UncategorizedThe Big Secret Project Part II April 3, 2015Thank y’all for all of your excitement and encouragement yesterday! I love that you guys are as excited as we are! Welcome to the roller coaster that is finding our next house: Big Secret Project Part II. As I said in yesterday’s post, God blew us away with how the sale of our house went down. We’ve been craving another project for a while now. Again, not because we don’t love our current house, but we’re just weird like that. We sort of love this whole renovating and designing journey. But for us, finding the next place isn’t as easy as it might be for some. You see, we love, LOVE, LOVE our current neighborhood. As I mentioned yesterday, we moved here with a mission in mind. Sure it’s nice that it’s walking distance to downtown, our favorite restaurants, the zoo, a large park, our church, and Anthropologie. And I LOVE that Target is a five minute drive away. The location really is perfect. But more than that, we love the people here. When we first moved into this house two years ago, we were shocked with the hospitality and community feel that we were greeted with. We knew more neighbors after our first weekend here than we knew in our two year stint at our first home. We’ve loved getting to know all of the people around us and the thought of leaving is really sad. Our vision when we moved here was to be in this area for the long haul. We knew that it would likely mean living in a few different houses, but we wanted to invest and live alongside the same people for years. So, that seems like the hard part, right? We know where we want to be, so just pick out a house. Unfortunately, it isn’t that easy in this area. We’re talking about a fairly small neighborhood that investors are SWARMING. An un-fixed house hasn’t been on the market in quite a while. All of a sudden, you’ll just see dumpsters appear in yards of houses you didn’t even know were available and an investor starts flipping it. We’re so grateful for the investment potential here, but it does make finding our next spot really hard. About a month after our house went under contract, a house on the outskirts of our neighborhood came up for sale by owner. The price was really high, so investors weren’t interested in it. I was thrilled! It was so cute on the outside – a lovely little green cottage and it had huge oak trees in the front yard. It was so charming. We went and saw it and really liked it. Chris had some concerns about the drainage and flow of the yard, but we knew and inspection would show us any issues. We couldn’t pay what they were asking and have an investment potential left, so we knew that could be a huge issue, but we put in an offer we were comfortable with anyway. Our offer was accepted and we had it under contract! It passed inspection! There were a few issues we would need to fix, but that’s to be expected on an old house like this. It felt like God had provided the perfect place and was coming through in what seemed like an impossible situation. We started making our plans. We had addition plans drawn up for the back of the house and I was super excited about that! We were adding on a large living room and a master suite with a claw foot tub (my absolute favorite part). We laid out the kitchen, chose walls to remove, and I started designing. This rug was purchased for the kitchen I already had totally designed. We were to close on this house on April 7th. When I first mentioned The Big Secret Project, it was this place. We worked it out with our buyers to rent our current house until August 1st! So we had four months total after closing to renovate the new place. Plans were in place to hit the ground running the minute we closed. I couldn’t have been more excited! But Chris started having reservations. I didn’t understand them. He just had an uneasy feeling about the way the yard was sloped and water issues. I kept saying, “It passed inspection! They said to put in a french drain and it would be fine!” This was our house. We had our plans. I’d designed so much of it! Paint colors were chosen, light fixtures picked out. God had provided. His uneasiness didn’t go away and he couldn’t really explain it. So a few weeks ago, he called a contact he had at the city and asked if the person over flood zones and storm drains could come out to the house. They scheduled a meeting. Thank goodness Chris had that check in his spirit about this – God saved us from what would’ve been a disastrous situation. With the lay of the land surrounding this lot, all water from several main roads drains to this one lot. The air conditioner had been under water before, there was likely mold in all of the air ducts. The beautiful addition we planned could’ve flooded at the first heavy rain. They told us it would’ve cost us thousands and thousands to fix this and we probably would’ve never been able to sell it in the future. All of our hard work over the last few years to make profits and pay down debt could’ve been gone in that one fail swoop. As sad as it was, we ran as fast as we could in the other direction. We got out of the contract that was thankfully contingent upon inspection. We were back to square one. Since that house, there have been several potential options and all have completely fallen through. We currently have no prospects. Not one house available. Not one single lead. Chris has said throughout this journey that he believed God was teaching us patience and telling us to just wait on Him. In trying to control it (because that’s what we do best), we went and looked in other areas and other houses, but had overwhelming peace that God wants us to stay in our area. It’s frustrating that we know we’re supposed to stay here, nothing is available, and we’re running out of time. Yes, we have four months, but we want to do the bulk of renovations before moving in so that baby Rosie isn’t living in sheetrock dust and paint fumes. It would be hard to rent after that because most things in our area are a minimum of a 6-month lease…oh and we have 110 Great Dane. This feels like an impossible situation. I keep going over and over it in my rational mind: if there are no houses available and we have this deadline, then we aren’t supposed to stay in this neighborhood. And I’ll immediately hear God say, “Wait on me.” But you aren’t providing a house. Don’t you know we’re running out of time here? Wait on me. But, you gave us Baby Rosie and Baby Rosie can’t live in a construction zone. Wait on me. God must not be hearing me, so my mind starts screaming, “BUT A RENOVATION TAKES THREE TO FOUR MONTHS AND YOU HAVE A CLOSING PERIOD ONCE YOU FIND A HOUSE AND OUR MOVE OUT DATE IS LESS THAN FOUR MONTHS AWAY NOW!!!” And God quietly, patiently, and lovingly says, “Rest and wait on me.” He reminds me how He basically dropped buyers for our house off on our doorstep. He reminds me how we married each other having no interest in design and renovating and God revealed that to us at the same time, weaving our separate threads into a beautiful story of adventure. I remember how God has provided time and time again. He has always exceeded our expectations, though we don’t deserve it. And He’s given me an overwhelming peace that He will do it again. If He wants us to be in this area, continuing on the mission we set out on two years ago, He will provide a house, though that feels impossible. He is sovereign over the timing, the money, all of the concerns. We just have to patiently wait. I know many of you were hoping to see pics of the next house today and man, I wish I had some to show you! But here’s what I can tell you: 1.) We will be renovating another house, top to bottom. 2.) You’ll be able to follow all progress here on the blog. 3.) Whenever it happens, it will be good and somewhat different from our current house. I’m pushing the design boundaries in my ideas. There will be new and inspiring design ideas coming your way!