We have made offers on three houses here in our little mountain town. Here's how it goes down. We get the email saying something meeting our needs and within our price range has hit the market. We change any plans we have for the day and call our realtor telling her we can see it as soon as possible. If it is in a neighborhood we like and it's a house we can see ourselves in, imagine ourselves sitting in front of the fire with hot cocoa, taking in the mountain views, throwing baseballs and softballs in the yard, then we make an offer that hot minute. And then our realtor lets us know that we are one of at least four offers and at least one is cash and at least one is above asking price. Surprisingly they do not choose us.
Apparently this time we came in second place. Always the bridesmaid, never the bride? Close only counts in horseshoes and hand grenades?
The housing inventory is really low right now. Houses trickle onto the market and are snapped up the very same day with full price, cash offers. We cannot hang.
We so badly want to feel settled here. To unpack our boxes and hang our pictures and find the sliding shorts that we know are in one of those boxes in the garage. To paint the walls and hang the basketball hoop and find the best and closest hike. To be home.
We try to be patient. We try not to get our hopes up. We try not to fall in love with a house that we want to make our home.
We still have time. And it has been proven time and time again that our timeline is mediocre at best and that things will happen when they are supposed to happen. We can be in our rental house until May 31. We have time. That's what Jim and I tell ourselves as we wait for more houses to hit the market as winter (is 60 and sunny in February winter) turns to spring. Thankfully we have a really wise teacher.
Back when we had only made one offer on one house, the kids and I were sitting around the lunch table while Jim was working. On the way home from work he was going to drive past a house to see how far it was from town. (Yes, we're like the Ingalls family. We have to go in to town now.) The boys were lamenting the fact that we hadn't been able to buy a house yet. ** Audrey, 8-year-old Audrey, took a deep breath and said this. And I know it's a direct quote because it was so darn perfect that I wrote it down immediately.
She said, "God already knows what house we're going to buy. Maybe it's the one dad's driving past now. We don't know. But God is directing us to it somehow. It shouldn't be the ones that didn't work."
Seriously. She said that. "It shouldn't be the ones that didn't work."
A while back, I wrote a post about moms being so hard on ourselves and I asked when you feel confident that you're parenting well. Those sentences right there. That's it. She knows there is good and bad and disappointment and joy and God's got it taken care of. I think of how she will be tested in life. How she will hurt. I think of how that knowledge will serve her and give her hope and guide her. I pray she will hold those deep and powerful thoughts close to her as she grows. But mostly, right now, I'm thankful for her sweet, gentle wisdom.
So we wait. And we go to the creek and we throw rocks.
We go to open space and we hike.
We wait for our home sweet home.
**For the record, we do not tell the kids when we make an offer on the house. We do tell them after we get the word that our offer was not accepted. We do not want them to get their hopes up and have them dashed because they are so very eager to be home. At the same time, we do tell them after the fact because we don't want them to think we are just driving around falling in love with houses and not acting on it.