Category Archives: Home

Today, we accepted an offer on our house

This evening was a monumental day in our history.  As I was meeting with my business partner and a buyer for our business, I received a phone call from our Realtor with an offer on our home.  Yes, I realize that the prior sentence has two major punches.

First, we listed our house for sale back in June.  As of September, we’d all but given up hope after our only potential showing canceled.  We showed the house twice in September and then things went quiet again.  Then on Wednesday, we got a call for a showing the same day.  Later that evening, I received the verbal offer – which was more than fair, though not quite full asking price.

Second, I’m merging my web design business with another.  As much as I love what I do with Zeal Tech, I am not able to spend the amount of time necessary to run the business and really attend to my customers needs.   Realizing those two issues, we have found a new business partner to merge our business into.  We will continue to serve our existing roles with the new company and serve our customers, but will be have a significant boost to customer service in the form of a manned phone and technical support available to everyone, quicker than we are normally able to respond since this is a secondary business for us.

But that brings us to today.  This morning, we accepted the offer made on our house.  So, pending home inspection (which should not turn up anything) and an acceptable appraisal (the more pressing issue in this market), the house will be gone.  That leaves us debt-free, but also homeless.  So, the process of homebuilding shall begin.  I believe this blog will come alive again with news of the home building process – much the same way when we were expecting Peyton’s arrival.  We hope that you’ll follow us on this new journey.

Note: This pre-dated entry was written on the day of the event.  Due to unknowns of selling the house and the business, I didn’t publish it at the time, but I wanted to put this out there with my thoughts and worries from that day.

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Surviving the Suffering Economy

Have you ever looked at your bank account and asked yourself, where did the money go? In this time of seriously being broke, day-to-day living starts to get depressing. Going out to splurge on a pair of shoes or a handbag seems to be a thing of the past. Everybody is strapped for cash and it doesn’t seem to be getting any better anytime soon.

My husband and I have found ways to trim the money fat and still not get depressed over it. We’ve sacrificed eating out for lunch during the workweek in order to go out to dinner and a movie. Its worth the wait! We realized that we could easily spend $75-125 a week just on lunches. Every now and then, we still go out with the boys or the girlfriends. This was a change, especially for us. Packing your lunch seemed so elementary, but in this day, its really the best way to save your funds. Just a simple sandwich or dinner leftovers make for a great lunch and keeps your dollars in your wallet. Plus, you don’t have to expend gas to go out!

Going green in your cleaning routine may be a helpful solution for those willing to try something different. Cleaning products are no doubt pricey, but going back to basics may help. All cleaning agents are originally made from a few general ingredients: baking soda, lemon juice, vinegar. Try using just baking soda with a tad of water for cleaning your bathtub/shower, stovetop and anything else that holds grime. I’ve found that it helps those surfaces sparkle. Plus, its environmentally-friendly. I recently bought a 12 lb. bag of baking soda from Sam’s Club for just under $4. My close friend told me that you can also wash your clothes in straight baking soda – which I plan to do when I run out of the 144 load bottle of $28 Tide.

There are many budget tips and tricks, you just have to be willing to make changes and sacrifices. Our rule is that we eat dinner at home every night unless we go out with friends or a date. This way, its way worth it to spend time with people and its more special. Rules help us keep boundaries in our financial limits, otherwise if it were up to me, we would always get take-out. Besides the money, I also think about the amount of waste from take-out. Compared to eating at home, the only thing I actually throw into the trash are polystyrene trays, plastic wrap and any seasoning packets.  Everything else, cans and boxes, gets recycled or reused.

I believe going green helps to save some green. I don’t think I’ve changed who I am, just have a different outlook and a conscience effort doing my part. Conscience efforts make all the difference.

Bathroom remodel complete

We’ve finally completed the bathroom remodel process.  Peyton finally has a bath tub to use for her every night.  It took a couple tries before she was comfortable in there.  Now she’s enjoying her baths – she even knows what to call it now.  We had everything mostly together before the party, but we finished up the last touches this week afterwards.  We still have some final decorations to finish, but everything is up and running properly – with no leaks.  We would have never been able to finish this without my dad and Brett’s help… so a BIG thank you to them!  All in all, it turned out great.  Should be something that we can enjoy for years to come…

End of April update

Not much happening this month… We have continued to work on the bathroom as we’ve had time – which isn’t much. We have been to different parks the past two weekends with Peyton and she absolutely loves playing on the slides and other toys… We have photos online of some of her fun. We also made it to the beach last weekend with Brett and Trina.

Grandma and Papa Sellers made it down this past weekend. They had a blast with Peyton as always. Peyton is growing and continues to wow us with new words and dances. She’s learning so much and so quickly. The daycare is teaching her all sorts of songs like “The Wheels on the Bus,” “Deep and Wide” and “Jesus Loves Me”. She also learned to say “no ma’mn,” something she apparently hears a lot from us… 🙂

Other than that, things have been mostly quiet and uneventful. We have been doing really well…

Random updates…

We had a full weekend this weekend. Friday, Grandma and Papa Sellers came into town. We just had a low key night at home. Everyone is feeling better from our various infections, so we enjoyed our time this weekend. We started early Saturday in the bathroom installing the plumbing for the new tub/shower. We finished that by mid-day and so we removed some of the subflooring in the bathroom so that we can replace it and hopefully correct a hump we have in the floor. Updated photos have been added in the Remodel gallery.

We took some family photos with the grandparents during the afternoon. This is their first professional photos with Peyton. Her other set of grandparents got to have professional photos during Christmas this year.

On Sunday, we had another play date with Layna and Olivia. Photos have been added to our .Mac gallery.

Bathroom update

This weekend, Brett came over and put in the backer board for the tile around the tub. That is all ready to go and now we can do the rough in on the plumbing. I hope that we can get that taken care of this weekend. My uncle will be doing the connections for the plumbing once we get the rough in complete. Brett can proceed with the tile around the tub after the rough in and some other things are sorted out.

We also went shopping and got all of the tile for the floors and the tub. Its all in our garage now waiting for installation, but I have a few things that need sorting out before that.

I need to figure out what to do with the ceiling. I’m thinking of making it a flat ceiling, but we don’t have flat ceilings anywhere else in the house. And I don’t do drywall. Anyone know a good drywall person??

We went ahead and ripped out the sink and cabinets in the bathroom too so that we can get a better plan of what we need to do with the floors. I’ll take some pictures tonight and post the progress…

Bathroom remodel

You may or may not know that Jen and I had our house listed for sale. We had decided to do this back last year in hopes of cashing out equity and building a house. Those plans didn’t work out, but we’re very happy with the outcome. Those lovely interest rates have been falling and we were able to get in on a good refinance of our home, getting both a good rate and shortening our loan period to 15 years. So, by the time Peyton is ready to go off to college, our house should be paid for.

Since we’re staying, we decided to cash out a little bit of equity to do some needed improvements. The two biggest are adding a bathtub in our house bath and adding a fence somewhere in the backyard.

See, item one is a funny thing. When we bought the house, we thought nothing of not having a bath tub in the house – just two showers. But when Peyton came home, we soon realized that the bathroom sink wouldn’t be big enough for long. She’s also outgrown the kitchen sink – well, maybe not outgrown, but she likes to splash too much for that to work… So we have begun redoing our bathroom. I have a gallery of photos so that you can follow the progress.

My dad came in town on Friday to help with this. He and I worked on this Friday and Saturday. And then we worked on it again yesterday all day before they went home. We’ve almost got it ready for tile. We plan to tile around the three walls that surround the tub. My distant cousin/friend Brett is going to be helping with that… Anyways, more on this project later.