minnesota

It’s the most, wonderful time, of the year!

Nope, I’m not talking about the Holidays, it’s FALL! I have lived in MN for 9 years and I don’t remember the fall colors being this beautiful. Not only are all the colors popping at the same time, the weather has been perfect. Rain only occasionally, and highs in the 50s and 60s. I can only hope our winter is this picture perfect. ūüôā

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baby & bundles

We made it! ¬†We moved into our new home and have been living there for about 10 days. ¬†The move was exhausting, but exciting. ¬†We quickly unpacked (most) boxes within a couple of days, but still have a lot of organizing and finding-homes-for to do. ¬†It luckily didn’t rain much during the move, I tend to be famous for rainy moves.

We moved out of our old home on Thursday, then stayed overnight at Z’s parent’s house that night while we were homeless. ¬†The next day, we didn’t close until 2pm, so I had the morning to relax and refuel for moving part 2. ¬†I took P for a walk that morning and had a run-in with a coyote! ¬†It was 9:30am and very sunny, so it was strange to see one so out in the open. ¬†I was walking in the street when it walked down someone’s yard, across the street right in front of us, then into the woods on the other side. ¬†It didn’t pause or even seem to notice us, so it didn’t seem scary at all! ¬†Miss P seemed very alert, but didn’t move much. ¬†Maybe she knew it wasn’t a dog? ¬†The creature sightings continued when we moved in, two HUGE turkeys were walking across our backyard. ¬†Those things are like 4 feet tall! ¬†Then recently, I spotted a garter snake in my front yard, ¬†I haven’t seen one of those since childhood. ¬†Weird how these nature sightings come in groups.

Anywho, we moved in to our new home on Friday, and it seemed to take less than half the time than moving out. ¬†Funny how that happens. ¬†We spent that whole day putting away, organizing, putting together, etc. ¬†We took little breaks to relish in our new home. ¬†Do we¬†actually live here?? I’ve been telling friends that it feels like we are kids living in our parent’s house. ¬†We are officially old!

On Saturday I got to take a break from unpacking, actually take a shower, and attend a baby shower of one of my best friends from college, Emily.  She grew up around here but lives in Chicago, so it was great to see her and her adorable bump!

Me, Emily, and Amy (another college friend)

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Emily is having a girl in the next few months, and I’m so excited to meet her! ¬†She’s going to be a lucky little girl with the most fun, sweet mom!

This last weekend was filled with rain. ¬†In fact, there has been entirely WAY too much rain in our lives lately. ¬†So much so that there is flooding, and event Lake Minnetonka put a “no wake” clause on the entire lake because of high levels. So if you want to go boating, you’re gonna have to go¬†reeeeal slow. ¬†On Saturday we had some high winds with our rain storm, and we lost one big branch and about a million tiny branches/sticks from our trees.

(Not a great shot of the big branch, my phone kept focusing on the screen). ¬†Luckily, it landed on the walking path, and didn’t hit the house or any pretty plants.

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Z had a work event all weekend, so his dad was kind enough to come over on Sunday and help me bundle the sticks and cut up the big branch.  We bundled and bundled for way too long!  I was happy when that project was over.

june 2014 4I capped off that day of hard work with a trip to our peony bush, my favorite flower ever.  My old home had a tiny plant with white blooms, and this home has a much larger plant, but with dark magenta blooms.

*swoon*

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There is a lot more upkeep with this house, especially with the yard. ¬†I am finding that I don’t really mind doing the work. ¬†I want it to stay beautiful! ¬†Z even picked up a dozen little gold fish for our pond, to try and keep away the algae that grows. ¬†Turns out they keep hiding behind the rocks and I’ve only seen them once! ¬†He might spring for larger fish this week.

Well, back to work. ¬†Or as I should call it, listening-to-World-Cup-yells-and-screams-while-I-sit-at-a-desk. ¬†Here’s hoping I can get some work done over the next month. ¬†Goooooooooooaaaaaaalllllllllllllll!

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1 week!

It has been a while since my last post… We are officially moving in one week so we have been a bit busy!
There was a long drawn out ordeal with the seller about financing, and also a contract mistake, but thankfully we have gotten it all sorted out and managed to hang on to our seller. Phew! Last week we had the pleasure of meeting the sellers of our new home, and they couldn’t have been nicer. They are selling us a bunch of their furniture so we went over to take a look the pieces. A sweet couple from Louisiana, they had thick southern drawls that were fun (and different for up north!) to hear. They also informed us all about the house and gave us maintenance numbers, so nice! They even let me take a bunch of boxes they weren’t going to use.
We cannot wait to move. We are throwing together boxes this weekend and into next week, then out we go on Thursday. I’m am hoping to grab a small break and get outside to enjoy this summer weather! Finally!!
Let the countdown BEGIN…

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movin’ on up!

This is a LONG overdue post: ¬†We’re moving!

Z and I had been looking on and off at houses for the better part of a¬†year. ¬†The market in Minneapolis has completely changed overnight, and now when a good house hits the market, it sells, immediately. ¬†Most good houses aren’t even hitting the market, and selling before-hand through word of mouth. ¬†We got a bit frustrated after losing a couple of houses to multiple offer situations, but then, finally, our new house hit the market. ¬†There weren’t any interior pics posted, but Z did some detective work and found some old pics online. ¬†The pics looked pretty good, so we set up a showing. ¬†We were happily surprised that the house was even BETTER than the old pics, many more updates had been done!! ¬†We put our offer in right away. ¬†We found out the next day that there were 5 other offers on that house in just 24 hours, so we changed our offer to be more aggressive. ¬†We had learned a thing or two about what it takes to get a good house in this market, so we weren’t planning on taking any chances. ¬†Plus, we threw in a nice, personal letter with a photo to seal the deal. ¬†Hooray! ¬†It’s ours!!

It’s a 4bed/4bath with 3 gas fireplaces to keep us warm, a sun room, and a nice yard. ¬†Some of the bathrooms need updating, but otherwise we love everything that has been done to the house. ¬†I’m not including pics of the outside or sharing the exact location on the blog, but I will email friends and family soon. ¬†Here are some pics:

Front door entry.

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Front living room that walks into the dining room.

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Small office just off the front living room.

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Main floor family room.

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Basement.

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Sun room that walks outside onto deck.

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Small deck next to a paver patio with pergola (Z and our inspector).

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Eat-in kitchen area (with wine fridge! eee!)

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The kitchen (my FAVORITE room).

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Can we all take a moment to sing like angels for this? Aaaaaaahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh….. ‚̧

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We could not be more excited.

You’re probably wondering, “what about your current house??” ¬†Well, we sold it! ¬†It only took two days! ¬†Well, 2 weeks of prep work, THEN two days. ūüôā ¬†The joy of having our offer accepted on the new house was halted when I started to realize that we needed to put our current house on the market ASAP, and how much we had to do to prepare. ¬†Thankfully, some hired help came to the rescue. ¬†We had two weeks to do work, but within those two weeks included two weekend trips (one for fun, and one for Easter), and two nights of holiday dinners for Passover. ¬†Plus we were both working full time during the day. ¬†I was thinking there was no way on Earth we would get our house ready in time!

First, Z and I cleaned out any excess stuff from our house. ¬†Every room was cleaned out, and super edited down. ¬†We took all of the extra things and brought them to Z’s parent’s house. ¬†They have a big storage room that they were happy to lend to us for a while. ¬†While we were in California for Coachella (see previous post), we had our friend and his crew come in and do some updating for us. ¬†Our friend is one of the hosts of the show “Renovate to Rent” on HGTV (season 2 is filming!), so he definitely knows what he’s doing. ¬†They painted trim & doors, replaced door knobs, replaced carpeting in the basement, and put an apoxy over our 1950s rose pink bathroom tub and sink. ¬†It looked so much more fresh when we returned! ¬† A guy that Z works with owns a cleaning company, so we had them come in last minute to do a big show-house clean, since we just didn’t have the time. ¬†We had about 6 showings, 2 paper offers, and 2 promised offers within 2 days! ¬†We accepted one of them and chose the same closing date as our new house.

I’ll miss this house and our great neighborhood. ¬†Everyone has been so nice and it was a wonderful first home for us, and a great learning experience. ¬†I’ll take the memories from this house and be ready to create new ones in our new home!

Bye-bye house. ¬†I’ll miss your flowering crabapple, your hydrangea bushes, your private yard, and your warm fireplace. ¬†Be good to the new owner.

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White Out

This winter has tested my limits. I even took a vacation to Florida and I’m already ready for another getaway. I miss warm breezes, plants, long walks, and grilling.
BUT, I’m trying to stay positive, so enjoy my wintry pics…

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Glittery snow and a tiny Penelope head…

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View from my desk on storm day.

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Z’s birthday was celebrated by roof shoveling.

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Knee deep!

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I must say though, the sunny days sure are pretty.

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Happy almost March!!

As of late – January in Minnesota

January has been brutal with a capitol “B”. ¬†One day it’s a balmy 36, the next day it’s snowing, and the next day it’s -22. ¬† In the past 9 winters I have lived here, there is usually 0-1 day(s) with a double-digit below zero temperature. ¬†This year there have been 3 or 4! ¬†It’s almost becoming laughable. ¬†Z and I have been hovering in front of our fireplace in the evenings and I’ve been spending extra money on underground parking at work.

Currently, we are having our handyman Josh help us with some light installations. ¬† Our current dining room chandelier used to be centered over a small round table, so it wasn’t centered (at the ceiling), for our larger rectangular table. ¬†We were weary of cutting a big hole in the ceiling ourselves, so we called Josh to come help. ¬†This is the fixture we are taking down:

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I was home when Josh was there the first day, and I came over to look when he said “What the hell?!?!”. ¬†Never a great thing to hear from your handyman! ¬†After removing the old chandelier, he found this:ceiling

Yup, that’s right. ¬†A BATHROOM FAN was installed into our dining room ceiling at some point in our home’s history. I am still having a hard time figuring out what this thing was doing there. Because of this big thing, we now have a HUGE hole in the ceiling that is on it’s 3rd round of patching/sanding. So, the new fixture¬†still isn’t installed. A few months ago, we purchased this from Pottery Barn when it was on mega-sale:

light fixture newI’m hoping it looks to scale because it sure looks large in the box! We shall see. We will also be installing a small pendant light over the kitchen sink, and a new fan/light combo in our master bedroom. We haven’t had the use of a working overhead light in our bedroom for probably over a year (I know), so it is overdue. Updates to come on those.

A couple of weeks ago when it was warm enough for a long walk, I decided to snap a pic of a new construction home on a neighboring street. (click to enlarge)

houseI love this house. ¬†The exterior finishes aren’t complete yet, but you get the idea. ¬†I have a thing for 1-story homes, and have noticed that not many are being built these days. ¬†I love all of the windows and the contemporary feel. ¬†I bet those windows on the top are going to let in some great light for the family room/kitchen (I am guessing). ¬†Stashing this idea in case Z lets me build one day! ūüôā

Today is one of those spring-like warmer days (high of 36!), so I am going to try to get out for a walk/romp in the snow with P after work.  She definitely deserves it after being cooped up during our frigid days!

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Also, I decided to chop my hair the other day to just resting on my shoulders.  Sorry for the hat, but you get the idea of the length here.  I am loving how easy it is.

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Happy Friday!!!