The house had only been posted on HAR for a couple hours when I scrambled across our little rent house, burst through DK’s studio doors, placed my laptop front and center and breathlessly exclaimed “DK, I’ve found our house. This is our house.”
We’d only been searching for a couple months and were thrilled to finally bust an official move with our good friend Josh Hill, he’s a realtor and the most resourceful, open minded, enthusiastic and energetic guy you could ever hope to have help guide you in this huge life decision. I frantically texted him begging “Can we go see it today?!” He was out of town but promised we’d get on it first thing Monday morning. But I couldn’t wait. I dreamed about it, memorized every detail and measurement, and prayed, mostly giving thanks. First thing after church the next morning, I drove DK and Jordan to the house and my heart was racing.
Parked outside, across and down the street a few houses, my heart soared and I began imagining our life in this house. Kids in the yard, Jordan learning to ride a bike, parties underneath the Magnolia tree out front, I was spilling over with tears and disbelief. See, I was so certain during our search that we’d know that we knew that we knew that God had set aside the perfect house for us that now we’d found it… and I was overwhelmed by the fruits of that faith.
We drove by very slowly a few times. DK was excited too, but being the balance to me that he is, tried to calm me and be somewhat realistic. We decided to head home, but a surge in my heart had me flip the car around and tell DK “Just one more pass!!” And that’s when we first saw her. She must have seen us stalking her house but here came Sandra down the front sidewalk to retrieve her Sunday paper. “DK, roll down your window!”
I pulled up in front of the house and hollered over DK through the window. “Hi!! I’m sorry if we’ve freaked you out, but we’re the Kilgores and we’re coming to see your beautiful house as soon as possible!!” She waved and said some polite things back and then we waved goodbye. We’d later learn she went back inside and told Rick, her husband of 48 years, “I just met the family that’s going to buy our house.”
After seeing the house first thing Monday morning, it was unanimous between the 3 of us. We made an offer. With our offer, I wrote a letter to the owners explaining who we were and what we dreamed of for the house. From there the details are as you can imagine. The waiting, the finances, the paperwork, the waiting. I kept reminding DK about the need to every day let go of this house and trust. Because we were both self employed at the time, it took awhile to work through the process and jump through the hoops of proving we were capable of a mortgage. And as a result of this process taking so much time, they accepted another offer and we lost the house.
I remember it clearly. Sitting with DK in his studio, Josh on speakerphone. “I’m so sorry guys.” We all sighed heavily and took a moment.
I walked out of the studio and into our guest room where my studio was set up at the time. I put on my headphones and listened to some Brooke Fraser. I said another prayer of thanks to God for showing us what we could have, that we are capable and that He would carry us through this to find another house. I began to feel this crazy peace settle over me and I could really feel the Lord smiling down on me. A moment later, I jumped out of my chair and ran across the house, bursting through DK’s studio doors. “Babe. (heavy breathing) We’re not supposed to give up on the house. It’s still ours.
A week later, that offer fell through.
We closed on December 28th of 2012.
The Stages of Shock – Moments after closing on our first house together.
The experience wouldn’t have been as rich without the opportunity we’ve had in getting to know the owners and learning about the history of their lives in the house. Built in 1944, this house has been in their family since 1954 and they were married under the archway in the living room. (It’s also believed the house is haunted.) We walked the yard together and they taught me about the plants and shrubs, where each blossom came from and how to care for it all. We had dinner together in the house and Jordan fell in love with them. We’re so blessed to know them and we love to see them each time they stop by while swinging through town. Josh says it’s very rare for owners and buyers to have a relationship like this, but considering the life of this house, I think it only makes sense.
Though the last year has been extremely trying and difficult due to the strained process of completing the restoration, we still truly love this house and are more connected with it than we’d ever imagined. We changed a few major things (I’m excited to post about the process) but have maintained and stayed true to the original structure, charm, design and spirit of the house. We are ecstatic and feeling beyond blessed to continue on the life of this house.
C’est la vie,