Monday, April 30, 2012

It's Official!

We did it! This morning we met with our realtor, Jenny and the title company representative, Ruth to sign about 200 pages of paper. I think they told us 40 separate times that we must maintain insurance on the home. I did feel slightly smug because, even though I felt like much of the whole process was in legalese mumbojumbo, our realtor AND T thought that our loan was an FHA and I knew it was a conventional. Doesn't really mean anything in the long run but I was proud that something stuck :) We ended up needing to bring less to closing that we thought, which was a nice surprise. Soooo- heart attacks were averted by all!

Then, more fun started. T went to work. I got busy switching over the utilities into our names and getting them ready to turn off at the right time at the apartment. A little after 5pm, I met Jenny at the house so she could give me the keys. She's funny. She handed me the keys and said, "Well, shall we look inside and make sure there's no hobos living in it now?" Haha! She even offered to take us for a beer after we get settled. I thought that was nice of her.

I got started looking around the house checking on what we had asked the seller to fix. Pretty much everything looked good. When T got off work he made his way over. We figured out exactly which keys went to which doors and then- all of the sudden it hit me. I got so excited and started jumping up and down and clapping- we get to live here!!! For as long as we want!! We get to raise our kids here!! We can do whatever we want to this place! For someone who, since moving to college has only ever rented, this is super exciting!

Of course, we also made a list of things that need to be done- getting rid of the cobwebs taking over the back door, reinforcing the railing at the top of the stairs, changing some light bulbs- but still, we are basking in the excitement. We will never buy our first home again. That's worth celebrating :)

Monday, April 23, 2012

Here are some of our pictures. T & I both took them (though for future reference: if it's really great, he likely did it!)

Lunch at the Black Bear Diner in Grants Pass, OR. We did not go hungry, don't worry, Mom & Dad.

They had such a cute bear outside. He's reading the Guide to Stealing Picnic Baskets.
The Grants Pass Caveman. We were terrified!

Stopping to stretch our legs, enjoying one of the many beautiful views.

Our rental was a Mazda 3 hybrid and got great gas mileage. At times, even 99.9 mpg!

Beach bums!

Ostrich driftwood- use your imagination :)

The town of Elk where we stayed is very small. Maybe 200? No cell phone service or anything. T & I think about 20 of the residents are these cattle. Adorable!
We saw lots of other creatures. Here are a few (that's an otter in the top one!)

We enjoyed some amazing views!

 We spotted Venus (who is coincidentally the goddess of love and prosperity).

We love old growth redwoods!

We drove through a tree that was over 2400 years old. Can you spot my sunburn?

One great year in the books...many more to come!

One Year Anniversary

For our one year anniversary we took a road trip back to Elk Cove Inn, where we got married. Here's what happened:
Tuesday- left Portland, made it to Crescent City, CA.
Wednesday- On the road again. Saw a herd of Elk by the side of the road! An unexpected treat. Made it to Elk, CA. Just as beautiful as we remembered! Winter must have been dry though because we did notice that the greenery wasn't quite as lush. We were glad it was so amazingly vibrant when we got married last year. Our suite was just as we remembered it, beautiful hardwoods, jacuzzi tub, fireplace, massive bed, a wall of windows facing the ocean and a balcony with the same view and an awesome breeze. We read, saw a whale playing in the ocean, took pictures, and just relaxed.
Thursday- Played catch and Frisbee on the beach. Saw the otters in the fresh water stream and a deer eating dinner. T thinks he may have seen a group of brown pelicans as well but they were too high to be 100% sure, even with binoculars.
Friday- Took a day trip to Hopland, about an hour and a half East of Elk. We had enormous chocolate shakes at a local cafe, then toured the Milano winery. The wine maker, Deanna gave us a great tour and personal tasting. We were honest and told her that we don't really know anything about wine. I knew that I liked some rosé wines and some white zinfandel wines and that I usually didn't like wines that were described with words like "mossy", "leather", or "earthy". She was a great tour guide. She was very informative, personable, and developed the tasting around my feedback of the wines. We bought a bottle of Carignan, which is a red wine (up until then I had never tasted a red that I truly enjoyed!) and a blended white variety called Sunshine. We also visited the Real Goods Solar Living Center. It's a fun and educational stop where you can learn about making your home and business more sustainable. They have a tiny house on site and some neat displays but there was going to be a huge festival the very next day. Sigh. Oh, well. They also have a store, where I grabbed some aloe. Apparently, I did need sun screen after all...
Saturday- More relaxing and picture taking during sunsets. Can't beat that!
Sunday- Time to leave. Boo! Drove all the way home and made it in before midnight. The cats seemed glad to see us but weren't jumping up and down. We were glad because at that point we just wanted to sleep!

The trip was a lot of fun. It's so important to be able to spend time with your spouse without the interruptions of certain technologies (though we did have our cameras, we didn't have TV, cellphones, or computers there) every now and then. You remember why you love them :)

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Welcome to Our Blog

Hi Everyone!
Travis and I have so much going on in our lives right now that it seemed only right to start a blog. What's going on, you ask? Weeellll, 9 months ago we moved far away from the mid-west (and our families) to Portland, Oregon. We are getting ready to celebrate our one year anniversary AND we are in the middle of buying our first home right now (a beautiful, 1900s 4 bed, 2 bath with a great blank slate for a back yard!)
If this sounds like something you'd like to hear more of, then stick around :)