Pre-Match and House Looking

Andy and I had a great date Saturday night. We went to his pre match day party. It was great to meet his colleagues after all this time. They had delicious pizza and I got to know quite a bit of his friends, but we’re old (well older than a lot of them + three kids) so we left at 9 and went home. Thank goodness. Because today was day light savings. We were tired enough as it was. Friday night was also kind of like a date because we sat down together and worked out pros and cons of our favorite houses to look at. We have quite a few we would be perfectly happy in, so I’m excited to go look. We got some more work done in the house and our neighbors came and trimmed our trees for only $250– we had a different estimate for 1600! He did a great job, more than I expected at that price.  It is nice to have it done so we have one less thing to worry about as we move forward. The boys had been asking for Panda for quite a while, so we told Max if he did well in school then we would get Panda as a family Friday night. Max consumed his dinner pretty quickly and then started into Mav’s plate. Mav pushed Max’s hand away and said, “Hey!” Max replied, “Mav, we’re brothers, we share!” Mav exclaimed, “Not with Panda!” They really are pretty good at sharing, most of the time, but apparently Panda is off limits in that area. Beverly is so hard to keep up with. She. Wears. Me. Out. She has not been sleeping well ever since she had a nasty virus in her mouth (two weeks ago) it has since healed, but the habit of getting up multiple times in the night has continued. I am tired, man. When she’s awake she’s been cranky because she’s not getting enough sleep at night. She doesn’t need two naps in the day anymore, and I don’t want to give her two for fear she’ll sleep worse at night. But she barely makes it till 10:30 before she can’t go any more. Then the afternoon is a fight with her because she’s tired again. I even caved a couple of times and tried to put her down for an afternoon nap, but she wouldn’t have it. We are taking her with us to GA, so I’m hoping she can get over her orneriness and lack of sleep before then. We will be staying with our Realtor. Well, next to. She has a guest house next to her property that she reserves for her extended family and clients. She has been so helpful and this is a huge blessing. We had another wonderful person offer their home, but their house is also on the market, so we did not feel comfortable infringing on that stressful time by being house guests in a house they want to keep immaculate. Wish us luck! I may write next week if I get a chance, if not, then the next time I post we will hopefully have made an offer on a house!
2019-03-18 01:54:06 The very first house we saw turned out to be our favorite for the day. We saw maybe 12 or more homes. 5 of them would be very comfortable and nice. Our favorite one was 530 Bunchgrass St, Evans 30809 if you want to look it up. The realestate here is about $100/sq ft. Which is pretty awesome. We will be out looking at more homes tomorrow, then I think Tuesday we will narrow it down to our top five and have second looks then make an offer. That’s the plan anyway. Bev has been a trooper. Andy and I left our house in Houston at 3 AM (thanks for the ride mom!). She was wide eyed until we got on the plane at 5:45 and then after we got up in the air she probably slept for about an hour of the hour, forty-five minute flight. Then she was wide awake till we got on our two hour drive to Augusta and even then only slept for about a half hour. She slept on and off during our house hunting in the afternoon and only was moderately monsterish. We had a lovely dinner with some new acquaintances. We’ve never met these wonderful people, but they reached out to us through Facebook because Andy is former SF (Special forces) as is her husband, Charley.  He also went the EM path and is finishing his residency in Augusta and then moving in the summer. We would buy their house in a heart beat if it was in our budget. It was gorgeous and in the best neighborhood in the area. Admittedly, I was a little nervous about the dinner. They were the family that had actually offered to let us stay with them, but they don’t have any young kids so I knew they didn’t have a high chair or play pen, but we were going to make do anyway because our budget is tight. So I made a gift for them, thinking it as a small repayment for staying with them. When we decided to stay with our realtor instead, I told her I still wanted to meet her and give her the gift so she invited us to dinner. Gina was so incredibly sweet. We had a lot in common. Both former teachers, both miffed by the system, both SF-doc wives AND she collects elephants! I mean seriously, we’re practically the same person! Ha! We had a lot to talk about and they answered a lot of my questions about the area and the program that Andy will be joining in June. We left when Bevy hit the wall of tiredness. It is weird being back in my childhood state. As we flew into Atlanta and then drove through downtown, floods of memories came to my mind. Trips to Florida, holding our breath under the downtown freeway tunnels, riding the tram at the airport. Things I held with fondness in my mind. The road to Augusta was lined with trees, just like every other road in GA. I love that. There’s a decent sized city behind that wall of trees, but you would never know until you take an exit. I think we’ll be driving early Friday into Atlanta. I’m not sure if we’ll explore the world of Coca-cola or drive through my home towns. I’m curious to know if Harry’s market is still up and running as well as our family’s favorite Chinese restaurant nearby where the theater we owned. Is the theater up? I don’t know. I heard it went under but then I thought someone else fixed it up again and started the business going. I have met the nicest people here. It makes moving here a lot easier and puts my stomach and mind at ease. Perhaps I won’t get any more stress bumps before the move (HA!). Tamara Atwood’s old roommate, Kim Ahlstrom lives in the ward I attended and gave me a warm welcome. She is hoping I buy her home, which would be nice, but it’s a bit smaller than what we’re looking at currently, but it is in a really good part of Evans with the top-rated school, so we’ll see. We were also invited to dinner by one of the ward members, Joanna Hickman. I met her through FB as well. -quick tangent – I did the social media fast President Nelson had challenged last spring and it was AMAZING! So times when I feel grumpy or down I sometimes think is due to something I’ve read on FB and I kind of want to dump the whole program, but since I’ve been using FB so much for networking for this move and stuff, I haven’t been able to give it up, plus I use it a lot for ward business. SO I’m kind of at an impasse. Maybe I’ll try dumping it after the move. Ok tangent over. Joanna, and her husband were so friendly and welcoming. They served us a delicious and festive corned beef roast and potatoes. They have adorable children which made Beverly super happy. She’s been kind of angry at all the driving and being strapped in a car seat stuff.  They may or may not be here much longer, since they’re waiting on their match still (they’re doing the SOAP- see one of Andy’s previous blogs for info on what that means). So I already have friends. Which is one of the worries I had. Granted the three friends I feel I’ve made are moving (Kim, Gina, and maybe Joanna), but our realtor, Ruth is pretty awesome as well. And I met another lady in the ward who just moved here from Italy and is also army, though not med army. Despite those wonderful women moving, I actually think what I’ve learned is that I will find people to love here. But I won’t stop loving those I’m leaving behind (that’s for you Marni). You will always be my friend and family. Gina invited over a couple of people for us to meet, but we only were able to stay long enough to meet one family, Jessica Parker and her SF-doc Chuck. They also have two littles (6 yr old girl, and 2.5 yr old boy) so I’m looking forward to play dates with them. I will probably see some of these people again on Tuesday for SBS (a baptist bible study). A lot of LDS, Methodist, or whatever women come to this to discuss the Bible, get free child care, and support one other. I believe it is just for doctor’s wives to help support each other during the difficult stages of training. This will probably be a God-send during Andy’s intern year, especially since we’re thinking about trying for a fourth kid sometime in the near-ish future. This week’s schedule is not set in stone, but I think we’ll start by looking at the remaining high-interest homes tomorrow and then a second look on just our favorites on Tuesday then probably make an offer and explore the city the rest of the time. We still want to check out Mav’s preschool, find a sport for Max to start in the summer or fall, and figure out my favorite grocery shopping spots. Well, wish us like! Till next week!
2019-03-19 12:53:30 This is a late post.  We found three houses we really liked and are having a hard time narrowing it to one.  One of the houses is super well priced, but it doesn’t have a fence and you need HOA approval for a fence.  I am so sick of HOAs.  That alone makes me not like it as much.  It also has a RV sized shower in the master bathroom and with Andy’s stature, that may not work. That being said, everything else is nice in it.  The school it is zoned to is very good.  We would not be able to fit our breakfast table and dining room table though.  Still on our list. The second house is more expensive, but still a good price. It has a fence, but the backyard is smaller than we would like.  Other than that, it is great.  The kitchen is big and the closet is big.  It’s biggest concern is the Master Bedroom is on the main floor and the Nursery would be on the second floor.  This is important to Elise and I can understand that. This brings us to our third house.  It is only slightly more than the second, but it is a brand new build in a brand new neighborhood.  That can be risky since there may not be that many kids to play with.  It is right across from the Elementary school though, and it is a good school.  The house has everything Elise and I want. It is beautiful too. This is Elise chiming in. I didn’t sleep well last night because I’m worried about making the right decision, but I feel like Heavenly Father would be happy with us picking any of these three and is leaving it to me to decide. Though I kind of wish he’d just decide for me. I really felt good about the house on Bridgewater, but the fence is an absolute necessity with Daisy (and helpful to let the young kids play without too much worry). Our realtor said that their HOA is hard to get a hold of and tends to be picky about things, which isn’t super fun to deal with, so we may have to move on. The shower is an issue as well because it really is quite small and Andy would barely fit in it. The tub isn’t much bigger, so that wouldn’t make it a better alternative for him. When I saw the white house on Palisade I was in love. It is gorgeous. It is built extremely well and has some very nice features. I don’t feel we’d have any trouble selling it in three years, especially as the neighborhood will be more developed by then. The only question is, do I want to deal with that much of an undeveloped neighborhood? But the school is literally right across the street, whereas with Bunchgrass house, it is nearly 3 miles down the road. With the school being so close to Palisade, I really don’t think it will take long for young families to move in. The only issue aside from that, is it is on the edge of Grovetown which has an abundance of land and lower resale prices, with the worry that rezoning could occur. But I really can’t imagine our area would be zoned to anything besides the school across the street. But it is something to consider. Andy will be making a decent amount more after residency, so if we can’t sell it right off the bat, we could still afford the mortgage and then rent it for Masters to help pay for the mortgage. I saw a house listed at $3000 a night for a 3 bedroom 2 bath “cozy” house. It looked to be about 50 years old and not in prime condition. I doubt they’ll get a Master’s renter, but that is the price the prime houses rent for. Of course, while we’re living here, with Andy’s crazy busy residency schedule, we probably won’t get to rent it out, especially the first intern year, but it is something to consider. There is lots of land here with lots of room for growth. I imagine the next three years things will grow more than I expect. Bunchgrass is a great home. I could be truly happy there. It is in a marvelous neighborhood with a decent school (rated 7). It has a running trail, sidewalks (a rare commodity in GA), and a magnificent pool. The only things that sit uneasy with me are the condition of the grass (basically all weeds now) and the Master bedroom being so far from the nursery. Despite all that I think we would really enjoy it and the neighborhood. We hope to make an offer by the end of the day! I’ll report back this evening!
2019-03-20 01:16:23 Rasmania 101 []: This is the letter that my mother, Catharine Rasband writes. Army Doc []: This is the blog written by Dr. Andy Jackson about his career in Emergency Medicine with the military.
2019-03-20 02:13:41 I’m tired tonight, but not as tired as Bev and Andy. I’ve enjoyed getting to know the area and our realtor. Andy has too, but he’s getting anxious to make an offer. He likes to make decisions quickly… I, however, like to mull things over. Much to his chagrin. He’s being patient and I promised him I’ll make my decision tomorrow and we can make an offer. Another house popped up on my radar today. More established neighborhood, a better rated school, but similar to the new build– just 8 years old, so maybe not as nice or fancy. We decided Bridgewater just wasn’t a good fit due to the fence issue and possibly RV sized shower/bath. (I did marry a 6’3” man after all, I can’t expect him to get fully clean in a shower like that). Then we went to Bunchgrass. I do like it. I like it a lot. BUT the elementary school is quite a drive, the grass is in BAD shape, the back yard is small, and the master’s on the main floor (so I’d have to continue my midnight treks upstairs to get our crying babies). It’s a good house, but there are so many options I get to be picky. It’s our back up, but we’ve decided to go with the house on Palisade… unless the house that popped up today blows our minds. We’re going tomorrow morning at 9 and then we’ll make OUR decision. Andy told me, going into this, that he didn’t care where we lived or what our house looked like as long as it 1) had fiber internet and 2) had a place for his office. As we’ve looked at houses I’ve been pleasantly surprised by how much he actually is interested in how the house looks and feels. He may even be more picky about kitchens than me! Speaking of crying infants. Bevy continues to express her frustration with house hunting… she is probably ready more than all of us to be done getting in and out of the car every fifteen minutes. It hasn’t been easy having her, but as soon as she’s out of her carseat she’s happy again, so there’s that. I probably need to read some books on how to get your one year old from screaming so much. She screams when she’s mad, happy, goofy… whatever… it’s her go to noise. I may be deaf by the end of this trip. Despite her screaming in the car (or in large open spaces because of the “cool” echo) she has been fun. She was most happy at the house on Palisade, so I think she’s made up her mind. We went for a walk after house hunting today. It was very nice weather. It is so much less humid here, I have actually had to use lotion and chapstick quite frequently. Not dry like Midland or Utah, but a very nice balance. I have hardly noticed any mosquitos, but I’ll report back in the prime summer months (that being said, I know they’re at a rampage all ready in Houston). We got Thai for dinner. We need to find a Thai restaurant to replace our favorite date spote in Houston. We ate at Sawasdee in Martinez (pronounced Mar-ti-nez— not MARTEENEZ) they must have less hispanic population here than in Houston. Anyway, it was actually pretty good. No Ginger Thai, but the taste was pretty comprable. I just wish Ginger thai would give me their green cilantro sauce recipe… After dinner we went on another drive (sorry Bev). We drove to Palisade and the school is was next to– Lewiston Elementary. We took video and pictures of the playgrounds for Max. Then we did the same for Parkway Elementary (the other possibility if we go with the one we haven’t seen yet). We also passed by Columbia County Parks and Rec. They have tons of baseball fields. I’ll sign the boys up for football or t-ball in July or August for the fall season. It is exciting to be able to finally afford the little extras. I’m planning on getting a gym membership at the YMCA (which has military discounts and free child care), attend a bible study every Tuesday (which has free childcare and free breakfast), and Mav will attend preschool Tues-Thurs for four hours. I think it’ll be good for him. He loves getting out and he loves to play with friends. Buying a house feels daunting, but like my mom said to me through Marco-Polo, “Just go with what feels right and it’ll all work out.” I may have been waiting for a divine manifestation, but I think she’s right. I think we’ll get a house we love and it’ll work out. Well love y’all. Thanks for your prayers and love.

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