Tuesday, November 13, 2012


Forgive the short sentences. They're all I can manage today. You'll see why.

I took the day off yesterday. My wife was already off for Veteran's Day. But it was not a day off. Far from it.

This is what we knew going into the weekend. We had an OB/GYN appointment at 10:00 yesterday morning. We had to drop the car off to be serviced at 1:30. We had a hospital tour scheduled for 7:30.

Then Saturday happened. Or Saturday night, rather.

We get a phone call from our Realtor telling us we have an offer on the house. A low offer. A very low offer. Like twelve thousand dollars too low. Which is fifteen percent of the asking price. Yeah, not happening.

The phone call comes less than an hour before we plan to be asleep. Good luck with that.

Crunch the numbers. Figure the expenses. Try to come up with a figure that will let us break even. (If we can forget about losing any equity we had in the house. And we can't.) It could be worse, we know. But it could be better.

We sleep on it, though not so soundly. The next day, we seek advice from friends and family.

We come up with a number, and propose a counteroffer. Sunday. In the afternoon. Today is Tuesday. In the afternoon. Still no response on the counteroffer. Waiting is fun. Not.

Oh yeah, and the prospective buyers want to close in three weeks. Problem there – we have nowhere else to live. We can't get a loan and close in three weeks. Not gonna happen.

They will have to flexible on the closing date or there is no deal. Or we will have to move to an apartment (not ideal, but not the end of the world). Or we will need to find a house quickly and hope for the best on the timing.

Foreseeing a busy day ahead, I take off the entire day on Monday. Too much to do, too little time in which to do it. We make appointments with our Realtor that morning to see four houses that interest us.

We start the day with the OB/GYN appointment. It's our first time having a non-stress test, to be followed immediately by an ultrasound. All goes well with both tests. Baby is big (eighty-ninth percentile) but otherwise healthy.

The appointment takes longer than expected and we have just enough time to run home, grab the other car, and drop it off at the car dealership for servicing, then grab a bite to eat (in the car) before meeting with our Realtor.

We spend the next four hours looking at houses, in hopes that the sale of our house will go through. One house we'd previously fallen in love with online proves to be equally perfect inside and out, but... Our Realtor has found out that approximately thirty-thousand dollars worth of structural repairs need to be done. And we quickly fall out of love.

We see a couple of houses that are too in disrepair to be seriously considered.

We see another, newer house that's fine upstairs, but weird downstairs. And very, very small.

We see another house that simply won't work for us, layout-wise.

We see another house that's almost perfect. But it has a smaller kitchen than the one we currently have in our townhouse. Deal-breaker.

Returning to the real estate office, we talk to a mortgage lender who shares office space with the Realtors, but is otherwise unaffiliated with them. He runs our credit, finds it to be very good (we're not surprised), and pre-approves us for a loan.

We crunch numbers. We realize that we could possibly afford more house than we previously thought. Like one that's move-in ready. After all, we're running short on time – baby's coming, ready or not.

We talk more with our Realtor, who shares a number of other listings with us that are just outside of our previous budget. Information overload. Good information, no doubt. But by now brains are exploding. And they are ours.

Armed with flyers out the wazoo (a scientifically unverifiable body part), we leave to pick up the car (which has been ready for hours). Now we only have time to grab another quick bite to eat before heading to the hospital for the prenatal tour.

I order food, while Mary picks up prescriptions across the street. We scarf furiously. And onward to Vidant.

Heads swimming with information, we absorb even more for the next hour and a half. My legs hurt, my back and neck hurt, and I'm falling down sleepy. And I'm not the pregnant one. She's in even worse shape.

We finally make it back home forty-five minutes shy of twelve hours since we originally left the house.

Then the phone rings. Our friend, who's planning our baby shower that's happening in two and a half weeks, wants to know where we're registered. We're not. Amongst all the madness, we haven't gotten around to doing it. And don't know what to register for anyway. (We're getting help, though.)

Nice! One more thing to worry about. We promise to register this weekend, and we will.

After the four-hour childcare class on Saturday morning. Assuming we're not packing up boxes and trying to move out of house and home.

And next week's Thanksgiving. Which we're hosting. Maybe. I can't even think about that yet.

Surviving this week is top priority. And maybe just surviving in general.

POSTSCRIPT  –  A 5-Song Soundtrack To Our Life At The Present Time

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