Friday, March 18, 2011

Buying our house: Report #9

On Thursday, March 10, we began to feel at home, thanks to Larry. He hung our pictures, Shaker pegboards, clocks, and a bathroom cabinet. Now we had places to hang clothes, towels, and some of our artwork that didn't go on the walls. I think we made him rehang only one picture. It was too high once the curtains went up. And a firend suggested that we hang the moons and stars in the guest bedroom; she also helpd us rearrange it. Now it looks good!

That same day the crew began taking down the old fence, which had been rotting for a long time, and pruning back branches that were in the way. The hard part was taking out the gigantic bougainvillea on the east property line which had begun to take over the neighbor's yard. I'm told that the spines from that plant accounted for three wheelbarrow tires (two different crews); and we're always pulling thorns and branches out of our shoes.

The dumpster was delivered Wednesday, March 9. That's always a sign of progress; it didn't take long to fill it with plant and fence debris. Friday, March 11, our porch was screened, and we could let the dogs out on it without watching them. A friend had lent us an old screen door covered with lattice to cover up one badly torn section of screening.

We recycled packing boxes to different people, also roses, loropetalums, and two sagos. (They're cycads, not palms, btw.) Monday, March 14, the new AC units (we have a split system) were installed. Taking out the rusty old monster unit was a challenge, and they had to haul a lot of old pieces of the AC system from the attic. Hopefully, when we use the heat pump, it will no longer sound like a roaring monster. (We probably won't be using the heat pump any more this season. It's really warming up; the highs are in the mid 80s.)

Also on Monday, we got our new fridge. (We'd been using a small one for almost two weeks.) We ordered a 21 cubic foot model because we didn't want it to be too small. (Our last one at the old homestead had been too small since we bought a stainless steel model for resale value. I don't want one of those again!) Anyway, it was way too big for our galley kitchen. It was a behemoth! And we certainly didn't need that much freezer room. So we eventually decided to return it. There was a restocking fee. Ouch! We got our 17.9 cubic foot fridge Thursday, March 17, and we are happier with it. I admit that we could use more interior space, but it doesn't dwarf the kitchen.

That Thursday we also had our new fence installed; the back yard has a privacy fence for us and our new neighbors, chain link on both sides of the privacy fence in the back for the dogs, and a three rail fence out front; it also runs down the east property line to connect with the chain link fence. Unfortunately an old crape myrtle was in the way of the new front fence, which was moved back so it wasn't on the easement. Well, it was a tree we'd been discussing 'cause it looked strange. We thought it might have been "crape-murdered" too many times. So, I called around and tracked down the guy who'd done plant removal work for us earlier, and he came right over with his trusty chain saw. It was a pleasure watching him take off the tree branches and then take the trunk down in sections--all the way to the ground--and by himself. The man's a pro! (Thank you, Hubert, for coming to our rescue.)

Thursday we also got to watch the dumpster being removed. I asked the guy how he was going to get that big dumpster on that little truck bed?! He called us from out back later where we were takling to the AC crew to watch.The hydraulic winch pulls up the dumpster as the truck bed slides under it. Wow! The man said that there are bigger dumpsters that hang over the bed.

The front porch steps railing was also replaced; and we bought plants to begin the landscaping we'll have to do. We brought a lot of plants from the old homestead, thanks to the new owners, who've been generous with plants and help. So we've been planting, watering, and setting up our old concrete benches and birdbaths. It's beginning to feel like home. And we've ordered a washer and dryer. (Our friends have been taking turns doing our laundry.) Now I have check out the range, microwave, and dishwasher. I'm not sure when we'll get our cabinets and kitchen sink, but I'm sure looking forward to that!

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