The Dotted Line

clicon07-2012-a1 We woke up extra early this morning to prepare our home for the day’s events. Fresh towels were hung in the bathroom, the scale and bathmat removed. Hidden away were the kitchen wall calendar (we wouldn’t want someone to see from a photograph that our place is still for sale in May while noticing the calendar indicated it was up for sale in January, or so we were told), the toaster (I don’t know why), the cats’ toys and the large sheet of cardboard we keep on the living room floor for the cats to scratch instead of furniture. (Yes, that really works.

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Cats’ Cardboard

They actually prefer the cardboard.) A few hundred additional items were also relocated out of sight, as we were advised. It will be years, if ever, that we find all the things we tucked away. The place looked good though. Really good. Maybe we should reconsider!

0120condo20for20sale_zpsciklb7pbAt exactly 10:00 a.m. we met with “the” real estate agent. We signed 6000 pages of contractual gibberish (more or less and felt like more) and initialed even more. We handed over keys for the much loved lockbox (I hate that thing), and committed our home for sale.

Immediately following the last initialed page, with precision timing, Callie arrived. Her job was to prep the place for the photographer who was on her way by turning on every light and moving things from here to there. Callie also installed the lockbox by an exterior building entrance where lockboxes live, and measured every room, closet, and incidental space with her laser gizmo.

Then Margie arrived, also with precision timing, and proceeded to take pictures of every room from every angle. Her toughest job was to lower all the blinds to the sills. She would have preferred raising them to the top of each window but the heavy wooden blinds that had not been adjusted in a full 10 years would not be raised. (We always kept the blinds about a foot from the sill to allow the cats room to sit, lie, and chatter at birds and other nonparticipating creatures.) Margie then went around the building photographing such things as the exercise room and the rooftop deck, and other relevant places.

So the game is on! Now all the paperwork gets processed, the photos get selected and arranged, the brochures get printed. The listing will go live on millions and billions of websites (or some such number) on Thursday, and next Sunday, February 7, there will be an open house.

Here we go!

Transition

clicon07-2012-a1 Saying goodbye is always bittersweet. Portland has been good to us for the past 10 years.

It is now time to go home.

Our condo goes up for sale on February 4. Here is a preview:

Emergency Lights

The LiteSaver Emergency Light is a small, compact emergency light. It contains 21 LED lights. It is plugged into an electrical outlet where it remains ready to provide light when needed. It automatically lights when power is cut off. During normal times, it can serve as a night light, rechargeable flashlight, home security light, and camping light.

Each LiteSaver contains a “smart sensor.” In bright light such as daylight or other indoor lighting, the unit will not automatically light, thus saving its charge for when needed. During a power outage, for example, the light will not turn itself on in daylight, but will turn on when light is later dimmed.

Each LiteSaver emergency light will provide bright light continuously for 8 hours. Using just one LED (the night light), it will provide light for 144 continuous hours.

For details see the Calcellular website.

Other emergency lights are also available. Just ask google.

Free-For-All

Mail package delivery service has long been established for this building such that packages are delivered to unit doors. Most of the time that happens. Sometimes this happens instead:

There were even more packages. Several packages were removed by owners just prior to the taking of this picture. Today packages were abandoned by both UPS and On-Trac carriers, left unattended and scattered about haphazardly. Sometimes FedEx adds to the mix. The packages pictured above were repositioned by the USPS mail carrier who was unable to deliver letter mail to mailboxes until he first pushed all of the packages back against the wall.

Attention owners: Bring your reading glasses and be prepared to sort through the mess to find what is yours. There is no rush; some packages hang around unclaimed for days. At the same time, hope that your package was not especially attractive  to someone else.

The ICE Age

In the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina (2005) came the realization that in a disaster, victims  needing assistance must be identified and their medical needs must be determined, and quickly. Often victims are incapacitated, or cannot speak for any number of reasons, family members may have been separated, etc.

From Katrina was born the concept of ICE contacts – In Case of Emergency.

Emergency personnel today know to check your cell phone for ICE (In Case of Emergency). ICE should be on every cell phone. In fact, it is recommended that two ICE contacts be listed, the primary emergency contact, and a backup contact.

So, add your ICE contact to the contacts on your cell phone. The contact name should be ICE. Provide as much information as possible in your ICE entry, including the name and relationship of the emergency contact person, their phone, email address, work phone, and so on. Remember to provide a second emergency contact, also named ICE, also with complete information.

Use the ADD PHOTO function to associate this picture or something similar of your choice:

This could save your life.

 

DIY All Purpose Cleaner

Materials:

Spray bottle
1 part Dawn dish detergent
1 part white vinegar

Directions:
Combine Dawn and vinegar in spray bottle.
Shake well.

Spray on area to be cleaned.
Let stand (a few minutes, more for tough jobs).
Rinse, wipe, or blot, as appropriate.

Uses:

  • Bathtub
  • Shower doors
  • Toilet
  • Counters
  • Carpet stains*
  • …and more!

* For carpet stains, 1 part Dawn and 2 parts vinegar is recommended.

DIY Glass Cleaner

Eliminate a lot of unnecessary toxic chemicals and reduce cost dramatically with the following homemade, environmentally friendly, glass cleaner. It really works.

DIY Glass Cleaner

Materials:
Spray bottle
2 cups water
1/4 cup white vinegar
1/4 cup isopropyl alcohol

1 tablespoon cornstarch*

Directions:
Combine all ingredients in spray bottle
Shake well before each use

*The cornstarch eliminates streaks. Shake bottle before using to ensure that the cornstarch  will not clog the nozzle.

Hoopla

The Multnonah County Public Library is offering a new digital service for viewing movies, TV shows, and listening to music. They have recently connected with Hoopla which offers thousands of on-demand selections, and all for free. There is no wait for any download, no need for holds, and no waiting lists.

All downloads are free and on demand. Download your selection to your smartphone, tablet, or computer. The only requirement is a Multnomah County library card.

Ping Pong in the Pearl

There are 20+ ping pong tables available, open to all.

Pure Pong
1315 NW Overton Street
Portland, OR 97209
(971) 570-9625
 

Ear Plugs Required

The new Microsoft Store opened this morning at SW 3rd Avenue and Yamhill. Crowded with enthusiastic salesmen and shoppers alike, the decibel level inside the store made it a challenge to ask a question and nearly impossible to hear an answer. Thinking is not possible.

With similar look and feel to the Apple Store at Pioneer Place, the Microsoft Store features its new Surface Tablet. With cover/keyboard, built-in kickstand, expandable memory, USB port, and most if not all of the standard Microsoft features we have come to know on desktop and laptop computers, the Surface has appeal.

The cover comes in various colors. I did see pink, but not red. There’s the deal breaker

World Naked Bike Ride

 

World Naked Bike Ride is an international event. In Portland, naked cyclists prepare for a ride en masse through the city.  Cyclists and spectators gather tonight at the Portland Art Museum and the ride begins at 10 p.m.

 

Piroshki and a Pickle

Piroshki and a Pickle is a Russian coffeehouse specializing in piroshkis – stuffed pastries. A piroshki is similar to a light and flaky croissant with a biscuit-like taste that is stuffed with lusciousness – for breakfast, lunch, and dessert. They also boast a variety of pickles and an array of specialty coffees.

Piroshki and a Pickle
1023 SW Yamhill
Portland, OR 97205
(503) 577-8157
 

Note: Piroshki and a Pickle has closed.

 

A Sign of Things To Come

City Target – SW 10 & Alder

Help Wanted

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Our new City Target store is getting ready for its grand opening planned for this coming July. Posters touting employment opportunities are now displayed in their windows.

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It is interesting to note that the targeted Target employees are the members of the texting generation. There is no address or phone number provided for contact information.

April Board Meeting Notes

Item: New but unnamed welcoming committee formed. Conviviality?

Permission for website requested.

Board recommends property manager’s website. $50 per month!

Item:  Wireless doorbells permitted, per new specs.

Item:  Artwork – 2015 budget. Make that 2014. So go.

Item:  Bill former tenant for $1,500 wall repair. Ask. Maybe they’ll pay!

Item:  Balcony (deck) work – leave key for access.

Item:  Smoking violation – round up a witness.

Item:  Next meeting = annual meeting = board seat elections. Be there!

Sharing

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Here is a first: Our property manager sent out a broadcast email for the sole purpose of sharing information. Emails from the property manager generally have one of three purposes:

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  1. To collect information, i.e., semi-annual surveys.
  2. To alert and to frighten, i.e., reports of potential violence somewhere/anywhere in the downtown area.
  3. To instruct, i.e., when and how to prepare for window washing, building repairs, etc.

Never before has an email been circulated by the property manager (or the HOA) for the sole purpose of sharing information.

And the contents of that email:

Dear University Park Condominiums Residents:

As indicated in a recent Portland Business Journal article (link below), St. Mary’s Academy is purchasing the building that was formerly the U.S. Postal Service’s University Station.

You can read the article by clicking here for additional information.

Our new property manager is onto something big: communication.

Pretty Progress

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Carpeting is being laid from the first floor up.

Hallway carpet – first peek, first floor

Lobby – wall paint

First peek, first floor:

Getting Laid

Carpet

We’ve only just begun.

UPC Welcomes Plaid Pantry

A special meeting was held by the Board of Directors today. Plaid Pantry has proclaimed interest in renting the retail space at the corner of Broadway and Market Street. Plaid Pantry’s CEO/President along with several other management personnel were accompanied by their real estate agent to present their business.

Acknowledging an upscale community, Plaid Pantry representatives said to better blend with the community, they will be stocking craft beer, local beer, and organic beer, among others. They also agreed to avoid truck deliveries between 11 p.m. and 6 a.m. Following a brief question and answer period, the Board approved Plaid Pantry as tenant. With a 10-year lease plus options, Plaid Pantry promises to be a long-term neighbor.

Retail Space

Plaid Pantry, a Portland-based convenience store chain, has expressed interest in the former 7-Eleven retail space in our building. Part of the initial process is appearing before the Board of Directors for discussion and formal approval, which is scheduled to occur on Wednesday.

We visited two neighborhood Plaid Pantry outlets, both within just a few blocks of home. It seems only natural to compare what Plaid Pantry offers with what came before in this location. The 7-Eleven store offered a selection of grocery items, including bread, eggs, and the like, while also offering ready-to-eat foods such as hot dogs, pizza, and more. It served well as a general store, always open – 24 hours per day, seven days a week. In contrast, Plaid Pantry’s offerings are more limited, with focus on beer and wine, cigarettes, snack items, and lottery tickets. We could not find store hours posted in either store, but their website says “virtually every store is open 24 hours.”

While we certainly hope Plaid Pantry is a good fit for our building and our neighborhood, at first glance it appears it might make Mellow Mood look good.

Photo from the Plaid Pantry website.