So I thought i should tell you how we got here, to our country livin’ life.
Just before Christmas 2016, I thought it would be good to start looking at new houses. It was kinda of a day dream, that I accidently got too involved with. When I say ‘I’ got involved with it, I also dragged Col D along too. So, on a very damp, rainy December Saturday afternoon (hangover free due to the fact that I was 7.5 months pregers), I drove Col D, and Bonnie & Clyde to Helensburgh to view a house that we were not (really) in the mind set or position to buy. The last few homes I have bought, I viewed…errr around 10-20 properties before deciding to buy, so there was NO WAY that we would want to buy this one. Or was there….
The house was situated just off a lovely leafy road, up a drive way and through pillars (great first impression). As we wandered through the house, the seller telling us how she had brought up her family of 4 there, I was mentally picturing the Christmas tree; the wooden wendy house in the garden; the parties (it was clearly a party house) and of course the sound of wee running feet across the worn solid wood flooring, I knew it was ok as Col D (the voice of reason and sensibility) would bring me back down to earth.
We left the house and Col D turned to me, his face beaming, and said “I love it!’. Aww shite. We were screwed. One viewing and we had fallen in love with this gorgeous pile of bricks n mortar. The two dogs had chased each other round the garden, and we could tell that Bonnie was fantasising about the amount of balls that could be thrown there and Clyde was dreaming of future bones, buried in the shrubbery.
So. On the 19th December, we set up a meeting with an estate agent, ready to put our Glasgow flat onto the market. I mean, it couldn’t have looked better Col D had spent the last month ripping out the only bathroom and replacing the whole thing – including toilet. Yes, we should’ve thought that one through. In hindsight, it was not the best time to have a home without a bathroom. Yes, I could wash in the kitchen, but like most other pregnant women, I was collecting frequent flyer points to the toilet. My bladder was being squashed by our unborn Wee C and I needed to pee….approximately every….20mins!! Col D being a kind, imaginative and inventive soul, very kindly fashioned me a commode (a dining chair with the seat pad replaced with a bucket). Which I sat on in the hall, but I guess I could’ve moved it to any room in the flat – a moveable ensuite!?
Anyway, I digress.
The bathroom was looking sweet! The Christmas dec’s were up and our flat was looking cosy as hell, we could get it photographed, put it on the market and hopefully sell – all superfast, giving us enough time to put an offer in our dream home. Nope! Apparently, everything shuts down for Christmas (geez oh, how inconsiderate of everyone wanting to spend time with their families and loved ones!) so we were advised that the process could start on the 9th January. Which would be fine, as our baba wasn’t due till middle of Feb!
Fast forward to January, our flat was photographed, and online and ready for viewers by the 10th January. Our estate agent very kindly did all the viewings for us, afterall I wanted to show how much space the rooms had, and when I was in them…the space certainly shrunk. By the 20th January, we accepted an offer and we waited on the paperwork being pulled together, whilst calling the estate agent for the ‘dream house’ telling them that we were ‘very possibly’ going to put an offer in. Fast forward another week (27th Jan) and I was being admitted to hospital ready to be induced (3 weeks early!). On 1st of February we were going home with our new beautiful baby girl when we were called by our solicitor, 3 other offers had come in for the ‘dream home’ and there would be a closing date on the 3rd February. After 2 mins of consideration, we threw our hat in and crossed our fingers. We were told at 4pm on the 3rd of February, that our offer had been accepted and as we looked down at our beautiful baby, looked at the sold sign still attached to our Glasgow flat window and our two dogs (still daydreaming of the garden), we knew that our future was pretty bloody exciting.
The next few weeks were some of the most stressful few weeks I’ve ever gone through. Col D was truly amazing, as I was nursing our baby, healing from a emergency C Section and dealing with an abscess on my ass (yeah, really!), I was not in any shape to be helping pack our 3 bedroom jammed packed flat, so he did it all himself! It was really tough living like that, surrounded by boxes, with a brand new baby and two very energetic dogs – but we got through it by thinking of the end goal. The days really seemed to drag by. The buyers for our flat, postponed the move by 2 weeks (MORE STRESS), but on the 28th March, nearly 4 months after we first viewed the house and exactly 3 years (to the day) after Col D proposed to me, we kissed each other in our empty flat and locked up, forever.
Top moving house whilst pregnant or with a new born babba
- Start by clearing out all the items you know that you haven’t used for ages (crockery, clothes, etc) and take to a charity shop or, if you have time put it on ebay (you can always buy something new for the babba with the proceeds.
- Pack away most of your clothes and shoes (most of mine didn’t fit as my feet had totally swollen) leave a capsule wardrobe of clothes and shoes that you can alternate with. I packed away my pre preggers clothes and kept out maternity stuff and loser fitting items.
- If you have lovely friendly family with a spare room/dining room, ask their permission to store some boxes there – this will leave you space to move and keep a constant review of the packing status. The lovely Col D did many trips to and from his parents house with boxes. Big Shout out right now to my parents in law – mr & mrs d, without them we would’ve been a REAL guddle!
- Start to dismantle unnecessary furniture, spare beds, wardrobes, dining tables etc and store these all in one room.
- Try to keep one maybe 2 rooms box free, we kept the living room and bedroom free from packing mess and I think it really helped us stay calm – we had a tidy place to relax and sleep at night with babba.
- Label all your boxes (clearly) so that it makes it much easier at the other end.
- I packed away most of Wee C’s clothes, for the first few weeks she was pretty much going to be in sleepsuits, so all her gorgeous wee outfits and new toys were packed away for the new house.
- When it gets closer to the big move day, make sure you have a box or chest full of your babbas essential items, nappies, creams, wipes, sleepsuits, muslins etc – and make sure that you know where this box is at all times
- The move day – even though you really want to be with your babba, I would recommend that for at least a couple of hours you take help (I would hope that some would’ve been offered). If a family member (we used grandparents) can look after your wee one for an hour or so, it will allow you to coordinate the move more calmly. Our parents also took the two dogs for the day. They were a great help!
- Don’t put any unrealistic unpacking deadlines on yourselves. You will be able to do essentials when you arrive and the rest you can do day by day, whenever your wee one is having a nap or sleep.
- We hired Gregor from Man with a Van he was absolutely brilliant, he was an expert when it came to packing the vans in a great order – even if you can think you can do the move yourself, its great to get someone professional to lead the way (it keeps everyone much calmer too).
- And try to remain calm. I encountered an irate driver as I was trying to reverse park a long wheel base van (whilst all my belongings were in the street). Let’s just say i’m glad Wee C was with her granny’s as it was not my proudest moment! 😀
I bought that flat 13 years ago. I bought it as a single (newly single) gal, and a whole lot of living had happened there:
- my 30th birthday;
- my 40th birthday;
- Col D proposed to me in the spareroom (with the 2 dogs at either side);
- I left for our wedding from there;
- our baby was conceived there; and
- we then brought our new daughter home there.
A whole lot of memories were in those walls. But, our memories move with us. As we walked into our new home, we were positive that this was going to be a happy home. And it is this home that our new memories, our family (all 14 Feet of Love) memories will be made and I look forward to sharing these with you.