Saturday, August 23, 2008

How time flies!

Was my last post really August 14th? Wow, the last nine days just flew by! A lot of stuff going on here, not much of it sewing until yesterday, unfortunately. The cat went through another bout of stomach problems, like she has twice before. A vet visit ($264.00!!!!) and ten days of medication later, she's like new, but mercy, she's well on her way to becoming the six million dollar kitty! We, including the vet, don't know what brings this on, but it's like little kitty gastritis, and if you catch it early enough while she's in the merely thowing up stage (you can imagine what comes after that but you really don't want a description, trust me on that) and dose her with steriods and ten days of Flagyl, she straightens up and doesn't get dehydrated. If it goes too long, there sub-cutaneous rehydration and anti-nausea medication and lots and lots of misery for everyone.

She has had the sub-q hydration twice before, in which they inject saline beneath the skin where it's absorbed into her system, in lieu of putting in an IV. Much easier on the kitty, but she looks like a fur-covered hot water bottle. I'm sure it's not painful or perhaps even uncomfortable, but she acts so put-upon that I can't tell how bad it really is. Luckily we caught her condition before she got to that point.

I saw a couple more houses, and the short answer is - no, nothing will work for us. One broke my heart: it was advertised as 2138 sq. ft., so we drove by to take a look; it had only one short step at the entrance, a beautifully landscaped yard, and it was gorgeous. So far, so good. I called my realtor on the quick and set up a showing. Unfortunately, the listing agent not only fibbed about how big the house was, her listing information gave me the ability to look up the house plan on the Frank Betz design firm website and find out that it's only 1750 sq. ft. Hey, what's almost 400 sq. ft. between friends???!!!!!!! Makes me so mad I could spit.

This was a killer because in all other aspects it was perfect, a beautiful house, and if it were just a little larger, I would have made an offer. The finishes were top drawer, the layout was good, it was just wonderful. Thanks to the Frank Betz website, I copied the floor plan into a drawing program and arranged and rearranged scale models of our furniture, but it wouldn't work. What with his home theater (as my mother once commented, "Why is your living room all about the electronics?") and his computer room and my home office (which I am not willing to part with!), and all the furniture his father built that we don't want to get rid of, there simply wasn't enough house.

We saw another house under construction in a small town about 15 miles away that was still small but closer to the right size; however, we didn't want to move that far out of the city and give up the conveniences to which we have grown accustomed. I may have some problems about where our house is located, but you can't beat it for proximity to everything you need.

And, the builder who wanted so much for his house (the barrier-free design that fit us to a tee....except for outrageous price) keeps calling and calling, even after we told him it was just too expensive and we couldn't go that high. I don't know exactly what's going on with that, but I have an idea.

His houses were fairly unique in the area, on flat lots and without steps, and because barrier-free design is so rare here he was able to charge a premium and get it. Then the housing market slowed down, and his new subdivision isn't taking off the way he expected. He doesn't build on speculation; most of the houses are contracted before they're started. Without a ready market of people lining up to pay oodles and oodles of money, the subdivision is languishing, and that doesn't look good. He may not be hurting for money yet. But he wants the front of that development filled up and successful looking to lure more buyers. He has figured out we are a prime candidate for his houses and keeps pursuing us.

Of course, if he were to lower the price to a reasonable cost per square foot comparable to the rest of the builders, he might well make a sale - and to us, too. As it is, he continues to try to charge the premium amount in a slow market, and it's not working. It seems like he's willing to do anything except bring his price more in line with the local market. Oh, well.

I also saw a terrible townhouse which was in such bad shape it immediately sent a prospective buyer scurrying right back out the door. It had a pot-sized burned spot on the laminate kitchen countertop that the seller hadn't even had bothered to fix. When I say burned spot, I mean a 10 inch circle of laminate melted all the way through to the particle board! Combined with the scratches and dings on the cabinets, the state of the walls, the cheap carpet, the laminate flooring where there should be hardwood at that price, it was a horror.

So.......we have pretty much suspended the house search. It ain't gonna happen. At least not this year. Rats.

One the quilty front, I completed a little more of the dragonfly applique. One body and one wing done and part of the second wing in process. It's slow, but nice to be back on track.

And I bought a quilt kit. Now, that is so NOT ME. But I saw this design in the July Fons and Porter magazine and had to have it.


momtofatdogs said...

I hated house hunting too! Keep to your guns about what is most important to YOU.


Marla said...

I too managed to let 9 days go by without a post. Don't worry, we'll be here!