August 27, 2014

its ALMOST a done deal

Well, after MUCH back and forth we finally got some good news today -the seller of the house we're in escrow on has agreed to some of our terms! Hooray! It looks like this house will close after all and I think we're ALL thrilled! That was a LONG process! I'm so relieved, I can't wait to get in there!

Not too much to report other than that, we're in our last handful of days in this sweet rental home, B is plugging along at school and I'm not as emotional as last week so -a win on lots of fronts! I finally finished the wedding I've been working on...it was good for me. I needed a project, a distraction, and something familiar in these last few weeks, this wedding was a blessing to me in a lot of ways. It was also bittersweet because it was my last wedding in Waco (well, as a resident anyway) and it was in my church...I found myself getting nostalgic and homesick as I worked my way thru these images but it was cathartic too. Sigh. Moving is hard.

We tried a new church this past week, leaps and bounds better than our previous experience here but still a far cry from what we're after. The pastor was on vacation so I think we're in agreement it deserves another go. Today B and I are meeting some friends for ice cream after school, looking forward to that. :) Baby steps toward normalcy over here, thanks for checking in. Now, head on over HERE to see a wedding I just blogged! xo

August 21, 2014

house stuff

I get asked about the ol' house situation a lot so now is a good time for an update...since I actually have one! It's so funny to me that any one other than my mom still reads this ol' blog...but you do, so thanks for that, folks!

Okay, so, after 3 attempts we FINALLY got under contract with the 2nd house we've tried to buy here in CA. Well, the seller of this beloved little house is an investor who has never lived in the house, he just bought it, flipped it, and put it back on the market. The problem with this is, he has lots of properties like this and this house isn't his big priority -BUMMER for us. Timelines comes and go, and his motivation to do ANYTHING seems quite small to non-existent. Couple that with his realtor who seems to be eternally out of the office/on vacation and its just maddening getting any form of communication going. Well, my realtor has been casually showing me houses here and there "just incase" we can't get this deal closed. What's so crazy is I asked her to show me a new listing yesterday and she thought I was talking about a house 2 doors down (similar address so easy mistake), so, I showed up in front of the house and she was 2 doors down, so we saw both! What's crazy is I hated the house I wanted to see but was SO INTRIGUED by the house she thought I wanted to see! (I would have never even looked at it based on the HORRID photos online). Well, its a bank owned property that needs some serious work BUT, it has GREAT bones and TONS of potential. So, it got me thinking. I came home and told Adam about it, he was intrigued as well, but we are both still married to the idea of "our" house working out. Well, FINALLY yesterday the seller made SOME movement. Its looking like "our" house will end up working out but we're still waiting to make sure some things get fixed before we dive in. Its so nice having a "backup" plan though, just incase! Up until this point there hasn't been anything I would even consider making an offer on, so its nice knowing options exist (esp as we're getting down to the wire on our temporary housing situation).

So, hopefully in a matter of days we'll have a concrete plan - that would be great. A house just came up for sale on this beloved rental street of ours, sadly its listed at $799K -no can do. :( The neighbors keep telling me "did you see a house is for sale???" Um...yeah, I do SEE it but, a TAD out of our reach! Sigh...I wish!!! B has made friends on this street and its so great seeing her having fun. I let her stay up late last night b/c I couldn't bear to make her come inside and stop playing -being tired at school seemed like a way better option to me. :)

Things have gotten better as this week has progressed, but its been a tough one for me...the moving has definitely hit me and its been a big adjustment. I miss Waco every day, badly, but I love waking up to the southern CA sunshine and feeling the cool morning as I take B to school (which daddy will resume tomorrow :). Lots to be thankful for, but allowing myself to be sad and feel the weight of this move too, as one of my friends put it "if you weren't sad then that means you didn't truly LIVE in Waco." Agreed. xo

HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO MY SISTER, STEPHANIE!! 40 AND FABULOUS!!!

August 19, 2014

today was better

Well, I just did drop off #2 and today was a better morning, I didn't even cry! (probably b/c I'm all cried out after yesterday...3 hours straight will do that to ya). B said her first day was "good" -she said she didn't meet any one new and she played alone at recess but she said that was "okay" too. She went to her first gymnastics session yesterday and I think that was really good for her! They wanted to see what skills she has so they know which class to place her in. I think it made her feel really good that they said she was "so close to moving up to the next level" -they want her to take a couple more beginner classes and then they'll move her up to the next class which she is pumped about. I think its safe to say yesterday was way harder on me than her, I just keep praying she'll meet at least 1 new friend soon. Sigh. I also think yesterday was so hard for me b/c I'm also dealing with my own feelings and sadness about our move. Its been so nuts since we left Waco and I don't think I've had too much time to process my own sadness about leaving. I LOVED Waco and would have been happy to stay there forever, so I need to grieve and allow myself to feel sad and miss my friends, home, church, etc.. As good as it is to resume life with my "old" friends, there is still a lot of heartache there about leaving a place I love so much and that's okay. This move is a big adjustment for all of us, it was weird not having Adam home until around 5pm last night! I know that's how a lot (if not most) of how the world works, but we've never had traditional schedules like this so, its going to take some getting used to. I heard B tell Adam this morning "I hardly saw you yesterday" and I'm sure it feels like that! We're used to Adam being home all the time with us, even though he's in his office working he's still present and we both miss him.

In other house news...........we still have NONE. Ay yi yi, we STILL have nothing in writing from the seller about the "fixes" we requested so that is just maddening. We are really hopeful this sale will go through, but this waiting is pretty much torture. Meanwhile we have 12 more days in this house, its been a soft place to land and we're thankful for it, but also ready to move on. Life in the in between is just plain hard.

Well, I've been neglecting a wedding that I NEED to get after today so I'm gonna go do that. Thanks for checking in and for your prayers for B, means a lot. xo

August 18, 2014

that was hard

Its been a pretty busy time over here, we've been out and about a lot visiting with friends, taking B to explore LA, spending our evenings with our neighbors, etc.. We've been intentional about using these 2 weeks to really do things that are going to be harder to do once real life starts. Well, real life started today, and thus begins the "new normal." I just got back from dropping B off at school, that was really really hard. I thought the first day of kindergarten would be the hardest drop off, I was wrong. Typically Adam always comes to B's first day and our family of 3 does it together, well, today was Adam's first day of orientation which began at 8am so he couldn't make it  - I needed him. On the way to school I got a text from one of B's friend's from school in Waco (well, from her grandma, not from her) and it was a photo of Brennan's best friend and her other really good friend from school on their first day, I think it may have been a mistake to show B but I also felt like I was supposed to. It ripped my heart out seeing her 2 school friends in their uniforms on the first day, B should be with them smiling away and with no cares in the world, but instead she handed my phone back to me, with a hurting look on her face and I fought back the tears as I said "It looks like Alice got a haircut!" And B said "and a new backpack."

I hated the way B's new school did the first day, we hadn't met B's teacher and all the students are looking for a sign with the teacher's name on it and it was total chaos. We had the hardest time finding her teacher and it just felt awkward to not have a proper introduction. I went with B to her class (along with the whole herd of parents/students, etc.) and they had B sitting at a table with 2 boys and 1 girl but the girl wasn't there! I kept praying she would show up, how hard to not even have a girl at her table!! I knew I had to leave quickly b/c I could feel the tears coming and I didn't want to break down in her classroom. I kissed her on the cheek, told her I loved her and literally ran to my car where I collapsed into tears as soon as I got in. That was hard. I know kids are resilient, I know in a matter of time this will seem so silly and like a distant memory, but today, in this moment, I feel like I just left my heart in a strange place and walked away, and it kills me. I hate moving.

Yesterday we tried a new church, and it was just plain awful. I know we won't be able to replace UBC and I had no illusions coming here that we would, but I was reminded yesterday of just how unique UBC is and how that community was one of a kind. All 3 of us walked out discouraged and B said "I know where the perfect church for us is, in Waco." I agree, B, I miss it too. I hate moving.

Sorry, for not blogging for a while this post is a big downer, but I'm admittedly not in the best mental/emotional place at the moment...I'll get better, it will just take time.

I took photos of my loves on their first day, can't wait to have them both home and hear how everything went...big day of firsts in the Winn household today! Thanks for checking in, all, prayers for my girl today are more than appreciated. xo

 
 
 
 
 
 

August 9, 2014

Day 9

Well, we moved...and its been pretty crazy ever since. Leaving Texas was hard, like I knew it would be, but truth be told -the actual leaving was much easier on me then when we left Pasadena 6.5 years ago. I'm not sure what to attribute that to but I do think hiring movers and cleaners helped with a lot of the stress that comes with moving but the leaving friends/house/life part didn't throw me into the emotional tailspin that leaving CA did. Don't get me wrong, it was really hard and I don't ever want to do it again but it was bearable. I miss Texas every day but with each day I am reminded of how much I love California and am so thankful to be here. Hands down the hardest part of all of this is watching B. When my mom left on Wednesday that "vacation' feeling came to a quick end and her demeanor hasn't been the same. I miss my spunky, happy girl. :( I know it will just take time, change is hard...I get it. We went to my friend's in-laws house the other day, that was lovely. I've spent a lot of time with those folks and they welcomed B with open arms and she spent all.day.long. in their pool playing and it made this mama's heart happy. Yesterday we took her to the Getty, Adam had never been and I had only been once so it was fun to see the art and take in the gorgeous views of LA. When we got home I asked B if she wanted me to make her favorite pasta dinner or if she wanted daddy and I to take her to our favorite pizza joint, to my surprise she chose for me to make dinner -I think she wanted something familiar more than she wanted the meal, that girl never turns down pizza! She walked into the kitchen and said "it smells soooo good" and I said "does it smell like home?" and she said "yes." Sweet girl. She made 2 wishes with pennies at the Getty, she didn't tell me her wishes but said they were the same, I asked if they involved Texas and she said "yes." Sniff. I miss it too, B.

It really has been a crazy 9 days, we hit the ground running with house stuff -lots of inspections, vendors coming to the house to give bids, etc.. We are currently waiting for the sellers to respond to our list of requests as far as repairs...fingers crossed. It needs a new roof which we knew, but it also needs some major chimney repairs that are spendy! Yikes. Meanwhile I'm day dreaming about all the changes I want to make...most will have to wait but a few will get done before we move in and I can't wait to see the small transformations to make it "ours."

Our current living situation is a bit of a dream... I refer to this neighborhood as "the land of nod" -its almost magical here! The house is an absolute GEM and the folks on this street have been SO nice to us! We've had drinks with our neighbors several times already and they have brought over toys for B to play with, the neighborhood girls have asked B to play, etc. They keep saying how they're plotting to keep us on the street! I'm sold! Except...there is NO way we could afford to live here, boo! The house we're renting would sell for over a million easily...its so great. We're just trying to take in each day and be thankful for the month we get to call this place home. :) (B actually isn't a huge fan of the house (odd) and she says she likes our house that we're moving into better -glad to hear it! :). I think she's just eager to live in her own space, and I totally get that. As much as I love living here I am really really eager to have my "own" space and things surrounding me.  My girl and I are definitely two of the same in many ways.

Well, that's pretty much what's been going on with us, a lot of house details and checking out LA to show B all that it offers before she starts school. Tonight we're having dinner with friends so that will be great, really looking forward to that. Just diving back into our new life and trying to feel at home as soon as possible. Prayers for B would be so so appreciated. Thanks for checking in. xoxo