Well, I almost made it to moving day without having an emotional ugly cry moment. Until last night. It's one week from moving day, so I guess I made it pretty far.
I know a "house" by definition is really just a man-made building. There's really nothing special about it, and it's totally perishable. But when you take two young newlyweds who don't know a thing about marriage or living together or fighting fairly (grin) and you move them into said house, fast forward four years later and one babe later, you have a house that's not just any ole' house. But one that's full to the brim of memories. And one that's getting awfully hard to say goodbye to.
When Nathan and I were engaged, we started looking for houses. I remember driving around town with my mom when we spotted an "Open House" sign in the front of (what would be) our yard. The moment we walked in, I fell hard. Partly because it had hardwood floors throughout (love at first sight!) and needed a lot of TLC - it just oozed "potential". But also because I grew up in a house very similar to this one - a tiny ranch with 3 bedrooms and 1 bathroom. I wanted to sign the dotted line that day! I remember calling Nathan immediately and telling him, "I found the ONE!" He came and checked it out, and as luck would have it he loved it too!
We closed on the house in April 2009, and he carried me through the threshold in June that same year. We hit the ground running with projects galore, and we really haven't stopped four years later. In fact, just this past week I found myself with paint brush in hand doing a few touch ups. I just can't help myself when it comes to this house.
There isn't a single surface that hasn't been tweaked, painted, gutted, re-decorated or touched. We have worked from the time we bought the house until the day we put the for sale sign up.
And I love everything about it. Even the things that drive me crazy (like the squeaky floorboards right outside my slumbering boy's room, or the road noise) will be missed.
But more than the work we've done, or the time we've spent, I'll never forget the memories we've made.
Bringing our boy home for the very first time...
(sweet day, where did time go?)
To watching him take his very first crawls . . .
And all the memories in between!
My man will probably roll his eyes when he reads this, but I really am honestly going to miss things like this too . . .
Some of our marriage's biggest "growth opportunities" occurred when we were knee-deep in house projects! ;)
So as we pack up our lives and get ready to move hundreds of miles away from this place we've called home, it's all a little bittersweet . . .
I'm thrilled we'll be closer to the majority of our families, and close to some very dear friends. I'm beyond excited that William will get to spend some much-needed time with family members he hasn't quite gotten to know yet. And I'm excited we get to set out in search for our next place to call home.
But we're also closing a major chapter in our lives, and I'd be lying if I said that wasn't sad. I've made some very dear friends here and it has been so difficult to say goodbye to them this week. I've also had to say goodbye to my parents, resign some volunteer duties from our church, and try and soak up every last sweet second of fun in our town. And the house? Well, with each closing cardboard box we get a little closer to saying goodbye to it too. It feels a little less like home every time we pack up a mirror, take down a photo, or empty out a cupboard.
But God did something so cool that was very specific and personal to me to help make this transition a teensy bit easier. The lady whose buying our house? Her last name is that same as my maiden name, and she loves the house. Like head-over-heels-wants-to-move-in-as-quickly-as-she-can loves it. And I really couldn't ask for anything better. I know all of our blood, sweat and tears over this house was worth it because we're handing the keys to someone who appreciates it.
We've come a long way ole' house...
Thank you for letting us reside here for a season. One of the happiest seasons of our lives. You will never be forgotten.