Wednesday, March 22, 2017

house hunting

I'm just going to pick up right where I left off as best I can ;)

The other day I mentioned we went to Kansas for a little trip last month. Landon had some meetings and we needed to look at houses anyway, so we decided to knock them both out at the same time. On Wednesday, once Landon was finished with his meetings and his parents were set up in the hotel rooms with the boys for nap time [because his parents came to help with the boys. bless them], we walked over to our realtor's office, which was just a block down the road from the hotel and our afternoon of house hunting began.

We were working with a husband and wife realtor team and that afternoon we met with the husband, Jim, he was the one I'd been talking with and emailing back and for about a month prior. Before meeting him I had looked at hundreds of houses online, and after picking out some "maybes" Landon looked with me and we talked about which houses we liked, loved, and were just a plain "no." The week before our trip to Kansas I emailed Jim a list with our favorite houses as well as houses we liked and wanted to see. In total, there were about a dozen houses to look at. My only request was to look at all of the houses on the list and look at them in proximity to the others so as to make quick work of the showings as possible. We were only going to be in town for a few days so we needed to be efficient with our time. After going over some paperwork in Jim's office we headed out to look at the houses we had only seen pictures of!


It's one thing to see pictures online of a house, it's another thing completely to walk through the house and get a feel for it. We were able to see about half of the houses that first afternoon and had picked out a few favorites to hold onto for the next day. In some houses we stayed longer than others, but in every house I tried to picture us there as a family and see our daily lives. My Bible study leader had told me when they bought their house it just, "felt like home," and I was kind of going off of what she said. Did this house feel like home? Could it be our forever home? Because my prayer is that the house we pick there, is the one we grow old in. Though we shall see, I suppose. It was a full afternoon of looking at houses and we had a favorite picked out by the end of it! That night Landon had another meeting, so the boys and I ate dinner with his parents and then went back to the hotel to get the boys in bed.

The following morning we met with Leslie, the wife of the team. Our day started bright and early after we had a little breakfast with the boys and then gave kisses good-bye. It was so good to know they were being well taken care of and loved while we were out and about. There happened to be a discovery museum right across the street from our hotel, and Jim had gotten passes for the boys and the grandparents to go see it. With their day planned, we headed off to start looking at more houses. Leslie showed us around town some more and of course took us to see the rest of the houses. There were so many good choices! We kept saying to each other how we didn't know how we were going to decide which house to pick! I was kind of really hoping that one house would just really pop and that would be it. But really, there were a lot of good choices and we felt that a number of them could have been home. So I really started praying about which house would be home. And the more we looked, the more we kept refining our top three list and the more we kept coming back to one house from the night before.


After looking at all of the houses on our list, we asked to go back to what I'll call the brown house, just to see it one more time. As we were looking around again, we just knew that was home. So we made plans with Leslie to break for lunch, go back to the hotel, and then once the boys were up from their nap, go back to the house to let the boys and Landon's parents see it. We got to the brown house a few minutes before Leslie that evening, so we were able to walk around outside for a little bit and meet one of the neighbors who happened to be outside with her twin nearly two year old boys. As it turns out, we have a lot in common - and that's just from chatting for a few minutes. Meeting her gave me hope and even more excitement for the brown house.


The brown house is a ranch style house, with a finished basement [because tornados], with a flat drive [because basketball], on nearly an acre of land -the majority of which is wooded, at the end of a cul-de-sac, towards the end of a neighborhood. It was everything we were only hoping to have in a home. Everything about the brown house was perfect. We absolutely loved the house.

So we decided the brown house was the one. There were two other top contenders, we always tried to keep just three favorites in the running, but the location and lot is what really made us fall in love with this house. This is the house I can see us growing old in, that I can picture the boys bringing their friends home to, celebrating their graduations in, coming home to with their brides, bringing their babies over to play, a house that could be our forever home, that Lord willing, we never have to move from. Gosh, that's a lot for a house to say. But it's the truth.

The brown house felt like home. 


And oh, how I can't wait to make our home in it. While I've never been homeless, I have been rootless, I've moved once every few years since before I can even remember. To settle down and stay in one home for always is my dream. If the Lord will allow it, I would love to always be at home in this house. 

While I'm enjoying our days here and now, making the most of them and trying to fill them with fun things for the boys, I am very much looking forward to moving and settling into our new home. Shoot, Oliver will get to sleep in a bedroom and not the laundry room, what's not to be excited about?! The next few months are going to be unusually crazy and busy, but I think they will be oh so good.

The rest of the story isn't as exciting, we put an offer in, there were a few counters [so nerve wracking!] but in the end, we got the brown house and are so very excited to make it home in just a few very short months!



Thursday, March 9, 2017

a look back at February [part 1]

Hello friends! It has been too long. I didn't realize just how long until a friend pointed it out to me this morning. Anyhow, we have been keeping busy this past month or so and after thinking about it, I decided it was full of things I would really like to remember. Since that's the point of this blog I figured I should share about our little happenings before they're too long gone and forgotten. So, here we go, a little life lately post to give a short update. 

This winter has been so blah. It's been super mild for the most part, which I suppose is nice for most, but I like snow when it's cold and we haven't had much of it at all this year. So it was a nice little surprise when we had a decent snow fall in the beginning of February. I bundled the boys up after nap time and we headed outside for some play time. It may have only lasted ten minutes or less, but it was fun just the same. 


We also made a trip to Kansas. Landon had some meetings he had to attend, and since we knew we'd have to go out there in a month or so anyhow to look at houses, we decided it made the most sense for all of us to go when he had his meetings and just look at houses then. So I spent the week before our travels packing and organizing things to get ready, because it does take a week for me to get us all ready for a long trip like that.

The first two days of our trip we stopped in a town not too far from where we were headed for Landon to attend some meetings. It just so happens, that the little town was the very same one I have my first memories from and some family friends still live there. So while Landon was at meetings all day, I took the boys to a farm I used to play at all the time when I was their age. I hadn't been there in about 12 years, and a lot has changed and developed in the area. It was a fun way to spend the morning and I'm so thankful it worked out for me to see old family friends. We moved from that home when I was about four and apparently I clung to my mom's friend's leg crying to stay with her and not let me go with my family. I guess I didn't want to move? That was the very lady we spent the morning with and it was so nice.  The boys were able to play with toys run around and we didn't feel trapped in a hotel room which was wonderful.

Before we met up with my friend, I needed to grab something at the grocery store and the boys were delighted to find amazing car shopping carts. Surprisingly, it wasn't as bulky to steer around the store as I anticipated. It's the little things ;)


Right around nap time we had to take Landon to another meeting, the boys had slept poorly the night before and I knew they were tired so thankfully they fell asleep in the car while taking him to his meeting. After we dropped him off I just drop the boys around town for a while, looking at this and that. I even stopped by my old house. I wasn't born in Kansas, but it's where I have my very first memories, and this little house was the first one I remember. I sent a picture to my older brother and sister and we had a nice little text chat about how much they loved that house and Kansas and for some reason that was just really special to me. I'm glad I was able to find our house and send them a little memory. 


It just so happened to be Valentine's Day while we were there, so we celebrated in style, eating a picnic lunch in the hotel lobby to save some money. haha. I wouldn't have it any other way though. The boys got a little gift of stickers and coloring books and sunglasses. Big stuff I tell ya.


On Wednesday morning Landon had some meetings scheduled, but thankfully he had been able to reschedule them for the afternoon before because holy goodness sakes. Tuesday night was horrible. Emerson fell asleep after about an hour of whining, Oliver fell asleep after about two hours of fussing and crying. Then two hours later Oliver work up - not to sleep again. He wouldn't sleep in his bed, he wouldn't sleep in our bed, he wouldn't sleep in the chair with me. The boy would not sleep. After about two hours of me trying to get him to go back to sleep I woke Landon up to give it a try. He took turns with me for about an hour and Oliver still would not sleep. So at about three in the morning he called the hotel we were supposed to check in at later that afternoon and asked if we could have a very early check in. They agreed to it, and I have never packed our stuff so fast as I did that night. By the time Landon came back with the luggage cart, our bags were all packed we were ready to go. Thankfully the boys fell right to sleep in the car while we drove the hour to our next and final stop. We checked into the hotel around 5 that morning, in the hotel room we were exhausted but of course the boys were wide awake. Thank goodness for PBS and their sweet little shows. Oliver cuddled and watched/dozed while we lay on the beds to rest for a little while before having breakfast and Emerson was happy to watch the shows too. 


Landon had arranged for a few meetings on Wednesday morning in town, so after eating breakfast and getting ready for the day, the boys and I took Landon to yet another meeting and then we drove around town a little bit and stopped in at two preschools to check them out for Emerson in the Fall. I really just wanted to see the facility and meet the directors of the programs and was happy to be able to do that. I was hoping to visit one more preschool, but we ran out of time that morning, because we had to go meet Landon's parents who graciously agreed to come meet us in Kansas and watch the boys while we looked at houses. And oh, how very thankful were we for them doing that. We could have looked at houses with the boys... but oh my goodness, it would have been one hot mess. SO thankful for his parents coming to entertain the boys while we looked around. 


And I think I'll stop there for today. I have more to share about our trip and about house hunting, but that will need a post all of its own.

Happy Thursday to you all!