Saturday, August 13, 2011

Moving in and getting settled

July is a great time of year to be in Minneapolis.  Residents, knowing what winter will bring in a few months, don't want to waste a minute inside and make every effort to enjoy the beautiful weather.  But on our moving day in July of 2004, it rained.  Thankfully, the contents of a one-bedroom apartment didn't take long to move from the west end of Lake Calhoun to our new home.

Mark and his friend Andy transferred most of the furniture and boxes while I worked on scrubbing the paint off our living room floor with my new discovery:  Goo Gone.  The red oak hardwood floor had not been sanded or sealed for decades.  The former homeowner did the floors no favors by painting the living room and bedroom walls without using drop cloths.  Paint splatters could be found all around both rooms.  Another immediate chore I assigned myself was washing down the walls, which reeked of cigarette smoke, with another newly-discovered cleaning product:  Soilax.

The house was in such bad shape that Mark had difficulty convincing Wells Fargo to give him a loan.  He also struggled to get homeowners' insurance due to the condition of the house.  He went back and forth between the two and convinced them to provide a loan and offer insurance.  Mark, in return, promised to replace the roof within the first month and work through the other issues identified in the inspector's 44-page report.

Not long after we moved in, my parents and siblings came for a visit.  Mark thought we'd make pizza for an easy Friday night dinner.  I put the oven on preheat, but it didn't heat up.  That explained why the oven was as clean as new.  Plan B involved cooking the pizza on our Weber charcoal grill.  Here's a tip:  if you want to barbecue pizza on a charcoal grill, don't use Matchlight charcoal.  Your pizza will taste like lighter fluid.  A new stove would be a priority.

A new washer and dryer became an early priority as well, after my first load of clothes came out looking rusty.  The dryer wasn't getting clothes dry, either.  I mentioned in the first post that the harvest gold dishwasher, circa 1975, did not work.  Were we going to have to replace all of our appliances at once?  We lived without a dishwasher for a while.  The refrigerator seemed fine, but we found that food would spoil sooner than we expected.  Add a refrigerator to the growing list of major purchases that we'd likely be making in the near future.

As we invested time and money in this house, it started to feel more like a home.  Soon after we moved in, the annual National Night Out potluck gave us the opportunity to meet nearly all of our neighbors.  We felt truly welcomed and looked forward to many more chances to get to know them and feel a part of this urban community.

No comments:

Post a Comment