A Big Move

Oh, you guys, things are coming up Stimey.

I have big news. You may know (or you may not) that Team Stimey has been rapidly outgrowing our house for a while now. For example, Jack and Quinn share a room, which is lovely when they get along and a NIGHTMARE when they are fighting. Sam’s room is too small for all of his books and Alex and I made the bathroom-less upstairs floor of the house our master bedroom before we realized how dumb that was. Also, when someone visits us, I have to bribe Sam by buying him more books to get him to give up his bed and let our guest sleep in it while he sleeps on the couch.

I understand that I have made my house sound terrible, but it is really not. It is a lovely house with a fantastic backyard in a quiet, friendly neighborhood, but my children just keep growing bigger and bigger and it is not working for us anymore.

We’d been hoping to move in the next year or so but weren’t looking yet. Except it turns out that Alex secretly was looking. He’d been watching one house in particular for a long time and after its price was reduced for the second time, he was all, “Hey, wanna go to an open house, just for fun?”

Long story short, we’re buying that house and we’ll be moving in May.


Photo of the top of a real estate sign. Chester the stuffed mouse is sitting on the top, right next to the sign that says, "Under Contract."

Chester is pretty excited about this move too.

You guys, I almost cannot contain my excitement. For reals. This house is amazing. So amazing. Each of my kids is going to have their own room. We will have a guest room. THERE IS A BATHROOM IN THE MASTER BEDROOM.

I could go on. I probably will in future posts. You are going to get so tired of me yabbering on about this new dream house we are going to live in.

*big happy sigh and just a little bit of hand flapping*

So, what do our kids think of the whole thing? They’ve been to the house once and they loved it. The night that we told them that our offer had been accepted and we were going to move in to the house, they started yelling, “Hugs for everyone!” and jumping around in joy.

As long as they get to bring their stuff, their friends still get to come over to hang out, and the cats come with us, the kiddos are ON BOARD.

Photo of Ruby the black cat sitting in a cardboard box.

We’ll be packing Ruby in this box.

We are all so excited we almost can’t stand it.

Step one of living our new charmed lives in the new house, of course, is that we have to pack up our old one. Because we have a nearly 60-day close, we fortunately have a lot of time to get our shit together.

Trust me, we’re going to need it.

We’re working hard on packing, with an emphasis on getting rid of stuff we don’t want or need anymore. Honestly, the more we can trash or donate, the better. How to get rid of that stuff is the question though. Alex and I are trying to decide if we want to have a yard sale to get rid of a lot of our stuff (cash money! but a lot of work) or if we just want to donate it all and take the tax deduction (I throw some crap in the driveway, make a call to a charity, and I’m done).

Do you have opinions on this? I’m torn. I’d really like to hear your thoughts.

I would also very much like your emphatic finger crossings and knock on woods that nothing goes wrong between now and closing. Everything looks good and the forecast is for smooth sailing, but I will be on edge until I hold those keys in my hand.

(Keys! I finally get to throw away all the keys sitting around my house that belong to god knows what!)

If you need me over the next month and a half, I’ll have a cardboard box in one hand and a marker and packing tape in the other.

*more jumping up and down followed by an awkward jump-dance*

58 thoughts on “A Big Move

  1. I’m of the opinion that garage sales are the worst. Sure, the extra cash you earn is nice but for cost is your dignity. Strangers dig through the stuff that you once (or maybe still) loved and turn their noses up at it or even worse, ask if you’ll accept a quarter for it. It’s awful. Charity is the superior option.

    On another note, time for me to plan another trip!

  2. That is SO EXCITING!!!! We can’t wait to come visit the new house! And hope you get a fantastic price for the old one!

    And i vote for sending all the crap to auction. Put it in the driveway, someone comes and gets it, and then they give you money a little later on.


    Sometimes I hear people say they made multiple hundreds of dollars on a yard sale, but even when I’ve had TONS of GOOD STUFF, I’ve never made enough money to be worth the time spent sitting outside uncomfortably, having strangers try to bargain with me. Plus having to PRICE it all, ug, kill me now. I would far, far, far rather donate it.

  4. Aren’t charitable donations just as humiliating? Two friends recently (and in separate states) called for their stuff to be picked up and it was rejected!

    Congratulations, you guys. Looking forward to seeing photos of the new place!

    • Stimey’s stuff is probably good enough to not get rejected, Vickie! And I vote – hybrid – put everything out on the front stoop. Announce a “pay what you want”, be thrilled with any cash that comes, call the big truck the next day.

  5. How about renting a dumpster or googling Bagster? They hold 3.300 pounds. can be purchased at Home Depot. and are cheaper than renting a dumpster.

  6. OMG. this is huge. You big secret keeper you. You put your house on the market, bought a house, went under contract, and meanwhile, are all, I’ve got nothing going on!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Anyway, donate the stuff. I’m lazy.

    • I was just paranoid to say anything until all ducks were in a row. Also, our house is not on the market yet because we are not the “sell your house while you’re living in it” types. I don’t think it would show very well with our crap all over.

  7. Congratulations on your new adventure! So exciting! A new chapter in your lives.

    Having been a military spouse for 17 years, I would totally opt for the donation route. Yard sales are so time consuming, and you end up making about 25 cents per hour.

    Just my 2 cents. :-)

    • Your two cents would take me a long time to earn based on that yard sale hourly wage. I think I’ll take your advice.

  8. Congratulations! So cool that you love the first house that YOU saw. Will the kids stay in their current schools, or start new ones in the fall?
    You’re smart to not pack things that you no longer need. By all means, donate whatever is in nice condition, and recycle the rest if possible. Not to make this difficult or anything. :)

    • Thank you! Sam and Jack are in specialized programs so will be unaffected. Quinn will go to a new school.

      You have no idea how much we have already recycled. Alex took a vanload of stuff to the dump and he got to visit all the sections—electronics, hazardous, etc…

  9. When I broke the news to Rachel last week, I was bracing myself for the reaction. She didn’t even look up from her book.

    “I already *know* that, Mom. Jack told me already.”

    “So…how do you feel about it?” I asked.

    “Well, he’s still going to be my best friend, and he’s still going to go to my school, and he said I can still come over. So win-win for us.”

    Win-win, indeed. Congratulations! We are so happy for you!

  10. Jealous. But happy for you. Maybe you could share privately the approximate location of your new domicile? We’ve been looking and I have yet to find a home in our price range where the area schools don’t amount to a chapter from Lord of the Flies.

    • That’s the trick isn’t it? Once I started looking around and saw what was available where in comparison to the house we’re moving to, I started to look around furtively for people who might try to sneak the house out from under us. I’ll PM you now.

  11. CONGRATULATIONS!!!!! How awesome is this!!!!!!!

    Looking forward to reading all about your mishaps…I mean adventures with the move. ;)

  12. Congratulations to you and your family. Looks like donating is the overwhelming suggestion. If you choose to donate, I would suggest taking pictures of your large donated items to substantiate any donated value. If you choose to sell, we found that the best way was to price it to cheap. We sold our furniture at give-away prices – so low that no one haggled with us and everything was gone in 2 hours. 2 items left that we donated to Habitat for Humanity ReStore and they picked up. Good luck to all of you and again, congratulations! We sure wish you the best. Looking forwards to your future posts.

  13. Totally agree about donating. My Girl Scout troop has done yard sale the past two autumns, and in both cases we made a couple hundred bucks but still ended up hauling a carload or two to Goodwill anyhow. And not only do you have to sacrifice the better part of a Saturday to do a sale, there’s all the prep work before. I say donate!

  14. Congratulations! How exciting!
    Last time I moved, it was 40 degrees (Celcius) and I couldn’t be bothered carrying any more things in the heat so I left a couch behind.

  15. You know how some people always come out smelling like a rose when selling used things? I’m not those people. Years ago I determined that I prefer the warm fuzzy feeling that donating can give me as opposed to the cranky, resentful ripped off feeling. So, there’s that. Meanwhile, Wow! Sam and I may have the book problem in common. I have finally started hauling a few boxes of those to town with me each time I go. It will take years – but at least my daughter will have to concede that I made an effort in the correct direction. Good luck in your new adventures!

    • I am familiar with the cranky, resentful, ripped off feeling. I’d rather not revisit it. Donate it is!

      And, hey, small steps are still steps!

  16. Congratulations on your new house! Yaaaaaay! *kermit flail*

    Donating is easier. But if you do decide to yard sale some suggestions:
    1. Don’t bother with any really nice furniture or big furniture. Craigslist or donate them. Most yard salers aren’t looking to spend the money you would probably want for that stuff.

    2. The exception being kids furniture/toys/outdoor gear. Around here that stuff sells fast.

    3. I put like items in groups and then post a sign for the price of the items. For example: stuffed animals go in a box and the box is labelled $1 each. Kids tshirts are piled on a table with a sign attached to the front of the table Tshirts $1. That way I don’t have to individually price every little stinking thing.

    4. I know many yard salers love to haggle. They want to haggle with you. But most of the time I don’t. I don’t do the yard sales to make money. I do it to get rid of stuff. And if no one buys it, I donate it.

    5. Does you neighborhood have facebook or web page where you could post items for sale? That’s where we put a lot of our larger items. We also do a Neighborhood Yard Sale in the spring so that there are a lot of houses for people to hit. It helps increase the traffic.

    I have never made so much money that the yard sale has really been worth it. So when our Neighborhood Yard Sale comes around, I only join in if I’m not too busy.

    How does Quinn feel about changing schools?

    • Thank you so much for the yard sale tips. If I ever get so ambitious as to try it out, I’ll use these tips. I think the people suggesting donating win this round. :)

      Quinn is okay about switching schools. His best friend is leaving his current school, so at least that isn’t a problem. I anticipate some anxiety as it gets closer, but we’ll deal with it. He’s being a champ.

  17. Oh and may the Realty Gods shine down on you and you sell your current/old house in the time frame that suits you. :)

  18. Congratulations!

    From someone who has moved 9 times in the last 18 years (twice internationally), I say make things as easy as possible. Big things that you can make a bit of money from (exercise equipment, furniture, appliances, instruments, old baby stuff) sell on Craigslist or consignment. Everything else, donate.

    My moving tip: gather up all the loose change hanging around the house. The jar in the kitchen, the stash in the laundry, flotsam in the couch, even the stuff in your car. Take it to the bank (or CoinStar, if you’re desperate). You’ll be astounded how much you’ll find, and how heavy it is! Our last big move, I found $45 worth!

  19. Pingback: Lessons of Packing #1 | Stimeyland

  20. Wow, I’m totally jealous! We too, have outgrown our house – Char and Jules fight constantly in their shared room. Plus, I have three almost teen girls and one shower – yeah….. We’d love to move before Alex reaches high school – not a fan of the public option :(.

  21. I’m finally just catching up on blogs after spring break, and yay! Super exciting news from Team Stimey – I’m so excited for your family! Once you take possession, can Chester lead us on a photo tour of the new place? I love living vicariously through other people’s houses :)

  22. I know that the donation route is easier but the cash will come in handy when you’re moving. Here’s what I suggest: Have large boxes with prices labled on them, then as you go through stuff, anything you want to sell put in the correct price point box. 2 projects done at once. Then, schedule the donation people to come pick up later on the day of the sale so you still get rid of it all in one day!

    Good luck on whatever you decide. Can’t wait to see real pics of the new place!

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