Sunday, March 30, 2008


We got the keys on Friday, and with all the boys including the furry ones, headed over to see our home. The furry boys loved it, ran around excited and introduced themselves to the neighbor's dogs. It is ours.

David from the record store came over yesterday morning, right after Papa Seed and his friend took off to do the asbestos removal. I ended up getting $700 for my vinyl. I was hoping it would be $800, but then again I pulled a couple hundred more out of the stack in a moment of panic before he came over, so it felt like a fair deal. He was a really nice guy too, and I really like that it was an independent store that is going to attract hard core music folks. It was more liberating than I expected, although this morning I woke up with a Gloria Gaynor song (not that Gloria Gaynor song, but one called "For the First Time In My Life") running over and over and over again through my head. I haven't heard that song in probably 20 years. Yesterday I got about a quarter for the album it is on.

Mancub and I took off to do some hardcore shopping after that, entering the Seventh Circle of Hell and leaving with stories about really sweet techgeek boys who helped us, along with that much coveted Xbox 360 and four, count 'em, four Rated M games (he had asked if he could get one - I did some research and found four that were supposed to be good but the last game like that I played was Ms. PacMan in the lobby of a theater in Sacramento back in the early 80's, so I'm going by the fansites). Got a deal on the special edition of Halo III that comes with some kind of helmet for decorative purposes only. Made sure he had the Gold Card so he can play live with his friends on line. Or something. Not sure I got it, but my intention was to totally spoil him, and I did. For ONE day. Before the move. Before the adoption. I bought myself (meaning, the family) a 40" HD TV, and my first iPod.

His "Mom" called him to say he could pick up her widescreen TV, which is probably even bigger than our new one. He is going to hook that up to the Xbox. She also asked how things were going in Driver's Training, and when he told her great she offered him her old car, since she had just bought a new one. This was something she had arranged with us a few weeks ago, but we kept it from him. All of this left him in kind of a dazed state of glory. "This is a really good day!" he said several times. Pressing his luck, he asked if we could go get ramen at his favorite restaurant. Continuing the Spoil Mancub Day, I agreed. Besides, they do have delicious noodles.

We picked up some more paint for a few rooms, and headed over to Creek House. Papa Seed and friend were just finishing up what had been a much more difficult and exhausting job than they expected. Walking in the house, I love it more than I did the last time, when I loved it more than I did the last time. Now with it empty, I get to really see it. And then it started to snow. First a little, then a lot. Snow on Creek House - you can't get more Laura Ingalls Wilder than that. It was beautiful.

Tuesday, March 25, 2008


My eyes have been taking turns twitching for the past two weeks. Today it was mainly the right one. I was offered some anxiety medication by a kind soul, but I declined. It is really a mild irritation, but it comes with a certain stigma no doubt about it.

I'm guessing it is coming from the dust that is blowing like a volcano in our clean sweeping, lack of sleep and exhaustion, and increase in coffee intake. I'm thinking it will ease up in a few weeks when I can take respite by the creek. Already I'm piling up the expectations of miracle cures for the new place. That's a lot of pressure to put on a building and a small piece of land.

I feel like a relic when I get on the electronic store web sites to see what we can get to replace our clunky stereo made up of various pieces. I don't think stereo system is a current phrase. Home theater something or other is all that shows up, but we only want that in one room. We want a CD player and radio in the living room. CD players are like good tortilla chips. They've all be replaced by Doritos, or in this case iPods. Our walls of CDs now mean that we are old. I think I'm going to buy an iPod but I'm not getting a thrill when thinking I can plop one tiny machine into another to play music. I guess there will be a certain satisfaction in being able to play NPR shows when I want to hear them.

Mainly, I keep thinking that I'll be getting a new computer that I can use to watch and listen to things on ubu. My Old Skool Mac is way too slow and small. I still haven't decided if I'll get the 20" screen or just be a total hog and get 24". These consumer choices are clearly dangerous. We do still need to buy chickens and I want to use Earth Plaster when we redo the bathroom. Plus, the games for Mancub's XBox are going to be expensive as heck. I had no idea it cost so much to play Kill! Kill! Kill! We just used plastic toys which were cheap.

Monday, March 24, 2008

Signed in a Dash.

Today we signed the papers. It was a big stack, but I was prepared and almost expecting it to be twice as big. Managed to do it on my lunch time, even with the falafels that Papa Seed brought when he picked me up. We demolished those, then headed down to where we handed a very young woman our Passports, Driver's Licenses and the biggest check that has every featured either of our names. Quickly, our lives changed.

Last night it started to hit finally. Of course it has hit before, but it was different last night. More real, more astounding.

This morning our shower started to leak big time. Yesterday our basement flooded (again) and our kitchen faucet came off. Everyone asks if we will miss this house because for the last eight years we have said how much we love our neighborhood, but I will not miss this home. Not anytime soon. There are some good and some great times left behind here, but I'm so wanting to move on.

Add to the list of things I never thought I'd do an email to a local vintage record store to see about their policies and pricing for vinyl. Found out they do house-calls for large collections. I easily qualify as having a large collection. I think I'll pull out a few 100 or so favorites I've never found on CD and let go. I might even make enough to pay for Mancub's Xbox. Talk about passing the torch. I don't think I have enough time left on earth to revisit listening to each of my albums again, even if I quit my job. Besides, I want to spend time putting in a claw foot bathtub, building an Earth Oven, listening to urban coyote howls, making art, and walking under trees. I'm okay knowing some young one is buying my old copy of Bow Wow Wow. I'm keeping the first solo Sarah Dash however, just in case of emergencies. Some longings can't be healed by coyotes, even if they are much rarer these days.

Saturday, March 22, 2008

Floors and Ceilings

While Mancub was doing yet another ridiculous Shoplifting Diversion class - at least his fourth punishment for stealing a can of coke nine months ago (and after each consequence we have promised him it is all behind him only to have Big Brother knock on our door again - Please Leave Our Child Behind!), Papa Seed and I went back to ecohaus, this time to actually exchange money for our first home improvement products.

We decided on the Sahara shade of Marmoleum for the Laundry/Utility room. Also decided to go ahead and get the rolls of the wool underflooring that absorbs moisture and noise, not that we expect either of those to be an issue but now we are trying to think about quality for resell. We haven't even moved into our first home, and already we are keeping in mind resell value.

We held off on getting flooring for the house bathroom. We have to decide if we are willing to take on a bigger remodeling job than just the floors or keep it simple. We are thinking that we will take out the fiberglass blood red shower/tub monster, cut back on the huge counter and do away with one of the sinks (one of which is Crayola crayon red) and try to put in a (used) clawfoot tub, a nice (new) bowl sink, and add some storage shelves. If we do this, we will wait until we are moved totally in, so we have access to the "mother-in-law" bonus unit bathroom, which will have a tenant for the first three days of ownership (a little something we agreed to with the current ownder).

Papa Seed got an estimate on removing the asbestos ceilings from the three rooms. I'm starting to soften on letting him do it. He promises he will get all the proper equipment including a throwaway jumpsuit. He has printed out the complete instructions for the homeowner that the City puts together. I'll go over it with him later, and if he agrees to get on of his buds to help him (because it sure as Hell won't be me), I'll probably let him.

Then we have to paint the ceilings. We picked out an American Pride environmentally friendly paint color for the Utility room walls while at ecohaus. I guess we can use that for the ceiling there. Mancub has to pick out a color for his room. It is difficult to get him excited about most of the house changes. He is mainly just interested in the Xbox 360 that was part of the bargain in agreeing to a move. That won't be green. We can only do what we can do. At least we can make his ceiling green friendly.

We found a church pew at EarthWise that we will probably buy for the Living Room. Mancub wasn't thrilled when we told him about it, but he is outnumbered on this one.

I put some furniture on craigslist. Making way for the new. No bites yet, but then I didn't add a photo. I'll do that tomorrow if no one responds.

Friday, March 21, 2008

Popcorn Ceiling

Papa Seed and I disagree about what to do with the popcorn ceiling. He wants to go in there and do a DIY job to remove it. Since we know it is the asbestos type of popcorn, I think that is too risky. We had a heated email exchange while we both were at work this morning. I think we have decided to cover it up, instead of disturbing it. We might revisit this before Friday.

Friday is the day it becomes final. The day we get keys. Monday will be the day we sign the paperwork. As of last night we are in the mysterious "escrow" phase. That is a word I've long heard grown-ups use, but never really had any idea what it meant.

I've packed my fifth box of CDs and have barely made a dent. I guess this is why every generation after mine is switching to iPods and MP3s. I've lost count of how many boxes of books we've packed so far, but there are still books in every room that need a way to be transported.

I took another two boxes of freebies to work today. Almost everything went quickly. I foolishly thought someone on craigslist might want magazines, but so far no bites. Too bad because they are good ones. A whole lot of money has been spent on this things that I guess will just get recycled. I guess this is why every generation after mine has switched to the internet.

Thursday, March 20, 2008

Creek House

Creek House

We are packing now. Going through almost five decades of memories in various forms, trying really hard to do the sell/give-away * recycle * throw away * save thing that all of the experts suggest. It seems endless and I have a perfectly good reason to hold on to every matchbook, ticket stub, old calendar, and card except I've somehow managed to go a stack of years without needing or seeing these things.

The new house is a new life. It will be the first home we have ever owned, either of us and both of us. We are wanting a fresh start with less, but richer in meaning. More conscious, less cluttered.

It is beautiful. The creek goes in front and along the side. It makes the most incredible sound. The house has hardwood floors, and a fireplace with blue tiles in front of it. In back is a chicken coop and a rotating composter. There is a greenbelt behind us where coyotes wander and foxes roam and eagles nest.

We have an adventure in front of us.