The saga of Gracie the night monster continues... Last night was horrendous, she wouldn't stay in bed and she was pacing around our room, so hubby let her out (again) and she went potty. She hadn't done anything when he took them out before bedtime, though - how annoying! Then she seemed to settle, but at 2am she was whining and scratching on my side of the bed. I let her out again - she peed. Again, why she couldn't have done that either of the previous two times we'd let her out, I don't know! Then again she woke us at 5am. Jeez! I don't know what her problem is, but she definitely doesn't like night time. She just won't settle. We have a problem virtually every night and it's doing our heads in! I would put her out in the hallway overnight but she would still whine and cry and then she'd start scratching the bedroom door, so it wouldn't help much. It's infuriating! She wakes us probably as many times as a newborn baby would! (I'm not comparing having dogs to having children, by the way - I know it's completely different but at least you expect a baby to wake you through the night!)
Yesterday we searched online for houses for sale within about 10 miles of our area. We made a list of some of them and went to drive by them, to see what the areas were like and if the houses looked worthwhile making an appointment to view. Of course, you can only tell so much from the exterior, but it was more about location and whether the areas had a good vibe about them. We've ruled out one house for definite, because in order to get to it you have to drive right by loads of really run-down trailer parks and boarded up houses - it didn't exactly feel safe round there! The house itself and its surrounding neighborhood seemed nice enough, but it was almost as though the housing estate was built in amongst all these dodgy trailer parks! It just didn't have a good feel to it. So we didn't waste our time - at least we've ruled some in and some out, which is what we expected to do really. It's going to be a learning curve, that's for sure. We're pretty sure we know what we want, for the most part - our main requirements are as follows:
- 4 bedrooms or more
- 2 bathrooms (or 1.5, 1.75, whatever!)
- 2 car garage
- good air conditioning
- nice location with good access to the freeways and good amenities nearby
In addition to that, I'd like to have a laundry room as we do now and it's really nice not to have to do laundry in the garage (in Phoenix it's way too hot in the summer to spend much time in the garage, since they generally don't have A/C!). The laundry room isn't absolutely essential but it would be nice!
We saw one house which looked nice but it was literally 3 doors down from a big elementary school - that kinda put us off. I mean, we're wanting to have children soon so for that reason it would be good, but traffic would be crazy at school start and end times and there were signs up saying no parking between 7am and 4pm - so you couldn't even park outside your own house! That wouldn't be so much of a problem for us because we'd park in the garage or on the driveway (depending on if we had 1 or 2 cars and if we had enough space in the garage for both) but if we had guests that could be very problematic. We ruled that one out.
There were a couple of really nice neighborhoods we looked at and we want to make appointments to view those houses, so we effectively ruled some houses in! Quite a variation in prices, going from literally as little as $85,000 to $135,000. We could go higher but we figured we'd start out low and see what we can get - in this economy there are a lot of nice houses going for cheap, so we may as well try and get one for as little as we can. We don't need a flashy house, after all! The 4 bedroom requirement is partly because hubby works from home so he needs an office, we need a bedroom, we'll need a nursery when we have a baby and it would be nice to have a spare room. Also, we're planning to have at least 2 kids so when that happens maybe we'll forget about having a spare room and they'll have a room each. We'll see! Neither of us wants to move house again for a long time, so we need to make sure we buy the right one and one that's going to be big enough for us and our expanding family! :-)
I got a message on Facebook this morning from hubby's sister in Florida, asking if we're going to be attending her daughter's high school graduation in June. Maybe it's because I'm not American and I don't "get it" but really? It's over 2000 miles away! It's a high school graduation! I spoke to hubby about it and told him that since his sister didn't come to our wedding, I don't see why we should go all that way for a high school graduation! I'm pretty sure that weddings are a bit more important than graduations, right? Surely they are! Anyway, I've never met his sister and although I would like to, we're not going to be able to make it regardless. Hubby's vacation time doesn't re-set until July, he only has a few days left at this point and he's wanting to take them soon; we're wanting to buy a house and so him taking unpaid leave isn't really an option; I looked at flights and the cheapest I could find was almost $1000 return for the two of us, which is significant when we're going to need a deposit for our house and moving fees etc. Hubby's parents are going, he said they'll probably be driving - so we could go with them if we had the time, but if we were going to go it would have to be by air because we don't have enough time to drive there and back! Also, we'd have to find someone to look after the dogs and they'd probably have to go into kennels for a few days - I'm not keen on that idea, and it adds more expense! A couple of people we know from the dog park offered to look after Suzie if we went away, but that was before we got Gracie - with 2 dogs I'm sure people would be more reluctant to make the same offer! Plus, I couldn't impose the night monster on anyone - how mean would that be?!
So anyway, I told hubby's sister that he doesn't have the vacation time and we're trying to buy a house so taking unpaid leave isn't an option right now. I still don't see why we should make that effort to go all that way for a silly high school graduation when she didn't make the effort to come to our wedding.