Thursday, September 24, 2015

Save the Best for Last, or "The Week the Steeles Almost Bought a House"

I believe firmly in signs. The way certain things, moments, feelings can send a message to us for better or worse. All signs pointed to yes for a certain townhome AJ and I spent the past week or so dealing with. The story begins last week as I did a quick Zillow search the other night while watching “Little Women: LA” (I love me some little lady drama but it doesn’t require my full attention. If it does, I have problems). I found a cute place and showed it to AJ. He is used to me showing him cute things of many varieties online but he seemed excited about this place too. Last Friday after going out to dinner, I suggested we drive by. We did and as I popped out of the car to grab a flier, the couple who owned the house came out and offered us a tour. Well…..that did it. We loved the layout, one of the walls was painted chevron (!!!), the neighborhood was perfect, and the icing on the cake was when the couple said “You remind us of us when we bought our first home! We want you to live here!” We are still in a lease on our current townhome but thought about it all weekend. 
On Saturday I called the owner and we discussed some more details about the home. I looked at AJ and we both just knew and decided, ok, let’s do this. The owner texted us smiley and heart emojis expressing how happy she was we would take good care of their home. We called our realtor pal who is a total rockstar, by the way. By Monday morning we had the financial details worked out with the lender (we had received a pre-approval a few months ago) and were all set up to tour it again Monday evening with our realtor. I picked up AJ at his school because we wanted to drive the distance from his school to “our house” together to see how long it was. The whole way there we discussed important matters like where the TV would go, what our first meal in the house would be, good walking paths nearby, etc. Once we entered the home we fell in love all over again. The owner even left us a COLDSTONE GIFT CARD and was all smiles and excited for us. We went back to the realtor’s office and drafted up an offer. A great offer. We were thrilled, a little scared, but mostly excited. I texted a few pals pics of the place and we both called our families. Then we went to Cafe Rio (because hello, too excited to cook is a real thing). We both went to bed that night dreaming of mantle decoration ideas and cute throw rugs (well, maybe that was just me). The next day when my class was at morning recess I texted our realtor, “Any news?” She said she was on it and had been in contact with the sellers but we didn’t have an official yes yet. More waiting. That afternoon I stopped by the car dealership to get an oil change and right there in Karl Malone Toyota the call came......

They rejected our offer. WHAT?!?? Our realtor was completely shocked and we were too. Our best guess is that the other offer came in just after ours and didn’t include a clause about paying the fee to get us out of our current lease. I was flabbergasted. I called AJ and we gave each other the pep talk that it “wasn’t meant to be.” But it had a LOFT, and CUTE STAIRS (yes, stairs can be cute and these ones were). I maintained my composure even after the oil change guy came out to deliver the news that I needed a new “cabin filter” whatever the F that is. I met some friends for dinner that night and it was a delight to catch up and get my mind off our real estate fumble. But when I got home the tears fell. We had so many signs!! It was perfect! But once I stopped the drama queen act  I realized how many things in my life had seemed so perfect and then fell apart. My plans have not worked out. Nope, they’ve fallen apart. BUT beautiful things were created with the pieces. There was that one time I entered grad school on a mission to teach high school history and ended up in 1st grade. And I love it. There were past relationships I was convinced were “the one” and they were hardly that. Not even close. Now I’m married to a better man than I could have ever imagined.  There was my first car that I loved but that died on me not once but twice on Chicago roads. So I sold it and felt like I got to experience the city in a much cooler way without it. There was the cross country college road trip my family went on so I could look at schools in Boston and I ended up loving Gonzaga  in Spokane, Washington and decided to go there.  And then there’s the house. Maybe real estate, like cars, careers,education and relationships is something where things not meant for us fall by the wayside so better, much better, things can come together. If I had to predict what my life would look like, I never, ever, in a million years thought I’d be where I am, with who I am, doing what I am, living where I am, loving what I do. But I do love it. All of it. Maybe the signs aren’t as obvious as I once thought. Maybe the signs are woven deeper, hidden beneath the surface, and are just part of a larger narrative. God sees the whole quilt and I am focused on just a tiny little stitch. Yeah, I think that’s it. And in the meantime, when the timing is just right, we will find a place with a mantle and cute stairs. I have big plans, you know.

1 comment:

  1. I love reading your blog! :) This post reminds me of a quote that I think about often, "At times, all of us run into closed doors. They are rarely pleasant and seldom wanted. However, when seen in an eternal perspective, closed doors may actually be helpful to us as they lead us to open windows of even greater opportunities." It sounds like you've already figured it out though. :) Best of luck to you in your house hunting search!