Thursday, September 1, 2011

Real Life: New address!

It is definitely time for a Campbell family update! It's been a crazy few weeks and I think I've finally recovered from my severe lack of sleep during the move to actually sit down and think about it all again to get it written down. Of course now it feels like ancient history so it's kind of a drag to write. Go figure. How about a bullet point post for today? Yeah. That will work. I recognize that you may not be interested in the drama of our crazy move itinerary so of course feel free to skim or skip if you want, but I have to get it documented. It was quite an adventure and I don't want to forget the wild ride.

  • Monday 8/15 - Picked up keys to our new place! A few maintenance issues still needing to be addressed but we were free to start moving things in. Gave two checks to the landlord - one for the security deposit and pro-rated August rent, and one that was post-dated for September 1st for the September rent.
  • Tuesday 8/16 - Took a few boxes to the new house! Woot woot!
  • Wednesday 8/17 - Packed. And purged. And packed. And purged.
  • Thursday 8/18 - Packed. And purged. And packed. And CLEANED. And had a professional cleaner come to my home to give me an estimate on what it would cost for her company to do our move-out house cleaning. I'd never given up that control in all 11 of our previous moves, but the idea of it was so appealing I thought I might be ready to hand over the reins. It was pretty horrifying to have them see the disastrous state of our home at that point. Messy and cluttered and strewn with boxes and all the stuff that just settles to the ground as you're purging and packing. But they assured me they'd seen much worse and let me know they'd get back to me with an estimate.
  • Friday 8/19 - Property Manager came to do a "pre-inspection" which, frankly, seemed like the stupidest thing I've ever heard of. Hey I know! Why don't you come inspect the home mid-packing, mid-purging and pre-cleaning, pre-repairs? Duh. I'm sure she was mortified as she walked around the home and I got increasingly aggravated with her as she snapped photos of scuffs on cabinets and chipped paint on high traffic areas. It was such a colossal waste of my time and energy and worry to have her there right in the middle of all the craziness of preparing for the move when things weren't even remotely ready to have her inspecting the place. I guess she just wanted to be prepared for any big repairs that might be necessary, and she'd never been inside the home so she wanted to see it to be able to start working on leasing it to the next renters, but still... were those extra 4 days really necessary? Hmmmph.
  • Friday 8/19 - As if the drama of the property manager wandering through our house wasn't horrifying enough, I checked our bank account and found that the new landlord had cashed our post-dated September rent check and that both his bank and ours allowed the check to clear! Seeing our account depleted by such a significant amount sent me into a total tizzy. Called my bank and got this answer "If you wrote the check and the funds are there we cash it regardless of date." Lovely. Contacted landlord and anxiously waited for a reply.
  • Saturday 8/20 - Finally fell into bed at about 3:30 a.m. I'd been so stressed about the move that I just couldn't make myself stop packing.
  • Saturday 8/20 - Up and moving about 7 a.m. Packing, packing, packing. At about 10 a.m. the troops started arriving to help! About half a dozen men from our ward (church congregation) showed up and started hauling boxes and furniture to the giant work truck one of the men had brought for us to use. The day was hot and sweaty so I ran to the grocery store to get bottled water (and donuts!) for everyone that was helping. By the time I got back and pulled in front of the new house they'd already unloaded the first truck and headed back to the old house for the second and final load! When I walked into my new house I found three women scrubbing and sanitizing my kitchen, unpacking boxes and organizing my kitchen shelves and cupboards for me! It was such an overwhelmingly kind act of service that I got pretty emotional. When the truck returned I took the time to count all the people from church who had shown up to help.... TWENTY-TWO!!! We had TWENTY-TWO people come to load, unload, carry and clean. It was astonishing. We've moved a lot of times and always been blessed with some help from friends and family but this was just unreal. We are so incredibly grateful for the assistance we got that day! It was surreal.
  • Saturday 8/20 - Afternoon - enjoyed a home with central air for the first time in 3 years!! Woot woot!! Heard back from the new landlord who apologized for the goof-up with the rent check and who said we'd be reimbursed on Monday if we could make it in to their office in town. Phew! That sealed the deal and when Willy said "Just hire the cleaners!" I didn't even fight him on it.
  • Saturday 8/20 - Evening - Went with Ben and Brady over to the old house and finished gathering up the random crap that still lingered. Took a van full of stuff to the new house and took Willy back with me to the old house to finish the final storage closet. Got home and in bed about 2 a.m.
  • Sunday 8/21 - I went alone to church to accompany in Sacrament meeting and then headed home. A couple of the kids had come down with wicked coughs Saturday night and we were all so exhausted we just couldn't do church. Met the cleaners over at the old house and let them do their thing. Despite my original hesitation about giving up control of the move-out cleaning and having to pay a huge wad of cash for the service, I've never EVER felt so relieved as I felt the moment I opened the house to the cleaners and let them at it. It was so freeing! And instead of killing myself cleaning all day (and night and the next day) I enjoyed a Sunday afternoon nap (in the air conditioned home hehehe!). Bliss! The cleaners scheduled to return on Monday to finish up a few details. It had gotten pretty late in the evening and it was dark and we all wanted to verify the work by daylight.
  • Monday 8/22 - Met the carpet cleaners at the old house and breathed a sigh of relief when they were the miracle workers I'd heard they would be. 
  • Monday 8/22 -Went to town to pick up the reimbursement check from the new landlord. Car decided to go crazy while I was stuck in one-way hell in downtown Honolulu. The low engine oil pressure light started flashing and then the alarm started dinging and there was literally NO street parking anywhere! I drove around increasingly panicked for over 5 minutes with that dang alarm dinging at me before I finally found a parking garage. Honestly wondered if I was even going to be able to drive the car! I picked up the check (phew) and then walked to a nearby Long's Drugs to pick up some oil for the car (that was fun to carry back to the car a few city blocks away...), put oil in the car and held my breath. The car ran! The light didn't flash and the alarm didn't sound. PHEW! Terrifying experience. Time for a stinkin' new car!!
  • Monday 8/22 - Evening - Willy and I headed to the old house to take care of some repairs that needed to be done, finish up the yard (which Willy was going to do with the help of our good family friend, but when we got stuck in town with the car issues, our friend and his 6 year old son went to the house and did all the mowing and trimming and palm frond gathering for us!!! Amazing!), and do touch up paint. I turned the Pandora on on my phone, tucked it in my pocket and tackled the painting. It was my first time every really doing house painting and I LOVED it! I found it incredibly enjoyable. (Until the next day when I could barely walk because of all the squats and stretching I'd done while painting LOL). Got home well after midnight. Another exhausting evening.
  • Tuesday 8/23 - Headed to the old house to meet pest control (a fun move-out requirement in Hawaii... blah.) and finish up the painting that I couldn't do in the dark of the evening before. Did some cleaning that the cleaners hadn't finished since they hadn't shown up to finalize things when they'd said they would (eeeeek) and felt a pretty substantial amount of panic wondering if they were going to come back at all to finish the job. They finally rolled in about an hour before my final walk-through was scheduled with the property manager. They said they wanted to come then so they could be there when the property manager was there in case anything needed to be done to meet her expectations. They had NO idea what they were committing to by doing that! The prop manager showed up a little early and was there for TWO HOURS doing our final check out walk through! It was ridiculous. She made the cleaners re-do all three bathrooms, re-do a few of the blinds, and re-do the entire laminate floor throughout the house! I was SOOOOO glad the cleaners were there when she came because otherwise I would have apparently been charged for the "dirty" areas or been responsible to clean them myself. (The woman was outrageous! The house was gorgeously clean. I couldn't believe how insane she was! Like scraping a handful of little pin-prick sized black spots on the outside of the sliding glass door with her fingernail and asking "Why wasn't this window cleaned?") It was the most eye-rolling experience I've ever been a part of. She did compliment the paint job though hahahaha! But I got to walk away from the house ultimately feeling like we would get the majority of our deposit back and it felt so relieving to be DONE!
  • Saturday 8/27 - Willy and I tackled the garage that was pretty packed with boxes from the move and basically got it emptied out with the exception of a handful of random crap boxes. It felt GREAT to get it done, even though it was no fun doing it LOL.
And now this week has been full of settling in, doing a little decorating and just getting used to a new home and neighborhood. I can honestly say we are so much happier here than we ever even expected. We had been worried about space because the layout is quite a bit different here, but we're fitting well. The kids are happy with their bedroom arrangements; Ben has his own room now and so does Molly, Toby and Brady are sharing a room now. Things feel good*. And not just because of the central air (but that certainly helps LOL) We're where we're supposed to be right now and that feels great! Home sweet home!

* I'm going to make one complaint about our new house. Right about the time that the second truck full of our furniture and boxes was arriving, so fully mid-way into the move, someone asked tentatively "Did you know there's no dishwasher?" And for a brief moment I thought I was going to lose my lunch or cry or both. But truth be told, I'm surviving the whole dishwashing-by-hand gig. It's true that the kids are now eating their sandwiches at the table on napkins instead of plates, but I haven't given in to the appeal of paper plates and plastic utensils yet, so I guess that's something. Sigh.


  1. I'm SO GLAD you got the cleaners and sorry you had to deal with dumb "inspectors" that assume you are trying to "get away" with hidden dirt. Sheesh... Maybe tears would have helped? Glad the cleaners were on top of that!

    Also glad you are settling in! Enjoy (more). Doesn't handwashing dishes feel domestic? (It will wear off on big food days, but enjoy it!)

  2. 2 hour walk through!?! That lady is insane! You're settled in before me and I've been in my place for a month and a half. Almost there now that I'm organizing twins room. Your move sounds much crazier than mine-sorry to boast :) -Teresa

  3. So glad for your new place! And way to control the dish usage, I would do the same. I am sure it is such a relief to be done with all the jazz from the other house.

  4. I found you! Every so often I swing by Xanga land to see what everone is up to, and its been glad I found your new blog. I need to get on another one pronto! Congrats on your WLB challenge, I really found it totally inspirational!