August 5, 2008

Five Things

Tuesday, August 05, 2008 Posted by Ryan , , No comments
I am starting my own Five Things tag because I don't have any blogger friends yet to tag me.

1) What were you doing 5 years ago?
Five years ago...I was working for the City as the Human Rights Specialist where I facilitated the Human Rights Commission (meetings, etc), took complaints, and served as a resource for the City and community. But, all this was only a 1/2 time job, so I also worked for PJALS (Peace and Action League of Spokane) and at Bethany Presbyterian Church. I was also sewing costumes for the production of Winnie the Pooh for Spokane Children's Theatre. It wasn't all big furry animal suits, 'cause those are scary. The animals all had ears and tails if appropriate, but Kanga and Roo wore matching blue print dresses with pink ruffled aprons, Eeyore wore grey chords and a big baggy blue cotton sweater (and of course had the pink ribbon on his tail), I also had a whole chorus of 5-year-old bunnies so they were outfitted in green t-shirts and khakis and bunny ear headbands with rabbit #1 and rabbit #2 in plaid button downs, sweater vests and vintage ties. I think the whole scheme worked well with a hint of 1950s inspiration. Of course I don't have any pictures, too bad.

2) What are five things on your to-do list today?
I usually don't have a to-do list, since I do the same thing most weekdays, but today:

1)Go to work

2)Send e-mail about getting quote for a new natural gas furnace to replace our oil furnace that could cost us in excess of $1500 to heat the house this winter.

3)Remember to turn the water off on the soaker hose that I left on along the house this morning and maybe get the other side of the house watered a little too.

4)Go to call backs for Oklahoma! auditions.

5)Try to go to sleep before 11pm

3) What are 5 snacks you enjoy?
I try to keep food in my desk at work so I'm not starving but I've gotten a little low lately. So I like 1) fresh fruit (what ever's in season or in the store during the winter. 2) Almonds (roasted salted ones from Costco) 3) Dried fruit (mostly goes into my oatmeal in the mornings) 4) Carrots and 5) then there's the stuff I love but try to not eat all the time (so it gets grouped into one item) like ice cream, cookies, an occasional chocolate bar, and a good stiff cocktail (not a snack you say? I disagree).

4) what are five things you would do if you were a billionaire?
I don't know what the average person's priorities are for this, but most of the other blogs I've read this post on are also people renovating their old houses and in general are normal people (normal like I'm normal, so what does that me). So, if I were a billionaire (funny how a millionaire isn't sufficient anymore) I would 1) pay off my house 2) pay people to finish the big projects I'm totally dreading like electrical and refinishing the floors 3) Do something for my parents (like send them to that trip to Europe they've talked about) to pay them back for everything they've helped with over the last 12 years since I've become and "adult" 4)Set up some sort of investment retirement plan (just in case you know) and 5)give a lot of money away.
There are a lot of other things I'd do with that money too, so I guess this is just the top five things.

5) What are 5 jobs you've had (or 5 places you've lived)?
Since I've already talked about jobs, I figure I could say five places I've lived, but then I've lived in a lot more that five places. Since I've lived in 5+ cities I thought I would specialize this answer to the five places I've lived in Spokane since moving back.

1) I lived with my parents for six months after moving back to Spokane and did a little house sitting so I could finish a few classes, find a job, and pay off my $900 credit card balance which seemed really big at the time since it was the first time I carried a balance on a card (and I had no income).

2) I moved to a little basement apartment in December (2001) with a roommate (Issac) downtown. I could walk to work, movies, the theatre, the bus station, bars, grocery store. Did I mention that I didn't have a car?

3) Issac moved to Boise for grad school in March of 2003 and Paul and I had gotten involved the previous September and was practically living in my apartment already, so we both moved into a new apartment that he'd signed a lease on across the river by the Courthouse.

4) By the summer of 2005 we were both itching for a little more space and the real estate market kept going up and I started to worry that if we didn't buy soon we'd be priced out. We were in a place where we could afford a house (even though I wasn't working full time again yet after being downsized during city budget cuts) and we started looking for a house. Our budget was $70-85,000. Laughably small now, but I remember then looking at houses I loved that were $92,000 and realizing that we couldn't afford them (now those same houses are 30% more at least). We found a house that I though had potential, it was little (700 sq ft) but had a little basement, but no garage, and the kitchen layout was funky, but after our inspection we had to pull out becuase there were just too many problems. At the same time my mother found us the deal of a century for a rental. All we had to do was clean out the entire house of the previous tenant's stuff, fix everything that had been neglected over a few decades (rip out carpet, paint absolutely everything, replace floors, and clean, clean, clean) but the location was terrific, the rent was a steal, and we could get a dog, so we moved up the hill to 25th.

5)After 2 years of fixing someone else's house and wanting to do even more (but realizing it wasn't worth our time when we'd be moving soon) We started looking for a house to buy again. By this time the market was even hotter than in '05 and even though we had a higher income, we were still looking at the same houses. And some of them literally were the SAME houses back on the market 2 years later but priced 30% higher (and not any nicer than they were before). Our budget started at 100-115,000 this time and we looked at a number of houses. After finding only 2 that were even in reasonable shape (since I was looking for a fixer-upper anyway) and dismissing one because the only bathroom was downstairs next to the kitchen and there was a really weird slope to the floor, we put an offer on a house that was super, but needed a TON of work and wasn't in a great location but close to downtown, close to an emerging neighborhood and on a bus line. Again after the inspection and finding out in addition to all the work I knew about and was cool about (like re-doing all the electrical, replacing the heating system, gut and re-do both bathrooms, fixing the slope in the kitchen floor, re-doing the floors, adding insulation) the roof was also failing. Since the owners weren't willing to budge on the price, or fix the 30 year old roof that they insisted wasn't as bad as the inspector said (he had pictures though, I saw it) we had to let the house go again. And that led us to this house. Our brick bungalow that I saw online and after peeking in the windows one afternoon fell in love with. We got a walk through and made an offer that day. we paid more than the top of our budget, and we still had to replace the roof, and the electrical, and re finish the floors, and scrape paint off everything, but it is in a super neighborhood (sadly no grocery store anymore, but maybe, someday) and we love it here.