Sunday, February 27, 2011

New Bedding...

As you may already know, Andy and Duncan had a bit of an accident that spurred a search for new bedding.  I immediately started looking through my favorite bedding sites and found something that fit the bill.  It was a slightly contemporary design, warm in color, and completely different from the solid colored coverlet I had gotten so tired of.  I finally received the shams last week, so I thought I'd share.

The new bedding hails from good ole' West Elm, and I am loving it.  I have always liked yellow, and the graphic design is much more interesting than what I was previously working with.  I realize I'll have to stick with neutral curtains, accent pillows, etc., but I like that this bedding holds its own. 

Bad news?  This bedding will NOT work in the green room at this point.  It completely clashes with the wall color and curtains, not to mention it looks pretty rough on the black bed in that room.  All of this to say, this will have to remain packed up until we make it into the next house.  Hopefully any potential buyers will not notice that we have torn bedding on our guest beds. :)  I look forward to the "clean slate" a new home will offer, and this bedding represents the first step in a different decorating direction. 

On a different note, a huge "Thank You" to  the McCrees for taking our lil' family of three to the mountains this weekend.  We had a blast...more on that to come!

Monday, February 21, 2011

We love some feedback...

So, as soon as Andy and I received our log-in information for our showing site (where all of our showings and feedback is stored), we have become slightly super obsessed with checking it.  Maybe it's our need to be liked, or the desire to know what random strangers feel about our home, or simply the hope beyond hopes that the feedback will read, "Buyers loved it.  Full price offer to follow."  Whatever the reason, Andy and I collectively check the site 4-5 times a day (ridiculous).

Well, so far the feedback has ranged from, "Thanks for the showing.  Not interested." to "Beautiful home.  Will let you know if it makes it to the second showing list."  Overall, we have been fairly pleased with the comments, and have been relieved to hear that the house shows well (and I personally like that people think the decor is okay--phew!).  However, today we had a last minute showing and the feedback that was posted afterward takes the cake.  I actually LOLed.  Here it is:

 First time out with a new client so I had a hard time gauging true interest. The house showed well and clients liked it a lot. I think you're on track... we saw some real dogs while we were out and yours was a star.

HAHA--Out of all of the "dogs" out there at our price point, our home was a "star."  Does it get better than that?  Way to go, Village Way.  Shine on.  Here's to hoping for more star-like appearances in the near future.

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Staying sane while selling your home...

I'm so glad we got the cat out of the bag on the last post.  There is so much to talk about now that the big announcement is out of the way. 

Call it OCD, or call it part of being an elementary school teacher, but when I go through with a project I really like to stay organized.  Or at the very least, I like to try keep things to a controlled chaos of sorts.  So naturally when we chose to list our home on the market, and we knew that we would have to keep said home VERY clean over an extended period of time, I figured we needed a plan.  A plan for divvying up all of the little things that would need to be cleaned on occasion to the things that would need to stay clean on a daily basis.  Otherwise, I would turn into a crazy person frantically yelling at my husband before work every morning--"Get that dish out of the sink!"  "Hurry, make the bed!"  "Empty the trash can, STAT!"  You get the point.  In order to save our marriage, and to get the both of us to work on time each morning, I came up with a plan.  It's not rocket science, but it seems to be working for us.

The Bozemans Really Technical, Rocket Science-Like Home Selling Plan:

1.  Keep clothes and gym bags cleaned up in Master and guest room
2. Keep landscaping in check
3. Keep garage in check
4. Vacuum weekly
5. Keep receipts in container in kitchen (this was a MUST--the accountant in him keeps receipts everywhere!)
6. Always keep remotes in TV trays (it needed to be said)

1. Keep clothes cleaned up in Master
2. Make bed EVERY day before work (this is a tough one for me--not a consistent bed-maker)
3. Keep bathroom counter clean in Master
4. Keep bathrooms and kitchen in check
5. Empty Master bath trash DAILY (I just empty it into the kitchen trash can --if anyone cares to know)
6. Open all blinds DAILY
7.  Dust tabletops and mantle weekly
8. Clean wood floors weekly

-Only use Master bath trash can (so there is only one to empty each morning)
-Put Duncan's bowls and toys up before leaving house (no signs of puppy!)
-Keep Glade Plug-Ins up to date

This is a slightly modified version of the one I have typed up at the house, but you get the picture.  Did you notice that I have more on my list than Andy?  Yes, if you want someone to totally buy into a plan such as this one, give yourself more on the list.  It gives the illusion that Andy has a lot less to do. :)  It has really helped us to each have our own duties to stay on top of.  This is not to say that Andy hasn't made the bed once or twice for me, and I didn't vacuum the house before yesterday's showings, but it does help to keep us focused.  I've found the better we can stay on top of the cleaning (little by little), the easier it is to prepare for those last minute showings.  It's quite daunting to keep an entire home clean all of the time, but when you break it down, it is very manageable.

So, clearly, this plan is not genius, but it is working for us.  It is allowing me some "control" during a time when we have things around our home that we can't always control (most specifically, showings).

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Secret's Out...

Yep, our home is officially out on the market.  Shocked?  Well, believe it or not, this has been in the works for a while now.  If you'll remember back to the very beginning, Andy had bought our home when our dating relationship was still just a baby.  He bought the house for himself and three other boys to reside in.  Skip ahead to an engagement, wedding, and honeymoon later, and I landed a spot (along with my furry friend, Duncan) on Village Way.  Truth be told, we always knew this was a temporary home.  Not because it wasn't large enough (it is more than enough room for the three of us), not because we couldn't make it our own (we have), and not because the location wasn't perfect (I'm only five minutes or so from my work!).  But because this house would forever be the bachelor pad that Andy bought before we were really serious enough to home shop together.  Because we really want to find a home that fits both of our fancies, and one that still allows me to complete decorating project after project (what else would I write about on here?). 

Why haven't we said anything about this fairly large undertaking?  To be honest, we did let the cat out of the bag with our immediate family (we felt that they should know before we did anything too crazy and we really needed advice on things along the way), but we weren't really ready to tell just everybody.  Why?  Well, we talked about it and were honestly scared to death that we would make a big deal about putting the house on the market...and then we would sit on the market for months and months (which we still could do) without many showings at all (embarrassing).  So, we suffered in silence and busted our tails EVERY weekend for the last couple of months finishing up all of the last details that needed finishing.  Did anyone notice that all of my "home project goals" for the year are already complete in February?  Sneaky, sneaky, we are.  On that note, to all of our friends who have asked recently, "What have you guys been up to this weekend?"--we most likely lied to you.  We probably said something like, "Oh, not much."  When, in all actuality, we had probably been bagging a yard full of leaves, touching up paint in every room in the house, decluttering the house, and putting unnecessary items in a storage unit, etc.  You know, a relaxing weekend.  Did you ever wonder why two sane people would choose to landscape in winter?  Makes sense now, huh?  It may seem shady to have kept all of our plans secretive, but in a huge way, selling your home is very personal.  It was a decision that Andy and I prayed about and discussed to death, and it took us a long time to get here.  A year's worth of changes and projects have all played a part in gussying up our home for a sale (hopefully). 

Why are we telling you now?  Well, frankly, several people have already figured it out.  Whether they have driven by the house and seen the sign in the yard, or have put two and two together with my not-so-subtle posting here, they know we are selling our home.  Also, we have actually had several showings so far (so that fear of telling everyone and never having showings has been eased).  Any offers?  No, not yet.  But what a morale boost to have a few showings!  We have received positive feedback, and feel really certain that our home will be just right for someone.  I'm hoping, if nothing else, someone will be able to see that we have put a lot of sweat, effort, moo-lah, and love into this home, and very little is left to do. 
Below, I have listed the link to our home photo slideshow (in case any of you have any friends that may be needing a home in our area).  I was ecstatic when I saw the pictures the photographer took of our home.  For over a year I have taken very mediocre pictures of our home improvements and none of them have done our work justice.  This is what our home really looks like on the inside. :)

So what are we up to now-a-days?  Well, sadly enough, most of the home projects are complete.  But our latest home project is ongoing--keep this place clean!  If you have ever heard someone complain about selling their home, and like me have thought, it can't be that bad--it is.  Not only have we done a million and one things to get ready to sell, we have to continually clean, clean, clean.  You have to leave your home in spit-spot condition EVERY DAY before leaving for work just in case someone wants to see it.  Meaning, lights have to be left on--just itching to get that electricity bill in the mail--and beds have to be made.  The sink needs to be wiped down and the bathroom trash cans need to be emptied.  Every morning.  Just in case.  On top of the cleaning, sometimes showings come at awkward times.  Like when you are on the couch sick with fever, body aches, nausea, etc. and they need to see the house in a couple of hours.  And your poor mom drives over an hour to come and get you and the dog because you are too out of it to drive you and the dog away from your home that needs to be shown.  Or like the time that school lets out early because of snow and a showing is rescheduled to a time in which you CAN go get the dog and get him out of the house for the showing.  And so you leave work (and all of the things you need to do) and go get the dog.  And you kill an hour and twenty minutes driving around with the dog until the snow gets so thick you have to drive home and you find out later that the showing was cancelled due to the weather.  But nobody told you.  Yep.  Those are the good times.  We are making it, but it has definitely kept us busy, kept us stressed, and kept us cleaner than usual. 

We've already learned a few tricks along the way (we've only been on the market for 15 days or so), and I'll try to share those as we go.  Cross your fingers and think of us when you leave a dirty dish in the sink...because you can. 

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Almost back to normal...

As I write this post, I am actually sitting upright.  Why is this a big deal?  I have not been able to sit up straight for long periods of time for the last few days.  I am not sure what illness I have been blessed with, but I would easily say it ranks in my Top 3 All-Time Worst Sicknesses.  It was a rotten combination of congestion (head and chest), head and back aches, fever, and stomach upset.  It all started with a sore throat last Thursday or so, and by Sunday afternoon I was not myself at all.  For the last few days I have been in the bed or on the couch every minute of every day (minus runs to the bathroom).  Whatever it was, it absolutely took every ounce of energy that I had.  I would just stare at the television for hours on end for fear that if I moved I'd get sick at my stomach.  Awful.  I'll just cross my fingers that I lost a couple of pounds through it all--there has to be a bright side, right? 

I hate all that I missed this week at school--the Valentine's party and the class picture, not to mention hours of instruction.  If it weren't for my fabulous partner teacher covering so well for me, I would have really pushed myself to go back to work faster than I needed to.  I am very thankful for the last few days of rest to get back on my feet again (literally). 

While on the topic, I also HAVE to give a shout-out to my mom who graciously offered to come and drive me to the walk-in clinic on Monday (I was so out of it, I wasn't sure I should/could drive).  She unfortunately caught my bug and was sick by that same evening.  I felt so bad!  She, too, said she just couldn't get out of bed.  Not sure what this bug is, but pray you don't get it!


But, let's discuss happier times for a moment.  Before I fell flat with sickness, I had gone home this past weekend to my parents to help throw a baby shower for a high school friend (also named Megan).  My mom helped me prepare a couple of dishes for the event, and we also threw together a little craft to help decorate for the shower.  I'm sure you may have already seen banners like this one, but I thought it turned out pretty cute.  Megan seemed to like it pretty well--she wanted to take it home to the baby's nursery! 

We tried to stick with the pink and green theme with the scrapbooking papers we used, and used alternating colors to back the letters of the name.  The triangles were made by folding 12x12 paper (we left them folded and glued rather than cutting them to size so that the triangles were thicker and less flimsy).

I tried to use different fonts for each letter to keep it fun.  We clipped each triangle to the twine with small black office clips.

We were really pleased with the results, and more importantly, Megan liked it too!

The hostesses with Megan (cutest pregant girl EVER).  It was so fun to get together with these ladies again.  It had been too long! 

That's all for now.  I'm off to drink more O.J.!

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Tutorial: How to Get New Bedding

Listen up, ladies.  If you are really wanting to replace your current bedding, but aren't sure how to talk your significant other into handing over the credit card, I've got the solution.  Have your leading man jump on the bed and rip the bedspread down the center.  Not kidding.  Does he really have a choice when the bedspread is torn down the middle?

It truly was so ironic.  I have thought for some time that I was SO tired of the bedding in the "green room," as we call it at our house.  Basically, this room is my apartment bedroom made over.  So, I've been staring at this silk bedding for quite a while.  However, it's one of those things where you can't really justify replacing it just because you are tired of it.  It was in decent condition, I had pillows and curtains to match, and it wasn't too terribly out of style.  Replacing the bedding was on my to-do list somewhere after a million other really necessary fixes, so I was willing to live with it for a while. 

Until the other night...when Andy and Duncan starting rough-housing...and Andy jumped on the bed...and RIP. 

Bye, bye silk bedding. 

The best part about it was the way that Andy "broke the news" to me.  "Meg, please don't be mad, okay?"  "I was playing around with Duncan and the bedspread in the green room sort of ripped."  "Are you mad?"  This was the part where I played sort of serious.  "Well, what exactly do you mean it ripped?"  "Let me see how bad it is."  At this point Andy is more than slightly nervous and bracing for the worst.  What am I really thinking?  HALLELUJAH!  I get rid of that stupid bedding I'm so stinking tired of.  Thank you, Andy, for freeing me up to swipe the card and get something new.  But what do I say? "Well, Andy, you and Duncan just need to settle down, okay?"  "There really isn't any way that I can fix this."  "I'm going to have to replace this bedding now, I guess." 

And ladies, at this point, I have him right where I want him.  He feels more than slightly relieved that I have not just chewed him up and spit him out, so he is more than willing to allow me to replace the bedding that he has ruined. 

So there you have it.  You want to replace something in the home?  Get your guy to ruin it in some form or fashion, and your decision is already made.  Guilt-free bedding I come! 

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Save the landscaping work for warmer weather...

That's our tip of the day, here at the Bozeman household.  For the last three or so weekends, Andy and I (along with the help of my little brother, on occasion) have been busting our tails in the cold to address our landscaping issues. 

First, we rid ourselves of the GIANT yews, which left us with GIANT roots to deal with and a lot of blank space in our landscaping beds.  So, we've been cutting out the roots, re-mulching the beds, and this weekend we set out to replace the shrubs.  As one might expect, it was nearly impossible to find ANY nurseries open this time of year, and Lowes and Home Depot won't have any stock for a while.  We finally found a nursery today and they were extremely helpful.  We didn't want to pay a lot at this point (we can always add things later when the weather is better/warmer), and we had no clue what we really needed/wanted.  So, we sprung for some holly bushes and pansies (they can supposedly survive through ice and snow), and I finally splurged on a spiral cypress (love!) for my lone front porch urn (the other fell off of the porch and broke=awesome). 

It has been a long day thus far, and we are still thawing out, but our house appears a bit greener this afternoon.  We realize the change is subtle with the small size of the hollies, but they needed room to grow in.  We can always add on later, right?

This is what we started with this morning.  I made sure to take these pics in on my camera to show to the landscaping store people.  It also helped us to figure out how many shrubs we needed.

Left bed...

Right beds...

After our little green additions...

We flanked the existing azalea bushes with 2 holly bushes.  We sprinkled in a few pansies for good measure.

We did the same on this side.

We've built up this shrub in the urn a bit since this picture, but I really love the look.  Of course, two of these would have been even more impressive, but when your urn decides to fall off the porch and break in decide one suits your fancy.

We are aware that something taller and more dramatic in the beds would have made a more noticeable change, but we felt that this was a good start.  Plus, we were not really in the mood to spend upwards of 500 dollars today, so this will do for now.


On an entirely different note, I sincerely apologize to our moms and others who might actually enjoy checking our blog.  I have been very neglectful.  Work has been really busy for the both of us lately, and we have other things going on around here that we will likely share later.  Bear with us for the next little bit.  My posting may be slightly sporadic. :)