getting our ducks in a row

In our backyard there is a pond. More accurately, our backyard is a pond. Although serene and full of the cutest goslings and ducklings these days, it's also a marshy mess--neighbor's trash receptacle and inhospitable for playing. (No jokes, for every bird species we've spied, there has also been a floating tv and/or tire.) Our front yard is a parking lot and there's no hiding the roar of the freeway just over the retaining wall. As much as we love our little duckling friends and our cheap-ola rent payments, it's a good thing we're moving out next month...

We just bought a house.

(insert excited, shrill wEeEeeeeEeE!)

It couldn't have come at a less convenient time. Up until this point, we'd probably looked at 30 or so houses but nothing was striking our fancy. Last week life was as busy as it gets and we had both agreed to put the house hunting on hold 'til June. (Jeff was shooting 3 weddings in the course of 8 days plus working a 40-hour week at the restaurant, I was working my stretch of four 12-hour shifts, and we had family in town visiting.)

Somehow I had time to dig up some home listings last Wednesday night and spied the cutest 1930s Cape Cod in Minneapolis. Hardwood floors, check. Fireplace, check. Beautiful open staircase, check. Built-in shelving, check. Real backyard, check. Sufficient bedrooms and bathrooms, check, check. We called our realtor in a jiffy and checked it out on Thursday.

First rule of house hunting, never get emotionally attached.
Ooops. That rule flew out the bright sparkling new dormer windows.
It had me at hello.

You know it's the right house for you when your heart begins skipping beats, you're moving in inside your head, and imagining where you'll set up the Christmas tree. It felt like a goofy-grinned, sweaty-palmed, freshman year kind of crush.

I always imagined we'd go for the bargain fixer-upper. Neither of us is extravagantly handy, but we don't mind getting our hands dirty. But this house had recently been foreclosed and already flipped by 2 guys who knew exactly what they were doing. The place was immaculate. New stainless steel appliances, fresh paint, polished floors. We could just move in and enjoy every bit of it.

My only hesitation was the neighborhood. I hadn't felt completely confident about raising our family in urban Minneapolis, was nervous about school districts, busy roads, and over-analyzing crime rates. When we got home I spent the entire afternoon mulling over the details, googling every last detail on the area, and constantly praying that God would give us a strong decision either way.

It's funny, because Jeff hadn't given this house a second thought until we went back for a second showing on Friday morning. He was still bent on the foreclosed fixer-upper down the street, when all along, I had been the one scheming on the project houses and he leaning toward the move-in readys. I think seeing it again in light of the fixer-upper made him realize that (my heart-throb house) was the sweetest deal.

Friday afternoon we made our first offer and by Saturday afternoon Jeff had signed the purchase agreement (while I was at work). Crazy how fast it all happened. What a sweet roller coaster ride.

This week we had our inspection. Es todo bueno!! Now all we have to do is:
Wait, wait for closing.
Share the pics with you, my friends.
Score some cute new furniture.
Learn something about window treatments.
Scheme on decorating.
Grow a garden, for real.
Buy a lawn mower.
A million other things.

But first, breathe and celebrate!
It's been so very hot here lately. (Makes me even more excited about filling up a kiddy pool in our new backyard for G.) Last night we hit Coldstone Creamery for a celebratory scoop:

Life is sweet.


jen @ homeinthecountry said...

Congratulations! How exciting! We, too, debated about buying a house in Minneapolis (when we lived there), and ultimately bought a super-cute 1920s house (ours needed serious work, though!). :) I can't wait to see pictures of your new home!

Susan said...

Looking forward to lots of pics of your family living the swell life in your SWELL NEW HOUSE! CONGRATULATIONS and
PS You know, they say that a new baby usually comes with a new house...happened for us!

Anonymous said...

congrats! sounds like quite the dream come true!

summer said...

oh my GOODNESS! congratulations, jessica!! this is so very exciting. i just cannot wait for photos. happy new home to you!

Anonymous said...

Oh Jessica that's wonderful news! So excited for you guys...think of all the fun decorating and crafty projects you have ahead! Make sure you take a sweet photo of your family at the front door when you walk in together for the first time as owners! :)

Chelle said...

YOU DID!!!!!!!!!!

Oh Jes...so happy for you guys. It's sounds amazing and perfect and so you guys. Wow, really overjoyed for you. Really, really.
Now praying for an extra heaping does of grace and stamina to get you through to being settled into your new home sweet home.

In the meantime, totally jumping for joy for you over here. And looking forward to hugging you and G. very soon. Need to email you.


Cottage Mommy said...

Woohoo! So, so excited for you and your family! Your new house sounds positively dreamy and right up my alley! Can't wait to see pics!!!!

{Jenna Lou} said...

Congrats!! Isn't it funny how once you stop looking the perfect thing just falls into your lap?

Can't wait to see the new diggs!!

Jenny said...

Congrats Jess! That is really exciting news I can't wait to see pictures.

Katie {My Paisley Apron} said...

Yay congrats!!! I hope it goes smoothly. I was surprised by how much work it was just to buy a house, but maybe it's easier when you work with people who flip them and therefore buy/sell more often. Can't wait to see pics!!!

JSchaller said...

Congratulations, Jess! It seems that more often than not I hear stories like yours. God just drops one in your lap when you've been thinking, "Oh, forget it!". Blessings on your move!

AndiMae said...

Oh, Jess! Seriously smiling the biggest smile over here for you guys! So so happy + excited for you! I love how in both of our little families, God totally had everything in His hands and had the perfect sweet homes all picked out for us. Really, really looking forward to seeing you next week (are you still coming?)and talking about being new homebuyers!!

Amanda said...

Could your life be ANY busier right now?! Congrats on the big purchase and here's to many adventures in your new home...which I'm sure you'll have no problems decorating.

Sandra said...

Congratulations! Best wishes on getting it all done!

Sara Christine said...

You probably get this all the time, but you have a ridiculously gorgeous baby! Too cute. He should be a Pampers model! :)

Emily Ryan said...

that is oh so exciting!! can't even wait to see the pictures!!

Kayt said...

Does it have a nanny room?? I'm so excited for you guys and there are more good things to Minneapolis than bad! Although I am still a St. Paul girl myself. Can't wait to celebrate with you!

Bluebelle said...

That's so exciting, congratulations! Looking forward to seeing pictures, it sounds beautiful...

Pixie said...

Congratulations! I myself am trying to buy right now. I found a lovely place but it's a condo conversion from rentals and the taxes are high and there's no condo association in place yet. :(

Your place sounds lovely!

On Second Street said...

how exciting! can't wait to hear more about it.