Tuesday, February 24, 2015

When we went to look this past Saturday, I had no idea we would be here 3 days later, packing up everything, and getting ready to put our house on the market. Several of you remember my post from a few weeks ago, here, where I pretty much admitted that we were too frustrated with our home search to continue. We had come to terms with where we live. We had found all of the positives, and committed to making it more of what we love. 

Well... this past week, a home that we had seen on the MLS previously (but never looked at), went back on the market. Having considered the house before, we decided that it didn't hurt to take a look. After all, if we didn't, it would be gone in a day or so anyways! So Saturday morning, at 9am we went and checked it out!

(Here is a sneak peak, hehe!)

We made an offer on Saturday afternoon, it was accepted on Sunday, and we even negotiated in the playset in the backyard and the custom closet system we wanted! We kept it all under our budget too! I feel like we really scored big and accomplished everything we were trying to- including
 Frisco ISD.

Excited as we are, the stress is real. What a blessing that I have had two days off of work to get the house packed up so we can declutter and get pictures taken. The goal is to list our house on Friday of this week!!! EEEK. Our home inspection on the new house in McKinney is today, and the "close by" date is March 31. With all of the sports, coaching, kids, jobs, and a trip coming up, we are BUSY.

Things can still happen, sales can fall through, so please send your prayers our way that this is an easy and clean process. Good news is, if anything were to happen, my house is as clutter free as I have EVER seen it, and I kinda LOVE that!!! Talk about a nice cleanse. 

After all of the ups and downs of searching for a new home. All of the "not this one" and "maybe we should stay" conversations, it's a crazy awesome blessing to have found a home, get all we wanted, and stay in our budget. God sure has had a funny way of teaching Ryan and I lately. Every time we have stopped trying to "fix" our situations: my job, the house, kids schools....he provides. He continuously reminds us to "be still and know that I am God.  Psalm 46:10

Once we finally do, he always "works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose."
Romans 8:28

All that said: If you would like our new address when we move, shoot me a message with your address so we can update you and you can send those adorable Christmas cards our way next year! I can't wait to share our new home with you. It has gorgeous molding around the windows, and beautiful kitchen with the white cabinets I was dying for. Taking pictures of the kiddos in this house is what I'm MOST excited for! (Not that that's why we are moving! HAHA). Be ready for some home project and pictures overload coming soon.


10 Ways a Mother Thinks Differently

Friday, February 13, 2015

Being a younger mom, I'm constantly reminded of how motherhood changes you, as I watch some of my very dear friends live their single lives right out of college. (For this purpose- let's say single is "without children" regardless of relationship status.) In fact, one of my very good friends at work and I giggle about how different her evenings look than mine all the time.

This got me thinking about how differently my mind works than some of my single girlfriends. Becoming a mom so young, I don't really know what my brain would be like any other way (permeant mommy brain fog, lovely), but I visit with my girlfriends enough to know how different our mind sets are. Neither is right or wrong, just very different, in a humorous way! Motherhood changes you, and here are 10 ways as a mom, we think differently than our single friends.

1. A productive day looks differently

The single GF:  A productive day is, up by 9:30, a cup of coffee...or 2, a load of laundry, a 2 hour work out, and quick lunch with the bestie. Maybe a quick trip to the mall to grab a top for tonight, caught up on last nights episode of Scandle, and then out with the beau. 

The Mom: A productive day is up at 7:00 am, baby fed, changed, pooped, spit up, and re dressed all by 8:30am. Guzzling coffee by the thermos load, shuffling two kids to the dr. by 9:15, returning husbands Christmas gift that was a size too small (secretly keeping the cash instead of exchange *shhh, he'll never know), running by academy for soccer socks for this afternoons game, a stop at SAMS Club for some formula, and lunch done by 12pm. Quick pit stop for the 4 year old's soccer game, target stop for dinner food, swing through the car wash (get interior vaccumed if I'm feeling super productive), back home, make dinner, simutaniously doing 4 loads of laundry, play with kids, bath time for 2 kids, bedtime routines, "oh hey, husband, I know you have been helping all day, but have we even spoken? Love you!", shower myself, clean house, catch up on a half episode of the Greys Anatomy from 2 weeks ago at 11pm before falling asleep on the couch , then waking up and making bottles for the night, followed by falling, quite literally, into bed. Baby awake for a bottle at 3am (wait is that considered this day or tomorrow?) Now THATS a productive day! 

2. We think of money differently

The single GF:

An expensive pair of jeans: $250.00
An expensive meal: $40.00
An expensive bar tab: $80.00
Most expensive monthly payment: $1200.00 for that loft apartment in the chic part of town, above all the night life.

The Mom:

An expensive pair of jeans: $80.00
An expensive meal: $25.00
An expensive bar tab: what's a bar tab? 
Most expensive monthly payment: $1450.00 for child care (Monday-Friday, where we still send both of their food too!)

3. We think of style differently

the single GF: going to a cookout in a cute sundress that you have to wear a strapless bra for, with some trendy wedges, that cute necklace you bought last week, and those dangly, designer earrings are cute to boot! 

The Mom: a flowy shirt that disguises the spare tire your packing, that one pair of jeans that actually fit without having to pull them up everytime you bend down to tie a shoe, attempt - at - trendy flats, stud earrings so little mister can't rip them out, "do I even have my wedding ring on?", ready to go!

4. Our thoughts on a good Pandora station differs

The single GF: Train, One Republic, Ed Sheeran, Rhianna, Ellie Goulding, Hozier, Maroon 5, etc.

The Mom: disney songs, Princess radio, lullaby radio, Taylor Swift *edited*, toddler radio, kids bop 123847, etc.

5. We think of a long night a little differently

The single GF: started at 9pm with dinner and drinks at that Mexican resturante and bar, ended 5 bars down, 6 drinks in, with full on wobble, followed by a cab ride home at 2:30am, a few miserable moments on the bathroom floor, then waking up at 11 am after a LONG night.

The Mom: started at 9pm when your toddler was still up asking for water, her hair pulled up, to use the bathroom, one more kiss, her eye mask, that one stuffed animal, and an extra story. Continued with a baby having a bad dream, needing to be rocked for 15 minutes, then a bottle at 3 am, followed by the 4 year old with an upset tummy who feels like she's going to... Woop... A miserable half hour in the bathtub to clean her up, new sheets on the bed, back she goes. Waking at 7:30 am to start all over after a LONG night. Am I even awake? 

6. Our thoughts on a peaceful time to ourselves differ:

The single GF: a stop by Starbucks on her way to an hour long massage, then a mani/pedi on the way home. Ahhh! Feeling so refreshed!

The Mom: Peeing and a shower without a single family member present. SCORE!!!

7. Thoughts on "the best evening ever"

The single GF: one where she arrives home to a handsome hunk, with dinner plated next to a bottle of wine, by the fireplace, while a fire crackles, and she tells him all about her day as he stares totally engaged in her eyes. 

The Mom: one where no on utters the words, "what's for dinner?" the second we walk in the door.

8. We think of multi tasking differently

The single GF: texting, while getting ready, while watching Good Morning America, while drinking coffee

The Mom: texting, while cooking dinner, while entertaining the baby via 'Jesus loves me', while listening to the 4 year old's latest Preschool woahs, while doing laundry, while signing up for your turn on the snack service website for soccer. Bad A$$. 

9. Our thoughts on what a cleaning out the car is probably differ too

The single GF: has enough hands to carry all the trash in after each drive, and time to try on her new clothes after each shopping trip. She has gotten a car wash every week, and takes the time to wipe off her muddy boots on rainy days. 

The Mom: is busy carrying a diaper bag, a purse, a backpack, a baby carrier, and a little hand... Too busy in fact to get any of the trash that has not only accumulated from her in the front seat but also from the midgets in the back who think of the floor as their personal trash can, collecting anything they have no purpose for including crumbs, gum, food, toys, tags, packaging, etc.  She forgets she even bought anything during the chaos know as "getting in the door", leaving her shopping bags behind... For weeks sometimes. It was raining this morning, so she leaves lbs. of mud on the floor mats, praising herself for actually brining in all the shoes that the midgets remove every damn time they are in the car!

10. Our thoughts on true love HAVE to differ!

The single GF: imagines true love to come in the form of romance. Being romanced by a man who adores her, lavishes her in love and gifts, has a cheerful attitude and giving heart. One who still believes in chivalry. One who knows how to have fun, and make her laugh. True love is what she seeks, just like us all.

The Mom: knows what form true love comes in. It comes from a man who in the mist of this very imperfect life, still tells her she's beautiful, even post baby body and all. It comes from a love that doesn't have to be spoken about to know it exisits in the form of the partnership that is parenting. It comes from little tounges that think it's funny to lick you when you try to kiss them. It comes from Saturday mornings when you wake up with all 4 family members and 2 pets... All in one bed. It's the homemade coloring page "just for you".
It's the "your the best mom Evers" and the "I never want to move away when I grow ups". The Mom knows the true love  we all search for.

Like I said, comparing life without children to a life with can be quite an ironic and funny thing. At times, it appears that the single GF has the world at her fingertips, but until you know the life of motherhood, you never really understand anything at all. You don't appreciate things the same way, and you don't know love the same way. There are days I wish I was the single GF, but there isn't a night that I don't lay my head down, in the peace of the night, that I don't thank God for calling me to this insane life of the Mom.

What a New House Isn't Worth To Us

Monday, February 9, 2015

Many of you have been following us on our New Home Search adventure. Mostly in the form of texts and conversations answering a million questions and giving countless opinions (it feels like we have never done this before even though we have just 3 years ago!)

So for those of you who have been following here is an update and those who have not, it goes a little something like this:

We have been looking at houses for months. The market here in North Texas is completely crazy! More on that momentarily. We are primarily looking to move for better school districts and a bit more functional sq. footage. Right now we have just shy of 2200 sq. ft. That's not a problem, the layout, however, poses challenges for accomadating our at home working needs and a place for all of the ever-growing amount of kids toys that we house.

Finding the right house for us seems to me nearly impossible. We are quite picky for one, and secondly we are not DYIers. Meaning we want to move in, have the best, and not have to do it ourselves. Is that too much to ask?? Haha in DFW's hot market, the answer we have found is, YES!

For those of you out of state let me put this in perspective for you:

Example 1: a house posted on the MLS at 10:40 pm on a Thursday night. I contacted the listing agent via email at 11:15 pm same night and we had an appointment scheduled to see the house (without even pictures being posted online yet) for 7:00 pm the following day. After seeing that house that evening, there were already 5 offers on the table. That's less than 24 hours people!

Example 2: a house posted on the MLS at 7:15 am Saturday morning. I contacted the listing agent by phone at 11:00am same day, and had an appointment with our realtor to see the house at 3:15pm that afternoon. After seeing the house, and making an offer 10K OVER asking price, we were told there were other offers and we weren't even in the ballgame offer wise. That's less than 12 hours folks!!

Nuts! It's simply ridiculous how hard it is to buy in North Dallas right now! We even had to get pre approved to own both our house and the new house at the same time because no homeowner is going to accept a contingent offer in this market and we can't risk listing our house and it selling in one day, and us not having a place to live!  

Needless to say, through all of this, we have come to the conclusion that the only way for us to find a new house is to build one. 

Building here is a whole different type of crazy! These new builds are being sold at rediculous prices. Sure, you get something shiny and new, but the sky high price tags are yet another indication of our thriving and growing little community. With Toyota moving its corporate head quarters here, relocating over 4,000 jobs to North Texas... Someone will pay the price. So they keep selling.

After lots of looking, last Sunday we signed an agreement to build, yay! We filled out the paperwork and paid our deposit to get everything going. We both left with nervous feelings in our stomach, thinking they would turn to excitement with time. As of the following morning, they had not. We both knew what we needed to do.

Ryan went and picked up our money, and canceled our agreement to build. We both immediately felt a sense of relief. Something that should have been fun and exciting was going to be a burden that neither of us was willing to carry.

In the week following our change of heart, we have stopped refreshing the MLS. We are done spending our entire weekends trudging through model homes, and running to the next showing.

So where do we sit now?

Right here. On Buckskin. Still in the house with the blue door. In the place we got engaged at. The house we came home to as a married couple, the place that became a haven for our rescued dog, Ewok, the home we brought Hudson back to. We have decided to put all of that time and energy into loving what we already have. Sure, we have a laundry list of things we want to upgrade:

New cabinets
Paint the house
New fence

But what we do have is nice too. We have hardwood floors. We have stainless steel appliances and granite counters through out. We have front loading washers and dryers. We have a driveway gate that allows for hours of 'roof ball' fun, with no fear of danger from cars. We have approx. 535 sq. feet to our individual selves (that's almost as much as my first apartment!) 

We have amazing neighbors that we can truly call 'friends'. The kind that let you borrow electric hedge trimmers, teach your husband how to properly trim a tree, help calm you down and treat headlice when your child brings it home. The kind that every family wishes they had! We are zoned in a school district that many people in other parts of the country would kill to have their children sent to, we don't have to fear for our safety. We have quick access to an excessive amount of shopping and dinning. We have quicker commutes, allowing Ryan to make soccer practice and karate after work. We have a house full of love and happy children, but perhaps one of the most rewarding things is that we have freedom!

We have freedom from financial burdens and stress. We have the freedom to take the trips to Italy, Disneyland, Yosemite, Colorado, Florida, Boston, and more. 
We have the freedom to take the kids to Disney on Ice, and the Circus, and Build A Bear, and to Baseball games, and whatever else arises to experience. We have the freedom to drive nice cars, and take care of them. The freedom for me to stay home if our lives ever lead to that. The freedom for Ryan to have season tickets to football games, and us to go on cruises and dates! Because of our decision to stay, we give ourselves a choice to spend money on the things we love and enjoy VS. our money spending itself every month. 

We have heard countless stories of people stretching the budget for the house with more space. Some think it's worth it in the end and others have said they wish they hadn't.

 As for us- these reasons are what a new house simply isn't worth to us. 

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