The summer of 2015 is going to be amazing. Warren and I are so looking forward to hitting the road and heading west. We will be away for at least ten weeks, visiting friends in Haidi Gwaii and family in Kamloops and Edmonton. We have never explored the inner passage off the Alaska coast. It will be the trip of a life time. But, in order to rent out our house successfully and take off on a three month road trip of awesomeness… a little pre-planning is necessary. Lots of planning and countless mini projects are keeping us on track.
This is my To Do List:
Our house has been listed with a local vacation home rental company. I gave them lots of house photos and we are now posted on their web site. To date we have five weeks booked. How cool is that? List house….done √
Warren and I plan to be away on vacation while our house is rented. A responsible person is essential to manage the property (cut grass) and clean the house. We have interviewed and hired a wonderful student to be our property manager / housekeeper. done √
The rental company gave us a long list of necessary household items. We had most everything on their list but we did invest in lovely new linens, fresh pillows, duvets and covers and lots of towels. done √
Warren built me a lovely spacious new linen closet. I have stained it and most of our new linens are on the shelves. I still want to pretty it up with more baskets and labels.
I have really been enjoying creating a colourful and fun “Welcome to our House and Here is Everything You Might Want to Know” binder for our rental guests. I have never done scrap booking before. Just shopping for the supplies and gathering brochures and local maps has been a blast. My true calling was a tour guide.
I am also writing a property manager / housekeeper guide / procedure binder. Mostly it is filled with reminders of hidden spots within the house that dirt might collect. I keep waking up at night and worrying that our property manager / housekeeper will forget to check the oven tray or microwave for splatter. What if our guests return a dirty dish to the cupboard? Will she catch it? Will she sweep under each and every bed every time? Hiring and trusting one individual has been the scariest part of renting out our house. It is so pivotal to our success. Our housekeeper must really care about our guests expectations. How do you instil this attitude and work ethic?
Also on my To Do list is pulling out some old paint cans and repainting a few little smudges
We are cleaning out drawers and closets and storing away all of our personal stuff. (definitely not all done yet)
This week I am planting my summer seeds in the solarium. Warren has just installed a new grow light. It is a bit early but I want my plants to be well established and strong when I plant them in mid May. I won’t be around to baby them. Their roots will have to find their own water and nutrients. My 2015 garden will still be filled with lots of lovely herbs and heirloom tomatoes. I love my beds to be filled with zinnias, and marigolds, bachelor buttons and cosmos. I have also over wintered a lot of last year’s geraniums.
Warren will be leaving for out west one month before me. We will meet up in Edmonton. I’m basing my departure date on the risk that we won’t have any more frost. I will plant my garden and go………………
One of my greatest challenges is to get Libby (our dog) road trip worthy. I fear it is a loss cause. She is a free spirit who loves to run at maximum speed….everywhere. We installed an invisible fence when she was only a pup and she has grown up tearing around here with wild abandon. I have been taking her into town to get her use to the leash and sidewalks. She hates the car. It makes her motion sick and when she sees another dog or person at the side of the road she barks. (This mini project is definitely not complete)
Arranging for all of our bills to be paid on-line without any mailed invoices and arranging for any existing mail to be collected
Making a few “Private” signs for off limit areas and a house’s rental name sign for our mail box.
Tune up the lawn mowers / complete income taxes / plus a thousand other things
Then there is the planning for our awesome trip
I’m assuming we might be off the grid for many days in northern BC, and the Yukon so I want to do as much research now. I can’t count on our lap-top and iphones to connect with the internet on the Alaska highway. What is the address where we are staying? What time does the inner passage ferry leave the dock? Is this place dog friendly? As co-pilot, I’m taking lots of notes now.
My life is filled with anticipation. These are good times. I love to have goals and a full calendar. All of my attention is focused on summer planning. With my long “To Do” list I am able to ignore the lingering two feet of snow outside my window.