Saturday, September 5, 2009

I'm Baaaaaaack!

Did you miss me?

Sorry for the long hiatus but it wasn't because I was stranded on some luxurious island sipping exotic drinks while laying in my hammock feeling the breeze and listening to the lapping waters.

No, I have been preparing to move and then actually doing it.

The reason I mention the "preparing" part is because that is what really took the longest. I've been in the same house for 20 years and I'll go ahead and confess now that I was a hoarder. I think it came from the fact that we had a devastating flood when I was a child (1972 hurricane Agnes caused the Genesee River in Wellsville, NY to fill up our first floor of our home). We lost darn near everything.

After that I just held onto everything. Well, it's either that or I was just too lazy to go through stuff and kept "saving it for later just in case".

At any rate, I had lived in this house for longer than I ever lived anywhere and so the "save for later" stuff had pretty much been allowed to take over my back room.

So I have been freed from my obsession through a couple weeks of sorting and a bunch of trips to Stinky Town (the dump) with trailer loads of stuff I no longer felt compelled to drag around with me through life.

I'm telling you, it's a liberating feeling to be leaning more towards a "zen" kind of minimalistic existence.

When you have to move all that crap it really brings its worth to the forefront. I had some stuff that I was really attached to go rolling down the hill at the dump and I didn't even shed a tear.

I didn't do a yard sale, ebay or even craigslist because there wasn't any time and it would have meant holding onto stuff longer and possibly having second thoughts. There wasn't even any lucky helper to root through stuff and say "You're really getting rid of this?? Can I have it??"

Well, my oldest son did help me (he, in fact, did most of the lifting/hauling) but he didn't get overjoyed or envious of any of the junk I was throwing away with the exception of a box of wires that could be used to connect various electronic components.

Right in the middle of our move, a guy came by from the insurance company to take pictures and report back to our new home owner's insurance company.

We got a subsequent letter stating we were canceled.

The reasons being:

  1. The bushes were too big (my 50 year old azaleas).
  2. The house was green and needed pressure washing.
  3. The yard needed to be mowed.
  4. Branches from the tree out back hang over the roof.
  5. The steps needed handrails on both sides.
  6. The laundry room steps needed handrails (even tho nobody has ever used that door in the last 20 years.)
  7. The trampoline was still up (I had told them it would be disassembled but I hadn't gotten that far yet).
  8. The project Jaguar in the back yard (inside the privacy fence) was listed as a "junk vehicle" that needed to be removed.
  9. There was "trash" all over the yard. (the stuff I was sorting and taking to the dump, along with all the construction materials I was saving from our remodeling efforts from the past 2 years).

So, while I was trying to go through all my "stuff" to pack and move, etc., I also now had to contend with a deadline to get the house in shape by Sept. 4th so I could find a new insurance company who would write a policy based on my "rebuttal" photos.

So, one day would be spent making trips to the dump, or filling up boxes with the "keep" stuff, and other days would be spent pressure washing the house, painting the porch, building handrails etc.

If it weren't for the help of my son, and John and his carpenter friend and motivational force Larry, I'd have never made it.


  1. Hacked the azaleas down to the ground so they couldn't argue that they were still too big or possibly touching the house (they are stumps now).
  2. Pressure washed the whole place with Larry's industrial sized pressure washer (I did very nearly all of that chore myself).
  3. Hired a guy with a riding mower to do front and back yards.
  4. Used Larry's pole saw to trim trees that hung over the house.
  5. Had Larry build handrails for front porch.
  6. Had him build a pair for the laundry room steps.
  7. Took apart the trampoline.
  8. Put the hood back on the Jag and covered it with a car cover.
  9. The "trash" pretty much took care of itself once we had the stuff sorted and packed or hauled to the dump.

Yesterday was the deadline and I emailed all the pics to our insurance company. They still want a few more pics, but they sent me a quote from another provider. Hopefully that will all be a bad memory real soon and everything will be back to normal and fully insured.

It's almost like they wanted a brand freaking new house to insure. The place was built in the 40's for crying out loud.

So, now the other part of the story.

We moved because a) we are struggling to pay the mortgage since John works construction and is out of work much of the time lately and b) my son and his wife and daughter (who live with my mother) wanted their own place and were going to move out and leave her living alone.

I couldn't have that. So, John and I talked it over and decided the logical solution would be for our family to move in and stay with her while my older son's family moved into our house and paid the mortgage. Problem solved.

The move is nearly complete but each party still has "stuff" at the other party's former home.

And none of this would have been possible without my Fingolimod. I think it gives me super human strength, or at least it kept me from collapsing into one big puddle.

All this, and I had my 2 year study checkup last week, but that's another post.

1 comment:

  1. Yay! You're back!
    Boo! Hiss! Homeowner's insurance companies! So, just how big of an azalea is too big? I don't really understand their issue.
    I'm just glad you are doing OK and all this work and stress has agreed with you. ;-)


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