Thursday, March 15, 2018

A Messy Biz Announcement!

So, we think we should probably tell you about another thing we've been working on during our year of crazy change! 

We were completely surprised by this addition, and were luckily able to move our wedding back from the summer of 2018 to the summer of 2019. We are due on August 15, 2018! 

If you're also a teacher, nothing else quite says "O.M.G. I DIDN'T PLAN THIS!" like having your baby due the first week of school in Colorado. 

Stay tuned for some baby inspired posts as we learn how to navigate this crazy, wild, amazing new adventure and all the triumphs and struggles that go with it.


Tuesday, March 13, 2018

Finding a Rental in a New City

After owning a home for nearly 10 years, it was super weird and super hard for me to transition to being a renter. I spent a ton of time looking into different places, locations, and types of rentals.

A few key things I realized about renting in a city, specifically Denver, Colorado:

  1. It is very expensive. Full stop. We pay $1400 for a 2 bedroom 1 bathroom duplex 15 minutes from downtown Denver. It has a giant yard, garage, and fireplace. Our mortgage in Grand Junction was $870. Ouch. Some things we lost in this rental: A/C, 2nd bath, 3rd bedroom.
  2. Private rentals seem to be better. They are more willing to work with you, are friendlier, and much more accessible for maintenance. They want to protect their investment. I eventually found ours on
  3. Be fully aware of what area you are in- it is a little sketchy to rent sight unseen. Make sure you can go and tour the place or send a trusted friend or family member. We almost ended up in a tiny tiny rental that wasn't well maintained because it looked great in the pictures but not in person. 
  4. Take someone with you! My mother-in-law, Kathy, went along with me to help me be critical. She has lived in Denver for 30+ years and knows the areas really well. 
  5. Be prepared to offer an 18 or 24 month lease. You will lock in your rate, especially with the constantly changing housing market in a hot area like this.
  6. Be willing to expand your search area. Everyone here commutes and there is a great public transit system.
  7. Be patient! It took us from the end of April until the first of June to find this place. 

Here is our rental the first time we took a tour (we're the right half of the duplex): 

Overall it is a good space with new carpet and nice doors (I care about these things) and it was full brick and I'm not going to lie, I LOVE parking in a garage. The main pros of this home that helped us to select it:
  • It had a gigantic back yard for our baby dogs. They LOVE it out there! I just read an article online from Time about how millenials are picking housing for their dogs and not for their families. I mean, guilty. It's a fun read, find it here on!
  • 6 foot privacy fence around 3/4 of the back yard. After only having a short chainlink, this was amazing to me.
  • Decently budget friendly.
  • Garage!
  • Covered patio!
  • Did you even see that big yard?
  • Fireplace
  • Separate dining room space
  • Can have both dogs without major deposit cost.
  • Well maintained, clean, non smoking.
  • Family nearby.
  • Quick and easy highway access for commuting.

Our landlord is awesome. The color on the walls was very peanut buttery, and though that is one of my favorite snacks... it was a bit intense in a semi-gloss throughout the whole house. The landlord let us paint and personalize the space. It made a huge difference! I'll show you all that awesomeness next. We fixed it up to be really quite cute. 

Do you have any rental tips? What did you learn moving to a new place? 

Thursday, March 8, 2018

5 Things to Know About All This Messy Business

Moving away from my home town has been quite the experience. There have been so much to learn and so many new roads and directions to figure out! There's also been learning the ropes of my  teaching job at my new school and designing new coursework and curriculum for classes. We have way more freedom to do different activities and lessons here, but that means I have to build or rebuild a lot of it from scratch. Because of these tumultuous changes I've taken a break from blogging and we have tried to focus on our new life here.

Now! I realized just how much I miss it and am going to start all over, even if I never become a mega popular blogger where I can leave my day job to communicate and write all day with you guys, at least I have a spot where I can have a great time talking about things that are important to myself and others at this stage. So! Here are 5 things you need to know about This Messy Business moving forward into the new life and phase of this little bloggy and I'm excited for a fresh start!
Back in 2010 

In 2013.

  1.  I am a 27 year old high school English teacher and Speech & Debate coach! I've been teaching high school for 5 years now.  I love all things reading and talking. I am hoping to incorporate more book reviews, suggestions, must read lists, and even some lesson inspiration. 
  2. Brennan and I are engaged! We are going to be getting married on June 15, 2019 and I gotta tell you... I love wedding planning. If I were to forgo teaching I would totally go into the wedding planning business. It's awesome. 
  3. I started this blog when I was 19 or 20 to document remodeling and renovating my 3 bedroom 2 bath manufactured home in Grand Junction, Colorado. We sold it in under a week in July 2017.  You could read all about how I staged it to have it move quickly here.
  4. We are primarily a plant-based family! We are working to shift all our products to cruelty free and vegan. Brennan has been vegan for 4 years and I have been working to transition into that same lifestyle.  We love when we get to do a CSA with a farm in the summer, hopefully we find on like what we had in Grand Junction here in Denver! 
  5. We now live in Denver, Colorado and it is a huge change! We are hoping to go on more adventures that I can document and share with you, try out different awesome restaurants, and find cool neighborhoods. We want to purchase a home in the next 3 years so we need to explore the right place for us.  Right now, we love renting. Read all about why here!

I'm hoping reinvigorating the blog and widening my scope from the previous years will make this a place where I can enjoy others, collaborate, and share some fun pieces of our lives. What do you think makes a successful blog? What do you like to read about?