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Large-Scale Catch-Ups

Well, the house saga may be coming to an end, though I won't hold my breath or anything; what looks like distant land could just as easily be a landfill island.

We suddenly had a spurt of viewers for the house over the last week. That's happened before, so I did what I had to do to be ready and held hope firmly at bay. On Friday, we had two showings; on Saturday (yes, Valentine's Day), we had two more. The realtor wanted to set up a third showing Saturday evening, but as Eric and I were going out and leaving Sam home with a sitter, we told her it wouldn't work.

On Sunday, we headed to Eric's home, where we still remain. We'll be here through the weekend, just visiting and spending time with the family. Before we left, though, we talked to the realtor, and she said that she was hearing positive things from one of the people from Friday and one from Saturday; she hoped that we would have good news this week. Well, we'd been at that point before, right down to a "they're probably going to make an offer today!" scenario that never panned out. This time, I was able to smile, but I left the enthusiasm to those who are paid to feign it.

Friday's viewer came for a second showing yesterday afternoon. By early evening, we had an offer. Our realtor faxed it to Eric's brother's office so we could look it over.

Our listing price, to allow for bargaining, was three thousand over what we paid for the place. The buyer's offer was six thousand below that. I find it extremely funny that meeting them halfway will put us right back at the very price we paid to buy the house almost a year ago.

The conditions were all reasonable. They want possession by late April, which is doable. They want most of the appliances, which is fine, but they don't need the fridge. I joked to Dad last night on the phone, "So I might break even on the house, but be up a refrigerator!" After talking to the company's relocation agent, we went ahead and counter-offered up the three thousand. If they accept it, and all the inspections go all right, we'll sell the house.

It feels oddly anticlimactic. Maybe if I were there right now, walking around my rooms, I'd feel the punch of the moment more keenly. As it is, I feel a bit disconnected. I'm glad that this could be over, but I'm not really comprehending what's about to happen, I think. That could be a good thing, if this all falls through in the end.

We did go out for Valentine's Day. We ended up dead lucky, really; we didn't get the sitter until the last minute, so it was really to late to get reservations for anywhere. We had a gift certificate for an Italian place that only took call-ahead seating, but when we couldn't even get through to them on the phone, we decided to take our chances with a different place.

We ended up at Poco Piatti, a "little plates" restaurant. It didn't open until five o'clock, but when we got there at about ten minutes before five, a small group of people were gathering in front of the door. "Do you guys have reservations?" "No, do you?" It seemed promising for us. When the doors opened, we got a table almost immediately. Good thing, too; thirty minutes later, the foyer was packed with people waiting to eat.

For the uninitiated, a "little plates" restaurant means that pretty much everything is an appetizer; each person orders several dishes from the menu, and everybody shares the food as it comes. Everything comes out of the kitchen very quickly, and you can order more as you go along. At this restaurant, the food was Mediterranean: Greek, Spanish, Middle Eastern, and Italian. Eric and I started out with a variety of plates, including a spectacular Greek marinated octopus dish and some delicious Spanish snails in a tomato sauce with chorizo. I also indulged in the best sangria I've ever had. Okay, so I've only had it once before, and that was a nonalcoholic version in a junior high cooking class, but it was still quite excellent.

After we finished with an awesome tiramisu dessert, we headed off without a destination in mind. A movie would have been nice, but there was nothing showing in that time block that I wanted to see. We finally ended up playing pool against each other at a sports bar. It was one of the best times we've had together in recent memory, regardless of the fact that neither of us are even adequate pool players. Maybe it was even better that way; we played ourselves into giggles until it was time to go home and pay the babysitter. We must do that again; I promise myself once more in this writing.

And Sam? He enjoyed himself thoroughly. I think it was a pretty good present for him to have a young lady give him her undivided attention all night long; he talked about it for long after she left. "I drive Ashley! Ashley play trains!" He must have had a blast.

All in all, if that was to be our last Valentine's Day in Toledo, it was well spent.

As far as our visit here goes, it's going well. Rita is feeling much better. She doesn't want us to reveal it to the world, but since there's nobody she knows who reads this, and I have to tell somebody, I'll spill the good news here. Her chemo is working wonderfully, and the doctor is thinking about stopping the chemo treatments to see if she's in remission. Remission, folks! If she beats's a miracle, plain and unvarnished. The woman has one lung, and it was one of the nastiest forms of cancer, and she may beat it. I'm astounded.

But she's not telling anybody, as she doesn't want to get hopes up. She doesn't even want to get her own hopes up too far. That's understandable; she was supposed to have a treatment today, but her blood counts were too low to consider it. She's still sick for now, regardless of what the future may hold. Keeping a calm and rational mind is the way to go.

Everybody's loving having Sam around. He's so much healthier than he was when we were here at Christmas, so his grandparents can actually enjoy playing with him this time. He's played with Hailey a couple of times, and the two of them together are almost enough to power a city's electricity. There are simply no "down" moments with the two of them.

Rita took us out yesterday to buy Sam's Valentine's Day present. She picked up The Lion King 1 1/2, and then she said he could have one more toy. We all assumed he'd go for a truck or a car. Nope; Baby Barbara came to join our family instead. She's one of those extra-chubby little baby dolls, and I think she might be able to join Sam in the bathtub. I'm not really sure why he named her "Barbara," but I'm not questioning it. Her diaper comes off, and he likes to "change" her with studious frequency.

So far, no complaints about this visit. I do hope we get to spend more time with Eric's brother's family; Hailey's in "school" now, and Linda's heading out of town on Friday. Eric and Bryan are going out for dinner tomorrow night, so that leaves one evening where we all might get together. I rather hope Rita's not counting on having us spend it here; the kids make this little house feel about the size of a shoebox when they get going.

Is winter over yet? Can I just make the decision to have it be over? No more snow; I mean it!

previous one year ago:
I could actually feel the individual "uncool" molecules settling on my skin and I stood there in uncomfortable silence.
two years ago:
His current favorite nursing position: on hands and knees, rocking back and forth.
three years ago:
Some were sure that there were actually two creatures in the ceiling, but the only one that mattered to me was the one with wings and a beak.
four years ago:
As I didn't like ice under my car, I was equally opposed to having it over my car.
In the ears:
Sam's cartoons

On the Bookshelf:

Gratuitous Sam

(You'll have to wait until we return)


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