New year, new home(stead)

We were planning to put our house (the one in the ‘burbs, you recall) on the market in the spring. We weren’t sure where we were headed, but we felt ready to step out in faith and list our house, even if it meant bunking in with the ‘rents or living in an RV or . . . whatever.

We weren’t even sure we’d be staying in this state or country. We had been looking for a long, long time, and we were frustrated by the restrictions and prices where we live. If we needed to go elsewhere to have the land we wanted, so be it.

But then, one Tuesday evening in late October, I saw a new listing two counties away with 22 acres, an old stone house, and a barn. It was within comfortable commuting distance to our parents and siblings, and it was just barely in our price range. I showed it to Jason and he  immediately said, “We have to go look.”

 

home

So we did. As soon as we pulled off the road, we could tell that this was the kind of peaceful setting we were looking for. It’s not in the middle of nowhere — there are dozens of houses on the road, so there are plenty of neighbors — but the property is spacious, and the house is visible from but not near the road.

The barn, woods, and exterior of this home would capture anyone’s imagination, but we’re well aware of all the reasons why a family with three kids wouldn’t want this centenarian house. No air conditioning, master bath, or kitchen counterspace would definitely be dealbreakers for many families (and we get that). But we have decided we’re willing to trade in certain amenities for the acreage and freedom that allows us to have chickens, a large garden, and maybe even other animals someday. And the house, while in need of major updates, is in great structural shape. It may take us decades to do it, but it’s a home worth renovating.

So in 2017, we’ll be kissing our air-conditioned home in the suburbs goodbye. There are still details to figure out and papers to sign, so it’s definitely not a done deal. But we are full of hope and gratitude for what this property will be for us and for the people we share it with.

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