Monday, July 2, 2012

Where things stand...

Hi everyone!  I hope you are all keeping cool, that you have power and that you're gearing up for an enjoyable July 4th. As for us, we've been busy celebrating and of course moving to building this house. But now the celebrating note, yesterday, July 1 was my birthday and I had an amazing weekend with my family.  We ended up going into the city (that's NYC for all you non-northeast folks) and seeing the Tony Award winning musical, Porgy and Bess, which was phenomenal.  We had good eats all weekend too--first, we went to El Vez, a Mexican restaurant in downtown Philly. I loved the food at El Vez…best tacos and guacamole I ever had!  An exciting aspect of moving to the Delaware Valley is the great restaurants in Philly.  Then on Saturday, while we were in NYC, we went to the Neely's restaurant. The Neely's are a celebrity chef couple on the Food Network; the food was delicious.  Then on Sunday, after church we headed to a restaurant in Jersey City, Fire and Oak. My husband said it was the best breakfast he ever had. Below are some pics of our food experience. I am such a foodie!

Says it all…a must see show. 

Blood Orange Margarita in a sugar rimmed glass at El Vez!

Amazing, did I say amazing, I mean scruptious mango and papaya guacamole. It was a lil spice with a lil sweetness. Again, this is El Vez in Philly.  

I love cupcakes!  Living in DC area, Georgetown Cupcakes were my favorite.  Since we're moving to Philly metro, we had to give Philly Cupcakes a go. Not as good a Georgetown, so we're still on a mission. 

Fire and Oak also had unlimited Bellini's and Mimosa's.

This was my meal, berry multi-grain pancakes…tried to keep it Weight Watchers point friendly:-)

If you're ever in Jersey City, go to Fire and Oak for brunch. This is Banana Foster French Toast.  You will be satisfied…all day!

We tried to go to Cake Boss' bakery in Hoboken, but the line was very long. 

But I digress, this blog is all about our house. Well, we heard from NVR and they said that our loan is in underwriting. The account rep said we should have heard something by last Friday, but it is radio silence. When you heard about your loan approval was it written or a phone call?  Next we met with the Guardian rep, Robert. He was very nice and we knew exactly what we wanted, so we left the meeting adding $975 to our building budget, which included cable in all 4 bedrooms and wiring for the TV to be mounted over the fireplace.  Although the smart connect was intriguing we decided that we'll make our entertainment area in the basement in about two years, once we recuperate from this house buying process.  We also made some additional changes to the house, they are as follows:

  • Kitchen: Deleted the ceiling fan hook-up over the island.  Our island is so tiny, it just will never be anything other than a prep area for cooking or for serving food. So, we added a  recessed light over the kitchen sink, but I think I may take this one out now while I'm typing this.  What is the point?  I have all the windows from the morning room and a light there. What do you guys think, keep it or not?  So, we keep it we'll a total of 5 recessed lights in the kitchen.

  • Family Room: Deleted the eyeballs over the fireplace, added 4 recessed lights. Added the blower and remote for the fireplace. This is another good suggestion I acquired from the blogs…I had no idea we purchased an over 3K fireplace that would not give off heat--not worth it, so ergo the blower addition.

  • Dining Room: Deleted the hardwood (will do that later with the office, and probably the hallway upstairs) and went with basic carpet and pad

  • Secondary and Master Bathrooms: Changed the cabinet to the one we selected for the kitchen, Wyoming Timberlake Cherry Bordeaux.  I was between that color and expresso, but I think the expresso is very dark (looks black) and I may get tired of it quick--what do you think?

So, that is all for now…will post again when we get the final approval. Looks like we may not break ground until a few weeks, which definitely will take us into a November closing.


  1. It is the best Mexican I've ever had! What about Thai food, any suggestions for a great place to go in Philly?

  2. Happy Birthday, Danielle!!! You are my kind of girl, I love love love to eat! Wish you were here--we would all be eating buddies. Bananas Foster is my FAVORITE dessert amongst a few other things. lol. I am from New York and plan to ride up this weekend--my entire family is still there. We may check out one of those restaurants. Maybe even the show too! Any whoo......we are still in the waiting game too. We thought we would get the approval last week. NO GO! We are now dealing directly with the lender to expedite things at this point. We were told maybe Thursday of this week--fingers are STILL crossed!!

    As for the house--Kitchen--the lightening from the morning room is fantastic during the day, the one light over the sink adds ambience at night and it's something special about those recess lights that add excitement to the room. I am bias--I love lightening! If I remember correctly the five recess lights came as a package deal in the kitchen, so we chose the package. What the hell, I say go for it, at the end of the day, that one light will cost you very little, but will add great ambience at night.

    Cabinets--Both colors are great and offer different options. I like both of them. What is the look and feel that you desire when walking into your kitchen? The cherry will give you a traditional look and the espresso will allow you to have fun with colors and neutral accessories that you can switch out when you get bored with the espresso looking black. I tend to move my accessories around to give me different looks when the mood strikes me. Again, it just depends on what speaks to your heart. Have fun!!


    1. I hear you about the lighting…love it too, but our pocketbook will not allow it. Maybe that is an upgrade we will do later. Our lighting package is more than what I will pay for the 4 recessed lights in the kitchen, so…guess that is a no brainer. Yes, go and check out those places to eat, I am sure you will not be disappointed. Thanks for the birthday greetings too!

  3. Looks like you had a fabulous weekend!
    We did cherry Bordeaux for the same reasons you mentioned. I think the black will be too dark (for me) and though we have light from the morning room, I might not like it all dark.

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    L see!


    1. I had a great time! Yeah, I agree that even with the light of the morning room, expresso will be too dark. How is your house coming along?

  4. We have black cabinets in our townhouse and while I love they way the look (very modern and chic) I HATE how much dust and fingerprints they show! I clean them at least 2x weeks, so while I loved the look of the espresso cabinets I too went with cherry!