September 18th, 2016

Sunday's Activities Include: Applebee's, horse, no playdate, vacuuming drawers

Today, T. decided NOT to go to Honey Pot Hill Farms for apple picking, because it was raining and cloudy. Instead we went to the playground for a bit, and then off to Applebee's for lunch. After lunch, we drove around for a bit, because we were really early. Then we went to the horse.

There is no playdate this evening, because of illness. I vacuumed the drawers in the master bathroom after decluttering them. Nothing like having short hair for a while to make the long hairs that get everywhere really noticeable. They are not everywhere now! This was triggered in part because it turns out both kids really like to clean their feet, and I was looking for the pumice stones that I knew I owned (not for the kids, but if I'm going to be washing a bunch of feet I'm gonna do my own and as long as I'm there I might as well take the callous down a notch). But while I was in the drawers, I rationalized what went where, and moved some items out for disposal (mostly electric toothbrushes that I no longer use).

I finally decided it did make sense to have two cleaning kits, one for each floor. I don't like to do this, because the odds of one batch being ignored (or worse, both) becomes that much bigger). However, if I'm on one floor and the kit is on the other, and I just want to spend 5-10 minutes cleaning something, having to go up and down (or down and up) the stairs can be enough to stop me from doing it at all. So. 2 kits. Then I had to find a bucket for the kit, which we did not have a spare, until I realized that one of the waste baskets I was about to declutter from where it had been sitting unused on a closet shelf for ... years ... could act as a bucket and go right back onto that shelf in a more useful configuration. R. then suggested putting it on the floor in a different closet, which honestly, is a better idea simply from the perspective of What If Something Horrible Happens.

Yesterday T. and R. went ice skating for the first time in a while. T. is wearing size 8 sneakers and riding boots, however, the ice skating boot fitting guy thinks he belongs in a 6.5 wide. Which I don't doubt, but so many other shoes don't come in widths and also, we don't much care for lace ups, both of which tend to push one into larger sizes than one might otherwise be.

I've been reading about the roomba 980, and thinking about how it compares to our current model (780). I haven't actually decided yet to get a new one, but in the meantime, I'm going to pass along the one that had been sitting on a laundry shelf for ... years, to D.'s family if they want it, otherwise to someone else. Someone might as well be using it.

ETA: I vacuumed the basement stairs. This had not been done in a while, and I'm not sure it has ever been done quite so thoroughly because there is often something _on_ the stairs, waiting to move to some other location. It has been mostly clear lately (I think I got really mad a while back and threw a lot of things away. Everyone who says anger never accomplishes anyone clearly knows no one quite like me.); only one box to go further down. I had R. bring it the rest of the way down, find me a short-ish extension cord (I just need an extra 6 feet, really), and did it. I went slow. I was super careful. And you can now go up and down it in bare feet and not pick up anything. It is lovely. I'm sure it won't last.

Uninformed speculation, local real estate edition

I took a few moments today after we were done with dinner (except A., who did not like the smell of brown rice cooking, and took her dinner out to the porch, where she has now asked me for three refills on her cup of water, wait, I think that is the fourth; she had fritos with her grilled cheese, berries and carrot sticks, so it is probably the head and the salt causing her to drink so much) to look at recent property sales in town. I have not done this in a while.

Price history of the listing (which may have been listed, taken down and relisted -- I don't know) shows it originally put up in April for $375K. That suggests they hoped some nice young family would buy the house and live in it. One month later, it was at $325K. By the end of June it was at $299K. It sold earlier this month for $240K, which is almost _exactly_ what we calculated a buildable lot was worth in Acton some years ago (I believe we had it figured at $220K based on the purchases involved in our house and the neighbor's, which occurred during the tail end of the previous boom).

One of the adjoining lots seems to be apartments, so I would not be too surprised to see one go that way. Central Street is considerably busier than our street, but brilliantly located as a commuter location, either by car or to the train.

The listing does suggest a real conundrum for anyone owning a smallish (3 bedroom, 1 bath) post-WW2 (in this case 1954) house in Acton. You can _try_ to get what Zillow might think it is worth, as a single family home. But can you afford to wait long enough for that? And what are the alternatives? I feel like it ought to be possible for an enterprising homeowner to make a deal with a capitol poor developer, so that the developer does the work but does not have to purchase the land, and the homeowner gets to participate in gain, which they otherwise probably cannot realize through a sale.