In a nutshell:
Friday: I didn't get out of the office until after 5:30. Blech! Wifey had called earlier in the day to let me know she was going out for drinks with coworkers at Anyways (a bar that's conveniently located about equidistant from our respective offices). I was going to go straight home and start the laundry but the thought of a nice thick malty Guinness was too much of a temptation for me to resist. So, anyways I met wifey and her coworkers at Anyways. One of her coworkers, Julie, is Australian and she had her 25 year old son, Brendan, with her. So I was relishing the delightful Australianess of the evening. :-) One of the things I love about the Aussies is that they lay all of their cards on the table. They don't mince words and they get right to the point. It's quite refreshing.
Saturday: Wifey and I went househunting with our realtor. After seeing some rather sketchy townhomes in some rather scary neighborhoods we finally saw a place we liked. The trouble was, after some of the dives we'd seen, a heated outhouse might have been appealing by comparison. We let our enthusiasm and our realtor's pressure get the better of us and we put an offer in.
Sunday: We went over to our friend's home to watch the World Cup Final. Our in-laws drove by the home we put the offer in on and told us we should pull out of the deal if at all possible. Considering how many times they've moved I trust their advice implicitly. There are certain matters I feel more comfortable listening to my parents on-- but when it comes to real estate, I'm much more apt to listen to my in-laws. So we pulled out of said deal. Just over 24 hours had passed so we're able to get our money back.
We're thinking of changing realtors and have even contacted another realtor with whom wifey has been in touch with in the past. If our realtor from this past weekend comes to the table with some more attractive options for us and backs off a bit on his pushiness then we might end up sticking with him. But we're going to give this other realtor a try first.
At any rate, to get more bang for our buck we're going to have to move further west. It will mean longer commutes but given the suburban sprawl of Chicago, even if we do move further west, within 5 years I anticipate whatever area we move to will be quite fully developed (unless of course we move out clear to the Iowa border, but I don't forsee that happening).