Friday, May 7, 2021

A Long Overdue Post

 I'm sorry I haven't popped in for so long. Thank ya'll for your kind and thoughtful messages, notes, and emails checking up on me. All is well, just really busy. Not any busier than ya'll, but I guess I'm just not as organized. Since our North Camp couple left, everything has fallen to DH and I and then I spent 18 days in Texas putting my hands on every single piece of paper and object in my parents' house and a lot of stuff fits into 3800 sq ft. I'm pretty sure that the house gets bigger every time  I open a drawer.  😂

I also juggled their many neighbors and friends who have been incredibly helpful. I took 8 dozen eggs to share with them: 

I spent zero time on the computer, but fielded 20-30 daily texts and phone calls. I spent approximately 40 hours in front of the shredder during the first 14 days and then I hit a wall, broke down,  and called a shredding company for the rest:

I hated leaving DH alone to take care of everything, but it could not be helped. I met with an art auction company and they came to select items that would fit their offerings, returning on a second day to collect the items. 

Met with an estate sale company and signed a contract for their services.

Took a deep breath and drove downtown to the courthouse to pick up some papers:

And was instantly scolded when my purse went through the x-ray and they spotted my Leatherman. Oops. I honestly forgot I couldn't take it in a courthouse. I never even think about it. I just always have it with me, but they said I could either take it back to my vehicle or they would confiscate it. I didn't want to walk back to the parking garage so I just walked outside and placed it under a little rose bush and retrieved it when I left.

Filled 60 large black leaf trash bags with things to throw out and recycle. 

I was overwhelmed with what to do with the endless cans and jugs of 'hazardous chemicals' that you aren't supposed to toss in the trash and a neighboring angel couple came and made a list for me:

Waste management will send you a bag in which to place them and they will pick it up if you register with them and send them a detailed list. This may be common knowledge for all of you, but this dirt road girl didn't have a clue. Here's the link, in case anyone needs their services: WMatyourdoor. I'm not sure how many areas they service, but you can check via the link.

Packed a few boxes of things I am keeping as I came across them.

Went through 10's of thousands of photos and sorted a pile to keep. Love the old ones:

Looks like I've got some mysteries to solve:

Spent a long time sorting through a briefcase of my dad's that held all sorts of birth/death/marriage certificates from family going back to the 1800' German.

Looks like I'll be digging into family ancestry and trying to document what I now have as there is no one else to do so, but I don't know where I'll find the time. The neighbors have given me all sorts of advice so I have some good contacts. I've been wanting to write about my parents' immigrant story and this may be the push I need. I found the document that denied my right to US Citizenship when I was born even though my dad was in the Air Force, but that's a story for another time.

Moved some things to the neighbors...this little set is perfect in their beautiful yard and it makes me happy to know it will be loved:

I also visited with a realtor that I really liked, but probably ought to meet with a few more before making a decision. Have already had tons of offers, but it's important to me WHO buys the house as the neighbors (everyone on the street) are VERY close knit and I want the new owners to be a good fit for everyone. It seems as if the real estate market has exploded all over, and Texas is no exception.

I handed off the margarita machine, 6 conference tables, 12 chairs, and 6 red-checked tablecloths to one neighbor. It was time to pass the torch. My parents had hundreds of gatherings and celebrations. They always hosted National Night Out for 24 years:

And neighbors always hosted Christmas, Thanksgiving, 4th of July, Halloween, Easter, Superbowl, and New Year's celebrations. They are a very social bunch! 

I didn't take my sewing machine, but I did take some fat quarters to cut for a project and I decompressed one evening by getting those pressed:

I had to come back to the ranch because we're putting out bulls and need to brand calves, but then I have to go back to Texas to finish things up, as the estate sale company will begin their work.

I can not tell you how good it is to be back home! 

So, in closing, I've just been juggling a lot of plates and juggling skills are not my strong suit, but God is good and His blessings have been abundant.

I promise not to disappear again and be back soon. Thank you again for checking in on me - I am touched by your kindness.


julieQ said...

OH my goodness...what a job, and an emotional one!!! Yes, real estate sells fast here, for sure. I hope it all juggles out perfectly for you. Prayers for strength!

Dorian said...

My goodness Karin, no wonder you disappeared!! You take the time you need, just a quick note every few weeks, to let us know you are ok. I hope things settle down for you soon. I also hope that you get your parents place sold quickly and easily. (((HUGS))) Bless you.

Janna and Mike said...

Good to hear from you and I will pray for you as this process continues--it's hard to be the only child.

Ruth said...

Oh my goodness! Definitely busy days for you. I think I will be able to use some of the information in this post to help one of my neighbors. Thank you for the note and the post. Proverbs 3:5-6 is my favorite. Deep breaths.

Carolyn said...

I totally understand what you are going through. I did it too in 2014, and I also ended up hiring an estate sale service as I couldn’t make enough headway by myself. Either way, it is mentally exhausting.

Janet O. said...

What a lot you have had and still have on your plate! And to go through all this after the loss is so much to shoulder! I am glad your Mom's neighbors are supportive and helpful. Though you are alone, you are not totally alone. And, as you say, you are being blessed--there is never a time you are completely alone! Prayers in your behalf will be lifted to the source of all strength and good!

Carol in Texas said...

What a job! I am an only child and years ago I had to clean out Mother’s house in Houston while living in Austin. But I had help from husband Peter, so that made it better.....2 heads to think things through. It was blessedly a small house and she had lived as a widow for many years. You have my deepest sympathy! But you have gotten so much done! I hope you can find good neighbors for their house. Texas is drawing lots of new residents and this house will probably bring many offers. Find a sympathetic agent you can trust. Blessings your way......Carol in Texas

The Joyful Quilter said...

3800 sq.ft.?!?! I certainly don't envy you that task!!! Glad to hear that neighbors are helping take care of some things.

PamjNativeTexan said...

Whew, you have been busy. I just want to let you know, that I live northwest of where your parents lived. In our neighborhood houses have been listed, and in less than 48 hours they are under contract, and had multiple offers. It’s a seller’s market, and saying that you might want to list the property, say you want to have it shown for 4-5 days or more, before you except a contract. Let their be some time for people to look, and think about the property, saying you will entertain any and all offers, giving time for the buyer to up their offering. You could explain to the Realtor about the neighbors and neighborhood and that it’s going to take a very special buyer. Please do not take the first offer that the Realtor brings you, stand your ground on the price and do not compromise one iota. People have a tendency to lowball offers, especially when they happen to find out it’s part of an Estate. I hope that the property goes into a bidding war. Cash deals close really fast, since the buyer doesn’t have to go through the loan process, even if they say they are pre approved, still takes 45 days or more to close sometimes. And be cautious about a home inspector, you might even find your own inspector before you put it on the market, and have a general inspection just to get an idea if anything is that outstanding/ needs repairs etc. Home Inspectors seem to work alongside a realtor and not always do they find everything, and are not that meticulous. They just want to help the Realtor that referred them, close on a property ASAP. We have been through some experiences here in Texas as we’ve bought & sold over 14 properties since 1990. And some of our stories/experiences have been dilly whopper’s. Be cautious and take care.

Chantal said...

Bon courage! Stay strong. The aftermath of losing someone is as bad as the loss itself, in my book anyway. You did so much already. Chin up. You're doing your mama proud. Consider yourself hugged. ;^)

Shelly said...

Such a task! Prayers for you. Sorry that you have to do it all on your own. Thank God for those good neighbors and friends of your parents. Enjoy your time at home. I hope you find a bit of downtime so you can rest up.

Shepherdess55 said...

So much to take care of between the ranch and you parents' home. You're in my thoughts and prayers.

Nancy said...

Being the only one to take care of your parents' estate is a daunting job but it seems you're handling it really well, Karin. You're probably tired both mentally and emotionally. I was when my brother, sister, and I took care of my parents' home after Mom died. Hard times.
It's wonderful you found so many documents to help with your family history. (Do you read and write German?) You might find helpful when it comes to organizing (and searching for) your family. Great old photos you have there. I hope you can figure out who the people are.
Blessings to you as you continue with your full plate!

Alycia~Quiltygirl said...

you were not kidding when you said you had been busy. Not a job I envy, but I am glad you have the photos and genealogy stuff. Maybe someday your kids will want to take on the mystery. Hope you can get a little break now and then ;-)

ytsmom said...

Glad you are back home for a while. I assumed your absence may be due to your mother's estate. It's a big job, especially when you live far away.

Unknown said...

Welcome back!

Pauline said...

Oh how I missed your post! If I'd thought about it I might have figured out
what was going on. You really had an enormous job to do all alone. I'm happy
that you are back home and doing what you love.

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