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Let's Panic: The Book!

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How to Endure and Possibly Triumph Over the Adorable Tyrant
who Will Ruin Your Body, Destroy Your Life, Liquefy Your Brain,
and Finally Turn You
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Written by Alice Bradley and Eden Kennedy

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At LET'S PANIC ABOUT BABIES, Eden Kennedy and I share our hard-won wisdom and tell you exactly what to think and feel and do, whether you're about to have a baby or already did and don't know what to do with it.

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« She doesn’t, incidentally, but if she reads this we’re probably both out of the will. | Main | Yogurt-dipped mornings, alcohol-soaked evenings »
Tuesday
Mar072006

A house! A house for us!

I haven’t told you about our new house! And it’s all God’s fault.

I have, in the past couple of weeks, found myself newly fearful of the Lord’s wrath. My God, it seems, is a vengeful God, replacing the God who compelled my parents to purchase the Barbie Dream Boat or the God who made sure my ex-boyfriend didn’t get a date to the prom. This God will take away our pretty house if he hears me bragging about it too much. He will send armies of termites into our pretty house’s support beams, and not even joists of steel will keep our (pretty) shelter from tumbling down upon the earth, and the ancient but lovely windows will shatter upon the ground, and mine enemies will rejoice, yea verily.

That said, I couldn’t wait until we had closed on the place to share our news, so I decided that God does not bother himself with blogs.

But enough about my petty God. We have a house! Here's how it went: we saw the listing, fell instantly and completely in love, decided it was too pretty for us to deserve, visited and were depressed because it was so pretty and it would undoubtedly go to someone nicer and better-looking, worried that the neighborhood is too sketchy, fell into an even deeper depression, were put in touch with a couple of residents of said neighborhood (thanks to my blog readers! My nice blog readers!), were reassured that the area is not at all sketchy, worried about the school, found out that the school is great, found out there were nine other bidders, freaked out, made the best offer we could, and here we are. A house! Us! We have a house! It’s a four-bedroom (FOUR!) and it has two sunrooms (TWO!) and an enclosed porch (AN!) and my god, but we love it.

We were fairly certain that someone (God) would take our house away from us because it’s so nice and so pretty pretty, but so far even the inspector couldn’t scare us away. We were certain he would take one look and say, “But these walls—they’re made of taffy! And the windows are just cling-wrap stapled into some lincoln logs!” and then we would cry and move into our nearby friend’s garage. It’s a two-car garage. Maybe we would like it.

Which is not to say that there aren’t issues with the house. It’s been relatively well maintained, but it’s over 90 years old. Also it’s probably teeming with ghosts. I was hoping the inspector would also check for ghosts, but he didn’t respond to my hints. I asked him, “Does it feel, you know, crowded in here?” and he said yes, why don’t you step outside.

Beyond the families of ghosts, there’s a tiny bit of water damage, a smidgen of termite damage, the chimney needs some work, there’s some creative wiring, and also the backyard is a swamp. On the other hand, we paid about $40K less than we thought we would.

Home ownership, I have learned, means you have to know stuff. Two weeks ago, if you had used words like “soffit” and “fascia” and “downspouts” and “garage,” I would have said, “I’ve heard of this ‘garage’, but about those other things, whuuuuh?” And now I’m tossing these terms around like I know what I’m talking about, because soon I’m pretty sure I will know! By gum, I’m learning!

In closing, let me say that if you have to call a contractor whose last name is Schwalbenberg, it’s probably a good idea if immediately beforehand you and your spouse don’t periodically cry out SCHWALBENBERRRG at each other or ask each other “If I asked you to hold my Schwalbenberg, would you still love me?” Because then? You’ll call Schwalbenberg, and while you’re leaving a message you’ll snort helplessly with laughter as you try to say his name and then you’ll have to hang up and call back and leave a message with a slightly different voice.

SCHWALBENBERG!

Reader Comments (114)

Yay!
March 7, 2006 | Unregistered Commenteranne nahm
Congratulations! May you have nothing but happy ghosts haunting you there!
March 7, 2006 | Unregistered CommenterDixie
Have faith! Yours is a God of solid foundations and energy conservation and a home as happy as a basket fulla puppies!

Congratulations, and thanks for the giggles!

Here's one more exclamation point for the hell of it!
March 7, 2006 | Unregistered CommenterRenee Dodd
I was going to say something cheesy and congratulate you, but LOD wrote cocksucker and now I can't stop laughing.
March 7, 2006 | Unregistered CommenterAmanda
Are there pictures? We are currently owning TWO houses, until I can sufficiently nag husband to GET THE CRAP OUT OF THE OTHER HOUSE AND SELL IT BEFORE WE DROWN IN A SEA OF MORTGAGES.

But really, I would like to see this pretty house. flickr?
March 7, 2006 | Unregistered CommenterBelinda
You should warn us before you write something that will make us snort out our water and alarm our co-workers. Shame on you.

Seriously - YAY!

March 7, 2006 | Unregistered Commenterspaulson
I started to just smile and move on to my next blog check but I just HAVE to post a congrats!

welcome to the world of mortgages!
March 7, 2006 | Unregistered Commenterkimmie
Congratulations! That's very exciting and wonderful.
March 7, 2006 | Unregistered CommenterJane
Congratulations!
March 7, 2006 | Unregistered CommenterTheresa
Hooray!!!! Now please use all of those terms in one sentence without semicolons, and end in the word "garage." You have five minutes.
March 7, 2006 | Unregistered Commenterlis
Oh, I'm SOOOO happy for you. I know how down you were about househunting. It's a hard job and it can be so depressing. But you got a pretty house in a nice neighborhood with a good school. What more can you ask for? Tell us what the style is, and color, and all that other girly stuff. I don't care much about soffits either, although I do know what they are!
March 7, 2006 | Unregistered Commentermargalit
Yay!! A very happy Finslippy house. The sunroom*S* will no doubt be quite inspirational. And I second the suggestion for PICTURES!! ASAP!!

We're all so happy for you.
March 7, 2006 | Unregistered CommenterNeb
You can move in and have a spring barbecue! And serve Schwalen-burgers!(the boyfriend keeps saying the word "mortgage", so it's quite reassuring to see that one can buy a house and be happy, not crazy.)
March 7, 2006 | Unregistered CommenterNadarine
FABulous! let me say it again, FABulous.
March 7, 2006 | Unregistered Commenterkristin
Congrats!!

And that was so funny, I laughed out loud. Not just once, not just twice, but THRICE! Ha! Good stuff... TAFFY (still giggling...)
March 7, 2006 | Unregistered CommenterJustLinda
Rats. I was going to make a joke about "spits mountain," but then my stupid husband beat me to it.
March 7, 2006 | Unregistered CommenterMoxie
Hopefully brief. Whispered congrats to avoid evil spirits. Telephone reference reminds me. I have fibromyalgia, which makes your mouth either do or forget how to do fundamental things. I had to have passport pictures, found a company with numerous shops. I called the most convenient to ask how late they were open. A man answered. I heard my voice say, "I was just calling to ask how old you are." There was a dead silence while each of us was thinking WTF did she/I just say?! I then asked "How late are you open today?" He answered and I hung up. I immediately told bf we had to go to another shop because that man would know I was the crazy person who called. Saintly bf took me to a different place. We both were laughing, but slightly less saintly bf is unable to hide that he continues to be ready to fall snorting to the floor with laughter because the tippy corners of his lips keep curling up. sigh.

farthest
Kinda new reader coming out of the woodwork to say Congratulations! What wonderful news, I am so excited for you and your family. In spite of the bits that need fixing, the house sounds really lovely. I cannot WAIT to have my first house someday, so I'm living vicariously through you for now. :-)
March 7, 2006 | Unregistered CommenterMichelle
yay alice! YAY! (oh, whoops, sorry God) *softly* yaaaaay!if the wiring is the fact that all your outlets only have the 2 prongs instead of the 3 prongs, we rented a house that had ONLY all 2 pronged outlets. There's a technical way to say this, like they weren't grounded or something, but gibberish, i tell you, un-understandable gibberish! Anyway, our friend had a grounding kit and together they fixed all the outlets in 1 afternoon, so really, it can be done! Easily!If your problem is something else, then god help you. seriously. back out now, while you still can. *wink* congrats!
March 7, 2006 | Unregistered Commenterraine
Farthest, that's the funniest thing I've heard today. How old was he, anyway?
March 7, 2006 | Unregistered Commenteralice
How exciting for you. yee-haw! ;D
March 7, 2006 | Unregistered CommenterFaith
Yay! Good for you! We just went through this ourselves (http://odiouswoman.blogspot.com/2005/12/big-news.html) - after falling in love with the perfect house, I was pretty sure the foundation was held together by prayer and gum. Three months in, everything still more or less works, so take heart.

And congratulations!
March 7, 2006 | Unregistered CommenterBrooke
Even better than the Barbie Dream Boat is the Finslippy Dream House! Congratulations!
March 7, 2006 | Unregistered CommenterVaguely Urban
I'm trying to think of something witty to say but unfortunately my brain exploded out of my head when I started laughing hysterically.

I'm glad your house is so pretty pretty and that you have an enclosed porch (AN!).
March 7, 2006 | Unregistered CommenterDM
Alice that is so freakin fantastic. Congratulations to the (AN!)th degree. I am so excited for you and especially for the enclosed porch! And can you please post a picture?
March 7, 2006 | Unregistered Commenterbeck

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