologize, but we’ve been super busy moving into the new house and getting settled, which means we have lots of stories to share.  So I’ll dive right in.

The girls watch as the moving truck pulls into position.
The girls watch as the moving truck pulls into position.

The move itself went pretty smoothly thanks to a great moving crew, who were not only super efficient, but very personable.  Unfortunately, I can’t say the same for our builder.  There were several outstanding issues after our home inspection and the foreman was working on the list of items until 1 am the day we moved in!  Because of the late hour, there were many areas that didn’t get cleaned like they should have, including paint on our floors.



Although the builder said we could request it to be cleaned, that would require us unloading all of our stuff into the garage and delaying moving into the house, which was simply not acceptable after all the planning we’d done.  We were already doing an “early occupancy” before closing due to delays on the builder’s part and didn’t want to wait further because we both had work schedules to contend with.  We chose to accept the cleaning “as is” and proceed with the move in, with a few repair items still to be addressed before closing and a few more to occur in the spring when the snow is gone and the ground thaws.

Three different sub-contractors came that very day to address several of the items, but there were still two remaining when we closed the following week – the major one being the mis-matched closet doors in the entry way.


I’m still dumbstruck at this.  Maybe they thought we wouldn’t notice, or care.   But I’m sure they knew it was different because they had to drill a hole outside of the flat plane made for the knob in order for it to line up with the others!  **Face palm**

The lack of cleaning by the builder meant up that we had to clean every surface before anything could be unpacked and put on it, including inside cabinets, which of course makes unpacking take twice as long.  And because there wasn’t a span of time between closing and moving, we were trying to install the pantry shelves and closet systems while moving in.  That’s a combination of projects I don’t recommend, although both turned out really nice (watch for a post about both soon).

The reality of all this is that for the past two weeks some rooms look pretty good with just a box or two remaining:




While others look like a tornado has struck.

The kitchen as Matt begins to organize his army of cooking paraphernalia.
The spare room currently holds everything that doesn’t have a ‘home’ yet.
Boxes waiting to go into storage in the crawlspace. And that’s not all of them!
The view into the Master. Piles o’ stuff was not the vision I had for this space!

Most of the spaces are starting to take shape and resemble the ‘vision’ I had for them, but it’s a process.  I’ll do a whole house tour once I get it mostly done.

We did have a few unexpected issues pop up as we started setting up things.  The first was the height of the doggie door. Apparently our previous slider was a wee bit shorter than the new one!


We stuffed a piece of cardboard up there while the movers were working, but the hubs later filled the gap with a nice piece of melamine scrap from the pantry project (post coming soon) so it looks almost built in.

The second issue was that our “bar height” chairs from the dining table weren’t tall enough for the new kitchen island bar.  We have 8 of these chairs and planned to use them for both the dining table and the bar, but that obviously won’t work.  You literally feel like you’re sitting at the kiddie table because the counter is about 6” above the middle of your chest!  So I’m now on the hunt for super tall stools instead and have my eye on these at Target, but just can’t bite the bullet at $120/chair (AK price)!  I’m holding out hoping for a super sale and being able to find enough in the same color at one store.

Another revelation of the move is that magnets don’t stick to stainless steel fridge doors.  I guess that should have occurred to me earlier, but I’ve had a few hundred other things on my mind as of late.  At least it keeps the fridge clutter free.  Apparently they do stick to the sides still, so I moved our little dry erase board to the side for writing grocery items on as they become low, otherwise I’ll never know what I should buy at the store.

Luckily, the dogs have adjusted well to the new house, although they had a few days there were all the activity was overwhelming and they clung to anything familiar – especially when they were doubled up and extra cushy!


Now that we’re finally in the new house we’re looking to get another dog and possibly a cat, which will definitely be another adjustment for them, but I’m sure they can handle it.  Especially if there’s treats involved. 🙂

A Quick Update

First things first, I’m sorry I’ve been MIA recently.  It was a SUPER busy at work last week and I had several photo sessions with new clients (that’s a very good thing!) so blogging just fell to the bottom of the list.  But, I’m back and I’ll try to make up for lost time with a post each day this week – although don’t hold me to that! 😉

We made our weekly visit to check on the construction progress at the new house on Sunday and didn’t see much visual change, but that doesn’t mean things didn’t happen.  The gas line was installed, as evidenced by the gas meter on the side of the garage.  That means there is progress still happening while we were sorting out the electrical issue – more on that in a minute.


We also know that R19 insulation was ‘blown’ into the attic, since Matt was there when the contractor arrived earlier this week.  Of course I don’t have any pictures of that, but I’m sure the home inspector will confirm it’s all there.  As you can see below the metal roof is still not complete, but it is closer than it was last week.


One major thing we noticed is that the debris on the lot has been cleaned up.  Remember how there was a huge pile of trash and scrap on this side of the house last week?  Well it was moved to the front and apparently burned based on the ashes seen on the right in the picture below.  It’s a good thing that Matt pulled out the usable pieces and set them aside in the woods when he was on site earlier this week!! Granted there are still items on the edges of the clearing that will need to be collected and a few items in the burn spot that weren’t completely destroyed that will have to be removed, but overall it’s looking a lot cleaner – which soothes my Type A personality!  Although it does make the dirt splatter from the recent rain more obvious… Luckily, I reminded myself that will be eliminated when we landscape next summer.



Most importantly, there were signs of progress on the electrical line being run.  The short story is that the seller of the lot did service the lot as he agreed to do, but not in the way that would have been most convenient or cost-effective for us.  So it boiled down to our options being 1.) Cut a 15′ wide stretch of trees from the front corner of the lot opposite the driveway to the house for the line to be run, at an additional cost of $3,000 if we cleared the trees ourselves or 2.) Pay an additional $3,500 to have the line run down the road and up the driveway to the house.  We chose to maintain the privacy and potential resale value by paying the extra $500 to go the extra distance.  Unfortunately, that meant we were over budget and needed to adjust the numbers with our lender.  Although I’m not happy with the increased cost, I am pretty proud that the only reason we are over budget is out of our control.  Every other selection and decision was made within budget at our original sales price and allowances balancing out.  Not many who build a home can say that!  Here you can make out the stakes that mark where the line will run up the driveway and to the side of the house.


Hopefully the actual line will go in this week and progress can resume inside with muding and taping, then finish work!  With all the recent delays, we’re now estimating we won’t close and move in until sometime in December.  Sigh.  I really want to spend Christmas in the new house, but ultimately my goal at this point is to be in the house by the end of the year.  Fingers crossed! 🙂

Visible Progress!

We did our weekly visit to check on the construction of the new house today and were happy to see that the roof is almost complete along with the drywall!  It looks so different seeing solid walls.  Luckily, all of the rooms seemed about the size I anticipated.  I know adding drywall can make rooms feel smaller, so if I like the space now I should really love it when it’s finished and painted!

The roof is done on the front except for a small part on the garage and the edge caps.
Inside the main living area from the laundry room door.
Main living area from back side of the kitchen.
Main living area from back side of the kitchen.
Kitchen and dining room from the front entry way.
Kitchen and dining room from the front entry way.
Corner pantry in the kitchen.
Corner pantry in the kitchen.
My future studio!!
My future studio!!
The corner of the entry way and hallway from the living room.
The junction of the studio, entry way and hallway from the living room.
Entry way hallway.
Entry way hallway.

The hallway from either end.

Guest room #1.
Guest room #1, or “Foster” room.
Guest room #2
Guest room #2
Master Bedroom!
Master Bedroom!
Master Bathroom corner tub and edge of the shower; the doorway on the left leads to the toilet room.
Hallway bathroom.
Hallway/guest bathroom.
Back of the roof, about 2/3 done.
Back of the roof, about 2/3 done.

Now we’re just waiting to get the power line figured out with the electric company.  There’s been a bit of a snag in deciding where the line will come from and how it will be run, so hopefully that gets resolved this week which will finalize the electrical inspection and allow the crew to get mudding and taping can be done before the cabinets are installed and then flooring.  Stay tuned! 🙂