The long and busy moving week

From the personal files: I bought a house last week. Here’s a rundown of what moving has entailed. This does not go into details about the buying part in the month leading up to this week.

Monday, April 21: I closed on the house at 9 a.m. It only took about 20 minutes. Apparently when you finance a mortgage with a credit union it’s a lot less paperwork than with a bank. I only had to sign my name about 20 times, which is far less than many closings, my lawyer told me. I spent much of the day on the phone changing addresses and phone numbers on my credit cards and bank accounts.

Tuesday, April 22: I picked up the new TV stand from Best Buy for my not-yet-bought 52″ LCD HDTV (still researching my decision). Loaded that into my dad’s van and then took it to the (empty) house where we opened the box and carried it in a piece at a time (rather than all 138 unwieldy pounds at once). Painted the master bedroom (which was pink, which was NOT going to fly) with the huge help of my parents. (I hadn’t painted a room in over a decade, and I was way out of practice.)

Earlier, I had been shopping for paint and had paint chips to match the walls of the other rooms. While I was comparing them to the walls I discovered there was a half-full 5-gallon can of paint in the basement which matched the rest of the walls in the house. So I didn’t have to buy paint. Bonus. Unfortunately, we didn’t start painting until 8 p.m., and didn’t finish the second coat until 2 a.m., so it was a late night. But it turned out really nice. Also earlier in the day, my mom planted some flowers for me in my yard’s landscaping.

Wednesday, April 23: Got up late after going to bed at 4 a.m. Bought a cable modem, then that afternoon I met the cable guy at the house and had my cable and Internet installed. Then I started the arduous task of packing my stuff at the apartment (which I should’ve started earlier, yes). My sister Jill flew into the Bloomington airport from San Diego that night, but because she missed her earlier flight she didn’t get here until 11:30 p.m.

Thursday, April 24: Moving truck day. I picked up the Budget rental truck and my dad and I started loading stuff around 11 a.m. There was still a lot of stuff I hadn’t packed (which I caught grief over, admittedly deservedly), so my mom and sister helped with that once they got to my apartment around 1 p.m. They basically did the whole first pass of the kitchen themselves, which was helpful, while Dad and I moved furniture and took stuff apart. A long day.

We made a trip with the moving truck over to the house around 5. Got it unloaded by around 7:30. My friends Andy and Marie met us at the house to help us unload stuff. Then they came back with us for the second trip with the truck while Mom and Jill worked on putting stuff away in my new kitchen. We finished unloading the second truck at the house around 11:30. I still had LOTS of stuff at the apartment, but it was smaller stuff that we could fit in my dad’s van over the next few days.

Andy and Marie bought me a nice Weber charcoal grill as a housewarming present, which was really nice of them! We moved in all the furniture to the various rooms (although did not set much up). While Andy and I moved other furniture, my dad put together my bed so I’d have somewhere to sleep. We returned the rental truck around midnight. Then I spent my first night in my new house.

Friday, April 25: Took two more vanloads of stuff from the apartment to my house — packed and loaded it, and then unloaded. Parents and Jill came back over to help unload and move stuff to the right rooms. We tried to set some stuff up. Best Buy delivered my washer and dryer a little after 5 p.m. and hooked it up. There was a dent in the side of the dryer (not visible when installed) and they agreed to take $40 off the price.

Late that night after everyone else left I set up the big new TV stand in the basement. Still don’t have the new 52″ LCD yet, so I put my old 27″ TV on it, which looks really tiny on that huge stand. (The 32″ TV is upstairs in the living room in my old entertainment center.) Set up my audio equipment and new floor speakers and tested out the room with the volume and subwoofer cranked up at 4 a.m., which made me smile since it would’ve been prohibitive to do that in my apartment. Went outside and I could barely hear even the bass. Put away more stuff. Finally went to bed at 6 a.m. when it was getting light out. Not enough hours in a day to get all this stuff done.

Saturday, April 26: We finally moved the last vanload of my stuff from the apartment (at this point I was really sick of moving stuff), except we left the cleaning supplies. Mom, Dad, and Jill came over to the house to help put more stuff away and eat dinner. I put the grill together and then lit the charcoal and cooked turkey fillets and corn on the cob. Mom made the rice.

Sunday, April 27: Cleaning day (part 1). After moving out everything, you could see that my apartment was a MESS. Had to dust and vacuum and clean and clean and clean. Also had to clean the carpets with my parents’ carpet cleaner. That alone took about four hours. Good thing I had help cleaning the stove and kitchen counters earlier, but I still didn’t get it all done. Went home to put more stuff away and assemble my desktop computer in my home office. Was up late (4 a.m., and then couldn’t fall asleep until after 5) even though I had to work in the morning. Bleah. (Honestly, I could’ve used another full week off to unpack.)

Monday, April 28: I was exhausted, so I called in late to work and went in around 10. Still not done cleaning (part 2). After work I went to the apartment to clean the oven and fridge. The fridge floor was absolutely covered in rust under the drawers. The thing is a complete piece of junk because it collects water all over its floor, which doesn’t drain properly and so then it rusts. YUCK. Layers of rust everywhere in that thing. Cleaning it, my hands smelled like metal. Between that and the oven I was cleaning for almost three hours. Note to self: Clean house more often than apartment. Note to landlords: Throw away piece-of-junk fridge and replace.

Tuesday, April 29: My sister flew out of the airport to head back to San Diego this morning. I went over to the apartment after work to finish cleaning (part 3) once and for all. Bathroom and shower are all that’s left. Argh; cleaning that shower tile and scrubbing the shower floor took forever. At least an hour for the shower alone. Cleaned sink, toilet, and mopped the floors; easy stuff compared to the shower tile. Finally done! This place is cleaner than when I moved in. Hopefully I’ll get back most of my security deposit.

Wednesday, April 30: Over my lunch hour I did a final walk-through of my empty apartment. I took some pictures for sentiment’s sake (hey, I’ve been in there a really long time), and with a bittersweet acknowledgement closed and locked the door one last time at my home of the last nine years (yikes). I drove to the rental office and turned in my keys. It’s done; I’m out. And I am a homeowner.

After work I mowed my lawn for the first time. I also finally settled on a 52″ LCD TV (Samsung) and ordered it from Amazon. My house is still a mess with boxes everywhere, but it’s slowly getting better. I’m going to have to go through all my stuff and reorganize it and move stuff around. There are drawers that could be freed up by taking old junk out and boxing it up or throwing it away. I’ll probably be doing that for weeks, if not months.

I didn’t realize I had so much stuff. You never do until you move.

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9 comments on this post

Matthew
Thursday, May 1, 2008, 10:40 am (UTC -6)

I ALWAYS hate moving, I’ve done it 3 times in the last 2 years and I shall be moving again (more permanently this time, as opposed to damned university accommodation) in July, which I am definitely not looking forward to. Even the thought of it makes me feel exhausted already.

Congrats on the Samsung though, great brand!

Brendan
Thursday, May 1, 2008, 9:24 pm (UTC -6)

I have never moved in my 22 year life. Yes I still live with my parents, and have been in the same house since birth. It will be a jarring life change when I finally get my own place. Plus it sounds like a pain in the ass.

Maybe I’ll stick around for a while longer.

Anna
Saturday, May 3, 2008, 6:03 pm (UTC -6)

The Last time I moved was with my parents, and it took us over five years to get everything unpacked. In fact there are still a couple of boxes full of useless jusnk stuck way up on the shelves in their house. Better luck to you.

Vincent
Tuesday, May 6, 2008, 7:55 pm (UTC -6)

It’s funny, I’ll be going through this exact same ordeal over the next few weeks. I’m closing on my house on 5/19, moving the next weekend, cleaning the apartment, and shopping for a TV, washer and dryer. Any advice on good appliances and TVs?

And I just finished BGS season 3 from netflix and recovering from my blown mind.

Jill
Wednesday, May 7, 2008, 12:56 am (UTC -6)

I must say, Jamahl really SHOULD have packed and cleaned “more” (or at all) before we were there to assist. What do you take us for–a supportive family, or a pro bono cleaning and moving staff?! 😛

Anyway, Jamahl, I’m looking forward to seeing you the next time I’m in Illinois, under more relaxed circumstances. Just remember, you now owe me a very large favor to be cashed in at any time I choose, for any reason, without warning.

Okay, I demand you fly here and clean my apartment right now. Heh.

I’m not kidding.

Julie
Thursday, May 8, 2008, 8:16 am (UTC -6)

Brendan: That’s nothing to feel bad about. I lived in the same house from birth until 27. Not that I didn’t WANT to move out, but I was determined to buy my own house as soon as possible, and living with mom meant not having to pay rent, only expenses, which was important on my crappy salary. I was very attached to my old house and my old neighborhood, to the point where I thought I would one day buy the house from my mom. I’m glad I didn’t; adapting to a new house in a new setting wasn’t nearly as hard as I thought it would be, and it’s amazing how quickly you can become comfortable in a new environment.

Stef
Tuesday, May 13, 2008, 4:31 am (UTC -6)

Congrats on the move. No more stolen news papers.

john doe
Tuesday, May 20, 2008, 8:10 am (UTC -6)

Has anyone stolen your paper yet?

What’s the neighborhood like compared to the old one?

Jamahl Epsicokhan
Tuesday, May 20, 2008, 3:50 pm (UTC -6)

No stolen newspapers at the new house, but I hadn’t had my paper stolen at my apartment since early February. The perp suddenly decided to quit.

The new neighborhood is nice. The old neighborhood was fine, but it was a block of nothing but apartments and condos. This is a more traditional neighborhood with houses and yards and driveways and garages and alleys.

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