Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Misadventures in medicine

First, they misplace my medical charts from Vancouver. Then they question whether I actually brought them in when I said I did. They might as well have called me a liar. Not exactly the best way to start with a new doctor.

Not impressed.

Then I have to do a 24hr urine collection for some lab work. I wait for almost an hour just to get a bottle in a paper bag. Then I drop off the bottle at the lab for analysis. A few days later I get a call from my doctor informing me the lab was unable to use the sample. I had dropped it off on a Friday and they didn't get around to testing it till Monday, and evidently it was not properly stored during that time. Excuse me?! Not only have they wasted my time, but they want me to go through the whole process again because they screwed up!

Really not impressed.

I don't usually like to make a fuss, who's going to listen or do anything about it? But I made it known I wasn't happy, in no uncertain terms. I am in no particular hurry to have my time wasted again, but I suppose I will eventually have to go and get those test done. I think the next time I drop off my sample, I will instruct them in the proper handling and storage of it.

That's two strikes now...I can't wait to see what will happen next.

Monday, April 27, 2009

A little bit of Vancouver

A Canpar Van pulled into the driveway this morning, just as Nate and I were stepping outside. The driver hopped out with a familiar looking box. It was the box of odds and ends we'd left with our old neighbours Cameron and Jacqui, just before we left Vancouver. Cameron drives for Canpar, and he'd helped us start our move by shipping some twenty boxes over to mum's. I had all but forgotten about this last box.

Nate could not wait to get it inside and see what was in it. It wasn't all that exciting really, but if he was disappointed he didn't show it. He wanted to know what everything was for, like the lint brushes and the small brush for applying hair dye.

Tucked in amongst all that, was this.

Sometimes, the little things mean so much.

Thanks to Cameron and Jacqui for getting the coffee and sending it with our stuff. And thanks to Amy and Justin #1 at Main Street for the hellos, and a big thank you to who ever it was who personalized the bag.

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Appliances, and how we like them

Those of you who know us, know just how much we like our kitchen appliances and gadgets. I'm not particularly sure where this fascination came from, but it started when I was a kid. Where other kids were interested in toys and candy, I got my biggest kicks when my parents went shopping for things for the kitchen. For me, it was the equivalent of going to the toy store. It still is. That Patty shares this fascination, is just a serendipitous

Yesterday we started shopping for appliances. We need pretty much everything. Refrigerator, range, dishwasher, washer, dryer...we have none of those things. We started at Sears, and chose a refrigerator, range, dishwasher, washer and dryer for something around $6,500. All nice, better than average, if not exactly top-of-the-line stuff. Truth be told, it seemed like a reasonably price for all that stuff. We didn't buy anything of course, but we had our benchmark now.

Today we took a look at the Sears discount outlet, and bought a Samsung SS electric range, a Kitchenaid 25 cu. ft. SS side-by-side refrigerator, and this Electrolux dishwasher. The range is pretty standard, but the refrigerator and dishwasher are top-of-the-line. All for $3,800. Which leaves us with some $2,700 for a laundry pair. Of course we aren't going to spend all of that on a laundry pair, as tempting as it may be. As Patty pointed out, any money we save means we get to buy more furniture for the house.

Next up, the laundry pair and a new king sized bed. Stay tuned.

Friday, April 10, 2009

The hunt is over

We got the word at around 3pm this afternoon. In all honest truth, I had all but forgotten about the 4pm deadline today. When the phone rang, I was wondering who on earth would be calling me on Good Friday. It was our realtor Ernie, telling me we had just bought ourselves a house.

The sellers had agreed to carry out the repair work and clean out the ducts before we take possession of the house on 4 May. I was in the middle of a nap when the call came and for awhile I wasn't even sure if it was happening. After all the price dickering and waiting, I have to say the end was pretty anti-climatic. After I hung up, I think I turned to Patty and said 'Congratulations, you just bought yourself a house.', and went back to sleep.

That is not to say we aren't excited. We went out to dinner this evening with Jen, and stopped by to see the house on the way. In just a little over three weeks, we get the keys and start making it our own. Now we get to do some of the fun things, like go shopping for appliances, pick colours and hunt for furniture!

Thursday, April 9, 2009

The inspection

We did the inspection of the house on Wednesday morning, and overall it went well. There were the usual bits and pieces here and there that needed taking care of, but nothing too daunting or scary.

The one concern was a spot in the ceiling of the kitchen that showed some water damage. The owners had pointed out a problem in this area and had indicated it had been repaired, so we're not sure if this is the same problem or an entirely new one. In any case, we want to have it taken care of before we take possession. The owners seem to be amenable to this, but they are getting their contractor in to look at it first before they give us a firm answer. So we wait till tomorrow evening.

On the plus side, neither Patty of myself seems to be swayed by these minor difficulties. We spent about two and a half hours in and around the house, and I did not once feel like I did not want it anymore. I think it grew on me even more, and I can see lots of potential in the basement and garage. Sure it won't all happen overnight, but I can see the basement getting fixed up over time and becoming a very nice rec space.

So fingers crossed it all will come together by tomorrow evening.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Four weeks in...

It's been four weeks since we left Vancouver for Halifax. Well, four weeks and a day I suppose. I was going to write this yesterday, but it just got away from me. As far as moves go, I guess this one has been pretty smooth sailing.

All our stuff arrived from Vancouver two weeks ago. It's all stowed away in mum and dad's basement. As far as we can tell, everything made it in one piece, although we haven't as yet unpacked.

Nate is settling in to his life in Halifax very well. He loves being around his grandparents, and is always telling us how much he likes it here. He is best friend to the bird, even if the feeling isn't mutual. It is quite a sight to see the bird, dog and Nate all follow dad around when he comes home from work.

We've finally found a house we both like. It doesn't give us everything on the wish list, but we always knew it was going to be hard to find a house that did. This one comes very close indeed. We did the house inspection this morning, but more about that in another post.

We've only been downtown a couple of times so far, once to go to the farmers market, and the other time to do some window shopping. Tomorrow we're going to take Nate to the Museum of Natural History. $82 buys you a family membership for a year, and is good for 27 museum locations throughout Nova Scotia, including the Maritime Museum. Not bad.

Myself, I am missing my old routine, but also enjoying not being the only set of eyes minding Nate. It's much easier getting Snoopy out for walks now. I occasionally feel I should be doing something more productive, but not enough to actually make me go do something about it. Besides, I think the house will provide me with lots of projects to keep me busy once we take possession. Every now and then I get homesick and wonder what everyone in Vancouver is up to. Otherwise I keep myself busy with Nate, Snoopy, and making to-do lists for the house. See, smooth sailing.

Thursday, April 2, 2009

The house on Stuart Graham

kitchen kitchen dining room

living room

master bedroom bedroom built-ins 2nd bedroom upstairs

main floor bedroom Align Center bath bath

I didn't get too many pictures, because it felt weird taking photos of the place with the owner there. You know,...weird in a creepy kind of way.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Just when you think you have it figured out

We went to see the house on Edward Arab Avenue again Tuesday evening, to see if we liked it as much as we thought we did. And we did. So Wednesday morning, we called our realtor and got him to draw up the papers to make an offer on the scarey house.

While he did that, I went looking on the internet and found
this house. It's in the same neighbourhood and almost the same size as the house on Edward Arab. It's carpet free, has a fenced yard, and their asking price is more than $40,000 less.

Another phone call to our realtor and Wednesday evening we went to see the house. It's had quite a few upgrades, most of the windows are new, there are four generously sized bedrooms, a half bath downsairs and a full bath with jetted tub upstairs. Long story short, we like it a lot.

Each house has its pros and cons. The house on Edward Arab is on a quieter street, with an unfenced backyard that looks out over a football field. It's got hot water radiators and a working fireplace. We would have to remove the carpets upstairs before we move in, and probably have a new tub installed as well.

The house on Stuart Graham is on a corner lot and bordered by a busy street to one side, church to the back and a short dead-end street in the front. It's got a fenced yard, a garage and is practically ready for us to move into. We would need to paint, but there isn't much else that needs to be done right away. It's got forced air heat as well as a working fireplace.

After a lot of back and forth and a rather sleepless night, we woke up this morning and put an offer on the house on Stuart Graham. In the end I think the extra money in our pocket made a strong argument for the house. While we like the house on Edward Arab, the higher asking price, coupled with the extra work we would need to do made that option less appealing.

Of course now I worry if I've made a mistake and chosen the wrong house.