Like Johnny Cash, we’ve been everywhere

We’ve been to:
Florence, Gaston, Forest Grove, Yamhill
Vernonia, Damascus, Gresham, West Linn,
Hillsboro, Yachats, Aurora, North Plains,
Sisters, Milwaukie, Cottage Grove, Lebanon,
Oregon City, Canby, Corbett, Redmond.

We’ve been everywhere. It’s about time to slip on a pair of red shoes, click my heels and proclaim there’s no place like home.

Finding the next home

Finding that next home is not as easy as I thought it would be. I was smart; I researched properties carefully using Zillow, compiled a list that took us to areas within a 30-mile distance to Portland, and off we went.

It’s been a wild chase. We’ve learned that a gentle slope means a steep dropoff, that irrigated farmland is realtor speak for boggy bottom land, a sweeping lawn that was photographed from about 2 inches off the ground is really a tatty little lawn, and that a cute 40’s era house high on a bluff with a great view of the river, is a house that was built too close to the edge of the precipice, with the very real possibility of stepping out of the back door and falling off the 90-foot drop.

It’s been discouraging, but our wanderings have helped us zero in on the areas we like best, and now it’s time to find realtors and get on their drip list.

This moving better happen soon. I’m starting to lose steam for the task; the more times we come home after viewing another unsuitable property, the more I want to stay in my home.

Leaving it all behind

The kids have flown to their own lives, we want to live leaner, and now it’s time to let go of our beautiful big house that has sheltered us so well for 20 years. The new dream house is a place in the country with a little land around it, no more than an hour’s drive from Portland.

Big order. I looked at the map and saw all the wide open spaces around Portland and thought it would be easy to find a couple of acres with a view. Something with an elevation so we’re not living on soggy bottom land. It turns out a lot of people want the same thing, so our choices appear limited.  Our search has been cursory, though, we need to get serious and settle on an area and engage a realtor.

And we have to do this while my husband works at his stressful job and I pack up our goods and work on the interior of our house to get it ready to sell.

Ah, packing. I’m astonished at how much of my stuff I really don’t care about, how easy it is to let it go. It’s not downsizing as much as shedding. Room by room: a big box for Goodwill and one for a garage sale, a trash bag, and boxes for the things that make the cut.

A corner of the basement is stacked with boxes of items we’re taking with us. Lord, just the idea of hauling these boxes to a storage unit, carrying them into our new forever home, and then unpacking and finding a place to put everything makes me want to chuck them all.