We made it!

What a whirlwind of an experience. 

We put an offer in for the home we fell in love with on October 4th. 

Three weeks later we faced road-block #1 with the first bank we went with. 

In early November, we switched to a new bank and waited for three weeks to hear whether we were approved or not. 

We found out on Black Friday, November 25th, that our loan was approved but had some contingencies we needed to take care of. 

After taking care of the contingencies, the bank experienced more back-ups and delays with inter-office colds and flus, processing errors and always needing something extra. 

December 12th we found out that we almost weren't going to get the house. We waited and waited and waited, hoping everything would be okay.

December 20th, we found out that it worked out after all and that we'd be able to close on December 23rd, two days before Christmas. 

We loaded up our belongings into boxes, took down our furniture, rented a moving truck and lined up friends to help, only to find out the morning of signing papers that we wouldn't be able to close that day after all (the bank took the day off for the holidays...)

Frustrated and discouraged and with no place to stay over the holidays, we decided to rent a room at a hotel and have our own "mini-Christmas" there before Christmas Eve. On our way to the hotel on the 23rd, we received a call from our real estate agent letting us know that the seller heard what happened to us and felt bad for us and decided to give us our keys early as a Christmas present. We were going to get to move in before Christmas after all!

So, we stayed overnight at the hotel, opened our pathetically wrapped presents (paper bag material and newspapers!), enjoyed coffee with a view of Portland on Christmas Eve morning and then loaded up the bed of a friend's borrowed pick-up with our bed, couch, and of course, Christmas tree. 

We were officially going to be spending Christmas Eve in our new home. 

It's very surreal to think that the first night in our first home was on Christmas Eve, and it was quite the Christmas present to wake up to! We literally had nothing but our bed and one outfit each with us, but we didn't care. We were finally in our home. :)

Friends came over to help move and paint the next day, and then on Tuesday we got the call that our home had recorded meaning we were officially official owners of our home. No more back and forth phone calls, no more bad news, no more roller-coastering, no more exasperation with the bank, no more disappointment... God was faithful and brought us an amazingly beautiful house in a great area and with a great interest rate to boot!

We are settling in comfortably, but discovering that owning a home has its own share of expenses... now that we have our home, it seems like every space needs its own "thing," from drawer organizers to stainless steel step cans, to lamps and curtains, to blinds and garage door openers and everything in between. I have to remind myself that I don't need everything for the house all at once, and I have to be okay that the house probably won't be ready inside for at least a year. :)  

I think one of the best parts about owning a home is that I can play my piano again! 

I think about what the purpose was in going through this and what God was trying to teach us. I know that I failed the patience test many times, and for that I am humbled. It was more that I couldn't deal with the ups and downs every single day, and wanted certainty one way or another. I felt like we lived in ambiguity and limbo for 2 1/2 months, and I just wanted to know what was going to happen. I know God carried us during those times, and I am mad at myself for letting stress take away some of the enjoyment of the fall season since I was checking my email and voicemail nearly 24/7 waiting for updates. 

Throughout the whole process Timothy just said, "no matter what happens, it will be good. If God doesn't want us to have the house, it only means He has something better. And if He lets us get the house, it means it was right for us. Win-win."
He was totally right, and I think I've also learned that I need to trust my husband more. 

Now we can have our friends over again! :)


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