Friday, June 6, 2008

Moving Out & On

What a week! What a month! I'm going to recount the events of the last several weeks for the benefit of those who don't know what's gone on and so that it is recorded for our family for posterity. This is bound to be a long one!

On February 13 we welcomed Katherine Loren into our family! On the 15th we came home to 14 C*** ***** **--the place Eric and I have called home for the past five years. Probably around the 16th, Eric started considering a move--putting our current home on the market and purchasing a home with more space! Over Spring Break, we met with an agent and started staging, de-cluttering, and cleaning! A few days before we were set to take pictures and put a sign in the yard someone called and wanted to see the house. Not wanting to turn away a potential sale, we said okay! That evening we got an offer, countered, etc. and "sold" our house! The kicker was that the buyer had to be in the house by the end of April, so we had less than three weeks to pack up and move out. The next two and a half weeks were spent packing boxes and the Saturday before closing we moved our family into a three bedroom apartment. April 30th, our closing date, rolled around and a sell that had seemed so perfect fell completely apart. Because of the buyer's situation, her financing fell through.

It's hard to pinpoint what emotion was the strongest at that point. I had literally emptied the last box that day and was now faced with the task of packing all of them back up for a move back into our house. To us it made the most sense to move back into the house for several reasons: houses sell better when they're full of furniture; we didn't want to pay rent and a house payment for the month of May; obviously, it's easier to get the girls in and out of a house than an apartment. However, the prospect of moving back was daunting: we'd already had a tearful good-bye and the girls had been shifted around so often in the past few weeks that their question each night was becoming, "Where are we sleeping tonight?". We did move back and spent a month or so showing the house to prospective buyers with little or no interest.

Just as our frustration was starting to peak, we heard from the original buyer who still wanted to buy the house pending paperwork finalizing a divorce. We were optimistic, but not hopeful, that everything would go as planned this time around. On June 3, we closed on 14 C*** ***** ** and tomorrow, June 7, will walk out of the door for the last time.

Throughout the packing, moving out, packing, moving in, we'd found a lot we loved in a new neighborhood; found a floorplan that we thought would work for our family, and started negotiations to build a new home. The process was frustrating and wasn't really working out the way we'd hoped, so this past weekend we started playing out different scenarios: Should we go ahead with the build and move into an apartment? Should we look for an existing house while living in an apartment? Either way, we knew we needed an apartment so we began looking for somewhere to live. We seemed to hit a roadblock each time we had a lead! On Sunday afternoon we decided to make an offer on a home we'd walked through a few weeks prior. It is a home that is built by the builder we'd met and been talking to, but it's obviously on a different lot than the one we'd picked. Our offer was countered and we accepted early this week; on Tuesday Eric met with a morgage broker and, unbelievably (less than a week later), today, Friday, June 6, 2008, we closed and are the owners of 103 A***** *****!

For me, looking back over the past several weeks, things are a blur. Why God chose to play things out this way is beyond me, but Eric and I are both confident that He has a purpose. It is clear that had we closed on April 30th, we wouldn't have made an offer on the house that we will begin to call home tomorrow. A few weeks ago, if asked what God uses to change His people most often, I'd have said circumstances. I now realize that just as often He uses people. Had I gone through this experience void of people there are two things I know would be true:
1. I wouldn't have seen my heart (i.e. my sinful heart) in the way that I responded to people that I dealt with in the midst of moving things in and out; cutting power, cable, water, etc.; re-hooking power, cable, water, etc.
2. I wouldn't have been blessed by the outpooring of tangible love shown to our family through: meals, childcare, muscle, encouragment, prayers, and on and on.

And now we take the next step: leaving our first home! Forgive me, the next few paragraphs are going to be sentimental, but there are a few things I don't want to forget about living here.

Eric and watched this home being built from start to finish. We picked out the carpet, countertops, etc. We've planted every tree that's in the yard and most of the flowers and bushes. Eric has turned what used to be South Carolina red clay into a carpet of the greenest grass on the street. We've painted, hung pictures, bought furniture and made this house, both inside and out our home. Those are all the things that you can see.

There are other things that happened here we'll just remember and treasure:

~The wonder of planting the maple trees Granny bought us when we moved in (she's been in Heaven for 4 years) and watching them grow.
~The fun of eating the best tomatoes--grown in our vegetable garden each summer.
~The memories of hanging out with dear friends.
~The excitement of conceiving our first child and the grief of saying good-bye when the Lord took that child into His arms.
~The blessing of bringing three healthy, beautiful little girls home.
~The joy of growing in understanding and relationship with our Holy Father.
~The miracle of falling deeper in love with one another.

Moving, like most change in life, is bittersweet. Excitement is mixed with sentiment, and laughter with just a few tears. Thanks, 14 C*** ***** **, for great memories; 103 A***** *****, here we come!


sarah said...

wow ... um.... you captured so well how i am feeling right now :) i am so excited for you! i can't wait to see pictures! i did look through the link you sent me and it looks beautiful!
i hope that you get settled quickly and that life settles down a bit for you!!!

Anna said...

Hope you're enjoying your new house!