Monday, February 28, 2005

Greetings From Japan!

Just landed in Tokyo - Narita Japan! Flew over on an Airbus A330, an very nice plane. My body knows it is almost 11pm at night and I still have 10 hours to go yet until I can hit the sack. I had dinner when I got on the plane, and breakfast right before I got off? I tried to sleep as I always do and onced again I just can't seem to do it! Coming into Japan is quite a site... dense packed houses and small fields for farms and everything goes right to the edge of the ocean. There are very large wind mills lining the beach to collect wind power and it is very dry here. I have 3 more hours here at the airport until I catch the next plane to Taipei, Taiwan. I have to look up how to spell that every time as it just is not easy to remember.

Seems very hot here in the United lounge, with lots of people eating and talking. Well I most go and see what strange food I can find and go and browse a shop or two. I will upload some photos as soon as I shoot some.

My Last Couple Of Hours...

Today is the day I leave for the Far East. I'm all packed up and have all of the necessary documents required. For the record, I would be much happier if I were to stay home and continue to put the new house back together. Well my ride has arrived, I must go! I will keep you updated on my adventures.

Sunday, February 27, 2005

The Cat Door

The Cat Door
Originally uploaded by Richard Whitten.

This was not fun! Cutting a hole in the wall of your new house without any idea of what was in there did not make me happy. Once I get back home I will put molding around it for a finished look.

Temporary Internet & Phone

Temporary Internet & Phone
Originally uploaded by Richard Whitten.

This is the current setup for the internet and the Phone at our new house. It is not pretty, but it works!

Packing Up For China!

Today is the last day to get myself prepared for the long haul over the Pacific to the Far East. Packing will have an added fun factor as everything I need is definitely in the house, the big question is where? I have most of the stuff on the floor in the living room, so it is just a matter of getting out in that garage and finding the rest!

The cat door went until 9:00 pm last night but is done. Now the trick is to get the cats to use it. I hauled Mishra out into the garage and had her do a 'test fitting'. If she can go through then any cat can!

The Family Room is up and running with T.V. and couch placement. I also have the computer room up and running at 37% computing capacity. The Central Core still sits silently in the corner as it will have to wait until I return and we can wire the down stairs for 220 and pick up a pig tail!

Well, I am off again to begin the hunt!

Saturday, February 26, 2005

Today's Missions

The big project for the day is going to be putting a cat door in the wall between the laundry room and the garage. For the first week of acclimating the cats to the new house we have had all of their support items (ie litter box, food, water) in our master bathroom. Nothing says new house like walking through cat litter on your way to the toilet! So at some point today with drill and saw in hand I will cleave a hole in the wall and attempt a professional looking portal to the 'other side'. Also on the list today is to hook up the T.V. and all of it's support items so Deb has something to do for the next 2 1/2 weeks while I am in China. Well none of this is getting done while I sit here typing, so I am off for now.

Friday, February 25, 2005

Phone Is Up...

We now have Vonage as our phone service. This is a very slick system that works over the internet using normal phones. Once I got the DSL line working I plugged in the Vonage box into the router, hooked a wireless phone base into the Vonage, and I now have 4 cordless phones all over the house that work just like land line phones. So of the four things I have spent ALL week trying to achieve we now have two. One: Internet - DSL is now up. Two: Phone - Vonage is now up. Three: Direct TV, Dish Network, or Cable - That would be a big 'NO' on all three! The first two can't see the satellite, and the last is not available yet. Four: Alarm System - They will not install until we have a phone line. This does NOT include Vonage as it is does not work for them apparently. So we have signed up for the cheapest line Quest offers - $8.95 a month. This goes in Monday and the alarm is installed next weekend. More tomorrow.

We Are Back Online!

Been only one week with no internet, but it has seemed much longer! Could have been up on Tuesday but it took me this long to track down the problem being one broken wire on a phone jack at the start of the line. Well, I am off to sign up for MSN and get a new email address. I will be updating everyone on the past week soon.

Friday, February 18, 2005

Day One Of The Big Move...

Slept well last night from sheer exhaustion but still don't feel ready for the big first day. I have been fighting a chest cold with much coughing and hacking. I am officially ready for that to be over, I am canceling my subscription! The cats know that something is going on; they are staying close and letting me know that they are not pleased with what ever it is. I am going to head downstairs and start preparing for the arrival of todays extremely generous volunteer moving company... Ray, Wayne & Sandi!

Thursday, February 17, 2005

Signed, Sealed... But Not Delivered, Yet!

After much agony and mental anguish we are almost to the end of "The Joy Of House Buying." We should be able to get the keys to the new house tomorrow between 10 and 11 am. The big move will start then and continue until Sunday. I will keep you posted.

Tuesday, February 15, 2005

We Sign Tomorrow!

If all goes as planned, by this time tomorrow we will have the keys to the new house! Friday morning is the first day of moving with many people volunteering to help for what is sure to be a big move.

The final preparations of the new house continued today with a pressure wash of the deck and gutters, weather stripping on the exterior doors, more spackle and painting on the inside, final carpet trimming around the wood floors, many dump truck loads of sand and a large road grader preparing for the black top tomorrow, and a few minor touch-ups here and there.

Things that we will have to wait until after we get the keys are a blocker post for the gas furnace (To prevent a hit with the car), kick plate under the front door, mirrors, towel racks, and toilet roll holders in the bathrooms, an outside downspout drain repair, and some outside dirt smoothing.

We are doing 'okay' on the pre-packing... I am sure we'll get really into it tonight. We just want to be there, not actually do the packing!

Sunday, February 13, 2005

I Can Get Out Of This!

Okay, so maybe I'm a little stuck!

An adventure from last year to soothe my wounds...

This took about an hour to get out of! Broke the winch cable, almost flipped the rig. In the end I had to get pulled out and ended up fixing the cable in town with no damage to the Jeep.

Must Play With Jeep!

I'm Starting To Get The Fever...

As I sit here this morning I feel the need to head out into the woods and test my driving skills against the best nature has to offer. To forget all of my responsibilities, put on a flannel, pack a lunch, gas up the rig and hit the mountains! To place myself in the middle of danger and risk my life trying to get to the top of some IMPOSSIBLY STEEP HILL!

Alas, I don't have time today as I have to pack. It was fun while it lasted!

Saturday, February 12, 2005

We're getting there...

Stopped by the house last night and a lot has changed! The final cleaning is complete and I have no idea how they do it! There had to be 5 wheelbarrow loads of saw dust alone to remove from the inside of that house. Everything now has a shine and sparkle and begs for us to move in. If all goes well we should do this starting on Thursday night or Friday.

Things left to complete in the house are as follows: weather stripping on the exterior doors, mirrors, towel racks and toilet paper holders in the bathrooms, trim and tack carpet up to wood floor moldings, install post in the garage to protect gas water heater from car strike, clean garage, power wash deck, gutters and front driveway, some dirt smoothing on the right side of the house, and then give me the keys.

We are going to start packing up this weekend and stage as much as we can in the garage to make an easy move as soon as we close. We also have to go and order a new refrigerator and washer and dryer as we are leaving those for the new owner. I will post some new house photos later on today.

Tuesday, February 08, 2005

One Down, One To Go!

Today at noon it became final. We have sold our house and are now renting it from the new owner until we can move into our new house. I can assure you that this is not a stage I am enjoying! It feels very strange, like letting go of one ring on the trapeze without grabbing onto another one first. Oh, and with out a net I might add. We were supposed to sign on Thursday and move in this weekend, but that is not going to happen due to a series of events dealing with the financing, and the builder not being done yet. So we wait while my stomach gurgles and events beyond our control are handled by complete strangers who have no vested interest in whether this happens or not. I am fine, thanks for asking.

The reason for all of this stems from the builder announcing 2 weeks early that he is done with the house and that we can commence with the closing process and then move in. This knocked the financing off kilter because they were not ready yet and did not expect the house to be completed so early. This really does not matter though, because the house actually is NOT ready yet. The builder has many things to complete and the appraiser for our bank will not sign off on the house until these items are done. (This is good as they are watching out for my butt and theirs.)

So to sum everything up:

A) We have sold our house. (YEA!!!)
B) We are renting our old house from the new buyer for $40 bucks a day. (Hey, at least we have some place to stay!)
C) We are waiting for our financing to catch up to the accelerated home completion date. (This should be done by tomorrow!)
D) We are waiting for the builder to finish the house. (This is the part that is the hardest to deal with because we would not be in this mess if he had not started the ball rolling by saying he was done and ready to close!)
E) We lost the weekend as our moving days and will have to wait until sometime (unknown) next week to close and then move in next weekend? (Cross your fingers!)

Oh yea I almost forgot... I leave for China on the 28th. (I'm staying calm.)

Sunday, February 06, 2005

Good Morning From Fresno, CA!

I am preparing to catch a plane home today as another store opening comes to an end. This has been quite the week for me with a ton of stuff going on. I have not had the time to update the blog for the last week, so I'll post a make up entry later on today.

The biggest news is that a week from today we should be in the new house! This has been a rollercoaster as the house was not supposed to be ready until the 21st. We have overcome however and are ready to begin the move.

Well, the plane awaits and I am ready to be home!