My husband and I married a year to the day after our first date. We held our wedding in the front yard of a 650 square foot barn apartment we lived in exchange for my work as a homeschool teacher. Another year later, we were pregnant (SURPRISE!). While we weren’t planning on having a baby so soon, we long agreed that we wanted to have our kids close together in age, and that we wanted to have 4 of them. So ready or not, we were going into family mode. …And we were NOT ready.
At 3 months pregnant, we decided to start house hunting! One morning I woke up, jumped on Zillow and found a brand new house listing just minutes from our little barn. I called our dear friend and real-estate agent, Heidi Green (seriously, if you are house hunting in the Middle, TN area… look her up! You need her in your life!). We got the first showing. I couldn’t believe it! When I arrived, my mother-in-law was already there per my request to look with me. I vividly remember the glow on her face when she looked at me and exclaimed “This is a GREAT house!” And she was right! It was a beautiful egg blue ranch style home nestled in the middle of 1.2 lovely acres with 3 beds, 1 bath, all the wood paneling, and a gentle voice that seemed to whisper the promise of simpler times.
My husband was unable to come see it that day, but I sent him a video of his parents and our real estate agent all assuring us to snatch up this steal as soon as possible! So my husband took the second biggest leap of his life after marrying me and we put in an offer! Full asking price: $93,000. The owners accepted! Unfortunately the close date was moved back to a day that we had already planned to be on a much needed vacation with my family in Florida. Kindly, my father-in-law agreed to represent us on the day of closing so we could still make the trip.
Our suddenly very adult life seemed to be on track. Then came the crazy.
Within two hours of arriving to the beach, my husband BROKE HIS ARM! More like shattered it! In the WATER! Like, bad. He had to wait until we were back in Tennessee to get the surgery he needed, so we decided to make the most out of our “vacation” with a little cold beer & morphine for my hubs, and a lot of backgammon for the both of us. The next day was closing day on the house and we sat there on the beach, intensely sobered by our circumstances. We were about to have our first mortgage, with a baby on the way, a sudden mountain of medical bills ahead of us, and to top it off, my poor morphined husband didn’t have short-term disability with his labor intensive job, so we also had no income for the foreseeable future! My security glands were firing on all cylinders and my better half had to remind me to breathe on more than one occasion.
One sleep later and we were officially homeowners! We prayed, assured each other that God would provide, and began brainstorming how to bring in income. While still in Florida I managed to set up an interview for a second job with a financial company with amazing pay (which I got praise the Lord!). My husband also got an interview for his dream job editing & directing for the Dave Ramsey show. Amazingly, the doctor (and now dear friend) who performed my husband’s arm surgery ended up calling his contact within the company and gave my husband the glowing review that helped him land the job out of 160 applicants! Oh how God provides!! Y’all, the day before my husband’s surgery, we literally had $0 in the bank and yet by the time we gave birth to our beautiful baby girl, we were well on our way to saving up the money we needed to fix up the house and move in by the time we had to be out of the barn. I say it again, oh how God provides! To date we have saved $10,000. We already discovered that $5,132 of that will need to go to a total plumbing re-pipe (bummer, but we expected that going in). That leaves us with a little under $5,000 to transform our little knobby-pine fixer upper into the baby raising home of our dreams! Walls will come down. Wood will be painted. Hard wood floors will be revealed (we hope)! Renovations begin July 1st so stay tuned! The adventure has just begun!