Sunday, August 25, 2013

Make-Ahead Work Day Lunches: Grilled Chicken Salad, Yogurt, and Fruit

I've found that if I pack myself a lunch and take it to work, I'll eat it. If I don't bring a lunch and rely on myself to make healthy choices in the company dining room or at a nearby restaurant, I end up eating something awful for me.

Though I didn't have much extra time this evening, I was able to use some of my new Ziploc containers to throw together 3 pre-made salads. My phone was nearby, so I figured I could document it for all 2 of my blog readers.

Dressing on the bottom - this keeps all the crunchy or lettuce-y bits from getting soggy. I'll shake it up before eating. I alternated Wishbone House Italian and Hidden Valley Ranch. I know, Hidden Valley Ranch might as well be melted butter. I don't care. This salad is STILL better than eating a cheeseburger.

Sugar snap peas are next, followed by pre-grilled chicken strips and wedges of tomatoes.

Romaine mixed lettuce and crispy onions as a topper.

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Hello, Homeowners!

What an eventful weekend!

Closing Time
We both took off work on Friday for our closing. After walking around Wharton's downtown square to kill time, we met our Realtor at the title company around 9:30am. There were a couple things holding us up, so while the title company shuffled paperwork, we chatted with our Realtor and the sellers' agent. We even caught a glimpse of the sellers on their way out. He was in a big rush, but she was friendly and stopped to shake our hands. She told us they had just planted a Satsuma orange tree in the back yard and were worried it wouldn't make it. I promised to take care of it and take pictures of it once it was back to full health.

Just when the nerves were ready to take over, they called us back to sign papers. I've been at the closing table before as a Realtor, but it's a whole different ball game being on the buyers' side. Friends and family warned us over and over how tedious this part was going to be, but I really don't think it was that bad. The title company explained every page we signed, and we were still out of there in just over an hour.

By 11:30am, we were homeowners. We skipped off to our new home to check it out.

Something's Broken
As soon as we stepped onto the back porch, I noticed something wrong with the water softener. The tank looks a lot like a large SCUBA oxygen tank - it stands vertically. When I saw it, it was collapsed. The tank was still in one piece and standing, but it was as if the air/water had been sucked out of it. Electricity was turned on in the house, so what could the problem be? With inspection of the water well pump, we discovered the pump had lost its prime during the time the electricity was off in the home.

9 gallons of water and a lot of shouting across the yard, flipping the breaker, and being disappointed later, the pump was primed, and we were free to enjoy our home with running water. The softener filled back up without issue, and we've been going ever since.

First Night
Vince and I spent that night in our new home. We had only our bed (on the floor), a change of clothes, and some delivered pizza. It was a perfect night. Silent, alien, surreal, and perfect.

Moving Day
Saturday morning, we met the movers at our storage unit. In 30 minutes, everything was loaded up. They followed us to the house, and had our belongings inside in another 30 minutes. It was like magic. If you're in the Wharton County area, I recommend these guys to anyone: Mund Moving Co.

Skip ahead to Tuesday morning, and I'm at work, writing this blog post. Sunday and Monday have been spent cleaning, organizing and just enjoying our new home. We were supposed to receive our fridge yesterday, but Sears Home Delivery is TERRIBLE, and it is going to be another week. Vince haggled with a Best Buy manager to get a good deal on a nice floor model fridge. It'll get moved out to the garage later, but we have a fridge in the kitchen for now.

Bravo has learned what fire ants are, and we've learned how big an acre is and what it's like to mow it with a 22" self-propel mower. I still have work to do in the garden, but that'll wait until the weekend. Our plan is to save the big stuff for the weekends and unpack a couple boxes each night. It's hard to remember to slow down and enjoy the new house with all the things that need to get done, but our relaxing back porch makes it easier.

No pictures for now, but I'll try to stay on top of that. More updates to come as we try to fix a crack on our water pump this evening. We might have to re-prime the pump again, so that'll be fun.

I have so many ideas for crafts, DIY, recipes, and more. There should be lots going on here in the near future.

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Long-Awaited Drum Roll...

... aaaaaand we got the "clear to close" from our loan officer today!

After not hearing from him late yesterday or early today as promised, I gave him a call myself at 3:45pm. He apologized, said he thought he emailed me, and told me "Oh, yeah. You're clear to close. Friday at 9:30am."

Very uneventful for my first ever home purchase. Especially after the ordeal we went through, I expected more of a "Congratulations, Mrs. Morales! Great news! You're clear to close!" Oh well.

So without further ado, a montage of happy animals to express how I feel:

So, let's make it to Friday without any anxiety attacks, get moved in, and send out housewarming invites! See you there! :))