Monday, July 27, 2009

Boston, Part 2

I got a little sidetracked what with the whole "buying a house" thing, and I'm afriad I never did post the rest of my trip to Boston! So, here we go:

We went on a super-touristy, but really nice, swan boat ride in the Boston Public Gardens. It just so happened that several of the resident swans had recently had their little goslings, so there were lots of cute little guys swimming around. It was another great way to cool off during Boston's heat wave! Along the Freedom Trail, we stopped into a little cemetery - there seem to be tons of them all around Boston - and lo and behold it was the final resting place of militant revolutionary and famous brewer Samuel Adams. Although, as G discovered while reading the signage, he isn't actually buried under the marker pictured above. We're not entirely sure where he's buried (alas, the signage was a little vague) but we finally decided he was somewhere inside the brick wall lining the cemetery. Theresa explained that the bar across the street advertised itself as the only bar in the world where you can drink a Sam Adams while looking at his grave. I love Boston.

On Saturday, I went off to meet up with my cousin Andrew, who moved to Boston about a year ago. I took the ferry across Boston Harbor to get to Andrew's neighborhood in Charlestown - really great views! He took me to see Bunker Hill, and the monument there. We decided not to climb up the 24 flights of stairs to the top, but it was still a great view of the area. We also stopped into the oldest continuously operating tavern left in Boston for lunch - the Warren Tavern. We wound up the day with a really fantastic tour of the USS Constitution, more commonly known as "Old Ironsides". The ship is currently undergoing pretty major renovations, so the masts and the top deck aren't where they normally would be, but the young sailors who are assigned to the ship were really passionate about their ship and did a great job.

So, that's it! That evening Kristin and hosted a great BBQ at her house, and at 9:00 the next morning G and I were on the train headed south once again. It was a whirlwind trip, but so much fun! I think I finally satisfied my need for a good summer roadtrip...

Now, of course, I couldn't do an entire post without mentioning the new house - tomorrow is inspection day! Yikes! Everyone keep your fingers crossed that the inspector doesn't find something horrid...

Saturday, July 25, 2009

I Think I Bought a House!!

Cute little cubby behind the door in the spare bedroom.

Side door into the kitchen - the original door, too!

The front door that opens into the living room - gotta love those vertical blinds!

A bad photo of the really great yard - you can kinda see the little shed behind the crepe myrtle.

Suzy pointing at a dead shrub in front of the house.

Yes, you read that correctly! Its all happened extremely fast, but apparently its true! After much back and forth, I finally decided to put in an offer on House #1, the small bungalow with the great yard (geez, that sounds like House Hunters doesn't it?). So, Suzy and I did all the paperwork yesterday afternoon, and low and behold at 4:00, the seller verbally accepted my offer! This morning he made it official and signed off on the deal! So, assuming nothing terrible shows up during the inspection, I'll be a real homeowner by the end of August! WOOHOOO!!!!!

At the moment, I'm only slightly terrified. I'm not sure if that will get better or worse, but I think its safe to say that I'm going to be good for absolutely nothing for a few days. I'm so distracted that I threw an entire box of cereal in the trash this morning!

Anyway, I've posted a few (million) random photos of the house - enjoy!

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Boston, Part 1

The "Birthplace" house - where JA was born.

Peacefield - the house JA bought after his presidency. It was owned by the Adams family up until the 1920's.

The coolest place in Boston Common!
Here's the first few of my pictures from Boston. After a long 12 hour train ride, on which we sat behind a family that liked to scream at their kids in Russian - I wish you had been there, Bess, you coulda translated for us! - we made our first tour stop at Adams National Historic Park, the home of John Adams. Very cool, although from a curatorial perspective they need some help! I truly appreciate the fact that G's college friends Theresa and Kristin were willing to hang in there through the history-geek bonanza that ensued as we explored all three houses on the park property - thanks ladies! The third photo above was taken on Boston Common. I took it to prove that for the two full days we were in Boston it was FREAKIN' HOT!!!!!!!!!! Apparently Boston has been suffering through a really cold, rainy summer thus far, except for the two days the Virginians were in town. In the photo, you can see all the kids of Boston desperately trying to cool off in this beautiful wading pool. I cooled my feet for a minute, too.
Tomorrow: swans, Bunker Hill and where exactly is Sam Adams buried??

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

The Latest Batch

So, it seems the real estate market picked up a bit around here while I was in Boston. Last night after work, Suzy and I went to look at three different houses, pictured above. All are excellent prospects! The first one, a 1957 rambler, is in very good shape, has a somewhat updated kitchen and is on a quiet, residential/commercial street. Its the lowest-priced of the three, but its also pretty small - two bedrooms/one bath. It has an awesome yard, though! The only real drawback is the second house shown above - only slightly more expensive but 3 times as large. Its a 1967 ranch with a sunroom, 3 bedrooms and a huge finished basement. If it weren't for this second house I wouldn't even be debating making an offer on the first one, but now I'm wondering - do I buy a tiny but cute house or a much larger but less attractive house? The larger house would have better resale value, but I've always thought buying a house based on resale value is kinda pointless - why should I buy a house based on what other people find appealing? I'm the one who has to live there! So, anyway I'm doing some serious debating back and forth between the two (it doesn't help that I might just be the most indecisive person in the world). The last house shown above is a little rambler that's ACTUALLY LOCATED DOWNTOWN and its priced UNDER $200,000!!!!!!!!!!! However, its still above my price range. Suzy says it is extremely unlikely that the buyer would accept what I can offer, but she's going to make a verbal offer in a few days, just on the off chance. I'm holding out hope that because it needs serious updates inside that everyone else will pass on it. A girl can hope, right? In the meantime, I have to choose between the more reality-based properties. Hmmm...

Monday, July 20, 2009

Back in Town...

Got back from Beantown last night after a LONG train ride! I think G and I survived okay! I have lots of stories and photos to share, but first I have to get myself settled back into life - I'm not even sure where my toothbrush is right now...So, stay tune - more to come!

P.S. Just heard on the news this morning that today is the 40th anniversary of the Apollo landing on the moon. Cool, huh? Hard to believe its been 40 years. And really, what HAVE we been doing since then??

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Allright, Allright!

So, its been a while. I realize that. After several subtle hints from friends wondering if I had cracked up after losing The House last month, I decided I better get something up on this blog before July disappears entirely! Really, the reason for my absence was just that nothing much has been going on. No new houses to look at, no summer happenings to report. I've just been going to work and watching really bad summer TV in the evenings. Well, I also squeezed in a quick 4th of July weekend with the fam in there - that was nice. But otherwise, same old, same old!

I do have something exciting coming up, though! This evening I'm leaving for a long weekend up in Boston with G! I'm really looking forward to it - lots of site-seeing and general touristy stuff. So, at some point next week I'll have fun stories and hopefully some decent photos to share. Until then, well, I guess that's it...