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Sunday, November 30, 2014

Thanksgiving Traditions

 Tradition is what you make it, isn't it? Every year for the past four years we have spent Thanksgiving with Ray. To start the festivities off, he traditionally Cancels The Trip. This is done for a variety of reasons, it's too far, too cold, the weather, the time. We return volley with un-canceling, this year was faster than most. He called David early on Tuesday and I called him back before 9 am - the next time he cancelled us it was too late, we were 100 miles away. It didn't go as planned of course. My Master plan was to do a visit super early, get home, throw the dogs in the car,dump them in jail and off we go. The visit took longer than expected - of course!- when I got home I still had to finish packing, David was dawdling, the cats still needed to get settled... We FINALLY got on the way. Then halfway there David remembered he'd forgotten the dogs paperwork at home. ARRGH. The place we take them knows us and was not concerned, they said they'd just call the vets and it could be faxed over. So we finally get going and for once the weather was right, it was snowing like predicted. The roads were surprisingly good but it still held us up. Instead of the usual five and a half hours it took us over seven. We arrived almost 7 pm, tired and cold. We called Ray to let him know we got in ok and would see him in the morning, we had tiny four dollar frozen pizzas for dinner and turned in for the night. Morning wa much better - cold and sunny, snow melted. Ray looked great, he's recovered from the accident he had earlier in  the year. He's back to driving and doing his own grocery shopping, has gained back al it of the weigh he had lost. We went to the Stack for breakfast, did a little shopping, hung out at Ray's and then back to the Stack for our traditional Thanksgiving dinner. You might think that's a little weird or depressing, but it is the best night of the year. We laugh and talk of times past,the boys Setsu, Mikio, their kids, the crazy things we did. We talk of the years of Sunday brunches when everyone sat down to eat - sometimes as many as a dozen people. How that expanded into Sunday dinner too, hours of talking and laughing. The next day we went to the bookstore, drove byBest Buy -no thank you - and then for an afternoon at the art museum. We had dinner at the Arlington for a change of pace, then spent the evening at Rays. Saturday saw us off early - we had to be back by noon to spring the dogs. The ride back waa much faster, we manage it in about 5 and a half hours. So, that is our tradition - I hope everyone had a great holiday too.

Saturday, November 29, 2014

A House Made Of Straw

I don't know if these pictures will stay -  I've been having quite a lot of trouble with them lately. I mean I like my iPad, but the pictures just don't seem to come through but I miss blogging so I think what I will do is blog without the pictures. In other news some people may have wondered what happened with the houses - it's still going on and it's still quite a mess. We went under contract with this woman and she claimed that the title was not clear,  the family of the woman that had passed away, oh jeez,  this is just so complicated so let me start again. The man and woman that originally owned it had a land contract (that's a separate type of contract that you make monthly payments on) when he passed away she got a loan and she purchased the house and  that satisfy the land contract. When we went to sell it  there was a paper glitch because it was never taken off the deed . They had six children between them so this woman and her lawyer claimed the title was not clear. Two title companies said they would underwrite the title but she refused that, then we had offered to just let her out of it and she refused again,she became quite upset so what David did was he got six quick claim deed signed by the children l-et me tell you this is a lot harder than it sounds,. He had to pay a full day salary for four of them and I couldn't blame them for asking. I mean they had to give up a day worth of work for something that was really not their concern David had to pay for that to be filed and this all took about three weeks. We were supposed to close on that Monday and on Friday she told us through her lawyer that she was no longer interested the house, she decided not to buy it after all. This was a huge problem for us as the house had been taken off the market for two months of prime selling. This time of year it's near to impossible to sell the house - in addition we've been paying the taxes the utilities and the mortgage on this house and now we have nothing but to start over. Even if someone wanted it tomorrow it would be at least another two months for inspections, closing, etc..the house in Fairmont is not complete yet either so we have the expense of that. We had to file a claim with the title company and now they gave us a lawyer and we are going to sue this woman but in the meantime we have a house we cannot sell and cannot rent so my one salary is supporting three houses, taxes,utilities and all. A little bit of a stomach clenched. A little bit.