No turning back now

Sorry for the lack of posts over the holiday – needless to say the weather was a major distraction (we can cross “first sunburn of the season” off the list…). But I hope everyone had a great long weekend – especially our veterans!

I signed the lease on Apartment No. 8 on Sunday, so we are 100 percent good-to-go now. It’s a one-year lease – July to July – but I’ll actually be moving in June 26. I’m convinced this is the place for me – I haven’t even looked at Craigslist to see if something better has since become available! That’s pretty good for a worrier like me. Sharleen moves in to her part of the house (the second and third floors) next Saturday. I’ll go that day and measure all the rooms, so I can start sketching out where to put everything (well, the few things  that I actually own). I’m so anxious to move in!

I did a little bit of furniture shopping, rather looking, over the weekend but didn’t come up with much. Value City Furniture and Ashley Furniture were both awful, but Roy’s Furniture in Lincoln Park seemed promising. Just need to decide if I want to/can blow a bunch of money on couch right now. By far my biggest problem is DECIDING ON A COLOR SCHEME!

Spring cleaning

One of the most exciting things about having my own place is having my possessions – all of my possessions and only my possessions – around me. But, many of you know, I have a lot of stuff. Yup. So the challenge is getting all of it to fit into the new place, but I’m actually looking forward to organizing/donating/repurposing/throwing away things and ultimately simplifying my life.

I started that process this weekend at my parents’ house. Yes, I still have stuff there unfortunately (I’m sure my mother thinks the same thing). But I got a really good rhythm going, and I’m hoping to carry that momentum over to my current apartment. I want to get started organizing things over the long weekend, but the nice WEATHER MIGHT DISTRACT…

(It’s time – I’m finally ready to get rid of my prom dresses! l’ll never have an opportunity to wear them again, but someone else might. Ladies, donate your dresses to an organization that provides formal wear to low-income high school students. I volunteer for the Glass Slipper Project “boutiques” every spring, and it’s so great to see the girls excited about their “new” dresses!)

Home sweet home

It’s official – I have a new apartment! It took 10 viewings to finally push me over the edge and make me decide on Apartment No. 8 (for any new readers, you can see interior shots here). I dropped off half of the deposit this morning and will pay the rest when I sign the lease (finding a time to meet is complicated because of the holiday weekend, plus a birthday party and a funeral). So I guess it’s not 100 percent official, but I could tell Sharleen was getting anxious about confirming (with cold hard cash – well, check really) my intent to take the apartment . Now I’m getting ANXIOUS FOR JULY 1ST!

I did it! I did it!

That’s right, I actually made a decision and submitted an application! Apartment No. 8, will you be mine? I don’t want to get too excited yet seeing as there is another application in the mix, but I’m hoping my overall charm and good looks won Sharleen over.

I visited the apartment again yesterday – this was after a visit to a two bedroom that was absolutely covered in Legos… (wish I had taken pictures but I was too worried about dying in there to think about the good of the blog, sorry guys) Anyway, I came to the realization that there are just too many good characteristics about this place to let the little things get in the way. Sure, I’d rather have hardwood floors instead of carpeting, but brand-new carpet isn’t such a bad compromise. And the location is damn near perfection. There’s a lot more storage than I originally thought too.

Plus, Sharleen has an English bulldog, and she mentioned that maybe I could walk it when she has long days on her consulting job. Now some of you may know my love-hate relationship with bulldogs (namely Georgia and Mortie), but I took it as a GOOD SIGN.

Breaking news: Bracket upset

Apartment No. 5: In a surprising turn of events, Apartment No. 5 was ejected from the tournament. After a Second Viewing Committee investigation, certain things started to come to light – bad paint jobs, a beyond-just-dirty bathroom, leaky windows, a deceased owner…

Apartment No. 8: With Apartment No. 5 out of the running, Apartment No. 8 has jumped to the No. 1 seed. Even though the monthly rent is a bit pricey, the landlady texted me over the weekend to tell me that HDTV (with the movie channels) and high-speed internet are included! That’d save me over $70/month. Now does Apartment No. 8 have enough perks (including garage parking, outdoor space, great landlord access, location) to overcome the tiny bedroom, lack of dining space and unusual entryway?

May 20th: Apartment No. 9

I shouldn’t have even looked at this place seeing as it’s over my budget (because no utilities are included), but luckily it was no slam dunk. The living room and dining room were huuuuge with great windows, but the bedroom and bathroom were very small.

The deal breaker, though, was the fact that the bedroom has no closet. This girl needs her closet space! I guess I could have taken over the coat closet, but it was fairly small too, and the only other closet in the apartment was the kitchen pantry (where the handyman who was showing the place suggested I could hang clothes…).

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The verdict: The awesome back deck wasn’t enough to overcome the lack of storage. NOT CONSIDERING.

May 20th: Apartment No. 8

Uh oh. I’m going to get into trouble if I find more than one apartment to consider… Everyone knows how indecisive I am! (Not that I’m not trying to improve on that…)

Friday’s visits started off very well however. Apartment No. 8 was freshly painted and had new carpet – new as in that day. Everything in the bathroom was brand new too, as were the kitchen counter tops. The kitchen actually had cabinets and a full-sized stove and refrigerator. Plus, there’s a washer and dryer right off the kitchen (not coin operated!), and I’d only have to share it with the landlady, Sharleen. The backyard was great – a cute little square of grass – and Sharleen has plans to put in a table and chairs and a BBQ. Bonus: There’s a garage, but her SUV won’t fit inside, so she said I could park in there!

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The location is really great; it’s almost directly behind Apartment No. 4). And it’d be awesome to live in a building with just one other person (Charlene lives on the second and third floors).

Now for the problem: the bedroom. It’s tiny! I think only my bed could fit in there. So how important is the bedroom? I didn’t think that important, but maybe I’m having second thoughts (again, with the indecisiveness). But also, when comparing it to Apartment No. 5, it doesn’t have that separate dining room. So it also comes down to the importance of location…

The verdict: THERE’S MUCH TO CONSIDER.