Thursday, June 21, 2012

Refinancing our mortgage! Oy!

No baking this week, LOL! First, it's a bajillion degrees and Keebler cookies and Popsicles sound good to me, right????


We've applied for a new mortgage, to re-finance our sweet AGED farmhouse at 3.125% instead of its current 7%.

This will save me money. It will also cut off 7 years from our current loan. AND... it saves us over 90K in interest over the life of the loan.

Sweet. Sweet. Sweet.

But then there was this little thing about an APPRAISAL. An expert comes in and LOOKS AT YOUR HOUSE to decide its value.

Oy. Oy. Oy.

My house is not visitor-friendly without a week's notice and that's THE FIRST FLOOR. To be admitted to the second floor you either need to be a very close and understanding friend, a doctor or coroner.

I'm not kidding. The second floor is a THREE WEEK WARNING, minimal...

And the attic??????  I need a season, no lie. Spring, summer, fall, winter. A solid three months.

I got a week.

Seven days.

One stinkin', measly week.

We did our best, which clearly is not our best because if it was our best we wouldn't need months, right????

How 'bout you? Are you a casual housekeeper like me? Or are you a toilet-scrubbing-daily ball of household energy fire?

Because in my case, I'd rather write. Or snuggle babies. Both are preferable to housework.

Go ahead. Hit me with your best shot. Am I the anomaly among us?


  1. I've been through way too many house appraisals...

    The thing they always say is that they aren't looking at the housekeeping, they're looking at the square feet, the number of bathrooms, etc.

    I think they lie.

    Housekeeping. I try to keep up. Which means that the house is never perfectly clean and never messy enough to call in the bulldozers.

    I clean the bathroom and kitchen semi-daily (I miss some days) - I've learned that the daily swipe is painless compared to the once a month scrubbing.

    My children used to vacuum daily. Back when they weren't mobile and weren't working.

    Sigh. I miss those days. My slaves have grown up.

    Now the vacuuming gets done about three times a week - not nearly enough with a shedding dog in the house.

    (Yes, we're down to one dog now. Connor-dog went from "uncomfortable sometimes" to "in pain most of the time" a couple weeks ago, so it was time for the last trip to the vet. I still miss my constant shadow.)

    Dusting? Oh my. Until we moved here, the once a month or so dusting was plenty. Here in the semi-arid west, once a day wouldn't suffice - but my dusting habits haven't changed.

    The biggest problem right now is that our house was fairly full, and then in a space of three weeks we moved in a van load of my parent's stuff, and moved our two oldest children (and their stuff) in. We're still sorting through the piles!

    So, Ruthy, give me a week's notice before you visit, please. And don't wear black, unless you like the white fuzzy look...

    1. Here's the good thing: You don't need a week's notice for me. I'd just pop in, feel right at home and ignore the clutter OR help. So I'm the kind of people it's great to be friends with. Four years ago we had three lovely extra adults living here... And their stuff. There was way too much 'stuff'... I love the people. But the next time, the stuff stays in storage. I realized that not being able to move anything or set anything down was making me crazy and I don't get crazy too often. Unless I'm making fun of Mary Connealy. And that's just to be expected, right????

    2. RUTHY! You'd HELP?!?

      When can you get here?

    3. BTW - we did rent a storage locker for the duration.

      It's full.

      But, when people start moving into their own apartments again, things will sort themselves out. And I'm rather happy that it looks like it will be a few years before everyone is done with school and gone :)

  2. I am great at house cleaning!
    But I guess you are talking about my house not the ones I clean right! I am really good with other houses and i think I get on well with some because I clean as well as I can doing what is needed but I dont feel like a failure if its not 100% I know the floor is clean and washed etc. and I feel good cos the ladies i work for need me.

    My home well lets just say the landlords have a room they store stuff in here. they were coming last weekend to check it out and I went in to a cleaning frenzy. The lounge is better than its beenfor along time besides the hundred of so books i am covering for the church library. I made the hall tidier. I even did the dishes (dont laugh I only do them about once a week as I dont have many being just me). my room and the spare room i shut the door! the laundry is cleaner than normal.
    I also heard a tip. allow 5 mins morning and night to tidy up to put things away etc. I am doing tis with it being winter i often have to dry the clothes infront of the fire. They tend to stay on the chair for weeks. I now that them to my room and put them away straight away. the same with other items like mail etc at night they get put where they belong and its amazing this room still looks clean. Of course the landlords didn't turn up so thats an added incentive I bet they say this weekend when i see them tomorrow.
    Oh did I say I clean for them! I still have things to work on and I need to get rid of stuff (the library books have been adding up for 2 years!)

    1. Oh, Jenny, what a riot! I can see you tucking things away, hanging your unmentionables on a chair by the fire! I have a wrought iron enclosure around our wood stove, so I do my delicates on Friday night and hang them around the stove on the weekends. That way my little ones aren't treated to my granny underwear hanging to dry, but the drier KILLS underwear. And the stuff is way too pricey to take it for granted. There is not an article of men's underwear that you pay $46 for, right? So... What are bras made of? Gold-plated underwire? Because surely there's a reason they're ridiculously expensive.

      That may or may not be off-topic, but help me out here. Aren't bras over-priced?

    2. I have a fire guard also. I find the clothes dont dry as easy infront of the box fire as they did the open fire. I hardly have visitors so dont need to hide stuff but when the pastor came a few weeks ago there was not a chair for him to sit on. I was so embarrassed!
      and yes bras are way to dear ($46 isn't bad here being shall I say well endoured its more like $60+)
      I have a natural dryer, The clothes line outside! but its been raining for a couple of days now so I have to resort to the clothes horse in here.

  3. Been there. Done that.

    The best thing to kick me into cleaning mode is to have company over.

    If it is just the grandbabies, I shut door!

    A few years ago we thought we would be selling the house. The real estate agent came through and commented on how much "stuff" we had. That stuff was our inheritance from both sides of the family. My grandmother's tea cup collection. My parent's corner cupboard they refinished. The infamous peacock fireboard. Stuff went into the attic.

    When the housing bust hit, it took me a year to realize it was "my" house again and I could take all the "stuff" and put it back where it belonged!

    So glad you are getting a break. What a great low interest rate!

    1. It's a marvelous rate, isn't it? And I love that Peacock fireboard!!!! I must put that into a book...

      With a little hiked eyebrow alongside, but you and I know it's truly beautiful!

      I think we should list our homes every other year just to clean out the junk... Clearly I need motivation to stop writing, LOL!

  4. Oh Ruthy, you speak my language so eloquently. My house is in a dreadful state right now. I've been majorly attacking the front garden and that's taken all my weekend energy so the house just gets a lick and a promise. I turned fans on in every room with this heatwave and swirling dust bunnies danced from room to room which amused my dog to no end. I'm itching for some cooler weather and time to really scour the place down...but I still have one corner of my garden to finish first. So, if anyone comes to visit me in the next week or so it's tea and crumpets in the garden. No one is allowed to set foot in my house!


    1. Kav, that's me!!!! I would so much rather work in a garden or on a book or rock the babies when the weather is nice... or paint the outside of this rambling old place. I love the look of a clean house, but not enough to do it.

      I'm so glad I'm not alone!!!!

    2. Mine's usually clean but alway messy. I mailed off a book yesterday. So it's a disaster right now! I'm a packrat so clutter is alway a problem. But hubby is a neat freak, so you can tell my areas from his. LOL

    3. Missy, I've been wondering how your book was coming. So it's off! Yay!

      You do know it's summer now, right? It's time to put away the Christmas decorations.

  5. *hysterical laughter*

    Is that comment enough? ;-)

    I am not a cleaner. I would rather organize and declutter, research genealogy, do church stuff...almost anything in the world except clean. Well, I would much rather clean than eat liver, but that's another story.

    We have 2 extra adults, an almost-11-month-old grandson, and a cat, so they've outnumbered Donny, the dog and me. I give up.


    1. The extras, again. The ones who come home, move in for a few weeks, a few months, so "All in the Family", right????

      And it's just easier to look straight ahead than left and right!

  6. Ruthy, I'd have to put myself in the casual housekeeper category. But when I get the bug to clean, I do it in a big way. The spend-all-day-on-one-room kind of clean. Yeah, that doesn't happen very often. And usually when I have time to myself. Hubby always says he should leave more often.

    1. Mindy, I do it the same way. If I'm alone and can just rip things apart, I kind of love that!!!! But when the crew is on hand, even in small part, I find it hard (like I'm being rude or something, and yes, I know, the lot o' youse are surprised by that, right????? That I don't really want to be rude, LOL!) And I love projects. When my attic-to-first-floor staircase project is done, I'll love it... But that's a rainy day thing. If the sun is shining and I'm not writing or rocking, I'm getting dirty in REALLY UGLY CLOTHES to avoid poison ivy. I look ridiculous but I haven't gotten a bad case this year, so WAHHHHHOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO! ;)

  7. sigh...I honestly can't even call myself a housekeeper without fear of lightning striking...I dream of getting my place clean but it hasn't happened mom even gave up on both the house and me back before she got sick.


    1. Oh, Susanna! Mothers are more understanding than we give them credit for! But bless you for admitting it!

  8. Yes, Jan!! Had the hard copy all packed up yesterday ready to mail and remembered the Dear Reader letter and the discussion questions!! (Had already even emailed it.) SOOOO.... I had to email my editor back and say to ignore the first one. Then write all that other stuff. Then repackage it and resend the email. Crazy day!!

    I got to the post office around 4 pm. Walked out feeling so relieved but so thirsty. Couldn't figure out why until I realized all I had to drink all day was one cup of coffee. And hadn't eaten since my bagel for breakfast.

    Took most of today off!

    1. You get one day off.



      And I think you need to make extra coffee tomorrow 'cause I'm plannin' on working at the back table of the cafe, writin' my lil ol' heart out.

      You be sure and wait on me, won't you, Missy???? :)

    2. Do we still get to play the Christmas music tomorrow? Please?

    3. Oh, yes! I even sent a Youtube video of Breath of Heaven out on Facebook... I love Christmas music!!! And reading this Christmas story, seeing the hero's path from a rugged commander to a father who'd lost everything... and now has a chance to begin anew.... I realized that pain is often the birthplace of new life. And that shouldn't really surprise us.

  9. Ruthy, I just saw your request. I wondered who that was back there in the back of the cafe huddled over a laptop! I'm on the way with your coffee!

    Christmas music in the background, of course!


    1. Missy, you made me a caramel macchiato!!! Thank you, my dear and beloved friend! And did you notice the totally hot NYS Trooper I'm interviewing for my next book???