Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Making the house a home

We are closing in on the final month of the housing saga. Last week I made another trip to Maine to be there for the home inspection, which went really well. The place is in great condition, and there's nothing that needs to be done structurally to bring it up to code. We didn't think so since the place is so new and so nice! We did get water and air tests during the inspection as well. The water is fine, but unfortunately, we found that there was 3x the amount of radon in the air than the state says is healthy. So, we need to have a mitigation system put in. I was panicked at first, because you hear "high levels of radon" and it gives you pause. Plus I wasn't sure how easy it was to fix. But apparently it's just a small tube that's inserted in the basement under the foundation, and goes out through the roof. A fan in the tube sucks the radon out from underneath the house and vents it into the open air. It's energy efficient too, bringing the level down to well below what the state demands. So, it's one more thing we have to take care of, but it's not the end of the world. We also have talked about moving the closing up to the first of June, instead of the 14th. This would give us time to move in and get a bit settled before Mark starts work on the 18th. That gives us even less time! Assuming that the bank can get their appraiser out and all the paperwork taken care of. I never realized just how much was involved, the many steps to this process of buying a home. And I'm so non-smart in this area...want to know the myth of Theseus and the Minotaur, when the Normans invade the Saxons, sure, but ask me to explain liability, comprehensive, deductible, it's all gobblty-gook to me. Or it was...With Mark still on rotation, it's fallen to me to get quotes on homeowners insurance policies. And just as with learning about the house--soffet vents, furnaces, foundation insulation, I can now tell you about liability coverage, comprehensive and collision deductibles, fraud protection, and band-width speeds. Wait..that last one wasn't about insurance, but I've spent almost as much time on the phone last week with phone/cable companies as I have insurance agents. Turns out, Washington is much more in the boonies than we thought and we're lucky to have DSL access at all. I thought Mark was going to cry himself to sleep over the scare of no Internet, but fortunately for him ( I suppose unfortunately for me, I'll have to keep seeing his "computer face," the top of his head, eyes, then back of the laptop screen) we can get service, even out in the boonies. We won't, however, have cable. The current owner has a satellite dish which is staying with the house, so fortunately we won't have to purchase equipment. We talked about going without cable, but we both watch way too much tv for that.
Speaking of tv, we watched the semi-finals of Dancing with the Stars last night. I was never into the show, but my mom got me hooked on it, and now I can't miss it. All the remaining dancers are good (with the exception of Ian Zeirling...he's just too stiff, his dancing doesn't look natural). Laila Ali is pretty and has lots of character, but she's not as good as Apolo Anton Ono or Joey Fatone. It's going to come down to those two. I love watching Apolo and his partner Julianne. He's never danced before in his life, but he looks like he's been doing it forever. He has a natural grace and ease about him, maybe it's because he's an Olympic athlete, but they are just great to watch. Joey is also fantastic. He's got a small bit of dancing experience from N'sync, but nothing approaching ballroom. He and his partner Kym, pull out all the stops and do very tricky steps. He's also got this amazing charisma and showmanship. Mark and I have a bet, he thinks it will be Apolo who wins it, I think Joey. I think Apolo is just as talented, if not more so athletically, but Joey has that something extra and the crowd loves him. Below is his jive from the semi-finals last night which was AWESOME! Mark thought it should get an 11...it was so cool, the essence of what a jive/swing should be. I also included Apolo's Cha-cha, which raised one judges eyebrows, thinking it was too raunchy. I think it was fantastic!
Well, enough blogging out of me for now, I've got to carry on with the packing!

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