Friday, October 25, 2013

Week 11 ~ One Year Anniversary in Our New Home

On My Mind ~ Tomorrow marks the one year anniversary of the purchase of our home. What a faith-filled adventure it was buying this home! We were not even looking to move in August of 2012. We figured we were stuck in our declining neighborhood because of the market and economy. Besides, we thought, who would want to buy our home and move into a neighborhood where the cars were broken into constantly, drugs were sold on the corner and police sirens were the norm 24 hours a day? (Fortunately, it turned out that the young twenty-something crowd did want our home.) But that month the home we had wanted for so many years in a different neighborhood went into foreclosure and so began our adventure in a leap of faith. Miraculously, we were approved for a double loan, our offer was accepted and our old home was put on the market. We bought this home and sold the old home in the span of 10 weeks! We even turned enough of a profit on the old home to be able to make some of the desperately needed repairs on our new home. I am still awestruck at how easily it all came together. Not that we didn't experience some swing this financially, we had to go down to using only one car that didn't fit our entire family for about 7 months and also go without a dryer for nearly a year. Those sacrifices were well worth the outcome of a fulfilled dream.
We just finished painting the front door a dark red. Now, we just have to pick a paint color for the shutters and walls.
Good bye, gray and black.

Front picture window and front porch

Front corner of the house and future flower bed

The backyard and back of house
So, here we are a year later. We have cut down by ourselves many trees that were blocking the view of the house. There are still several trees to bring down that need a professional's attention (in the front and back of the property). We are in the midst of clearing hundreds of pounds of vines, strange weeds, poison ivy, and Virginia Creeper. We have replaced a third of the windows, insulated the attic, refinished the bathtub, installed a new basement floor, added gutter guards, graded the front yard to stop the constant flooding into the house, repaired lots of minor plumbing, installed a new circuit breaker, installed lighting (the former owner had pulled all of the fixtures out of the house when she went into foreclosure) and a few other odds and ends. We still need a new roof (but the patch job held through our massive summer rains). As you can see from the pictures ~ there is still plenty of landscaping to do. We keep finding rocks all over the property and are making an outline for a flower bed next spring. As soon as we all stop passing the family cold around, we will get out there and rake like mad. Everywhere I look there are weeds and crazy vines. At least we have gotten almost all of the Virginia Creeper off the house.

In Our Homeschool ~ What a busy week. We did tons of learning although only about 50% of what I had planned actually got done. There was much hopping down rabbit trails this week. The kids are obsessed with The Voyage of the Mimi.  I just can't seem to say no to please, just one more episode each day. We finished Homer Price and the kids immediately wanted to start Centerburg Tales (the sequel to Homer Price). We haven't finished our activities for Homer Price because we are too busy listening to the latest great stories in Centerburg Tales. LOL! We also didn't get to a single spelling lesson because we were too busy having fun with Analogy Crosswords! Also, a little rascal (Tom Sawyer) saw one of his Christmas gifts and thought it was for now (the downfall of buying school books in little spurts is that they think all boxes arriving in the mail are new school material) and can't stop reading it to do my prepared lessons. The book is The Brick Bible: The New Testament. So, we are busy learning and living!

Tom Sawyer's New Adventure ~ Tom Sawyer is now in occupational therapy (OT) two times a week. They are doing some really neat stuff with him. I am glad to see he is really enjoying it, and he doesn't even know that he is having lots of writing therapy. They are also doing lots of sensory work. They call it really cool things like astronaut training ~ LOL! They say that his vestibular system is severely overreactive. That really isn't a surprise. I am hoping that this more intensive approach for a short period of time will help him start building a more successful experience with writing. Goldilocks is being evaluated for OT on Monday. I would be shocked if she doesn't qualify with huge sensory issues. It looks like I will be spending a fair amount of time in the OT office waiting room soon. Thankfully, my kids are experienced waiting room schoolers....

Blessings, Dawn


  1. Your home looks lovely ~ I'm so glad you were able to get it. Love from your Mom

  2. I am so happy that you love your new home...well, I guess not so new now. I know what you mean about being too busy enjoying to get the work done on schoolwork, and that is how we were led down the somewhat unschooling path. I am glad you are getting good therapy. It is hard to find here.

  3. Dawn ~ It's hard to believe it's been a year since you all were going through the house business - it's all looking great, and I like how you say the sacrifices were worth what you have gained! I'm so happy for you all. :-)

  4. It sounds like your move was meant to be!
    I'm glad Tom Sawyer's OT is working well. I am having one of those weeks where I'm not sure it's doing my son any good so it's interesting to hear your experience. We are familiar with waiting room (or "waiting car" schooling too!)

  5. I ant believe it's been a year!!! You have done so much to it. Looks so pretty. Seems like a great homeschool week even at 50%. Happy weekend.

  6. It seems like you just moved a few months ago! You sure got a lot of work done on the house in just one year. I'm happy that you got out of your old neighborhood. With our kids' services, the therapists come to our home. It's sometimes difficult to have people in our home so often, but it's probably better than sitting in waiting rooms (although you seem to have some interesting waiting rooms where you live!). I'm glad that Tom Sawyer's OT is helping, and I hope that Goldilocks is approved and has the same experience!

  7. Happy one year! Owning a home is such an accomplishment these days (the world is not what it used to be). You got a lot accomplished in a year, WOW! Lifting my glass to you n a successful year 2!

  8. I just love your home. In England we don't tend to have the large porch ways and I just thing they are so beautiful! The idea of iced drinks on a warm day sitting outside, out of the sun, watching the world go by. Does it get any better? I need to get myself a porch way! I don't know where I would put it right enough, but both Gary and I would love to have one!
    Your week sounds perfect. Good old rabbit holes!

  9. I posted the same about three weeks ago and knew your anniversary was coming up soon. I remember all three of us moving at the same time.
    Your home looks lovely. We still have a lot to do on our place. I put off doing stuff this summer because of finances and because I wasn't sure what I really wanted to do. I finally decided on paint colors and have been working on painting the downstairs. I am going with a fall palatte. I can't wait to paint the foyer....a deep burnt orange. I might be going overboard but ten years of living in military housing with white walls and I need some color now!!
    Have a wonderful week Dawn!

  10. Your home looks great and what a lot of work y'all have done on it!

  11. Well, congratulations on getting a new house, and pulling through amid an unstable economic climate. With foreclosures going on left and right, it's increasingly gotten too tough to hold onto your properties and assets and/or turning them around. Though there are still these drastic options, such as declaring Chapter 11 and whatnot, to make sure that while you may be falling, you haven't yet teetered over the edge. Ultimately, we do not have to make that kind of choice, and shouldn't be in a position to do so, as much as possible. Though it helps that such legal recourse is there. What is sure, though, is that your new abode should lead you to more bracing horizons. That's what it's all about, really.

    Reginald @ Portia Douglas