We are just coming out of the longest most exciting two weeks (how can it have only been two weeks!) of our lives, coincidentally two of the busiest weeks of work for all three of us this year.
It started with a good valuation on our house, meant for the purposes of getting a better mortgage deal. Which led to questions:
What would selling the house mean in real terms? What could we do if we did sell the house? And then it went something like this:
List distances and times between various places of interest for potential new home and Ben’s work; list distances and times between those places and family back home; list how we would use the proceeds from the house to buy a home, buy an investment property, and to cover other costs; list pros and cons of moving in two years time; list risks and obstacles of said move; chat to old friend about said move and ask people’s opinions over facebook messenger; talk through and list how Ben would be able to transition from part-time to full-time writer if we stayed put and if we moved; realise we have to move; feel sad, conflicted; get over it within a day; research the towns and villages of the Forest of Dean; read forums and ask anyone we know with a connection to the forest for their recommendations of places to check out and to avoid; get excited about forestry rights for kids born in the forest; research forest amenities listing railway stations, post offices, hospitals, nurseries, schools, libraries, leisure centres, cinemas, cricket clubs, soft play, wildswimming spots, supermarkets, speciality food shops; list (mostly family and outdoor pursuits) attractions village by village; feel certain the move would offer the kids an even better childhood; agree new property requirements and try to perfect the search terms on rightmove to give us a manageable list of potentials; spend every second talking about the move, even when brushing teeth, from the moment we wake up until the moment we fall asleep; evolve the plan from investment property to wedding venue/holiday accommodation on our own site; become as obsessed with the future business plans as the future lifestyle envisaged; bring live in mom up to speed with the conversation so far and feel surprised and relieved that she’s as enthusiastic as we are; research events calendar in the new area; start to plan recon trip for the first weekend we can visit; more research on the natural landscape, special features and walks in the forest and Wye Valley; draw up plan of action with timescale from now to April 2017; list DIY, making good, painting and decorating, presenting and dressing to do before marketing our house and garden, room by room; argue over and agree strategy for the standard of finish before marketing the house; fall in love with several properties in the forest and valley; spend alot of time on google maps and streetview; phone estate agent to arrange a viewing on one; spend two days decluttering, spring cleaning and reorganising reception rooms; rub down and paint back door and drainpipe; freecycle unwanted furniture; bag up charity shop items; look up broadband provision for several properties we like; take a step back and consider the Malvern Hills as alternative area; dismiss this in favour of the Wye Valley which is now our preference over the forest itself; pick up supplies from Wickes; replan recon trip now two weeks away, based on our research and new preferences; replan timescale for DIY to hit new deadline for marketing the house of 1st April 2016!