Friday, April 29, 2011


Who watched it and what are your thoughts?

I didn't wake up to watch it. I watched the special on cbs. I loved her dress except for the neckline. Her blush was horrible, I heard she did her own make-up, but I loved everything else about her attire. Other than that I was very happy about it. Oh and I loved the cake, great design.


YES!!!!  In one week we'll be home owner's.  I think we're really prepared so far.  We got an email from our processor that we're CTC and package has been prepared.  We're just waiting for final figures at this point.  I called and set up utilites today for the day of closing as well.  I was really excited when I called for our trash collection.  I asked what can and cannot be recycled and was pleased to know that they sky is the limit practically.  They'll even take junk mail. 

We also ordered those Ginsu knives that ThriftyAmy told everyone about.  I LOVE GINSU.  My father gave me a set years ago and we still have them.  But now we have fancy ones.  Just like with Amy, they came in 2 days.  BTW, if you have a Sam's Club membership, they sell them there to.  I'm not sure if they only have them online or if they're in the store also. 

In other news, my brother is in town and we'll be taking him to see the house tomorrow morning.  We haven't been there since Monday.  Can't wait. 



Finally, we have a domicle that we can do this.  We're mounting TVs in our family room and owner's bedroom.  Matter of fact I ordered the wall mounts yesterday through Monoprice.  I spoke to a technical support rep online, gave them the make and models of our TVs, and told them what we wanted (fixed, tilt, and/or swivel).  They looked up the specs and gave me the model numbers.  It was so worry free.  The rep also gave me a link to a youtube video for mounting.  For about $85 we got two wall mounts including shipping.  Oh and we did get a new TV for our bedroom



We both had basements growing up so it was important to use that we had as much space as possible.  Therefore we only considered homes with attached garages.  Ideally when we finish the basement we'll be able to put a full bath, we got the rough ins, a bedroom and a media room.  Thoughts have also swarmed in our heads to maybe turn it into an apartment for an income property.  It's great having options. 

The attic is new territory for us.  We both had them, but they were more like the crawl space type.  Not the pull down ladder type that we have now.  It's great to know that we have extra storage for when we finish the basement.

Wednesday, April 27, 2011




What better way to save on electricity than to use the natural light the sun gives?  It's also way warmer too.  I think we have 28 windows between the first and second floors so there will be plenty of sun in the house.  I can't wait until we get bamboo floors in the house.  It's going to feel so warm when the sun hits the floors. 

Funny a few years ago we were anti sun light, but that was when we have our utilities included in our rent as well, lol.  Although waking up with sunlight in our faces isn't the best way for us to wake up, once we're up, let the sunlight in.  Every time I go in the house I notice how much is in the house.  I love how we won't have to turn on lights until just before sundown. 


How many of you are planning on using one either for predrywall and/or final walkthru?  We have one scheduled to come in before our final walkthru (we were going to use the same guy for the pre-drywall, but he was unavaliable), but I'm on the fence about using them.  I keep going back and forth.  On one hand if this was an existing home, I wouldn't have a second thought.  However, since we've seen our home being built from the ground up and generally don't go more than 3 days without seeing it, I'm wondering if we need one. 

Every issue or question that we've seen and had have been promptly answered by our PM.  I wonder if it's really necessary. 

What are your thoughts? 

Tuesday, April 26, 2011


It's amazing what carpet can do, lol.  We stopped by the house yesterday and our sales rep let us in.  As soon as we walked in we saw the carpet on the steps.  Sadly, we didn't get a picture of it.  I didn't even think about it until now.  Carpet is installed throughout the house.  Shelves are up in all of the closets, pantry, and laundry room.  All of the lighting fixtures are all and working, yeap we turned on every single light in the place.  We used energy star lights in our old place so we're used to how they brighten up a few moments after being turned on.  The faucets and toilets are in, didn't think to turn on the water, but we will before closing.  We talked to my Dad last night and he said to put in a stopper and fill up the sinks at least halfway, then drain to test the drainage in the sinks.  He also said to get an voltage thingy (yes I can't remember what it's called) so that you can plug into the outlets and test the voltage. 

I will have to say that I think part of the amazement was walking up to our front door on concrete (no pics of the walkway either).  No more mud for us, lol.  Oh and did you notice the countdown has single digit days now?  OMG, it's almost here.  I was telling Daniel yesterday that my co-workers were asking me when we were closing.  I said next Friday and it felt so good.  No longer a couple months or weeks from now, but next Friday.  Then it will become just Friday.  Can't wait. 

Okay so I know I owe ya'll pics and a countdown.  Pics are first, then the countdown.  Oh yeah, this is going to be a long post. 

Super pumped that we have a Lazy Susan

Laundry room shelves

Owner's Bedroom

Owner's closet

Owner's closet, gotta love the window

Owner's bath linen closet

Powder room


Pantry doors

Upstairs linen closet

Shower with faucets and soap dish



I don't like leaving lights on or having them come on with a timer.  Neither of us come home around the same time everyday and I think it's wasted energy to have lights on when you're not home.  This will give us great piece of mind.  We also like the fact that the house is already internally wired so in the event we decide not to renew with Guardian we can go to another company.  Plus we did save on our homeowners.  Not as much as we thought, but its a savings none the less.. 



When Dyson first came out I dreamed of owning one, but I couldn't justify having an expensive vacuum and a small place.  Then as I researched Dyson and other higher in vacuums I feel in love with Miele and have been obsessed with them since.  I can't wait to use it.  It was actually cheaper than some Dyson's and IMO a much better vacuum.  Plus the appliance store that we got it from will service it if we have an issue even after we've had it for a year.  The funny thing is that I don't like vacuuming, unless its with a canister vacuum.  I can't wait to open it up and use it.



We can probably fill up the pantry now with our non-perishables that are at my mother's house.  We love soup and cereal.  Like when I say we love it, we love it.  We will buy both of these in bulk and finish off the supply in two weeks.  This, plus the fridge, and the insane amount of cabinet space will allow us to shop how we want without having to wonder if we have enough room to store it. 

Saturday, April 23, 2011


That's the message that our PM sent us today when our sales rep and I attempted to access the house. Our walkway and stoop finally got poured. We walked on the dirt part beside the walkway and we were greeted by two pieces of plywood in a cross bone pattern, minus the skull. Yeap he was trying to tell us something, lol. Even the garage doors were locked.

I took pics, which I can't post until Monday, of the outside. I got pics of the lighting fixtures on the outside of the garage doors, the air conditioning units, the walkway, and the front door, wood planks and all. One exciting thing was that the front porch lights were on. Well one of them was on. I'll ask our PM about that on Monday.

On to the countdown.



Ours is huge. We measured about 60-70 feet behind the house for the flat part and 100+ including the hill up to the easements. For us this is a huge backyard. We could probably build a small house back there and still have plenty of room. When we have kids and get a dog there's plenty of room for them to play. We have no idea what we want to do with it other than adding a covered deck/patio. It feels great knowing that we have a lot of possibilities.



Speaking of kids and a dog, lol. This is one if the reasons that we got a bigger home. We know so many people that wished they would have bought a bigger first house. Plus we despise moving. Also we both grew up in the same house and we wanted to provide that opportunity for our future children.

Friday, April 22, 2011


Porch lights.  Daniel said that garage lights are installed as well, but he didn't get a pic.

Faucets and lighting fixture

Foyer chandelier

Powder room.  Daniel said the light fixture is installed, but he didn't get a picture of it

Better shot of foyer chandelier

Dining room chandelier


The complete fireplace

Utility tub

We went with basic appliances, faucets, and lighting fixtures.  I hope when we get the washer, dryer, and microwave, there's still room for a new dishwasher.  The included dishwasher is really loud for an open floor plan. 


We'll be getting up and getting dressed for our 9 am closing. We're so excited and we just can't hide it.

Pics will be coming later on today.


Thursday, April 21, 2011


I'm a little sad that I have nothing else to do regarding the house before the week of closing.  I've called Verizon and Direct TV and scheduled service, got our homeowners insurance set up, verified settlement, and what, as of now, we have to bring to settlement.  Well we did have a little scare.  I thought I made sure that we had EVERYTHING that we could possibly need prior to and during settlement handy during and after the move.  This way what we did yesterday and this morning wouldn't happen.  What did we do yesterday and this morning you might ask?  Go through the boxes at my mom's house for our social security cards.  We couldn't find them and I'm so upset about it.    When I say we have EVERYTHING ELSE I mean EVERYTHING ELSE.  We had our local tax payment stubs for the first quarter even.  I know they are in our possession somewhere, but I didn't want to take any chances.  So this morning we went to the SSA office and ordered replacement cards.  BTW if this happens to you, the office can give you a stamped letter with your name and SSN.  I verified with our NVR Settlement rep today that if we don't get the cards by settlement that the letters will be fine.  So other than that, I have nothing to do before setting up the utilities the week of closing.

Speaking of utilities, I have a question.  In our pre-settlement letter one page says to set up the utilities for the day after settlement and the next page to set up utilities for the day of settlement.  What day did ya'll set up your utilities on?

Last thing before the countdown.  As I write this post, Daniel still hasn't sent me the pics that he took from the house today.  So blame him for no pics, lol.  He did tell me that everything is installed in the powder room (sink, toilet, and light fixture).  Come to think of it, I'm not sure if the mirror is up.  Also the faucets are installed in our owner's bath and the light fixtures.  Our chandelier is up in the foyer and dining room and our dishwasher is installed in the kitchen.  He didn't look in the garage so we don't know if the stove and range hood are there yet or not. 

Now on to the countdown



I'm super excited about this.  Sometimes we need to adjust the temperature after we're settled in the bedroom.  Then it becomes a matter of rock, paper, scissors, the loser goes downstairs, lol.  Now we just have to jump out of bed and walk a few feet to change it.  I also like that the heating unit for upstairs is in the attic and the vents are in the ceiling.



I know this may seem weird, but I miss having our own garbage and recycling cans/bins.  Having to put the garbage in a dumpster can get interesting depending on how close it is to pick up day and the weather can be a nasty smelling experience.  I love to recycle.  When my municipality growing up started requiring residents to do it, my dad gave me the packet and he said that was my project.  I made sure the family recycled the right things in the proper way.  Our last place was the only rental that we had that offered recycling.  Of course it was in one location for the whole complex.  Whenever we put our recyclables in the bin, I was always disappointed that it wasn't full.  Some days I felt like we were the only ones that recycled.  I can't wait to get the information for our house and our bins.  I think I mentioned before that I want to have a shelf with bins for our recyclables in the mud room.  I like to have a rain barrel and a compost bin as well.  I kind of wish we had a rain barrel now.  With all of the rain we've gotten these past few weeks, we would've had enough water  for our lawn. 

Tuesday, April 19, 2011



I can't wait to stare it and know its all ours. I wish all floorplans offered this type of staircase. Under the previous model, Victoria, there was a lot more wasted space in the foyer. At least to us it seems like less wasted space in Victoria Falls. I do wish we would have upgrade the staircase to oak, but that's something that I hope we can change later.

I know I mentioned this yesterday, but we love the stain on the staircase.


Gourmet island

Lower railing

Upper railings

Random doors in the owner's bedroom.  I just thought this would make a cool pic

Attic insulation.  It's been blown in, Daniel saw it, but they must have put the batt to hold it in

Fireplace mantel installed

Monday, April 18, 2011



This is one of the reasons we picked Ryan as our builder. Knowing that we have an energy efficient home is important to us. I also love the green and sustainable components. Plus since we have the dual zone heating and cooling I'm hoping this will be reflected in our utilities.

We can't stand drafts. In our old place the loveseat, which is where I primarily sat, was in front of a window. During the colder months I would wrap a small blanket around my neck. Also our front door left a lot of cold in. We would walk down two steps and feel a drastic change in temperature.

Now on to the awesomeness. We stopped by the house today. We had to get our rep to let us in. The house is in lockdown mode now. Our railings are stained and they look great. They still need to be varnished though. The stain is much redder than the sample. It's a true cherry and we love it. Also the gourmet island is installed. Our walkway and stoop was supposed to be poured Saturday, but with the lovely weather we had that didn't happen. Our next nicest day will be Thursday. Everything looks great.

I admit I had a little freak out moment. It didn't look like our fridge would fit. This was a calm freak out moment as before we ordered it we compared to the biggest fridge that Ryan offered. So after we left the house we went to Home Depot. They didn't have our exact model, but they had a model that is similar. Once I got a better signal I was able to look up our fridge's dimensions. So in the end I was worried about nothing.

Okay I'm going to bed now. Until next time.

Sunday, April 17, 2011


Is there a wall mount guide for dummies? I started looking at wall mounts on monoprice for our TVs and I have no clue what I'm looking for. HELP!


I forgot to include this in the countdown post yesterday. We ordered the Ashley Key Town bedroom set from Levin on Friday. Finally adult bedroom furniture that isn't from IKEA. We didn't get the canopy bed because we didn't want to take away from the tray ceiling, and we got the 3 drawer nightstands. I don't understand why furniture stores price a package with just one nightstand. Even if your single, a nightstand on both sides if the bed just looks better.

Since I'm already making a post I might as well do a countdown item. I can't believe we're 19 days from closing. On Friday we're 2 weeks out from closing.



I cannot wait until our first event, which should be the the 4th of July. We already know that our house will be the holiday house and we wouldn't have it any other way. We looked at dining room tables again on Friday and the look in the reps face when we asked about a formal dining set that can accommodate 10 people was priceless. I think he wanted to card us to see if we're old enough to want this type of table, lol. Still haven't made a decision on that yet.

Anywho we can have people in the morning, family, dining, and/or living room. When we have formal dinners at least the kiddie table will be cool since it'll be in the morning room. Then we'll eventually have a deck/ patio. Hopefully we can put one on next year.

Something that bothers me when we would go over someone's house and they don't have enough room in the closet for coats. Granted if you have 20 or more people over it gets difficult, but 10 coats should be able to fit in your closet. That's why we'll also have coat racks in the mud room. We haven't figured out what to do with guest shoes yet. We're open to. suggestions.

Saturday, April 16, 2011



I can't wait to use it. The kitchen without an island has more counter space than what we're used to, but having this huge island takes it to another level. Plus we have extra cabinets. I have all types of ideas and scenarios for this thing. I'm glad we added another outlet to the other side.

Friday, April 15, 2011




Come on do I really need to explain this? Lol. This was another no brainer upgrade for us. I'm always cold so this will be on during the winter.  From what I am told even though we didn't get the blower, it still kicks out enough heat for the family room and possibly kitchen. 

Those of you that have a fireplace and that have already closed, let me know if this is true. 



STORAGE, STORAGE, STORAGE.  We finally have enough room for what we need and then some.  Although our master bedroom isn't as huge as we would have dreamed(think Rome's floorplan which has an INSANE master), it's bigger than what we've ever had and it's all usable.  In addition to our closets in the master all of the other bedrooms have nice size closets as well.  Plus we have the linen closet in our bathroom and one for the other bedrooms, and I just covered the first floor.  Not to mention the coat closet, which is actually between the front door and the garage (in our old place you walked up stairs and walked through the living and dinette areas to get to the coat closet).  Plus the attic.  We love that it has steps and not just a crawl space type of thing. 



We're so over small apartment fridges.  Plus Daniel is a restaurant manager.  Sometimes he has to go to the store or another location to pick up items.  Previously, he would have to think about what room was left in the fridge to see if he could pick up the item and store it overnight in the warmer months.  Now, no problem.  Oh and left overs.  After a big meal, we finally have room to store everything and not beg people to take it home for fear that we will throw it out.  Lastly, we don't have to work about going to the grocery store and not having enough room for our groceries.  Believe it or not, this has happened before.  We're going to enjoy all of the 28 cubic feet of this bad boy.

So that takes care of the size of the fridge, let's talk about the features.  Ours has the slim space saver ice on the door.  So we have the complete inner cabinet of the fridge that doesn't take up precious space.  The ice bucket is also removable.  Although the bucket doesn't store a lot of ice, which is fine with us because we're not big ice people, there's a tray in the freezer that offers more storage for ice.  The dispenser is taller than normal so it can accommodate most water bottles.  It also has a measured fill control.  Add to it the expandable shelf and you can place a small pot or water bottle in the dispenser and walk away to do other things if need be. 

Thursday, April 14, 2011


I'll post later with the countdown.  Anywho, yesterday was really productive.  I called Verizon to start things rolling with the phone and internet.  I set up phone, but they're still buidling the address for the internet.  I hope closing goes smoothly because I scheduled the technician to come out between 1-5pm the day of closing.  They only do installations during the week.

Now, on to the pics

Yay, upper and lower cabinets installed.  Gourmet island hasn't been installed yet though

Vinyl on the first floor

Railing is in

Trim is up in the master tray ceiling

French doors are on

Vinyl in the bathrooms upstairs

Ceramic tile in the shower

And now on the tub surround

So glad we got the double sinks

Vanity in guest bath.  I think this shows the true color of the vanity

Our gutters

Front stoop ready to be poured with concrete

And the walkway ready for concrete

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

#25 & 24


See there's a method to my madness :-). I'm so glad they made this an option in Victoria Falls as it wasn't in the previous Victoria floorplan. Although my dream is second floor laundry, first floor laundry is way better than going in the basement. I love that we have shelves in the laundry room. Plus you know the best part of having a laundry room in your first house...NEW WASHER & DRYER! Although we're going to wait until after we close, like leave from closing with the keys in hand and head straight to the store, I know what I want. Whirlpool WFW95HEX or WFW97HEX washers and the matching gas dryer.

The mud room will help shield our guests from seeing our laundry when they enter and exit through the garage. I would like to find a clever way for shoe storage( I'm thinking of a nice storage bench) in the mud room for the shoes we wear the most. This way they're easily accessible and we don't have a shoe pile when we take our shoes off. I would also like to put in a bookshelf to help organize the recyclables. I saw on the HGTV Green Home and have dreamed of this since.

Update to our settlement time. It's scheduled for 11:00 am May 6th. WE CAN'T WAIT!


I attempted to post these yesterday, but got busy at work. 

The pics below are from our visit on Saturday. 

When we arrived a guy was working on the railing.  He didn't want his picture taken so we just took this one instead

Lower kitchen cabinets in our dinning room

Dinning room tray ceiling

Upper cabinets.  Can't wait until our refridgerator is installed the day after closing

Planters shelf

Cabinets for the owner's bath and guest bath. 

I could only get the back side of the sink because the front was covered

These pics are from yesterday when Daniel went.  He took my mother with him and this was the first time she's step foot inside the house.  She loved it.  Then she started to decorate it...pray for us, lol

Trim added to

Oh yeah, they started working on the flooring

Sub floor action

Our PM and I played phone tag yesterday, but between the messages he left me and our actual call today we're making great progress.  He's trying to get the congrete guy scheduled so they can pour the walkway (has already been grated) and front stoop.  The ceramic guy started working on the owner's bath yesterday and should be done today.  The vinyl for our floors should be laid today and will probably be done tomorrow or the next day.  All utilities are up and running except water, which will be soon. 

For the past few days including today, we have been productive. 

  • I called and left a message at NVR settlement to see if we can nail down a time for closing. 
  • Called our current insurance company to let them know we're switching. 
  • Set up Direct TV last night
  • Called the movers that we used last time and scheduled the move
  • Bought a TV at Costco.  Yeap, you read right.  Here it is...

Samsung UN55C6400
  This TV was almost a steal.  We got it on super sale.  They dropped the price even more because there was only two left.  After we bought this, only the floor model remained.  Bad thing is that we found out the $90 installation pretty much included unpacking it.  In order to mount it the price goes up to $250.  So India, I hope you're right that we can mount it ourselves. 

I know I owe ya'll a countdown from last night and today, so those will come later on tonight.