Sunday, September 23, 2012

The World in Review

It has been a long time since I have been on here. Life has been busy, to say the least. My husband got a job promotion, my daughter is getting her first tooth, and we are all getting a house! Alright, let's rewind a little bit and I will tell you how:

We have been living in this apartment for almost four years, now. We've been here as our neighbors have come and gone. We have enjoyed the cherry blossoms off of our second-story back porch every spring. We have gone through a few gentle snows and a lot of icy mornings, rain and thunder. The kitchen is large, we have gas heat, and we are sandwiched between two apartments, making for cozy winters. Our cats are a little bit sad, being only able to roam on the back porch, but I've attempted several times to have an apartment garden, watching my failures with the hope that NEXT TIME I will get it right. We have made this place a home.

We live in a federally-owned apartment complex, but we are not getting rent assistance. I told you about how my husband got a promotion. We were told by the last apartment managers that we wouldn't have to come back in for financial evaluations any more, that we were secure in our living status. Well, we have new management and they didn't get that memo.

We got the notice at the beginning of the month-a financial review. Adam and I both freaked out, expecting to have to vacate in 30 days, knowing that we have no money for an application fee in another apartment complex. The rent has jumped dramatically since we moved in. We got in toward the beginning of the recession. We were lucky- our rent has been static this whole time. After receiving the notice, we immediately started looking for a house.

My mother has been so fantastic and supportive. I told her our predicament and she promised to give us the down if we couldn't get it any other way. I'm looking into first-time home buyer down payment assistance (wow, that's a mouthful!), but I haven't been able to find anything that fits our situation, yet. Maybe I should ask my uncle Stan if he has any ideas...

We got several real estate agents on the job, explaining to them all our predicament, hoping that we would take priority with one of them. At the first house we looked, the real estate agent was very on top of it. She took us through the entire house, showing us both the features and the defects of the house. She was so wonderful that we decided to work exclusively with her.

Later that week, I gave her a list of houses that we would like to visit. We had 6 houses on the list. We plowed through them with focus and determination, noting the good things and the things that would need to be fixed. Usually, there was more that needed to be fixed in our price range than not. One house stank so badly of dog and urine that we would have had to tear up all of the carpet, paint the floor and walls with exterior paint, and pray to God that the rest of the house was sound.

We were not thrilled, but still determined at our 6th and last house. We both went through it singly because Ariadne was asleep, and neither one of us was optimistic.

The house next to it was for sale, too. It looked really nice from the outside, and I thought that there was no way that it could be in our price range, but we decided to look at it anyway. Adam went through first. He came out with a beatific look on his face and said, "I like this one." I knew that this was it, and hoped against hope that it was in our price range.

Ariadne had awoken, so we all toured the house together. Wood floors, two bedrooms and a loft, gas heat and stove, full basement, beautiful back yard. The maple trees were so tall and elegant that I immediately was sold. I thought, "This is a backyard that my daughter can play in." The wind blew in soft gusts and the maples whispered in a gentle hush. I love this house.

The house was bank-owned. We put in an offer, the bank countered, we accepted. The house is now listed as 'pending!' Granted, we have to do the assessment, the inspection, and the actual payment, but we are supposed to have the contract tomorrow.

This is a forever house. This is the house that we want to raise our daughter in. This is a house that we could grow old in. This is our home before we even have the keys. I'm praying hard, hoping against hope, waiting with 'bated breath.

There's so much more that has happened in our lives and I'll tell you about it later but, until then, I will bid you adieu...

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