Originally uploaded by Mainline Mom
So for those of you who care, I think I've narrowed our new home location to the city of Sugarland. It's a suburb in the southwest of Houston. Seems to have good schools, nice master-planned communities with some upscale retail and affordable homes. And Mike's commute should be between 30 and 45 mintues, which is perfect. Still no idea when we'll be physically househunting, we have a busy couple of months ahead and our babysitters are also pretty busy. Lotsa vacation time planned.

The interview with the first Realtor went pretty well. Picking a list price is always so tough, she gave us a range of about 15K and so it's hard to decide whether to start high and hopefully maximize your selling price or start low and get more people looking at it to sell faster. We'll have a second opinion on Saturday after the yard sale.

Yep, tomorrow is the big yard sale. I hate yard sales, I sure hope it doesn't rain. I really don't want any of this stuff back in my house, and I don't want to be taking multiple trips to Goodwill.

Anybody know someone who either just had a baby boy or is about to have one? I have a ton of 6-9 month size winter clothes. Cute stuff! I think Jenifer (my yoga teacher) could have a girl and either way her baby will likely be too late/small for these clothes. My boys were big!

Well, I'd better get back to carrying stuff up and pricing it. Still gotta hit the bank for some small bills and change too!


Beautiful Weekend

Train Tracks
Originally uploaded by Mainline Mom
The weather was nearly perfect this weekend at the riverlot. The spending all day outside in the fresh air really wore everyone out, so the kids slept great overnight.

I did some more senior photos for Mike's twin cousins Hilary and Mallory, who are both headed to Penn State main campus this year. I'm excited for them to get out of their small town and experience a whole different side of life and people, etc. Unfortunately due to some timing issues I couldn't get both of them together. Drat!

Busy week ahead with carpet cleaners coming early this morning, my realtor coming tomorrow, my cleaning lady on Friday and on Saturday is our big yard sale!


Long Weekend Away

Originally uploaded by Mainline Mom
Yesterday we drove upstate to my inlaws' for the weekend. Since this weekend marks the start of summer, it's time to get their riverside campsite ready for use every weekend from now till Labor Day. Time to put the boatdocks in and clean out the cobwebs in the outhouse, sweet the pavillion and plug in the fridge. Let the barbequeing and cardplaying commence. The weather today is perfect for it.

Also today I have another photo shoot of the twins for some more senior pictures. Maybe we can find some cool locations. Should be interesting.


Interesting Week

Camera Mug
Originally uploaded by Mainline Mom
...so far. Tuesday Nathan got sent home from school with a fever. After some Tylenol he seemed just fine. I went to a great asian fusion restaurant with some friends in King of Prussia.

Wednesday I asked my mom to watch the kids while I attended my last MOPS meeting, since Nathan had been feverish. She drove her husband's pickup truck to my house so she could take home our snowblower (which we won't need in Houston) and my dollhouse (which I was saving in case I had a girl). Unfortunately she got a ticket for speeding, and found out the truck was out of inspection since October.

The MOPS meeting was good, and my group gave me a nice card with a $50 giftcard. Awesome considering I wasn't so great at planning stuff for all of us. My coordinator also gave me a gift certificate for a manicure, the perfect gift for me. I never get my nails done but always want to, so now I HAVE to. Also everyone got a big butterfly bush, great for my new gardening kick. So I needed to make several trips to the car with all my stuff, and after one trip I shoved my keys in my jeans pocket and left the purse in the car. On the next trip I discovered my keys were missing. I spent the next 30 minutes searching desperately for them, then gave up and got a ride home with my neighbor.

One of my close friends knew I had lost my keys, and found them shortly after I had left. She checked to make sure they started my car and called me, then she even went out of her way to drop them off to me. Then a couple hours later my neighbor drove me BACK to the church to pick up my car. Craziness. In the meantime my mom and I planted a flat of impatients, a very appropriate flower for MY garden.

Nathan spiked another fever and complained his throat hurt, so I took him to the doctor to check for strep. Of course, no strep and a waste of $15. Poor kid.

Then after we put the kids to bed I went to Target and JCPenney's and I think I finally ended my loooooongtime quest for curtains for my dining room and living room. The naked windows were better for my photo studio, but not good for selling a house, especially when the walls and trim are all white. It didn't help that I'm super cheap and spending $400+ on curtains seems like such a waste. Unless our buyer REALLY wants them, they're coming with us! I'll take pictures when I get them up, because I think they are pretty cool.



Wide Eyed
Originally uploaded by Mainline Mom
I called a realtor today! She's coming Tuesday. I'm very excited. Mike cleaned the garage out this weekend, and he did some cleaning in the basement tonight. I went nuts buying houseplants this weekend, and I LOVE them. I'm starting to get into this interior design stuff, from watching all the HGTV.

Now I'm very excited about finding and decorating our new house. I have high hopes from searching online that we may end up with almost 75% more living space. I'm envisioning a gorgeous entry with a huge curved staircase and a big open gameroom on the landing with tons of built-in shelves for our "library". I see a beautiful sophisticated study off the front hall with tons more built-ins for my home office and maybe even my photography studio. Granite countertops in my gourmet kitchen and built-in vanity in my master bath. Maybe a pool, as long as there is a patch of green alongside it in the back yard. Many of the houses have the entire backyard taken up by the pool.

Anyway, Mike says I'm getting way ahead of myself. But I have a positive attitude and I have fun house shopping online. Moving so far away from friends and family is a bummer, so I choose to focus on the upside.


Girls Night Out

Abigail and I
Originally uploaded by Mainline Mom
So believe or not last night was the first time I believe I have ever been "out" in downtown Philly. My best friend Abigail was home from her PhD work at Vanderbilt for the weekend and it happened to be her birthday so we decided to hit the town. We had some fabulous food and drinks at the Continental, a very cool diner turned bar and tapas restaurant.

Then we headed to the Plough and the Stars which was packed. The bouncer checked my ID and then hit on me, which is always nice. But the place was mostly packed with women so we didn't stay too long. We wandered down the street and a well dressed bouncer at the Blue Martini charmed us in the door. The music was pretty good and the people were looking good too so we stayed awhile. Alexis struck up a conversation with a goofy looking guy in a Phillies shirt who must've been there earlier to watch the game, because he and his friend just did not fit the scene. But they were super nice and went to Penn State so we chatted.

By the time we left my high heels were absolutely killing me and I determined that I'd rather pay for parking in a close-by lot than walk six blocks to our free spot, which as it turns out was not so free, since there was a ticket on the windshield when we arrived. Lex thought you didn't need to feed the meter after 9pm, but she must've been wrong. Unfortunately I also clocked my chin on the car door getting in. I'm pretty much a clutz that way.

I was very tired this morning but it was a really great time. My feet and chin are still sore.


I Love the 80's

80's Hair
Originally uploaded by Mainline Mom
Actually I'm not a fan of the fashions, but I do love some of the music. Mainly the new wave type stuff. So in honor of my MOPS 80's themed ice cream social last night, I attempted to tease up the bangs and dig out some Madonna inspired clothing. It was a pathetic attempt that ended up with me just looking hookerish. But we had a blast, looking over old photos and listening to our favorite songs.

Unfortunately Alex is sick again with a fever and he was up. ALL. night. I haven't been this tired in a long time. And it's pouring outside, which makes me want to stay in bed even more. But alas I took the kids out in the rain first thing this morning to Alex's doctor, only to have him say his ears are not infected so he does not need anything but Tylenol and TLC. Oh well. Another copay down the tubes.

If I can stop yawning for five minutes I'll head over to DCRMom's Pampered Chef party tonight, because I LURVE their stoneware and *somebody* broke my bar pan. And I could use a food chopper. And a pizza cutter. And a large serving spatula. And...you get the picture.

P.S. The house still is not on the market and I have lost the motivation to keep it tidy. I am still waiting waiting waiting for the relocation company to contact us so I can call a realtor in and have her tell me we need to paint. I hate painting but I've been watching too much HGTV and I'm convinced it would make a huge difference.



Holding Hands
Originally uploaded by Mainline Mom
Wednesdays are one of my days off, so this morning I took the kids to the Y. I was dreading it, being so out of shape, but I always end up leaving feeling great. Plus on Wed mornings I often see several friends there, and today was no different. I got to chat with Emily who is taking over as coordinator of my MOPS group next year. It is hard for me to hear about all the planning going on that I am not part of. Emily did the Race for the Cure on Sunday which is very inspiring to me, since I don't think she is really a runner yet. She said she ran some and walked some but still finished under her goal.

Then I ran into Jenifer, who I haven't seen in forever and is looking fabulously pregnant. As expected pregnancy suits her well. It made me miss it just a bit. But I miss doing her yoga classes even more. If I didn't have an 80's themed Ice Cream social tomorrow night and a Pampered Chef party at DCRMom's Friday night, I would go to a yoga class. Maybe next week. We both lamented never seeing or hearing from Mark anymore.

Yesterday we took the kids to the Dogwood Festival, an annual Phoenixville town fair. We ate lots of fair schleck and Nathan rode a few rides which totally thrilled him. I also ran into my friend Cory, yet another woman I will miss very much after we move. I genuinely love the fact that I have lived here long enough to "run into" my friends randomly about town. Anywho...time to take the kids out to play in this gorgeous weather.


Busy Weekend

A Moment
Originally uploaded by Mainline Mom
This weekend was crazy. Thursday night I hosted some MOPS ladies. Friday night we met fellow bloggers SharkeyMalarkey and her husband JP for dinner. They are great. Sharkey is tall. Then the four of us drove through the mean streets of Cheltenham to see William star in the stage production of The Philadelphia Story. He was great. We only got to stay a few minutes afterwards because our babysitter had to get home, but we enjoyed chatting with William and other bloggers Teri, Sue, and Charlotte. We all agreed it was like a big blind date. And we agreed to plan something for local bloggers again soon.

Then yesterday my sister was in town so she and my mom and I took our kids over to a benefit auction at our high school. That was kind of a disaster, there were not many places to sit and eat lunch, it was a bit cold, and Elizabeth and Nathan both threw tantrums when we dragged them out of the moonbounce. It was way past naptime, which never came for those two. Then we all went back to my place for some tasty homemade lasagna and a photoshoot.

Sunday we went to church and I got to drop of a ton of clothes for a charity called Wings for Success. I love purging to good causes. Then we headed to my mom's house for an early dinner before my sister's clan had to drive back to Virginia.

Busy week ahead too, starting with a shower and some work this morning while Alex sleeps in thanks to the rain.


Curb Appeal

Curb Appeal
Originally uploaded by Mainline Mom
Finally got what we needed to set the wheels in motion on selling the house. Time to interview some realtors and pick the best one that can sell our house the quickest. We're not in a rush but we get substantial bonuses for selling in a limited amount of time. Don't know yet when we'll actually fly to Houston for house-hunting. They do expect us to find someplace in one five-day trip. Yikes...that's pressure! I suppose since we could actually stay with my grandparents for free if we need to fly down more than once we could swing it. But I think there's plenty on the market to choose from, although it does appear to me that some homes are actually selling rather quickly down there.

Looking at my house from a buyer's perspective....I love it! It really is pretty. Guess I'm going to have to get used to Texas architecture.

On a side note, tonight is the opening night of William's (from Poop and Boogies) big production and we are excited to be going with SharkeyMalarkey and her husband J.P. Full review to follow....


The Men In My Life

My Boys
Originally uploaded by Mainline Mom
Could they look more alike? They do bring joy to our household.

Being an avid photographer, I'm sure you can imagine how many personal framed photographs of my family there are scattered about my house. So you can also speculate how difficult it was for me to take them all down and put them into storage, so that potential homebuyers will not be distracted by my gorgeous children and my fabulous talent! I feel like my house already looks bare, especially the mantel, and I'm not even done removing toys and other knick knacks yet.

Hopefully this weekend will mean lots of organizing, gardening, spackling and cleaning. I'm anxious to interview some real estate agents and see what they think our house will sell for, so that we can refine our house search in Texas.

In the meantime, tonight I have to go get a CT scan of my sinuses, because it seems my allergy medicine doesn't work and my sinuses are always getting infected and giving me nasty headaches. I'm sure this is will cost us a mint.
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