We ended up touring the Coast Guard ship and it was pretty awesome. We were at the back of the tour so we couldn't really hear, but the "kid" bringing up the rear was talkative and we got to chat with him the entire time about all the stuff they do. It's pretty impressive. Also, Miss E thought it was ridiculous that I called him a kid because OBVIOUSLY he was an adult. I explained to her that to ME, a 21-year-old is a kid. She came back at me with the the whole "anyone over 18 is an adult". Touche.
After a lunch out we started going to open houses in our neighborhood. I could write a book on the housing situation we have backed ourselves into but it's a doozy. We have committed to a very small and expensive area of town and finding a house in our price range that suits our needs is going to be difficult at best. Houses in our price range are also a hot commodity around here right now so we would have to be ready to leap on anything that comes up, which we would need to sell our house to do. If we sell our house though, there is no guarantee that something we want will be available (see: small area, expensive houses) and a good chance we could end up homeless or renting. Remodeling is also on the table. Maybe.
I have committed to spending some time going through open houses to get a better feel for what is avaliable and what things look like in our area. After lunch we went to two, and the kids were pretty good. They are old enough that the entire concept of "don't touch anything" or "just your eyeballs please" is not lost on them. They were polite, stayed by me and generally did great. Then I committed a rookie parenting miestake. We had about 30 minutes to kill until the next open house and being as it was about 2, I offered them Starbucks. Frapuccinos to be exact. Holy moly. The sugar hit and the last two houses were a nightmare. The kids were loud and amped up and running and jumping and laying on the floor. The 2 houses were about a quarter mile apart so I chose to have us walk in between them hoping they would burn off some of their sugar craziness but no such luck. The last house was all white and modern and the relator was super uptight. It was not a good combination. I got out of there as fast as we could.
Also, PEOPLE! If you are having an open house, open the curtains, air it out, wipe down your counters, and put everything, and I mean EVERYTHING, that you can away. I don't want to walk into your bedroom and see all your crap on the nightstand. I'm finding that it's really hard for me to walk in and see past the paint colors, decor choices and smells and really see the bones of the house and picture how we would live there. That is something Peter is way better than me at. He is the forest through the trees person on this sort of thing. All I can see is trees and bad smells.
Did I ever mention that the last time we were house hunting it was during my 2-5th month of pregnancy? I can't tell you how many many many houses I rejected simply because they smelled. I would walk into a house, smell one slight odor, my stomach would clench and I would tell Peter I hated the house. True story. Not pregnant this time but still not a huge fan of other folks odors.
Ugh. I hate this process. You know how they say that people with one kid will never know how easy they've got it? Until they have a 2nd one? Well I think home-buying is the same way. You never realize how freakin' easy it was to buy your first house until you get around to purchasing your second. Unless you are crazy wealthy of course, in that case neither of those cases applies.