Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Inspection Status and a - somewhat - Unexpected Visitor Today

The inspection on Monday went pretty well...just a couple small things to take care of, but luckily things my hubby can do :-)  We're thankful there was nothing big that popped up, like needing a new roof or something of that nature. We weren't really that worried, since we've taken good care of things, but-you just never know.

So...CHECK! That is off the list.

The next thing we WERE waiting on was the appraisal. Notice I said "were". Well, I may or may not have had a little freak out moment this morning when I got a call at 10:30am from the realty office stating that the appraiser wanted to schedule...for 11am - yes, eleven, ELEVEN! I hope I sounded calm on the phone, because in my mind I was freaking out a little bit. "WHAT?!?! 11am on THIS DAY?!?! 11am as in 30 minutes from now?!?! TODAY?!?!..."

I mentioned to the woman on the phone that I had just cleaned up breakfast and would have to get the kids set to get out the door (we normally have made sure to leave ~15-20 minutes before the scheduled time of showings and such). I was so relieved when she said that it would just be the appraiser coming, and there was no problem with us being at home. I'm sure she could feel my sense of panic decrease a bit from her end of the line.

When I got up this morning I had decided to make the bed and tidy our room, tidy the basement, tidy the kids rooms, and then wash dishes right after breakfast when my hubby left for work. I just had a feeling for some reason. I knew we'd be getting the call at some point (expecting some notice, maybe even 24 hours), so I just wanted to keep up on things. Little did I know that I would be getting THAT call mentioned above. I think He knew...

Without the burden of the tasks already completed, I was able to get the bathrooms wiped down, dishes put away, floor swept, etc... in a timely manner. Then we waited. The time was 11am-2pm, which I then realized must have been the time 'window'. He came around noon as the kids were eating lunch, checked out things outside, came in and took pictures of all the rooms/areas, had just a short bit of chit-chat (he was nice and friendly) and then he was on his way. Total time outside and inside, about 10 minutes. Is that how a typical appraisal goes? For some reason I was thinking it would have been a bit more in-depth (but not as much so as the inspection). I'm not complaining :-) I was just a little surprised that that was all there was to it...

Now - we wait. And pray. I think this is the last hurdle to overcome before setting a closing date and finalizing the sale.

The kids and I are going to visit the little library in town now (a bit later than planned after our unexpected visit!), then ride bikes/scooters and play outside, paint pictures, make some bars for hubby to snack on for work later this week, etc. Oh, and I'm going to relax; thankful that this step is complete...

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Waitin' For Our Report Card: A House Update

Here is the short version of our house update...

Wednesday afternoon, July 11th, our house went on the market. The next day (Thursday) we had three showings. One offer was placed. On Friday we had one showing. Friday night we placed a counteroffer with the buyer that had placed the offer on Thursday. Saturday, thankfully, for my sanity kids sake, we didn't receive any calls for showings. Sunday we had two showings. And, received ANOTHER offer! The other buyer that looked on Sunday also wanted to place an offer, but knowing there were already two offers on the table, they chose not to. We had another showing scheduled for Monday, and a short-notice call that came in for Tuesday, but both were cancelled since we were working on offers. I don't want to disclose too much about the offers that came in, because we are still in the works of the sale - but we decided to continue working with the first offer, and we were able to reach an agreeable deal!

We signed all the papers last Monday, and the sale is contingent upon the inspection and lender appraisal! When the For Sale sign went up in the yard last Thursday, it already had the SOLD sign affixed to the bottom :-)

The inspection took place yesterday...although we haven't heard anything back yet. In  my mind it feels like waiting to receive grades on report card day! Or, more so like waiting for a grade and feedback on a project - anxious to see what changes are needed (if any!) to achieve the perfect grade.

The appraisal hasn't been scheduled yet, but we are hoping that it will take place in the next week or so.

Even though we have a SOLD sign in our yard, it still doesn't feel real to us. We haven't celebrated in a proper way, and we won't, until things are final. Once we have a closing date, and it gets near with no changes, THEN it will be time to celebrate! We are nervously awaiting that day...

We are PRAYING that everything will work out how we see it in our minds...although I know it'll all work out how it should, so it's just a matter of being patient and letting things take their course.

I have so much more to write about, but we are getting ready to take the ol' fishing boat out to the lake today with the kiddos, so it's time to wrap this up. In the near future look for more posts about our home selling experience including: our little girl starting Kindergarten soon, what it's felt like 'showing' our home, paying out to sell a house, my feelings on moving, the inspection results, etc...

Make it a great day everyone!

Saturday, July 14, 2012

T.H.E. Recipe Link - Is Here...

Doesn't this look Fabulous? It comes from Rachel's blog: rachel cooks. I love to bake, and since going gluten-free two weeks ago I haven't done as much baking as I usually do (and, we've been so busy with the house that I just haven't taken the time to bake).

BUT, last weekend I needed something sweet. I had this recipe in my 'favorites' and while it was not written as gluten-free, I decided I HAD to make it because it just sounded soooo good. I made a couple substitutions and then I had gluten free Banana Chocolate Chip Cake with Chocolate Cream Cheese Frosting! Please visit Rachel's blog for her recipe...but I will list the substitutions for anyone wanting to try this gluten free (just be sure the other ingredients you use are in fact gluten free; chocolate chips, vanilla, etc...).

The recipe makes a 9x13 cake, but I actually made an 8x8 cake because I was worried I may end up eating the whole thing we weren't expecting any company to help us eat it. Other than changing up the flour (and the size) the only other changes I made were using butter instead of shortening (which I don't keep on hand), and using Almond Milk in place of milk for the frosting. I used buttermilk vs. sour milk for the cake, because I had some hanging around in the fridge. Below are the substitution amounts for 9x13, and 8x8 (and I simply cut measurements for all other ingredients in half for the 8x8).

9x13 Cake
In place of 2 cups of all-purpose flour, use:

1 cup Gluten Free All Purpose Flour
1 cup Brown Rice Flour
1 teaspoon Xanthan Gum

8x8 Cake
In place of 1 cup of all-purpose flour, use:

1/2 cup Gluten Free All Purpose Flour
1/2 cup Brown Rice Flour
1/2 teaspoon Xanthan Gum

Please visit Rachel's blog for the complete recipe...and to see the beautiful photos that make it hard to not want to make this...

If you give the recipe a try - please let me know what your thoughts are, and if you made substitutions or not.

Be sure to stop by and check out the rest of Rachel's blog...she has a ton of great recipes, good reads, and is currently having a Pancake Party during the month of July!'s time to add this to your to-do list for tomorrow ;-)

Sunday, July 8, 2012

Back later this week...

Well...I had hoped to post that fabulous recipe that I mentioned in my post yesterday, but the day has gotten away from me and now I am just finishing up my dinner. Yes, it is 9:30pm. Hubby's parents took the kids to spend the night so we've been busy working on the house today, and once I hit the 'publish' button I will be back to work. Reason being...tomorrow we'll be taking pictures of the house so I want everything in tip-top shape, and Tuesday afternoon we'll be meeting with our realtor again! So, THIS WEEK (assuming nothing unexpected comes up) our house will be on the MARKET! FOR SALE! EEK! I almost can't believe it - even though I know it's for real...

I PROMISE I won't forget to post that recipe this week, although reliving it through pictures may prompt me to bake it again ;-)

Maybe after Tuesday I will have a moment to breathe...ahh...

Saturday, July 7, 2012

My New Direction... (and a couple blog/recipe links to check out!)

The two weeks following my discontinuance of the Allergy Discovery Challenge were...challenging. I wasn't sure what I should eat. After a couple days of keeping it simple, I slipped back into just eating what I was making for everyone else. Although I try to keep things healthy, I do have a weakness for enjoy baking muffins, and making pancakes, waffles, etc. During these two weeks I had come across a muffin recipe by Rebecca at A Dusting of Sugar that sounded AWESOME. I started making them, but ended up changing the recipe a bit (only because I had some extra ingredients to throw in) to make a new creation. Someday I will post the changed-up recipe, but in the meantime please go to Rebecca's page and make.these.muffins - you will be happy you did! They were very addicting...I won't admit how many I ate myself...

Near the end of my second week, I could definitely tell that bread products were not my friend. They seemed to be making me feel sluggish and have an unsettled tummy, of sorts. I've also still been dealing with pain in my right foot - although, I seriously think there may be some type of injury/damage causing it VS it being food related. And luckily it's not my heel a.k.a. plantar fasciitis - because I've been there-suffered that. It's in front of my heel area, and if I walk with my right heel up (so, on my toes) as if I am wearing a wedge shoe - then the pain is gone. Today it actually feels a lot better; I think it just needs some rest to heal, but I have been on my feet for at least four weeks straight so it just hasn't had a chance to rest. I told Hubby that after we get our house on the market (hopefully next week!) then I will try to take more time off my feet, since I will just be trying to maintain the house and play with the kids. Just. Meaning all the deep cleaning and to-do lists are gone, so JUST the day to day tasks. Ahh...I can't wait!

It was a week ago Friday that I started searching the web one night after my family was all in bed. That night I decided what my new direction would be...because obviously something I was eating was making me not feel top-notch - and I'm no longer one to just "live with it". If there is something I can do to help myself be more energetic, clear minded, healthy, and just overall feel happier about life - then it is worth trying! Different things work for different people, so thank you for bearing with me as I try to figure out what works for me :-) new direction is: GLUTEN FREE!

A big thank you to my Hubby for his ever-understanding
nature and support - I feel so blessed to be his wife <3

So far, it has been going pretty well. I've found that many products we already use are gluten free so I haven't been limited too much, which also means I haven't been going hungry! It helps that we don't buy many convenience/processed foods. I tend to mostly use grains, dairy, fresh fruits and vegetables, and various fresh meats (pork, beef, chicken, fish, turkey).

I am still in the learning process, but have managed to make gluten-free choices since last Saturday (June 30th)! The other day I started reading a book written by Shauna James Ahern titled: gluten-free girl: HOW I FOUND THE FOOD THAT LOVES ME BACK... & HOW YOU CAN TOO. After finding her blog, I was pleased to find that our local library carried her book! I'm just in the beginning chapters, but so far it has been a good read. You should check out the blog that she now writes with her husband: gluten-free girl and the chef. Read about their story here. They also have a cookbook, but unfortunately our library doesn't carry it. I'll track it down somehow though!

I am excited about my new direction, and praying that my body will appreciate it :-)  So far I haven't been having tummy issues, and my energy levels have been up at times - unfortunately it usually kicks in late afternoon...but I'm hoping to change that. Although, I should note that this morning, with the help of my little kiddos, I was able to get some of the upper level house cleaning done right after breakfast because we were all looking forward to a special treat that I had baked: gluten-free! I LOVE to bake. LOVE. I also love to eat what I bake. I picked up a couple gluten-free flours earlier this week, and finally got a chance to bake last night. Hubby and I sampled it last night...and maybe that's why I was so motivated to get some cleaning done this morning. Because it was A.M.A.Z.I.N.G. I may need to bribe myself again to get the rest of my cleaning done today. The recipe wasn't written as gluten-free, but it sounded so good - I had to make it!

Look for the recipe and photo tomorrow, as well as a link to the recipe by the creator of this fabulous baked item! Gluten free or not, you will definitely want to bake it...

But, for now I'm off to cuddle with my kids and read books before they take their rest time...then maybe I better get cleaning to earn another piece of gluten-free goodness!

p.s. I can't wait to try making Rebecca's muffins with gluten free flour!!!

Monday, July 2, 2012

TODAY IS THE DAY: Still here, but with a new plan...

...and a new "title"...which I haven't come up with yet. With my last post I had made the emotional decision to temporarily discontinue my Allergy Discovery Challenge. I also had decided that Wheat was IN...but now I've decided Wheat is OUT.

I've also decided to take a different route with my "health" and as of right now I don't plan on picking up where I left off with the challenge. Although, I may consider it if I don't see any progress over the next few months with my new plan. WHICH...I am on Day 3 of already, but I want to finish out this week before posting about it. I'm only starting to notice a little change as of yet, and I'd like to give it some time so that I will have more to write about can report back on the progress I am making...assuming there will be progress...praying there will be progress!

Plus, it'll give me some more time to think of a new title for this new "series"  :-)