Monday, October 11, 2010


I moved to a new house last week. And the week before that. And the week before that, and this week. It took a long time. In fact, as you can see in the photo of my living room, it is still going on.

Every day, I discover new and interesting things about this house. Such as, water pools on the front steps when it rains. (Had to buy a squeegee and beg the landlord to do something about it. He says he will, but it hasn't been done yet.) Such as, the bathroom is the only room in the house without blinds on the window! (Had to buy a curtain rod and jury-rig a curtain out of some fabric I had lying around.) Such as, there are no electrical outlets on the outside of the house! (Had to pop out a screen and run my cord through the window in the laundry room.) Such as, none of the inside doors actually shuts all the way. (Can't buy anything to fix that...Will just have to keep yanking on them until the doorknobs fall off).

Despite all its obnoxious little quirks, I am quite fond of this house. See my public album on Facebook to learn just how cute it is. Despite my enthusiasm, however, renting an entire house has been a rather trying experience for me. Unlike when you rent a room in a shared residence, nothing comes ready to use (except the major appliances, thank goodness!). I had to call all the utility companies myself and get the service set up. Fortunately, I have amassed a decent collection of furniture (from being unable to resist discarded items found on the side of the road or abandoned by former housemates) and cookware (from being the only baker in my previous household and from being unable to resist discarded items donated by a moving-away neighbor), but every time I turn around, I realize there is something that I don't have but I need--a toilet plunger (haven't needed it yet, but it's a good thing to not wait around for), towels for the bathroom and kitchen, a towel rack for the kitchen, a broom, dishwasher soap (yes, for the first time in my independent life, I'm going to use a dishwasher instead of doing it by hand), a microwave, and on and on it goes.

This, while causing me to shell out money on an entirely too-regular basis, has also enabled me to exercise my bargain-shopping expertise. From Craigslist, I got a great deal on 2 sets of steel utility shelves for 10 dollars (OK, they're a little rusty), and from Freecycle, I got 2 kitchen chairs for 0 dollars (OK, the back is falling off one of them).

However, just as the merchants love their customers to do, I end up spending more money on things I don't need, simply because I'm out spending money on things I need. While I was at Target buying my first load of household necessities, I purchased a cute T-shirt that says, "I love my [Picture of bicycle]," and while I was at Target buying my third load of household necessities, I purchased an adorable red dress. To my credit, both of the apparel items were marked down (in the case of the dress, 50%) and I had been eying them patiently all summer, hoping the price would drop. While I was at Ikea buying my second load of household necessities, I also splurged on a mini ironing board, because after years of ironing my clothes on a bit of cardboard, I thought 6 dollars was a cheap step up.

Today, since I needed to go to the mega-thrift store anyway, I decided to take my sewing machine in to the sew-vac shop that's in the same complex. At the thrift store, I bought a knife block, a pot lid, towels and wash cloths, and (impulse buy alert!) a super-awesome like-new pair of high-heeled mid-calf brown boots, for a grand total of less than 10 dollars (there was a half-off Columbus day sale going on, and boy, did that make the parking lot crowded!), and then I spent 160 dollars to fix the sewing machine. Unfortunately, I was unable to find a microwave, which was the main reason I went there in the first place.

My shopping adventures will doubtlessly continue, as I still seek a microwave, furniture for the living room, and, well, who knows what I'll think of next? If I have learned anything from this venture, it's that (1) living all alone because your housemates haven't moved in yet starts off terrifying and ends up pretty fun, and (2) moving is synonymous with spending. In vast quantities. I hope I don't have to do this again for a good long time.


Anonymous said...

Sweeet!! I love your new home!! (apart from the fact that is has almost no outlets, and a few of your other observations such as water building up in the front porch). But anyway it's so pretty! and awesome about the mega-thrift store... those are such great places!!
Thanks for giving me something fun/interesting to read about.... I don't find much that is interesting... lol

ps.. any pics of your cute red dress??? (with you in it?) :)


Geoff said...

Do you live there all by yourself!?

You're so much more grown up than me :(

Tariq said...

Be careful picking up discarded furniture, especially upholstered chairs or couches. They could have bed bugs in them, which really make life miserable and horror-movie-like.

Rust is no problem! Sand paper + WD40.