Domestic Me, Downsizing

The Countdown Begins

How long have I been talking about selling our house now? For 2 years? Well, it took us awhile to call a realtor because we had a list of things we needed to do first. Then it took us awhile to do some of the main things the realtor told us we needed to do. Then it took us awhile to call the contractor she recommended to do some of the stuff we couldn’t do ourselves. Then it took us awhile to – oh wait, this time it wasn’t us – it took the contractor awhile to do what he was hired to do. (About half of the delay could be blamed on weather. BUT ONLY HALF.) And finally, this week, the realtor came BACK over to talk to me about what else needs to be done in preparation for photos. Photos will be a week from today, sign in the yard the following Monday.


Most of our rooms only needed a few things taken care of before pictures, and most of those things needed to be done to have it “Show Ready” anyway. BUT! There are 4 major projects. I’ve done two of them.

The first one was that E’s room needed to be made to look like the guest suite that it is. It didn’t have much left in it, and it was layed out the wrong way, so we had to move what was there around and then “stage” it to make it look like a bedroom.



That is an air mattress thrown up on a frame. DO NOT LAY DOWN ON IT. I can’t believe how good it looks. We bought this house mainly for that extra “Master Suite” which was PERFECT to give E the privacy and space he needed living with two small children.

The other challenge was my office. My office is a nice room off the deck but it’s not supposed to be an office. This is fine once people get here and see it, people understand that, but it doesn’t photograph well because that wasn’t the intention of the room. SO! She gave me some suggestions about how to make it look more like a sitting room in pictures so they can still photograph the room with the great windows off the deck.


BOOM! Out of frame is my desk with my cats on it and even further out of frame is the kid’s desk because they insisted on having a work space in here.

I still have to get the porch ready (it’s filthy from a winter of no use) and I have to rearrange the furniture in Nikki’s room to make it better for pictures, but still! Two big projects done in one week! It actually didn’t take too long, once I set out to do it.

She also asked me to make sure all of my plates were hung on my cabinets. Some had fallen and she said it made the outdate cabinets look more modern with that touch. This made me feel REALLY GOOD. I know my interior decorating style (although it took me about a decade of adult life to find it) and that is one of my favorite decorating choices in this house – so it was nice to know it wasn’t something so off-mark that it needed to be removed.


Someone asked how they were hung up on instagram – they’re just hung up with those sticky velcro tabs. They’re all those melanine plastic plates from Target. They get new colors/styles every season and I’ve just been building up my collection. So, super easy but also not at all destructive to the cabinets. And evidently? They modernize out-dated cabinets. Look at me being all modern!

Another change in our household this week? And this part is nothing short of miraculous. I did one load of laundry, washed and dryed, and then put it all up, IN THE SAME DAY. That never happens. Our clean clothes stay in baskets in the laundry room for weeks before I put them up. I basically wait until the baskets are full. BUT NO. NOT THIS WEEK. I put them up as soon as they were done.

This house is about 4400 square feet and after we decided we were having no more kids, and one of our kids moved out, it became about double what we needed. I am so sick of tending to this house, it’s not even funny. While this process has stressed me out and caused me to gain 20lbs now (Yes! We’re now up to 20lbs! Let’s not talk about it!) I am also so ready to just get out of this damn house because – hopefully – my stress levels will reduce substantially then.

Let’s not discuss the stress of just having the house show-ready at all times, or the stress of getting my dog out of the house every time it needs to be shown, I’m pulling a Scarlet O’Hara about that right now. I’ll worry about that part after the sign is in the yard.

11 thoughts on “The Countdown Begins”

  1. Just chiming in with some moral support here. First, those photos look great! Isn’t it amazing how sometimes relatively little things can make such a big difference? Second, when we put our house on the market in 2013 we had an unexpected/emergency houseguest who basically had all of her worldly possessions piled in our guest room and extra room. And a dog. And we specifically requested at least a day’s notice for people to come look at the house so we could do our best to make sure everything was clean and de-cluttered and that we had plans to be out of the house, which was really helpful. One time we got a call from a realtor who said, “I know we don’t have an appointment but we’re in the neighborhood, can we come over in about fifteen minutes?” Which was stressful and I was SMACK in the middle of cooking dinner and the kitchen was a wreck. So I did a quick cramming of random things into the dishwasher (it worked!) and wiped down the counters and stove, and the first thing they said when they walked in was, “We are so sorry to bother you, but your house smells GREAT! What are you cooking?” And that was a great jumping off point for talking about the kitchen and the house. I thought it would be so much more stressful than it was, and everything worked out great for us in the end! I hope it goes smooth and easy for you, too. Oh and I really like the plate collection over the cupboards, too!

  2. Good luck! I’ve never sold a house but I feel anxiety for you. BTW, I’d LOVE to have as many kitchen cabinets as you do!

  3. I feel your pain! The entire moving process is SO stressful! My husband and I have moved 8 times in 21 years.

    Our most recent move was last November. So the stress of it all is still fresh in my mind. I still have a few boxes to unpack, pictures to hang and organizing to do (nothing ever fits the same in a new place). And my office/scrap room is a wreck.

    But all the stress is worth it. We are in a much better place now – job, house, location, proximity to family – and now we are just dealing with your normal every day stresses of life with teenagers. πŸ™‚

    I hope your moving process goes smoothly an quickly!

  4. I’m so glad we have lots of fun memories in that beautiful home! Good luck with the final projects and keeping the house show ready. I know it’ll all work out. I can’t wait to hear/see where your new place will be. Love you and sending lots of patience!

  5. You and your family and Sweetie are always welcome in the Schiavone house should you ever need to evacuate ASAP for a showing πŸ™‚

  6. I love your house, but I see your point about too much room.
    I would say tho , I would still get 4 Bedrooms, crazy I know, but you could make one a office or as my daughter did (no kids) , well her hubby, made the 4th bedroom, a walk in closet, I love it , I wish we had one.
    Anyhow from what I have seen, your house will sell, d
    Take a few deep breaths and think positive πŸ˜‰

  7. Moving sucks, but downsizing is so liberating! We actually just went up in size and I can’t wait till it’s time to move again so we can go back to a smaller house.

    Love the plate idea! Might have to keep an eye out at thrift stores for something similar.

  8. Well, I work from home so the 4th bedroom will give us the benefit of a guess room AND an office! But we’ve found plenty of 4-bedroom houses under 3,000 square ft, so that will still be a huge downsize! πŸ™‚

  9. We just moved and our house was half that size so I can imagine showing it is a lot of work. I am happy for you finally being able to move. Good luck!

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