I hate moving. It’s right up there with injustice, commuter traffic and the jumanji vines that overtake the cute patio area behind our mother-in-law apartment on the list of things I prefer to avoid in life. And yet, at six months pregnant, that’s just what we decided to do.
Why go through this during an already very busy time? Yes, hormones have been suggested as the culprit. Really, a few very good reasons built a convincing argument that led to our crazy home selling, moving, home buying and temporary homelessness adventure. First, our neighborhood had been improving in value steadily the last couple of years since we bought our fixer upper farmhouse and a comparable house just down the street from us was sold high enough that it made us start thinking. Next, we went to Thursday night steaks at the Firehouse Pub near Venise and Farmer Ross and our friends Josh and Mitch. A few Coors Lights, great company, live music and cheap steaks later and Troy was talking about moving further South to be closer to our friends to allow for more mid-week man dates. And finally, as I considered setting up my nursery and nesting in our home, which of course we had just started to get to the place we had been working towards for the last two years of remodeling, I realized that there was something fundamentally wrong with this particular nest: it was just too far from the tree the apple fell off of.
Did I lose you in that convoluted analogy? Well, the process of becoming a mother myself made me want to be closer to my mom. And to my dad, my stepmom, my sister, my grandma, my cousins, our best friends, etc. I started dreaming about convenient baby sitters and days spent with Venise on the farm, watching our kids chase the chickens together.
And so, we did something drastic. We hired my cousin, an ambitious real estate agent just starting her career and eager enough to put up with our harassment as clients (leave a comment if you need an agent, she was great!) and we hunkered down to finish the last of our remodel projects.
It was a wry sort of comedic tragedy to watch ourselves accomplish in 3 weeks what we’d been leading steadily up to for two years, and probably would have taken another two years to complete, were it not for the pressure of an “on the market” date. Finish work was raced through, and a “for sale” sign went up in our yard as my tears flowed down. It was an emotional moment, because though I could not have known how profoundly our lives were about to change, I knew enough of what lay ahead- the stress of finding a home, moving, and saying goodbye to the first home we bought together and had imagined spending many more years together in.
Anyone who has ever sold a home knows what followed: the sparkling clean stove as you struggle to keep the place show ready, the rollercoaster ride of home showings, the negotiations process, inspections, crossing your fingers during appraisal, fixing the items on the inspections list, and the lovely reward after the relief of a successful sale, moving all of your crap. We rushed to move into a storage unit and a room at my grandma’s house while we continued our search for our next nest.
If you’ve ever purchased a home you know about what we went through there as well. Where on the south end should we live? How do we balance a work commute vs. being close to loved ones? Can we live on a busy street if it has the most perfect backyard for summer dinner parties? Is the 3,200 square foot outdated but gorgeous historic three story home with a basement full of doomsday prepping dried and canned food a worthwhile investment or a recipe for a drawn out divorce? Such were the questions we pondered daily, weekly, while fighting southbound afternoon traffic on our way to view houses.
And then, in that simple way that you know was meant to be from the beginning, we found it. The conversation shifted and we began to consider a town that had previously not made the list. And then in that town, we reconsidered a house that had previously been disregarded. We took a chance, we made an offer, and a few weeks of crappy sleep and a rushed signing later, we became home owners once again.