It’s taken me a while to get back to this… almost a month exactly, but here I am!
The last month has been a whirlwind adventure across the country and into this -very tan- house. After a wonderful final weekend where two good friends got married and another good friend had a baby, we took to the highway. First stop was Baltimore, MD where we dined on the waterfront with my friend, Erin and her fiance, Spencer. Day two took us through Virginia, West Virginia and Tennessee. We spent the rainy evening in downtown Nashville, but unfortunately didn’t have a chance to explore the city much. Day three was the longest and took us across the Mississippi River into Arkansas (very backwoods, fyi. Very interesting). Then the entire length of Oklahoma and a bit of the North Texas plains until we arrived in Amarillo. Up early on day 4, we finished our journey driving across the rest of the Texas panhandle, New Mexico and through the mountains of Northern Arizona.
While incredibly long, the drive was well worth it, not only to see the sites and the country, but also to allow ourselves some time to come to the realization that, yes, we were actually moving to Arizona. Several times during the drive, one of us would break the silence with, “wow, we’re really doing this” or “yeah, it just hit me. We’re driving out there and we’re not driving back.” The drive gave us a chance to reflect on the move and let it sink in before we actually arrive. It was literally a “necessary journey” to get where we were going. Virginia and parts of Tennessee were beautiful. Arkansas and Oklahoma were bland. The plains of North Texas were beautiful at the time of day we drove through- evening and early morning. The contrast of the golden grass against the dramatic blue twilight sky with thunder clouds rolling in was breathtaking. But in the mid day sun, I’m sure you tire of the flat terrain. The mountains of Arizona were gorgeous and reminded me of New Hampshire. It was nice to know that if we wanted to get away “up north” there was a scenic place to go not too far away.
We arrived on a Wednesday evening, Mr. S&P’s birthday. We celebrated the end of the drive and his birthday at a restaurant in Chandler. We had scheduled our closing on the house for Friday, but the first 5 days in Arizona did not quite as planned. While we waited to close, we stayed at the Extended Stay where Mr. S&P had lived since the beginning of June. It was not good, to say the least. Less quality than the most basic hotels that I’d even been in. Thinking we’d only be there for two nights though, we sucked it up.
Thursday I discovered the door key Mr. S&P gave me did not work, and when I went to the front desk to exchange it, they refused to give me a new key because I was not “registered” to the room. This was after I already left the room and the dog with no wallet or cell phone. Thanks, Extended Stay. While they allowed me to call Mr. S&P from their phone to get an “ok” to give me a new key, he was in a meeting and didn’t return for 45 minutes. Day #1 of Arizona and I was stuck in the lobby of the Extended Stay off Route 10 in Chandler. Later in the evening, while trying to schedule the next days closing, we discovered Bank of America made a mistake of our HUD statement. “We can’t close until Tuesday,” the girl claimed. Mr. S&P and I brought her to tears over the phone as we expressed our general disappointment and rage.
Her manager got involved and said they could pull strings to possibly still close on Friday. Friday morning came and went with no word from the bank. Finally after Mr. S&P and I started sending group emails to the bank, title company and our realtor, we came to the conclusion that time had run out on a Friday closing. It would have to be Monday. Extremely disappointed, we drove to the title company at 4pm to sign all the papers so on Monday morning, the only thing we’d have to do is wait for the bank to send the title company the money and then the title company would record it with the state. A whole weekend was lost in the process. I had scheduled cleaners and utility companies all weekend long and had to reschedule them.
Monday came and when 11am rolled around I checked with the title company to make sure they received the money from the bank. They hadn’t.
I called the bank, they were waiting on a form from the title company.
Again, in a rage, I put all parties on an email and told them all to get it straight ASAP so we could close that day. I am still not sure why I had to do all the running around to make sure people got each other the paperwork, but I have the feeling that if I had never called the bank and title company, they would have let another day pass without closing on the property. People in Arizona are a little more relaxed than Massachusetts and for once, I was glad to be the over-the-top New Englander.
We closed on Monday and immediately got to work. Over the next week, I repainted and re-did the floor in the laundry room, repainted the guest bedroom and repainted the office.
Guest Bedroom After
We still have a laundry list of projects to complete, but little by little we’re moving through them. Next up is the Master Bathroom, which will get a new coat of paint, new tile floors, a new vanity, new light fixtures and new mirrors. The Master Bedroom will get a coat of paint and a new bedroom set (king sized! yea!) Once we have the new bedroom set, we’ll be ready for guests. Come on down for a visit!