Monday, April 9, 2012

Monday Progress Report: Crisis Management

I hope everyone had a blessed Easter celebration. We celebrated with our church at Jones Plaza in downtown Houston. It’s always a surreal experience to hear praise music echoing off the skyscrapers of this city.

Easter turned out to be quite the romantic day for us. After church, Jon took me on a cheeseburger date to Wendy’s, complete with a frostee. Then he took me to look at Volvo station-wagons, which I’ve determined to be my new dream car. He tried showing me Audi station wagons, but I explained that my new fetish is somehow Volvo specific.  

After a few hours of lazing around the house, we went for a rare bike ride through The Heights before ending the night with the latest episode of The Amazing Race, which added Tanzania to our “Absolutely must go there” list.
The fact that we haven’t received our visas yet combined with last week’s flea fiasco has brought several of our relocation efforts to a standstill. The good news is that the flea situation is under control. We’re still having the pros come to spray our yard tomorrow just as a precaution but Samson is doing 1000% better. That means my mind is free to refocus on the backlogged items on my to-do list.
Logistics: We decided on a realtor and have all of our housing paperwork ready to go so that when we do get our visas back, we can list our house to sell.
We also received a cost estimate for shipping the dogs (roughly $5,000) and put down a 50% deposit. Jon’s company reimburses us for the shipping costs of one dog so we’re hoping that only $2,000 will be coming out of our pocket.  
Another big accomplishment has been setting up our UK bank account. As an American, when setting up banking in Aberdeen you basically have 3 options: HSBC, Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) or CitiBank. We decided to go with HSBC due to the fact that we could open an account now through their New York Branch. We’ve already transferred a large sum into the account so that when we get to Scotland we have the funds to buy cars a volvo station wagon and any major appliances that we need.
We had heard from other expats in Scotland that this is the easiest bank from which to transfer money back and forth from the US. CitiBank sounded ideal because they have branches in both the US and the UK. However, we discovered that they only have branches in England and there is essentially no relationship between the US and UK branches.
I’m sure there’s more to it than that, but banking really falls under Jonathan’s household duties. I just know how to swipe the credit card. If you’re moving to Scotland and want more specific information, you can email me at: theaberdeenwife at gmail dot com.

Shipment: We got our Restoration Hardware furniture! It was delivered Saturday and we are so happy with our choices. I gave the comfy chair and ottoman a test drive on Saturday and it is the perfect reading spot! The challenge is teaching Bailey that it is not the perfect dog bed.
shhh...don't tell Jonathan
I’m currently blogging from my new desk and its turning into quite the perfect space as well. One thing I will surely miss about the US is Restoration Hardware. I’m crossing my fingers that they start delivering to the UK soon.
We were able to donate our old desk and bookcase to Goodwill along with 8 trash bags full of clothes. With the delivery of our new furniture, I feel like the house is officially ready to stage. All it needs is one final deep clean, so as soon as our visas are approved I’ll start manically dusting, sweeping, mopping, and vacuuming. Or I’ll just call the housekeeper. What Jonathan doesn’t know won’t hurt him, right?
This Week's Goals: This week my biggest priorities are to buy the airplane approved kennels for the dogs, start filling out their paperwork with the assistance of the pet transport company, have Samson shaved, have the yard sprayed for fleas…yes the first 4 things on my list are dog related…Other than that, I’m continuing to get the house in showing order: reorganizing closets, pantries, cabinets, fridge, etc.
Hopefully I’ll be able to scratch some of the miscellaneous items off of my big list like getting Jon’s cowboys repaired (major priority when moving to Aberdeen, right?) and getting some art prints framed.
We’re dealing more and more with the possibility that we may not get a pre-assignment visit to line up our housing. But we’re also leaning more and more towards a house in the country which will give us more space for our American sized furniture and a bigger yard for our beloved flea bags.

1 comment:

  1. Scotland is beautiful! Definitely different from Texas, but I think you will like it alot :) And I agree with you- Volvo is awesome!! :)