the news

life has been pretty crazy lately. i don’t handle crazy well. crazy life = stressed, emotional, tired, bitchy justine. but so far i’m not divorced and my dog still loves me. so there’s that.

as you may know (if you’ve been reading), we put our condo on the market in january. as you may also know (if you are alive), the real estate market sucks for selling. in the four months our home has been on the market, we’ve had three showings, zero offers and zero feedback. which surprised/disappointed us, because, obviously, we think our home kicks ass (what homeowner doesn’t?).


we were hoping to buy a single family home to fix up. since last august, we’ve been scouring the mls for a house to buy. we looked at countless houses and found three we wanted to buy, two of which we put offers on, and zero that went any further due to our selling contingency.

we were constantly asking ourselves “how long will it take to sell our place? how much money will we lose?” we weren’t willing to wait forever but we weren’t willing to take a large loss as we technically didn’t have to sell. so we were stuck. we could of course always stay in our place, but we have been here, in a one bedroom, for four years and are in need of more space. especially since ryan works at home and we would like our family to be more comfortable when they visit.

living room

our other option was renting our place out. after debating back and forth we decided to list our condo for rent on craigslist to see what happened. what happened was within three hours we had three viewings scheduled and even more emails to answer. over the next few days we had about seven couples/individuals come to see our place. after sending out applications, we decided on one couple to take care of our baby move in.


problem? we had a couple who needed to sign a lease on our place so they knew they had a place to live in three weeks and we had no place to live ourselves. we hadn’t found a house we wanted to buy, and further, we weren’t sure we would be living downtown for five more years (like our original plan) so it didn’t really make sense to buy still. so began the obsessive, frantic search for an apartment to rent and the most stressful time of my life (in recent memory). i haven’t rented since college, and ever in chicago, so i had no idea what was out there. um, ew. the majority of places available for rent are not updated and dirty. and the majority of nice decent places do not accept dogs.


i thought we were never going to find an acceptable apartment. i obsessively checked craigslist every couple hours to see if new places popped up. i googled every variation of ‘apartments for rent in chicago’ and went through every site listed to try to find more options. didn’t the real estate market suck? surely there were other homeowners who took good care of their place (you know, cleaned it) and needed to rent it out. but i never found them.


in the end we did find an apartment through my obsessive craigslist stalking. it’s nowhere near perfect and i had a hard time pulling the trigger, hoping for something closer to perfect, but there wasn’t, at least in the limited time we had to look. pros: good location, new kitchen and appliances, three bedrooms, two bathrooms, dining room, a basement for storage and a patio. cons: the extreme lack of kitchen cabinets and counter space, small bedrooms (typical of older chicago buildings), longer walk to the el than we would like, bathrooms that are…questionable (we’ll see how they clean up) and no grass/mulch  in the outdoor space for beck. and neither of us can remember if there’s hardwoods or carpet in the bedrooms (hoping for hardwoods).


so i guess all that was a long way of saying the news is we’re moving. in t-minus 12 days. exactly one day after we get back from a six day vacation. we have to be 98% packed ive days from now so that when we get off the plane from florida we can pack the remaining 2% and clean away four years of dust and dirt (not like we don’t clean, but, you know, a deep clean. under the couch clean). then start moving at 7am as the renters are moving into our condo at 10am.

to sum it up, we put our place on craigslist, found renters and found a place to live, all in a week.  and had/have a total of less than a month to pack up and move, with family visiting and a vacation in the mix (and not to mention being crazy at work). so i’m a crazy lady. but it will be worth it. double the space, and i. get. to. decorate!

tgif and have a great weekend! can you guess my plans? they involve lots of cardboard and packing tape…


p.s. it is bittersweet to leave our first place. i remember how crazy it was to become homeowners (at the ages of 22 and 23 no less), it was such an adventure. it where we brought beck home to. where we returned to after getting married. our first tiling job. the great neighbors. and man, i’m going to miss our washer and dryer (our first purchase after our wedding. it was a glorious day to get rid of the dryer that randomly ruined clothes). but, i. get. to. decorate! (and have more blog posts!)


5 thoughts on “the news

  1. Hang in there Justine! They say moving is in the top 3 most stressful/emotional events in life- right up there with Deatch and Divorce. And having done it (and quickly) so many times, I can verify that is absolutely true. But, sounds like you are handling it like a champ and I have no doubt that you will soon make your new apartment as cozy as your condo. Thinking of you! All will work out!

    • thanks, amy. we haven’t moved in four years, and that was to our first place and before our wedding, so we didn’t have much – there’s just so much now! don’t know how you do it…but i’m sure we’ll work it out, thanks for the positive thoughts!

  2. Your place is so cute. I’m excited to see what you do w/ the new one. Now, I may have someone to go flea marketing w/!

    • thanks! i can’t wait to get it decorated, i’m so impatient i will want it done immediately, but unfortunately it can’t be that way. and you definitely have a thrifting partner! we need to start immediately, i need storage for the kitchen!

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