The Story of Our Move to the Mountains

The long-ish story of our move to the country after leaving city life behind!
The story of our move to the mountains + meet our new adopted puppy!

Wow, I feel like I owe you guys an apology… I have been woefully MIA here on the blog because life has been really intense lately. To be totally honest, moving to the new house has not been easy at all. In fact, it’s kind of been a nightmare! You know me: I’m always totally transparent and real about what our lives are like — even if it’s a really shitty time moving. So if you’re curious, here’s everything that went down in the past week.

Where to start… well, first, I lost the negotiations about hiring movers. Sean felt strongly that we’d be able to handle it all ourselves. But mark my words: I will never not hire movers again. Especially not after this past week! At least a month before our scheduled move date, we booked a 26′ truck with Uhaul to be picked up in Ballard, our old neighborhood. The day before moving day, we get a call saying the truck was only in Tacoma which is an hour away in the wrong direction of our move! They weren’t able to give us the truck we wanted at the location we needed… so Sean went down there to get the truck early in the morning and IT WAS NOT THERE!!!! After a lot of back and forth, he had to go to another location to get a smaller truck.

Because of the shenanigans with the moving truck, we got a late start to loading the truck. Also, because it was a smaller size than what we needed, we had to make two trips. Cool, huh? And don’t forget that it was a torrential downpour of rain on moving day for us! It literally felt like disaster upon disaster was compounding, but we powered through and got the first load packed.

Then we caravanned out to the new house which is about 2 hours away from Seattle… and upon arriving, we realized that the sellers left the house totally filthy! Before you ask, no we did not do a walk through. There simply was not time. We closed on Tuesday, got keys at 9 pm Wednesday and then had to move on Thursday in order to be out of our old house by Friday! Trust me, I wish we could have done a walk through, especially given the awful state that the house was left in.

The story of our move to the mountains + meet our new adopted puppy!

When we first came into the house, it’s like we were smacked in the face with odor. We knew the sellers had pets and kids, but while seeing the house multiple times it was not as foul smelling as it was when we first opened the door! I think that they literally stopped cleaning up or caring about the house as soon as we were under contract… and that they didn’t have great cleaning habits to begin with. They lived here for 5 years and believe me when I say this: I’ve been bleaching and scouring away what seems to be 5 years of someone else’s filth. I don’t want to go into the gross details of how disgusting the house was left… just know that it was offensive, rude, and completely irresponsible.

So we have officially been in the house for a week and we’re still working on getting the smell out. One of the rooms (the one that’s meant to be our main bedroom suite) smells so awful we’ve run an ozone machine to no avail. So our project this weekend is to rip out the carpet and hopefully find the sub-flooring in decent enough shape where we can seal it with Kilz. From there, my hope is a fresh coat of paint will help, too. As of today, we finally have confirmation that the sellers will pay for junk removal plus a cleaner which is a huge relief. Until that room is ready for us to inhabit, we’ve been sleeping in a guest room since it has the least foul smell. I still can’t believe we’ve been living like this for a week. It’s almost like camping… but way grosser, in my opinion.

The story of our move to the mountains + meet our new adopted puppy!

And in the midst of all of this, I adopted a puppy! Her name is Diamond and she’s a 7 month old pit bull/lab mix. I’m obsessed with her, but also having to put in a lot of work to get her housebroken and trained (on top of everything else). I definitely have had sleepless nights and even worried about having made a mistake adding to our family so soon after moving. But how that it’s been 5 days, she’s proving to be an amazing addition. She’s incredibly smart and so eager to please… and really just the cutest thing ever.

All in all, it’s been an insanely stressful, disappointing experience to move into this house… but we are trying to make the best of it. I’ve been enjoying living in the forest — especially because the trees are starting to turn for fall. I know that looking back, this will be a good story… but in the moment it’s been entirely consuming my day-to-day bandwidth. Sean and I are focusing on getting stuff WAY more settled in the house this weekend, so my hope is that I can get back on track with consistently posting here on the blog next week!

Behind The Blog

Joanna Hawley-McBride is a Pacific Northwest-based social media strategist, content creator, and former textile designer. Joanna is the founder and editor-in-chief of Jojotastic, a lifestyle blog focused on Joanna’s work-in-progress cabin, finding the best pair of underwear through #UnderwearThesis, and empowering women to explore nature — all in her signature unfiltered style. Her work has been featured in Domino, CNBC, and Eating Well.

Let's stay in touch:

Shop my picks on Amazon

Shop now

Please note that I use affiliate links at times here, as well as on my social media accounts. This means that if you click on a link to a product and purchase that product, I may receive a commission based on your purchase. I only feature products that truly inspire me. Any products that have been gifted to Jojotastic for review are noted at the bottom of the post. Sponsored posts are noted as such. All opinions are my own and always will be! Thanks for supporting content that keeps Jojotastic going.

Leave a Comment