Sunday, March 10, 2013

The road has been long...

But the journey was definitely WORTH IT!

It has been a little over a month since we moved into the new house and we have loved almost every minute of being here.  This past Saturday we finished unpacking the last box in the garage and so now all that's left is continuing to organize.  

In looking back at the pictures that I have taken over the weeks since I last posted it is good for me to see that we've come a long way, baby!  I have 74 pictures in my file titled "pictures for blog 3/10."  For all of our sakes, I will try not to include them all.  

The final push for our move in consisted of getting the landscaping done.  We ended up with more rain (imagine that) and so it pushed us back.  The city would not give us a permanent certificate of occupancy (CO) without the sod in, so we had to apply for a temporary CO, which we received on Friday February 1.  

I don't know how many truckloads of sod we had.  It was a lot.  And it was messy.
The neighbors were probably not very happy.
It took about 4 days to lay the sod in the entire yard.

At the same time the sod was going in, the front fence and gate were being competed.
Ooops... the welder caught the grass on fire!  
Thankfully, no one was hurt and grass grows back!

Meanwhile, in the back yard, the pool was getting finished:

Because of the rain, the pool finish was delayed, too. They have to bring the
 big trucks in for the gunite.  What is gunite?  It is a mixture of sand,
cement and water that is sprayed onto the interior of the pool.

After the gunite comes the pebble-tec, which is a plaster finish made up of
tiny pebbles, coloring, and plaster.  

Ready for water!

And the filling begins.
getting there...
Almost there...

Done!  This is the moment that I turned the water off.  It took about 3 days to fill,
running the water continually.  I think it is about 38,000 gallons.

Here is how it looks with all the equipment turned on.
While the workers were busy outside, I was busy inside doing things to get ready for the move in:

Lining all the drawers

Hanging Joe's shower curtain
So on Tuesday February 5, all of our stuff that had been in storage somewhere in Dallas showed up in 3 trucks.  Along with some of the furniture we had ordered in the meantime.

We tried very hard to organize all the deliveries.  Unfortunately, some of the drivers
were not very skilled at negotiating the driveway.  Mr. Ethan Allen driver got
 his truck stuck on the gate and cracked the column and dug out the newly placed sod.
After the movers left... we were faced with:

A sea of boxes

At least we had a walkway.
The first area to actually get set up was our master bedroom.  At least we could get away from the chaos a little...

We were very fortunate to have many people offer to help us with the move.  At first I didn't think we would really need it, but then I decided they wouldn't offer if they didn't want to, so I had friends help with unpacking, lining drawers, sealing granite and meals.  We felt very loved.  

On Thursday of that week, Jim and Joe went on a trip to Washington D.C.  For those that are shocked that he would leave then, it was planned back when we were supposed to have long been moved in by then!  It actually gave me a few days to work on getting some of the spaced organized... like the kitchen:

So, after months of planning and dreaming... it still took me a long time to get
things where they needed to go.  I am a little OCD when it comes to
setting up my stuff:  I want everything to be in the general vicinity of
where I use it.  I wasn't sure it was all going to fit.. but it did and with a
few empty upper shelves to spare!  (I can't reach them without a ladder, anyway.)

Late at night, trying to organize all the pantry supplies

DONE!  It only took 2 days!
The new round table and chairs!
One little design feature I love:  I can pull these guys out, use them, and put
them away again.  They stay plugged in all the time.  Yes, the food processor
 is still in plastic.  I got it for Christmas in 2011 and never got a chance to use it!
 Please notice the fabulous granite.  Probably my most
favorite thing in the whole house.
We had to wait to put our area rugs down on the newly finished floors, so all
the family room furniture was pushed aside for several days.  While I
was working in the kitchen, Susie was supervising from the couch.
Her expression captures how we were all feeling by the end of the week!

So, Jim and Joe arrived home that Saturday evening and I'm sure Jim thought I would have gotten more done.  I'm just not that fast at unpacking because I like to go box by box and get things in the general vicinity of where they need to go.  He has an alternate way of unpacking because of an irrational dislike of boxes and the need to get every single box out of the house at the first garbage pick up.  So, unbeknownst to me, he had Joe go upstairs and just empty boxes.  

On the following Tuesday, my goal was to get unpacked upstairs.  I really hadn't been up there, except to say goodnight to the boys.  So when I went up on that morning... this is what I was faced with:

Stuff.  Literally from one end of the upstairs to the other.  In a complete jumble.
I told Jim I was angry.  He apologized, but I know he was just glad to have
most of the boxes gone.  It took me about 12 hours to get this cleaned up and
pared down to 2 boxes.  This was probably my least favorite day of moving in.

After all the major areas were done, we were finally able to start getting the rooms actually set up.  Although we've made some minor changes, here's how they generally look now:

Joe's room.  Note:  this is not how it looks now.  It may not look this
way again until he leaves for college.

The "bunk" room.  Not much of a bunk room yet.  Jim calls this Michael's room.
If so, it's a good thing he will be used to sleeping in a twin bed from his mission!

Robert's room.  Poor Robert.  He slept in a sleeping bag on his bed for several days
until I finally found all of his bedding and the time to get his bed made!
Sad to say we still haven't hung his pictures... we plan to do that this week!

The family room.  
Bookshelves done!

We have been waiting a year and a half to hang this picture!  Long enough for it to be
a little outdated after the addition of Miles to our family.  Hence the wedding
pictures in the frame below it... we want him to be represented.
Master bedroom vestibule

Guest room

Laundry room/office.  This is another area that took DAYS for me to get situated.
Even now I still have some organizing to do.
Here is Susie's new bed.  She can be found here whenever I am on the computer.
 Occasionally, she will venture in here on her own if we are busy elsewhere
in the house--especially if she is cold.

All the while that we were moving in and setting up the house, the barn and horse fencing was also getting finished up:

Stall components delivered

Stall walls going up

Finished stall front
Dutch doors installed, barn fencing done

Wood floor finished upstairs

Bathroom hardware installed.  Creepy person in shower.
All the barn furniture delivered.  

Southeast corner of property

View of barn from Southwest corner of property.  A note about this tree:
our landscaper told us that it is the 4th largest measured Post Oak tree
in the entire DFW metroplex!!  It is 48 inches in diameter.  It is still my favorite.
View of back side (east) of property.

So for the most part, we are settled in.  Some of us have even had time to relax!

Typical Texas winter:  warm one day and cold the next.
Joe and Sue take advantage of the warm ones.

Sue LOVES the back yard.  As long as it is warm and dry.  
And I've taken the time to cook a bit...

Valentine's day meatloaf!
And enjoy the wildlife:

The other morning I looked out the window and this deer was pacing along the
front entrance fence--clearly having expected to go right through to the creek
like she used to.  I opened the gate and she came walking through the yard.
At first I thought, "oh no--now she's going to eat the landscaping."

But she walked right under the horse fence, through the pasture and under the
perimeter fence.  I haven't seen her again.  It's hard to see her in this picture
but she is right in the center above the back yard fence.

And here is an example of why I love Texas... even in the winter.

And here is one more.  This was the view out of our family room windows
at sunrise one morning this past week.  To say we love the views is an understatement!

Ahhh... home sweet home!