Sunday, November 2, 2014

Catching up

Hello all.

I've been holding my breath for a month. If you're a regular reader, you know that in September Dale and I took an "exploratory" trip to Las Cruces, New Mexico to see if we wanted to move there for retirement. We have a good friend there who is a Real Estate Agent, and was showing us around town with the various areas and what was available, at what price, and in general giving us a feel for what it would be like to live there.

Long story short, he had asked me what our perfect retirement home looked like to me. After contemplating for about 1 minute, I said... about 1600 square feet on a couple of acres, "fixer", close to town but with a country feel, and after being here a week, I want an adobe home. After explaining to me why that wasn't going to be easy to find, especially in our price range, we just left it that we had about an year to 18 months before we were ready to buy, and maybe something would happen between then and now.

We got a call our last morning in town and Bill asked if we'd go look at a property with him. His ex was the listing agent, and she would meet us there if it was okay. Little did anyone know, I'd been looking at the property on line for several months, and thought it might be just what we wanted.

We went, we looked, and the wheels started turning. As a real estate appraiser, I'm a quick study when I look at a house, particularly a "fixer" and am able to determine if it can be great. While the house isn't great right now, I think it can be spectacular with time and my husband's skill set. It needs some adobe restoration on the exterior, but it has a new heater, new water heater, new gas lines, and a new septic tank. All good things. Don't know about the electrical yet, but overall it appears to be cosmetic other than adobe repairs.

I knew I'd have to stay where we are for about 18 months before I could retire, BUT, perhaps, we could get the house and Dale could get it fixed up the way I wanted, with frequent visits between Northern California and New Mexico in the interim.

Many weeks of negotiations have transpired, and it appears to me that the Universe is pushing us as hard as it can to New Mexico. We are in contract on the house, at much less than it was listed for, and we should know within about 10 days if it's going to work.

We had intended to wait until the Holidays were over before our closing and the first foray to New Mexico. I was going to stay where I am right now and have over a year to pack, cull, and purge as necessary with Dale coming back every couple of months and taking a small U-Haul with the items that were ready to go. Then we got a call this week that our landlady has been in a major car accident, and is going to be off work for several months. They need to sell our house, and have given us notice that they'd like us out by the first of the year. YIKES!

As it sits right now, we are probably going to close on the property on or about December 15. Dale will head out in his truck, towing a trailer with tools and some basic furniture and personal items. Then get there, unload, and turn around and fly back for Christmas. I'll be moving into a small apartment for the next 15 months, and he'll take a large truck full of the stuff we intend to move to New Mexico with our dogs right before the first of the year. We'll have the carpets and windows professionally cleaned, and be done by New Years if all goes well.

So I have about 60 days to go through an entire house, determining what I need to keep for my apartment, what will go to New Mexico, and what will get sold or donated. And right in the middle of my hysteria, plans for SWAP 2015 were released and it look like it's right down my alley.

Well... maybe. Perhaps. I WILL be living alone, and no one will interfere with my sewing time. Less cooking. Less cleaning. Less interaction required. I can be a hermit and just sew every night for four months. Hmmm... the wheels are spinning. And most especially once I saw BeeJay's gorgeous SWAP plans. I could start and see how far I get. Don't have to submit if it doesn't work out!

I better get busy, I think!

More later....


  1. You are going to be one busy lady if all this happens. But you can survive it. I did just what you are doing. Sold our place, we moved everything to our present home 1000K away and sorted what he needed to survive 10 months of renos without me. I moved into a 1 bedroom apartment and finished up my contract, did some sewing and quilting and moved down when my time was up.

    I love the style of the house and am sure it will be amazing when you restore it. Keep us informed of the progress.

  2. How exciting. From the outside tThat house has BONES!!!!!! Fabulous. Good luck with it all.

  3. Wow, that's lots going on (in short period of time). Sounds as tho it is meant to be. Good luck with all the sorting and moving! oh, and sewing!!

  4. Ann...right at this moment, I'm wondering if I will survive...
    BeaJay.. It does have good bones and lots of potential.
    Linda... yes, hopefully a little sewing in the midst of the packing and all.
    We're looking forward to it. 350 days of sunshine a year. My own fruit trees of all kinds and lots of gardening space. We're thinking a little stand to sell the excess for some pin money. Or fabric money as it were.