Monday, October 20, 2014

Our 14 days at sea...Part 1

For the first days of our cruise, the winds had a northern chill and the seas were rough. Carlos and I stood on the deck and watched the 7 foot waves with their white caps and foaming seas. It was fun and although many people were seasick, the rough seas hardly bother us. As we approached the Azore Islands of Portugal, the winds died down and the seas calmed and the blue sky and sunny days warmed us quickly! Carlos celebrated his 63rd birthday on board and had a grand time!
The Azores were lovely and we had a a nice walk around town and did a bit of shopping as well as caught up with our e-mails. Our friends happened to be on the same ship (not pre-planned) and we spent some quality time with them!

Saturday, October 4, 2014

With love from Denmark...

We are here in Denmark, part 1 of Carlos retirement party....We have spend some quality time with our friends and their families. We have one and onehalf day left and than we start part 2, which is our cruise from Copenhagen to Miami...14 days of wonderful sea air and just two stops, one in the Azores of Portugal and the other at the island of St Thomas.
The first three days in Denmark we spend in Jutland in the city of Kolding. Now for the last three days we are in the small village of Lejre about an hour from the capital city of Copenhagen. Today we spent in Copenhagen visiting Elsinore and Kronborg Castle as well as a forest with deer.

Sunday, September 28, 2014

It's Official...Carlos is RETIRED!

Monday was Carlos official retirement we have many plans of what to do and are right in the middle of them.
First we travelled to South Dakota to get new drivers licenses and to change our residence to the state. Nine hour drive there, a few hours to do what was needed as well as an overnight to make it our residence and than nine hours back. Got our license plates and the car is back from the auto shop all repaired and made pretty...
South Dakota
This morning I bought a couple of dog crates that will fit in the back of the van for the cats to ride in comfort and safety from St Louis to the Yucatan. I figure that I will put two cats, a litter pan and food in water in each. They used to be the crates of a couple of 60 pound labs so we should be good.
Our transportation to Merida

Tomorrow we leave to fly to Ft Lauderdale where on Tuesday we catch a flight to Copenhagen, Denmark. There we will stay for five days with friends that were our exchange students many years ago. After that we will take a ship for 14 days to Miami.This is the start of the celebration for Carlos retirement!
In a strange coincidence friends who used to live here in St Louis area will be on the same ship. (they now live in Celebration, FL) The ship will arrive in Miami on the 20th of October. The morning of the 21st we have an eight am appointment at the Mexican Consulate to apply for our temporal visa.....So today we are making copies of all that paperwork we need......and I have to pack too.
Soon it will be Goodbye St Louis!

Monday, July 28, 2014

What is going into my container...

We have decided that we have enough stuff to fill a container. We have gotten a estimate from the shipping company and it's not outrageous. So while we have been staging our house for sale we also have been putting items and boxes in a 10X10 storage unit we are renting. (a container is 10X20) So besides all the boxes of books, kitchen pots and pans, good dishes and other items we think we need, we are taking a few pieces of furniture.
Our outdoor furniture:
We have two of these metal garden benches

We have this smaller table and chairs as well as a larger one

In the land of terraces this seating arrangement will come in handy

The few pieces of house furniture we are taking are some metal and glass end tables, our metal framed sleigh bed, a few lanps, two wicker chairs with matching table and I am still deciding on what tools! A very important item is a good vacuum cleaner to suck up all that concrete dust! (not to mention pet hair!)

yes, cats are going to Merida too!

Wonderful teak shower benches

A great vacuum clean.

So here you have it, I still haven't sold the's still full of furniture and other things we have to go through, so that's how we are spending our time....just trying to get through all of this and keep my sanity. My advise to all who are planning this same type of move, start de-cluttering NOW! I started over a year or more ago......and I'm still working on it.

Thursday, July 10, 2014

It's July and we are almost there!

I have been so busy preparing the St Louis house for sale that I have been seriously lacking in time or motivation to post for awhile. Add a serious family issue (not with us but with someone close to us) and there have been constraints there as well.
But a milestone has been reached. Yesterday the photographer came to take photos of the house for the MLS. But what we went through to get there has been amazing! I have been working on closets and storage for months... I have given furniture to friends as well as family members. I have packed and loaded items to a rented storage garage. I have trashed stuff, donated stuff and given stuff away. I am really not a hoarder or a shopper and I don't know where or how I got some of this stuff!
A week or so ago we had our consult with the home stager.. she went through the house and pointed to almost 75% of our furniture and artwork and gave us the "get rid of this and get rid of that", "move this here or move that out" routine/ It was shocking how much more work we had to do! And than she started on how to stage the yard and deck!
Before that we had spent thousands of dollars on having a new deck rail installed, chimney tuck pointed, paint and supplies. For out large living and dinning room we hired someone to paint while I tackled the smaller bedrooms. I am so tired of painting...I told Carlos I never want to paint again!
Now we have to prepare for the open house on Sunday and that means all the stuff we hid in the closets, garage and cupboards have to be cleared....So while the end is in sight the job is not done! However, Merida is in sight and that is the carrot on the stick!
Here are a couple of the rooms staged..... Pray that it sells quickly!

And here is some of the stuff to still figure out what to do with!

Saturday, May 10, 2014

Things are coming together...

The logistics of moving are a nightmare! Not only do we have to stage and declutter our home in St Louis, and get it ready to sell but we have to work on the visa's for Mexico. We are continuing to build parts our home in Merida as well working on all the hassle of moving the stuff we want to bring . And I do have to mention we are taking our 4 cats.
3 of my 4 cats, L to R, ragdoll, tonkinese and maine coon..the siamese was shy..all rescues

However we have made some strides! I have sold many bookcases and other furniture on Craig's List. A hundred year old dinning set was given to cousins in Iowa and was picked up last weekend. I'm so happy as it was a wedding gift when we lived in York, Pa and I wanted it to stay in the family!. They also took the black forest cuckoo clock.....I have all Carlos' books packed in boxes as well as our mask collection, some dishes and pottery. Now I am working on CD's, DVD's and photographs.
Most all of our other furniture, couches, chairs, end table, beds and desks are spoken for. Next I will go through linens and bedding and decide what is good enough to move and donate the rest...perhaps to a rescue organization.
While I was in Merida two weeks ago I asked someone if there was something they wished they had brought but did not and I was surprised by the was lamps and lamp I have decided to bring a few of my lamps.
Meanwhile in Merida we have added a few new to us pieces of furniture and it's getting more comfortable. There is so much space I don't think it will ever look cluttered, but just in case I have lots of closets and storage spaces!
New Upper Cabinets

New to us Couch in First Room
Brought a small TV down in my suitcase.... really surprised customs!
We have received information on shipping a container via land from St Louis to Panama City, FL than by sea to Progresso, Yucatan where it would go through customs and than overland to our home in Merida. We were surprised how reasonable a 20 foot container is.. Of course we would still need to hire a customers broker which can be pricey as well as store our goods here in St Louis until one of us has a permanent visa... still it is under the $'s we had allotted for the move!
So I am still painting rooms and fixing small items and we hope that by the end of May or Mid June we have our house here in St Louis on the market....cross your fingers it sells fast.. and for a great price!