This blog post is part of a series that I began for telling our story. You can read the first post here.

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As I mentioned yesterday, we had flown to Texas to look for a place to live the previous spring. I hate house shopping. It is the WORST. We have bought and sold four houses (4!!!!) in our marriage, and the buying part is always terrible. Not the actually sitting down and signing away your life part, that actually isn’t terrible if you don’t think too hard about the numbers. The part I always hate is looking for houses.

It starts with high hopes, dreams, and wishes. You tell the realtor, who you are just starting to get to know, all about what you’d like to have. How many bedrooms, bathrooms, square footage, yard, everything. Then you talk about your budget. Then you start to look at houses that are either far too expensive or far below your expectations. And you cry. Several times. And you adjust your expectations.

As it turned out, the house we ended up buying was the very first house we looked at. We initially rejected it because it only had two bedrooms, and we had hoped for three. But it had a large living room, a separate dining room, two full bathrooms, and the two bedrooms were spacious. We decided that we could live without a dedicated “study” at home, and just squeeze a desk into the guest room.

Other than the two bedroom issue, we loved the house immediately. It was quirky and newly carpeted. It had a fireplace and a wet bar. It had plenty of closet space, including a deep one in the hallway that could fit our upright freezer. It had a carport instead of a garage, but also had a small golf cart garage to the side and two outdoor closets, so plenty of storage for seasonal and outdoor items. It had a huge deck off the back that wasn’t in great shape, but was safe and sturdy. And best of all, it was in one of the nicest neighborhoods in town.

We actually arranged with the seller (the owner had died, so it was an estate sale) to rent the house for the final two weeks before closing, not to live in it yet but to be able to put our furniture in the house. It made it possible for the timing of our move to line up with closing on our house in Ohio. Somehow everything miraculously fit. We had gotten rid of several things before moving, and still managed to have space without over-crowding the house. Once we closed, we had members helping us to paint the interior (everything was white, and I couldn’t stand it). We hung curtains and unpacked and worked and attempted to settle in, while waiting for everything of that first summer to settle down.

We had no idea just how much that house would be lived in…

Next post coming tomorrow.