Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Update on the House

The 30 day waiting period that the Probate Court enforces will be up next Monday. My intention at this point is to have my offer & earnest money ready & in the family's hands Monday. They go to meet with their lawyer then & I think things will move much more quickly if they have my offer in hand that day. At this point, the only thing I'm unsure about it what to offer them. The asking price is quite reasonable & there are two things that need to be fixed at the property. The seller should be responsible for those repairs. My reasoning is that since 13 family members have to OK the sale & there are repairs that need to be made, perhaps my best course of action would be to offer their asking price. As far as I know, no one else is interested in the property so that kind of works in my favor, but I don't want to step on any toes by demanding repairs & then hacking at their price. I go back and forth on it - it's still very much a matter of prayer. I'm not really savvy when it comes to real estate, let me tell you. It leaves me feeling more than a little ignorant. If you have any tips or advice, let me know!

Valentine's Day

Since I know you were all wondering, I thought I would fill you on on how Mike & I celebrated Valentine's Day. I had to work both jobs that day so I didn't even see Mike. But on Wednesday night I stopped by his house after church & he gave me these beautiful roses. He likes to do things a little differently, hence the colors. "Red is boring b/c that's what every guy gets for his girl," he says. So I got lavender & pink roses & my they were beautiful! He also gave me a couple very funny, very sweet cards (that's one of them propped up on the vase in the picture). So, we both worked too hard on Valentine's Day & then we celebrated on Friday night. Mike picked me up (he's very old school about that & I love it!) & we went out to dinner at this wonderful Japanese restaurant. We had some sushi & some other good stuff & then we bummed around town running some errands (I know - so romantic!). Then we went back to his house for dessert - he had made this beautiful Oreo Cheesecake - say it with me people, YUM!
All in all, it was quite the satisfactory holiday. I know that some people consider it to be a Hallmark made occasion, but Valentine's Day was around long before Hallmark.
At least I think so (I haven't actually researched it). But I think it's fun to do something a little special. We didn't go nuts & spend tons of money; in fact, I haven't actually delivered my gift to Mike yet. I'm supposed to cook him dinner & our schedules & my ridiculous illness has put the kibosh on those plans. But I'm going to do it soon! Maybe even in my own kitchen!


I am absolutely desperate for someone to tell me that chicken soup really does help you get over the old fashioned flu. I have been sick since Sunday morning (although I was feeling funky Saturday night) & I am so OVER IT! If I watch one more cooking show or cheesy commercial for freecreditreport.com I am going to lose my mind! In the midst of my normally hectic days I used to occasionally fantasize about having a sick day or two to stay at home in my pajamas & catch up on stuff. Well, I've had them. I've caught up on my read through the Bible in a year reading & I've napped & I've been a slob. But I still feel awful. I haven't had a fever at all today & I didn't really have one yesterday until late in the evening. That means I'm well, right? I just haven't figured out why my body hurts like I've been beaten with a baseball bat, my lungs ache like I have COPD, and the coughing is about to split my skull. I've been taking my Tylenol & antibiotics, forcing fluids & I even ate chicken soup. That's a big deal for me b/c I hate chicken soup. I haven't liked it since the last time I had the flu - my senior year at Northland. They fed me chicken soup every day for like all 7 days I was sick. Yuck. That was a rough week, let me tell you - trucking up to the sick room every day all the way from the trailers. Ugh...bad memories. I loved Northland, but that week I was about ready to drop out. Anyway, if you have any tips or home remedies LET ME KNOW! I would quite willingly eat a garlic clove right now if you told me it would help. I'm a desperate sickie.

Tuesday, February 5, 2008

The Absolute Best Homemade Ice Cream Ever

My friend Carrie got a new homemade ice cream maker & I promised her that I would post this recipe. My parents have been making it for years. When I was a kid we had a wooden bucket ice cream maker with a crank handle that we all had to turn turns cranking. When my sister was pregnant with her first child, homemade ice cream was one of her major cravings. We traded in the antique model for a plastic bucket maker with electric motor but we didn't change the recipe! Carrie, I'm not sure it will work in your ice cream maker, but if you can, you should definitely give it a try!

Homemade Ice Cream
For an eight quart maker:
2 cans Eagle Brand sweetened condensed milk
1/2 cup Milnot
1 gallon whole milk
4 cups sugar
5 Tablespoons vanilla
9 eggs (we use Egg Beaters)
For a six quart maker:
1 1/2 cans Eagle Brand sweetened condensed milk
1/4 cup Milnot
3 quarts whole milk
3 cups sugar
3 Tablespoons plus 2 1/4 teaspoons vanilla
7 eggs (Egg Beaters)
Beat Eagle Brand, Milnot, and sugar together. Add milk and beat well again. Add vanilla & beat well. Pour into ice cream maker & let it work it's magic!
Now I realize there is nothing even remotely healthy about this recipe. If I get to have any say-so in how my family makes it we use skim milk instead of whole milk. I think it's the Eagle Brand that makes it so fabulous. If you give it a try, let me know what you think!

The House!

I know some of you might actually be curious about this house that I'm gonna buy. I took some pictures of the inside this past Saturday when my parents & Mike got to go see it with me. My dad was quite pleased with it - and that's a big deal because he has yet to approve of any of the houses I have looked at. And I have looked at quite a few over the last several years. So here are some shots of the house!
This is in the basement where the washer & dryer hook ups are.
Another basement shot. I was impressed with how clean & dry the basement was. And it's a full basement so that adds a lot of storage space. I thought it would be a great place to work out if I could get a treadmill or an elliptical someday. The ceilings are a little low so I decided that aerobics down there are not a good idea - unless I want bloody knuckles!
This one is taken from the dining room into the living room and that is the front door. I love the old woodwork & the columns. And of course I love the hardwood floors!
Another living room shot with my parentals checking it out.
And this is the bedroom. Of course the sheers & powder blue flowery wall paper would have to go. But that's no big deal. In fact, the only things I think I would need to change about the whole place are wall paper/painting issues. And that equals no big deal.
The bathroom has a shower instead of a tub shower. Kinda sad, but who has time to soak anyway?
The stove & refrigerator are included in the sale of the home. The stove is gas (which I have never used in my entire life). I've heard that they are the best. Anyone have any opinion on that one? My boss told me today that he has a newer flat top electric stove that he could sell me. There is an outlet that would accomodate an electric stove. Something to think about. Seriously let me know if you think gas is better & why.

I love this built in cabinet dealie. There is also a big pantry like cabinet around the corner (which is good because there is very limited cabinet/counter top space.

I know what you're all thinking - this house is perfect because the kitchen is decorated in sunflowers! And yes, sunflowers are one of my very favorite flowers, but no, I do not want them dancing all over my kitchen walls!

So that's a brief tour of the house I am hoping to buy. I will hopefully be able to get the mortgage application turned in & approved this week. My uncle's uncle is the one who owned the home & sadly he passed away last week. That puts us in different territory as far as the legality of the situation. He left no will & his sister's authority as power of attorney ceased at the time of death. Now the estate will go into probate. I really have no idea what all of this truly means but I think it translates into waiting a lot longer for the sale to be final. I will keep you all posted!

Monday, February 4, 2008

The Hand

I usually really enjoy the people aspect of my second job. I work part-time in a retail pharmacy & I've been there long enough now that I know certain customers by name or by vehicle (some of them always use the drive through). Anyway, tonight we were working away & I looked up at the monitor & noticed that a customer had pulled into the drive through. We don't have a conventional drive through set up with a drawer or window that opens. We actually have a canister that passes through a tube to the far side of the driveway. Then you can see the customer through a camera screen & they can see me through a monitor on their side. We also have the big window. I'm sure I'm not describing it very well, but just imagine that it's a bit hard to see one another & it's a bit hard to communicate because no one can ever hear me (imagine that!). So I see this customer drive in. I head over to the camera & speaker &\to greet her with a pleasant, "May I help you?" Only then did I notice that she was talking on her cell phone. Oops. Her response to my query was to hold her hand up & turn her face away from me. Seriously, she gave me that whole, "Talk to the hand!" posture. I couldn't believe it! Little moments like that make me glad that it's just a part-time job!