Friday, August 12, 2011

Roller Coaster Realty

Roller Coaster - say what? (hat tip to Ohio Players - I'm a 70's kid, what can I say?)

They say you only get hurt on a roller coaster if you jump off. I'm just enjoying the ride since at least this adds some excitement to our empty nest lives. Smile. Here's the latest on the house. Last night after 2 days of - offer / counter offer / response to counter offer we accepted the buyers offer. We went to bed excited and nervous that we had just agreed to be out in 30 days. We have no place to go but planned to look at a place with tons of character at 10 a.m. this morning. Got to work early this morning and received an email from our realtor explaining that the buyers, who hammered us for a great deal, talked over night and got cold feet. They are canceling.

Hands up everyone? Wheeeeeeeeeeeeeeee!

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Make It Your Own

Sunday morning is for muffins, well at least today it is. Do you have a Trader Joe's store near you? I admit to loving TJ's. No, they don't have everything but the scale of the store and the products they carry make shopping decisions manageable. Okay - enough of a plug for TJ's - back to muffins, right?
This handy little mix Triple Berry Bran Muffin mix is a delight and I've found with this mix you have the opportunity to safely and successfully add some delicious ingredients. It already includes dried cranberries, raspberries and another berry that escapes me right now - 'doh! This week I had some organic Santa Rosa plum from a local farm. I took one plum and diced it and then folded it in just before filling the muffin tin. Talk about moist muffins - talk about delicious goodness - this is a great way to add even more good stuff into your diet. I did this a few weeks back with apricots when they were in abundance. Fabulous. Again, this couldn't be simpler and the effect is a muffin you can be proud to serve the family or bring to the office to share with your work peeps, too.
P.S. This is one of those rare mixes that actually makes a full 1 dozen muffins.
Be well.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011


I really hesitate to call it downsizing because we really have yet to actually downsize our homes in terms of square footage. We did attempt a downsize when we moved here in November of 2009 but we got a really good deal and really just downsized our payment but not the home or lot size. That being said we are ready for our next move where we will go smaller on both the payment and the footprint this time (we'll try anyway - good deals are everywhere!).

Hubby and I have taken a long hard look at our financial situation and although it is not too bad, it could and should be better. We are not really prepared for a worst case scenario like a job loss. Are you? We have recently been introduced to the smart guidance of Dave Ramsey's Total Money Makeover and both hubby and I are in alignment on having an emergency fund and eliminating our debt. Now please know Dave does not start by telling people to sell their homes. Ha! In our case we just realized that we have more house than we need and if we did reduce that we would have a whole lot more money to apply to other debt and to save for retirement. We figure that with good health we have about 15 more years to work - that's it. Also, we want to start traveling more when we have vacation time and we are a little cash strapped for any major trips.

That brings me to this: Tada! Our house is on the market. Yes, it is all cleaned up and model-home pretty, right down to the glass bowl of fresh lemons on the kitchen table. :-) It seems we are living in some level of suspended animation so that we are ready, at the ring of the phone, to make a quick exit and allow home buyers (complete strangers) to come trudging through our home with their RE Agent. God, I hate this part!