Monday, October 27, 2014

Good things come to those who wait.

Yes, yes they do! Really. But the saying should really go, "Good things come to those who trust the Lord and wait."

After 17 months of searching, 2 weeks ago tomorrow, we finally bought a house. Closed, signed, official as official can be. {Insert all the happiest dances, cheers and tears here!} Tuesday, October 14th, 2014, I will always remember you fondly.

Rewind 2 months:

We had just returned from our lovely, relaxing 10 day California vacation. Right before our trip, we had seen a listing for a house that really interested us. Unfortunately, our realtor was on vacation the entire week before we left and unable to show it. My husband was also traveling the 3 days before our trip. We called the realtor's office to see if any other realtor could show it before Lee left out of town. No, no one was available because it was the weekend. We tried every way we could think of to see this house before we left for nearly 2 weeks, but to no avail. Frustrated, we gave it to the Lord. If this wasn't the house, so be it. If it was, he could save it for us 2 weeks, right? Well you have to understand something here. Spring and summer are not good times to buy in Charleston, or so we learned. We would literally send our realtor 5-10 listings at a time, and by the time we scheduled to see them, half or more would be sold. Literally. Houses were selling like hot cakes, and if you didn't jump the second one came on the market (like within a day), you were slap out of luck. That's a hard situation to find yourself in when you don't yet live in the city. So, the thought of this house being available 2 weeks later seemed slim to none.

We decided to go on vacation and leave all our house hunting worries behind. We didn't think about, talk about, or look at ANY house listings the whole vacation. Nearly miraculous, as it had been our sole focus all the months prior. We arrive back home Sunday night, and received an email from our realtor Monday morning. Good news! The house we were interested was not only still available, but the sellers had dropped the price $20k! What the what?!? We couldn't believe our eyes. We set up an appointment to go see it that day, and knew immediately upon walking in that this was the one. After looking a dozens and dozens and dozens of houses over the past year, we were beginning to wonder if we'd ever feel, say or know that. But we finally knew that we had found our house. It was everything on our checklist. A 1950's ranch style house that hadn't been renovated since it was built. And it was exactly that, down to the last detail: the square footage, number of bedrooms and bathrooms, a studio space, a fireplace, open living room + dining room floor plan, hard wood floors throughout, and an untouched kitchen and bathrooms we could renovate to our liking. It was a miracle! We seriously kept saying, we need to find a 50's grandma house that hasn't been updated yet so we can put our own touches on it. And guess what. . . the previous owners are the sweetest 91 and 93 year old couple that have no children and finally moved into assisted living. Our house was there all that time, it just wasn't ready for us yet. Sometimes God's promises just take a little time. 

We put an offer in the next day, and after a little negotiating, had an accepted offer a few days later. We got the house quite a bit under our budget which allowed us to get a home renovation loan to finance all the work that needed to be done. Now we were just praying we could get enough money to do all the things that needed done: new roof, new HVAC, total electrical rewire, update plumbing, gut and renovate kitchen and both bathrooms, paint entire house, and refinish hardwood floors. Closing was scheduled the last day of September. At this point it felt like we breathed a huge sigh of relief, all the while taking another deep breath for a whole lot more waiting. But. . . we would most definitely be bringing this baby home to a house. Our house. Our very first house. That was about the best news we could imagine.

Then life got a bit more crazy. The following 8 weeks were a hilarious combination of house guests every weekend, meetings with contractors, gathering an ungodly amount of paperwork (buying a house is SO. MUCH. WORK.), interviewing doulas, choosing appliances, cabinets, countertops, tile, sinks, faucets, shower doors, wood floor finishes, paint colors and roof shingle colors all within our budget, birthing classes, regular work, life and travel, AND trying to figure out a place to live while all the renovations are under way. Whew, I'm tired just typing that. 

That brings us to two Tuesdays ago. The blessed day we finally closed on our first home. Yes, our closing was delayed twice. Yes, the Lord miraculously provided through an early inheritance gift from my grandparents most the money we needed for our downpayment. Yes, it was a lot of waiting, praying, crying and trusting. Yes, the closing costs ended up being $1500 more than we thought. Yes, the whole process has been bigger than us, more expensive that we could afford, and stretched us to the breaking point. But the good news is we serve a big God. He has big plans for me, for you. He likes to be involved in our lives, and I've realized that sadly, the only way that usually happens is when things are too big or too hard for us to do on our own. It allows Him the chance to step in and be who He is. The big, all powerful, all knowing, all providing God!

Our tentative move in date is mid-December. At least we're crossing our fingers for that. We'd love to spend Christmas in our new house, and have a couple weeks to get unpacked and set up for baby girl's arrival the end of January. But, we shall see. If this whole process has taught me anything (and it has, a whole lot actually), it's this: Our ways are not God's ways. Our timing is not His timing. This life of being a follower of Jesus requires radical faith and radical trust. And a lot of times, it's waiting and trusting without knowing the outcome. That's scary, exciting, and nerve wracking all rolled into one, depending on the day.

The next 2 months don't look a whole lot slower than the last few. In 10 days, we're packing up (again) and moving back to NC to live with our gracious in-laws until the house is finished. My husband leaves for his second 2 week Asia work trip the day after. I have 2 baby showers to look forward to while he's gone. Yay! We leave 5 days after he gets back to spend a week in WA with my family for Thanksgiving. Another big yay! And then hopefully, a couple weeks later, we'll be heading back to Charleston to get moved into our brand new home just in time for Christmas. 

In other news, I'm 26w4d pregnant and baby girl is healthy, growing and quite the kicking machine. I'm feeling great and sleeping great too, thankfully. We're just soaking up every last drop of life as we know it, craziness and all. But we're getting more and more excited to meet and hold our girl. 95 days and counting;)

25 weeks
26 weeks


  1. So excited for you guys - and I get this. At least in some measure. Choosing to renovate, and move yet again, while planning a wedding.... taught me a few painful lessons... and continues to teach me. In fact your last blog nearly brought me to tears.

    Can't wait to see the finished project though, I'm sure it will be dreamy!!

  2. This was very encouraging for me. My husband and I are contemplating a move to a big city on God’s calling, possibly around this time next year. One of the huge faith challenges for me is the thought of trying to find somewhere nice for our family to live that we can actually afford. In human terms it’s pretty much an impossibility, but as you say, God’s timing and his provision is always perfect. This was a well-timed read for me, thank you for sharing. x

  3. julie, that's awesome news! glad everything is going wonderful with the house and baby! how exciting! things definitely happen for a reason and all that time you guys waited seemed that it paid off :) hugs and keep on posting on your adventures! always good to hear!