Aug 10

what just happened?

My studio lease expires at the end of this October. Since Nate and i are leaving for Portland in December, i gave notice on the space to move out at that time. I was extremely torn about it; i wanted to keep the space through December so that i could do all of my families one last time. But it wasn’t possible.

Last week my landlord started showing the space to prospective tenants. I mentioned that if they needed to move in a little early, that i can accommodate that, i just need about 2 weeks to vacate. “you know, if they want to move in October 15th instead of November 1st”… I got a call yesterday that a new tenant is leasing the space, contingent on me being out by August 25th. WHAT?!

I thought about it. I’m so packed with weddings August and September, and i would be starting to move out October 17th anyway…. So i caved. After 3 weeks of moving and prepping my house, i had a day of rest and now i have to do the studio. Of course, i am out of town this weekend for Tina and Mark’s wedding…. enter Nate.

Nate has been an absolute…. wow. He has been amazing during our whole transition, handling everything while i still worked and held up other obligations. Right now he is making me blueberry pancakes. ;) He’s going to spend his weekend packing my studio and doing any repairs etc. Isn’t he a doll?

There are contingency studios for my upcoming portrait sessions. I have a few great friends that are excited to let me use their spaces when i need too.  AWESOMENESS.

My pancakes are ready. ;)


Jul 10

my dad’s place

Over the next two weeks, Nate and i will be moving out of our house. In addition to moving our stuffs, we also have to do all those minor repairs to prep the place for our new tenant.( I am very excited for this mystery woman and her dog to live in my home. I hope that she enjoys it immensely.)  To say that i will be busy is an understatement. Please have patience with me returning phone calls etc. Don’t be surprised by emails sent at 3am. Also, my cell phone doesn’t have great reception at my dad’s house, which means phone calls will be going to voice mail much more often, and i will be returning calls from the house phone.

Living at my dad’s house will be a great transition to what our life in Portland will be like. While my dad only lives about 10 miles outside of downtown Rochester, it still feels slightly remote. How is this like Portland? Well, it really isn’t. But what it does is remove us from the notion that entertaining ourselves is a trip to Target. We have a more readily available option to sit on the deck overlooking the lake, walk the dogs along the dirt roads, jump in the lake, or anything else that can bring us a little closer to nature as our past time.   Really expand our living to the outdoors.  Currently, we do spend a lot of time in our yard, time that is dedicated to gardening and hammock napping and dog watching. What we are looking for is a true transition to outdoor LIVING and PLAYING. It is a fine distinction, but we know what we mean. ;)

Additionally, my dad doesn’t have a fenced yard, so we are primed for training the dogs off-leash and getting accustomed to taking them on more walks.   That adds a tad bit of stress, especially after last night’s skunk fiasco with Jackson… and we are still in the city. (yea, he caught a skunk, got sprayed, then um, killed it.) Since my dad’s yard is home to deer, raccoons, a fluffy black cat, and about 5 million small frogs, this should be fun. We have plenty of squirrels, raccoons, rabbits, and birds in our current yard, but the small prey can easily escape over a fence without a bounding pooch following. At dad’s, escape is to the woods, to which Jackson will surely follow. I’m sure Boogie will just bark with excitement as Jackson chases a doe.  And, oh dear, mosquitoes.

Let the fun begin.

The lake view:

A slug in the grass:

A katydid chilling on the John Deere:

A salamander chilling in Nate’s hand:

Jul 10

getting closer

Preparing for our move to Portland has been in a slight holding pattern for the past 2 months or so. Our major obstacle was to find a tenant to rent our house. Someone who would appreciate gardening and not be intimidated by the large lawn.  After all, we are leaving the riding lawnmower and including a gardening allowance.  ;) Still, it can be a lot of work for a property one is only renting. However, in my opinion, the Michigan economy favors renting over buying. So i had high hopes.

After 45 days on the market, i was getting nervous. In order for everything to fall into place for our new apartment in Portland, we needed a tenant to be moved in by September 1st.  The major downside to our house: 1 bathroom, upstairs. So we contemplated adding a powder room to the first floor master bedroom.  We are in the planning stage for that- and between Nate’s plumbing experience and my experience doing EVERYTHING else handyman related, we were confident that we could have the job done inside a week. i bought this house condemned, and Nate was 1 of only 3 contractors i hired (electrical and mechanical being the other 2).  And, if you’ve seen either of my studios, you know i can do some mad drywall work. ;)  We had just left the Habitat for Humanity ReSale shop , and i was checking the iPhone. Email from East Side Property Management (the company that would handle absolutely everything for us regarding the renting of the house), a qualified tenant has been found!  Just about 60 days on the market. Pretty good.

Our new tenant wants to move in ASAP, which means we have 3 weeks to get out. We are pretty much ready for that. A few things to do around the house, including reinforcing the gates on the privacy fence and finishing up the 190ft garden on the north end of our lot (read: 50sq ft of mulch, trellises to hang, and 12 more plants to ground) . We’ve already reduced our belongings, but we still have a few items to craigslist. Cross that- we are getting rid of almost all of our furniture, except the beds.  I think the biggest task is going to be preparing my dad’s house in north Oakland Township for our 4 month occupancy. While the man has an impressive 3000sqft house on a lake, there isn’t a fence to contain Boogie and Jackson, and we have to re-arrange the walk-out, finished basement to contain us.

Just in time for the busiest month of my wedding season.

I am really going to miss my gardens. I will miss my hammock. I will miss watching my pooches run laps and frolic. I will not miss driving 30-60 minutes to get anywhere i need to go. I look forward to living within 100′ of a mountain. And walking.

We are ready.

Mar 09

bad, bad, bad, bad blogger!!!

ok, finally i admit it.  I am really bad at keeping up with a blog.  But thanks to some nudging from Melody, here i am! ;)

So, let’s see, what’s up?

I redesigned my blog.  hehe  And my business cards, and lots of other stuff too.  I like change, and i like options.  I like so many things that i like to try them all!

For those who don’t know, i’m also a web programmer in my spare time (hahaha).  So i’ve been working a lot of developing web sites for various companies and friends.  For some reason i love writting code… i think it is the problem solver in me!

Ok, so now i feel like that is enough about me.  I’m posting this, um, post.

Then i am posting photos!

Dec 08

knock down, drag out…

So it is finally time for a well deserved break, and i get sick.  I mean really sick.  I’ve been sick for weeks…  It finally came to a head and feels like it is starting to clear though!  I have spent the last week literally passed out on my couch.  And from what i hear, i made whimpering noises in my sleep!!!  hahaha

Feeling more awake now.  Still spending a lot of time sleeping and walking in a fog, but alive and pretty much here!

So, soon, i’ll update the blog with something more exciting. ;)  Maybe some photos!

Thanks to everyone who helped us get all those holiday orders done quickly- it was a mad rush!