Monthly Archives: September 2006

Last minute change of plans

I took vacation days for Thursday, Friday – Monday and Tuesday to close on our houses and get moved in to the new house. So on Thursday morning I was off of work, Liz and I went to New Tampa and picked up the moving truck. We had purchased several items online and needed to go pick them up, so we headed out to Brandon to pickup our new couch set. We got there and the people were really nice and we had no trouble loading the new set. We left there and tried to find a place to stop and get a money order, because I was a few hundred short of the cash I needed to pay for the next item. We found an Amscot where we were going to try to buy a money order, but we only had a check and credit cards with us. They would not let us buy a money order since they deal strictly with cash. So we went to Lakeland anyway to pickup my new TV!!! I bought a 57″ Hitachi Big Screen. I got a great deal on it, it came with a matching entertainment center too. So there were two guys there at the house we picked it up from who helped us load it onto the truck. It took a while and lots of effort, but we managed to get the TV and entertainment center out of the house and onto the truck. I skinned up a knuckle hauling that monster, since we had to pick it up to get over dips and when moving at angles. We secured the TV to the side of the truck and went on our merry way. We only made it a short distance when we heard loud bang from the back of the truck. We pulled over to find the bungie cords we used had come undone. We re-secured the TV this time with rope and more blankets to protect it from any further impacts. Eventually it settled down and we made it back to Tampa in one piece. But something else happened on our way back to Tampa…

As we were leaving and about to get back on I4 to go home, we were sitting at a traffic light on Florida about to turn onto Memorial to get back to I4. Suddenly lots of police kept zooming by us, probably 10-15 cars, we had no idea what was going on. We saw tons of cops, an ambulance, lots of unmarked cars, and just a lot of police activity. We finally made it onto Memorial and were going down the road when we saw lots of people standing on the sides of the road and more police activity. We made it by the police as they just were coming out to stop traffic. We went a little further and saw motorcycle cops driving up and down the road looking for something. We went on our way and didn’t think much more of it. When we got back to Tampa, we heard what happened. Some guy (they think a drug dealer) shot two police officers and a dog. The dog and one of the police officers died and the other office is in critical condition. Last night there was a $15,000 reward for the capture of this guy. This morning, it was up to $40,000. I just now (at the time of writing this post) heard that they found the guy (think he was hiding in the woods) and they shot and killed him. So we were right there in Lakeland when all this happened just moments after it took place.

So we made it back to Tampa and decided to stop by the new house and drop off our loot into the garage. We were told to call the sellers agent for the code to the keypad of the garage door so we could get inside and unload out things. We tried calling and got her voicemail. We called over and over and were about to give up and leave after being there for about 30 minutes. Liz’s mom had just arrived to pick us up so we could leave the truck there until we heard from the sellers agent, just then the phone rang and it was her with the garage code. So we opened the door and unloaded the TV and entertainment center with the couch we got. Then we took the truck back to our house and were going to start loading more onto the truck. Liz had to leave at 2:30 to pickup Sarah from school, so she ate something quickly and left. Liz’s mom also left around that time. That left me home alone to load the truck. I was going to get as much loaded as I could and take a load to the garage so that when help came later, all we had left to move would be last minute things and the larger items I need help with. Well, once Liz left I got ready to go outside and haul stuff into the truck. I took my keys out of my pockets, and put my cell phone on the desk. I didn’t want to have a lot of stuff on me while moving. So I went outside and closed the door behind me. I didn’t realize until a few minutes later that I had just locked myself out of the house with no keys, no phone and no way back inside until Liz got back. Now Liz had to go take Sarah straight to Amanda’s house so she could watch the kids while we moved stuff. She also had to feed michael before she came back. So Liz didn’t come rescue me from my own stupidity until around 4:20pm. We originally thought that Thursday would be our only moving day since we had to be out of there for closing the next morning. So I was in a rush to get stuff loaded and moved, and was rather distraught that I had lost almost 2 hours of my moving time by locking myself out of the house. So Liz got home, and started to pack up more last minute things and I started loading more stuff onto the truck. I had put some things that were on the back porch in the truck already. Around 4:30 we got a call from our realtor, who said there was a delay on the buyers side and they were looking at a Wednesday closing now. So we had to unload what I had loaded onto the truck already, and help Liz finish getting what she needed. I then took the truck back to New Tampa and dropped it off. Liz took some things to Amanda’s house and they got Pizza for dinner. I got back from New Tampa to Amanda’s house around 8pm. I ate and helped get the kids to bed and left around 9:30. I spent the night alone at our old house since we still had most of our things in there. I didn’t want to leave it all there alone.

I got up this morning and came to work a little early so I could eat breakfast in the break room, since they provide pastries and bagels and such every Friday morning. Liz originally left me some milk so I could have some cereal for breakfast, but forgot to leave me some cereal. So I was stuck at the house with no food. I had a bagel and creme cheese for breakfast along with a yummy cheese danish.

I then got a call this morning from our realtor again with a few updates. Apparently I was not told of two more repairs to our house the buyers wanted done. Now I have to patch one more crack in the garage floor (which is normal in FL for a new house) and replace the air filter in the return on our hallway. The buyer is going to do his walkthrough on Monday while the appraiser is there.

So now we have reserved the moving truck for Saturday and Sunday just in case. Hopefully on Saturday we can get all of our stuff moved out of the house into the garage of the new house. I am meeting my realtor to get the truck at 9am tomorrow morning. This should be a fun weekend! And its killing me, I have that nice 57″ TV sitting in the new garage and no way to play with it until Wednesday! 😦 Maybe I will take my DVD player and some cables with me tonight and hook it up just to see it play. I’m so impatient.]]>

E-mail server during transition

Moving presents some unique challenges you don’t run into any other time. Specifically regarding hosting my own e-mail server. Over the past few days, I’ve been contemplating how I should handle moving to a new location with an entire weekend where I will not have internet access or a location at which to setup and run my e-mail server. I started checking into online paid mail services and searched for some open source solutions for a free solution. I stumbled upon a free beta service from Google. I think its under Google Apps for Domains. What this lets me do is setup my MX records for mail delivery on my domains, and route all mail to servers hosted by Google. I can pre-configure my accounts and settings so that I can do an immediate switch over. Once I had all my settings configured, I proceeded to change my MX records. I was surprised at how many servers are available from Google, they have 7 or 8 servers available for mail services. I configured all of them plus my two backup mail servers at This way in the extremely unlikely event that the godaddy mail servers go down (all 7 or 8 of them), mail will still fail over to my backup mail servers and queue for later delivery. The good thing is that POP3 access is available from Google, so I can get to my email during the weekend transition. I plan to export both my mailbox and Liz’s mailbox in Exchange to a PST file, then configure outlook on my laptop with profiles for both of our personal accounts. I can setup the PST files so we can get to all of our old messages, and still access new mail through POP3. I am going to leave the mail on the Google servers, and once I am all moved in and have my mail server setup and running, I can have my Mail Essentials POP3 downloader get all the mail I left on Google’s servers. I may take my time getting it set back up at the new house, since I want to have Verizon come install FIOS so I can drop Road Runner. With FIOS I can get twice the upload speed of Road Runner, plus 5 more MB of download speed. So its a way better deal and about the same price. Once I have tested FIOS and made sure it will work ok for my needs, I’ll drop RR.

Moving day approaching fast

Today is my last day of work this week. Tonight we have lots of last minute packing and dis-assembling to do. In the morning, Liz and I are going to go pickup the moving truck, then head over to Brandon to pickup our new couch set. Then from there, I hope to go to Lakeland to pickup my new TV and entertainment center. Fron there, on the way back we have to stop and get a refridgerator as well. Its going to be a very busy morning. Then I plan to load everything I can on own that morning/afternoon and take as full a load as I can manage to the new house and unload everything into the garage. I’ll then head back to the house and load more stuff, small furtiture and other items I can manage on my own. The goal is to only have the larger items that I need help with left when help arrives that late afternoon or early evening. We have almost everything packed, except for some stuf in the master closet, and kitchen and bathroom items. Liz is packing suitcases for us today for our extended weekend stay with friends. Hopefully, on Monday morning everything will go smoothly and we can close on the new house before 11am and head straight to the new house and start unpacking. At least thats the idea anyway! Good thing I bought a back brace!

packing progress

I have several important things to setup before our move, such as informing utilities of our move and turning off the cable/internet. We also have to disconnect the computers/servers in my office area, so I’ll have to re-route e-mail for the weekend. Going back to POP3 is going to be interesting.

Fortunately we got a lot of packing done this past weekend. We only have some closets, the patio, some garage stuff and last minute items left to pack. I think it will be fairly easy if we do all the prep work on the larger items Wednesday night. So that on Thursday, it will just be loading and last minute item packing.]]>

Good news

Got some good news yesterday from our realtor, the seller of the house we are buying agreed to let us keep our things in the garage of the new house. The downside is we had to conceed to dropping the repair funds allowed by our contract to $250 down from $500. There are a few minor things that need to be done, but nothing that would stop us from moving in and living in the home. I can probably buy most of the stuff we need and get family to help us here and there when they are visiting. 🙂

Moving right along

Well things are moving right along with our house moves, but it seems we just now started packing. We have to be out of our house one week from today and only have one weekend and a few hours each night in which to pack. I am taking off Thursady and Friday, as well as the next Monday and Tuesday so we can get our stuff moved and get into our new house. Its still up in the air if we can store our belongings in the garage of the new house. I am hoping thats what we can do, because I don’t want to have to move twice! Nor do I want to spend any more $$ than we already are. I also have a few minor repair items to take care of this weekend that have to be done before Wednesday of next week. We will be out of the house on Thursday night and won’t close on the new one until Monday.

Earlier closing

Well it looks like we might be closing on the sale of our existing house next Friday, Sept 29th. This is a little sooner than we thought so now we are scrambling to find ways to work out all the details of selling our house first and then buying one. Looks like we may need to stay with someone for the weekend and then close on our new house on Monday October 2nd. Hopefully the sellers will let us keep our stuff in the garage of the new house over the weekend. Also more good news, I just sold my TV, so that should give us the needed money we would need to pay bills and pay for the up front stuff we have going on right now. So things are looking up!

Fast Closing

WOW, we just got a message from our realtor that the buyers of our house want to close by the end of the month. This means we have a LOT of packing to do. Its almost unreal that we are moving, we are ready to go, but it snuck up on us so fast! I just hope when its time to move, we are not frantically trying to pack and get out in a rush.

Visit from John

Yesterday, my middle brother John drove down from Gainsville to visit for a few hours. He was in Gainsville helping another member of our family move some belongings from Gainsville back to his home in Maryland. John was able to drive down and have dinner with us. I took him for a spin in the Miata and we drove to the new house we are getting. We walked around a little and then I let him drive back to our house. He brought Sarah a pet turtle which she loves. It was a nice visit and John got some pictures and video while he was here.

Home Inspection

Our buyer for our house had their home inspection done on Friday. So far we have not heard about any problems or concerns on their part, which is a good sign. Our home inspection for the house we are buying is about to take place now. Hopefully all will go well and there won’t be any problems with the house we want to buy. Once this is complete, the only thing left is the appraisal which we may be able to re-use the one the seller had done a few weeks ago. I’m hoping that the buyers mortgage company can get their stuff done quickly and we can close the first few days of October. Getting through this week and next week should be interesting, as we had to put $1,000 down on our new house, which will make paying other bills and living a challenge until my next pay period.