Wednesday, June 20, 2012

June Update and Getting Ready for Haven 2012

Sorry for being a bit MIA over here…but summer beckons and so does the sheer insanity fun that comes along with it.  I have been swamped – but in a good way.  Aside from working, I have spent every weekend just running non stop.  Not literally running, do you guys even know me at all!?  Haha, just kidding. 

The first weekend I spent on the hunt for a house.  We’ve decided to take the plunge, and really get serious about buying our first home.  Stressful, fun, exasperating, patience-trying, nerve-wracking, entertaining, all that and more describes the experience thus far.  We found this amazing house, a foreclosure priced at $75K in a neighborhood of homes valued around $150-170K.  Perfect location for us, a 4 car garage!, around 1600 square feet, on a cul-de-sac, just overall fantastic. 

Gotta Know Knoxville 043           Gotta Know Knoxville 061 

However, it did need a lot, and I mean A LOT of work.  The entire floor needed to be replaced – I wonder if there was some type of cat hoarding situation going on, that carpet was NASTY.  Lots of spray paint of obscene images covered the walls – but hey nothing a good coat of paint couldn’t fix!  We had a contractor come out to evaluate the situation, it needed a new roof (on both the house and garage), windows, and lots of other fixins.  It would cost around $25K at least to get into livable condition – and $100K is our max.  We put in an offer, it was turned down – then another, and it was declined too.  We found out later that by the time we had put in our first offer, someone had already put in a bid at around $100.  Our realtor sucked throughout the entire process.  She was very uninformative, especially for first time home buyers.  I knew when I met her we didn’t really connect, but I just wanted the process to hurry up and get on with it!  Needless to say, we lost the house and the realtor lost us as clients.  We have another offer on a house right now - with a different realtor - so I’ll keep you updated on how that goes!

Memphis

The second weekend I went with my friend to attend her friend’s wedding in Memphis.  Talk about a logistical nightmare!  I’m one of those people who like to like to plan to make the most of short weekends.  I had done some research on tours to cram in some get-to-know-Memphis time on the cheap.  We told the groom of our plans, and he dissuaded our plans and told us he would be glad to show us around.  We were like, are you kidding – it’s your wedding day!?  Typical male.  Totally clueless of impending wedding-day reality.  Unfortunately we drove the 6 hours in our friend’s car, so we were stuck without a ride as the guys we came with were actually standing up in the wedding.  We tried to be independent, but were quickly shut down once we learned a cab was $80 round trip from our hotel.  The weekend as a whole was rather anti-climactic, as we never made it to The Peabody, Rendevous for some BBQ, Graceland, Beale Street or anywhere really.  Oh well, just an excuse to go back and plan it our way next time!

Secret City Festival

This past weekend Jeff’s parents came down from Michigan to visit us.  I am so blessed with fantastic in-laws.  We started out the evening of their arrival by heading downtown Knoxville and enjoying the passerby while eating dinner on the patio of a new restaurant.  Saturday was packed full of fun – we rode a scenic train through parts of Oak Ridge where the labs there developed the atomic bombs during WWII.  We followed that by sticking around for the Secret City Festival – a festival dedicated to Oak Ridge’s role in the war.  Dinner at Carrabba’s, then a hilarious evening of comedy at Side Splitters rounded out our evening.  We tried to make Sunday a bit slower paced, so we headed out to the lake to do some fishing – aka sunbathing.  Somehow the lake always makes one hungry so we introduced them to one our favorite local joints – Sam & Andy’s.  After lunch, we ended up splitting up – Jeff and his dad drove out to Sevierville to pick up a 2 year old washer and dryer (for only $175 together!), and his mom and I went to Charming Charlie (my weakness!) to shop around.  We spent the evening relaxing and mentally delaying their inevitable departure back home for as long as possible.  I hope one day they are able to move down here – and my parents too – we just miss them so much.  But a fun weekend was had by all.

Haven Conference

This weekend is Haven!!  I haven’t packed or done anything of course, but I am super excited about it.  I think it will really round out my experience in comparison to SNAP! which was more along the lines of craft blogging, whereas Haven is more home blogging – furniture, décor, etc.  Are you attending Haven 2012 too?  I would LOVE to meet you!  If this is your first conference, check out my post on that here.

And I’m not even done yet!  The last weekend of June I’m headed to Asheville, North Carolina with Jeff, Katie, and her hubby Justin.  We’re going to scope out the scene downtown, head over to the Biltmore, and attempt to relax.

I’m tired just thinking about June.