The Last 12 years

I could certainly, over multiple blog posts, fill you in on every last detail of our time since moving to Our Bright Road but I’d much rather look ahead.  At the same time, though, I feel like what we went through explains our “now” and it may be a cautionary tale for others so here goes….

When I fell in love with this house, we were still in our old house.  Obviously, we needed to sell it.  It was proposed to us that we could go ahead and buy the new house prior to selling the old house.  The real estate market was hot.  Houses were moving.  And I was so in love with the new house that I was afraid we’d lose it if we didn’t act.  And then the real estate market crashed.

We owned two houses.  We paid two mortgages; we paid two sets of utilities, mowed the grass in two places, cleaned and kept up two houses.  It was brutal.  Our first winter here, the pipes burst and the furnace died.  It felt like we were bleeding money at every turn.  It was exhausting.  When our old house finally sold, it was a blessing but the reality was that after a market crash, it sold for a huge amount of money under what we owed.  We thought about an equity loan on this house but at that point, our house wasn’t worth what we had paid for it and there was no equity to be found.

You may have heard of people getting help when their homes sold for less than they owed but no one offered that to us.  I don’t think the banks were forthcoming in the fact that they might have to help people.  So regardless of whatever help was out in the world, we didn’t get it.   So, we made the only choice we felt we had.  We cleaned out what was left of our savings and borrowed the rest so we could finally be free of the 2 house-stress.

At that point, we were in recovery mode.   Pay back the borrowed money.  Pay down the credit cards and try to make headway.  And then, if you’ll remember, we had a recession.  It affected my business.  It affected our family.  By the smallest of margins, we squeaked by.  We made small, inexpensive, creative fixes with whatever money we could scrape together.  And I know you’re aware of the miracle a coat of paint can do.  We managed.  We did what we could.  As I look back, they were really tough times but we were somehow blessed enough to avoid the foreclosures and bankruptcies that plagued our country at that time.  I’m so very grateful for that.

And while there’s more to the story, this is the abbreviated version and since you’re just meeting me, I’m trying to avoid looking like a Lifetime movie.   So…  For the most part, that brings us to now.  We’ve been a little broken and defeated but we’re on the mend.  We are getting better.  We’ve renewed our zest for fixing up our home and we’re hoping you want to share the adventure with us.