Wednesday, November 24, 2010
This has been a strange move. No one has ever packed for me before and I have moved a lot. They aren't that detailed in describing what they put in the boxes so it is going to be a treasure hunt to find anything. Oh, well. At least I don't have to pack. I've certainly had plenty of experience packing. In the 20 years since college I have not lived in the same place more than 3 years. In fact, I've lived in 10 different places. I've moved within the same building twice and had the place I was living sold 3 times. This was supposed to be the house we stayed in forever. Guess it didn't work that way.
The first 4 places I lived after moving our of my parents' house were in the Elmira, NY area. This would be the poor, crappy housing years. I was just out of college and was making less than nothing in small market TV. My first place was a house I shared with the morning reporter. I worked evenings so we rarely saw each other during the week. That worked well until Saturday. Her boyfriend would come to town and they wanted me to get lost so they could play house. That got old in a hurry. I would go to my parents' house to do laundry and get a free meal. Then I would end up hanging out at work on my day off until 11:30 waiting for my friends to get off work so we could go out. When the owners sold the house I wasn't too sad to part with my roommate.
The 2nd place in Elmira was the fake roommate situation. Two of my friends at WETM were dating. The woman rented an apartment in a house. She had a roommate who was rarely home. Her boyfriend wanted to move in but they didn't want their parents to know. I moved in to a downstairs apartment by myself but the boyfriend used that as his address, kept a few things there and paid part of the rent. That lasted a few months until the 2 female roommates had a fight and my fake roommate had to start paying rent upstairs.
Apartment #3 in Elmira was an efficiency with no shower. It was in a building above a business. There was a main room just big enough for a double bed, love seat and TV stand. There was a small kitchen and a built in cabinet in the hall where I stored my clothes. The bathroom had no shower, just a handheld shower thing attached above the faucet. I literally sat in the tub to take a shower. After about a year the apartment next door came open. That was the first time I moved within the same building.
Apartment #4 had a separate bedroom and a shared kitchen/living room area for the same price as the last place. The strange part about this apartment was that the bathroom was down the hall. Not within the apartment, but the shared hall that went to all 3 apartments on that floor. I literally had to leave the apartment and go down the hall to use the bathroom or shower. At least it had a real shower! After a few months of that I got a job in Fort Myers, FL and we entered the next phase of apartment living.
My first place in Fort Myers (#5) was the standard 1 bedroom Florida apartment with a pool. It was in a very large apartment complex. For the first time I had a modern apartment with a dishwasher and washer/dryer. After Elmira apartments it was heaven!
After 2 years they were raising the rent and I wanted a little more space. Apartment #6 was another standard 1 bedroom apartment with a little more square footage and in a smaller complex. I stayed there 3 years. By that point I was almost 30 and kind of tired of living in apartment complexes. I wanted more space and someplace a little nicer.
Place #7 was a 2 bedroom condo. It was in a 5 story condo building that had a center court with a pool. This was Florida so most of the residents were elderly. No problem. They were good neighbors and I had more space and covered parking. If you've ever lived in a hot climate you know what a bonus covered parking is. I lived on the 4th floor and really liked it. However, after 3 years the condo was sold and I had to move once again. Luckily the nice elderly condo president hooked me up. He found me another condo in the building that was for rent. This was the 2nd time I moved within the same building.
Place #8 was a ground floor condo. It wasn't quite as nice as the last place but was still fine. They sold that place on me too. Luckily this time the new owner also bought it as a rental so I did not have to move. After a couple of years I left Fort Myers and moved to Pennsylvania to get married.
Place #9 was our 3 bedroom townhouse. We had two days to find a place when I came up for a visit when we got formally engaged. We wanted a place that included lawn maintenance since Mark traveled so much. We liked the space and layout of the townhouse. We clearly were not thinking ahead! Because we were the 2nd owner we did not research the builder which was a mistake. The place was built on the cheap. Our house inspector did not catch some major builder errors which ended up costing us money when we sold.
The layout that seemed so perfect was terrible once we had children. The master was on the first floor. Great when I was pregnant with triplets. Not so great once the kids were sleeping in their own room upstairs. We ended up sleeping in the guest room for about 4 months because it was across the hall from the kids. There was an open loft that overlooked the 2 story great room. It had toddler accident written all over it. Plus, of couse, there just wasn't enough space with 3 babies. We moved when they were 8 months old and just starting to crawl.
Place #10 is the house we are moving out of this week. We kind of planned to live here until we were too old to climb the stairs so leaving after 3.5 years wasn't really expected. However, Mark's new job was too good of an opportunity to pass up. We are leaving a 4 bedroom house built by a great builder in a nice community. I sure hope our next house and community ends up being all that we want.
Now we move in to limbo for about 2.5 months. The kids and I will be moving to my parents' house until after Christmas. Then we will be moving in to the furnished townhouse that Mark is renting in Fort Mill. Our house is just being started so we really hope it will be finished in early February. This hole in the ground will be Place #11. I would really like to live there more than 3 years!