It's hard to believe that just over two months ago we were putting a For Sale sign in our yard and praying for a move by Fall. When we took our house off the market two years ago, we decided to put a little front deck on the front. In doing so, we ended up ripping out all the old concrete front steps and just happened to uncover this St. Joseph statue that had been buried by the previous occupant. If you are unfamiliar with St. Joseph, it's said to be the saint for helping people sell houses, and the story goes that if you bury it a certain way in your yard, it will not only help you sell your house - but help you sell it quickly! Having gone through massive disappointment a couple of years ago, finding this little statue during our first home improvement project that we determined we should do to help us sell it the next time... kind of seemed like a bit of a sign and omen, and I hung on to this statue for almost two years waiting for our opportunity to put it to use. My parents also struggled to sell their home last year, and with one week to go in their six month contract, they decided to bury their own statue, and it worked for them almost immediately! So - at the beginning of April, two days before our sign went in the yard, the boys and Cody dug a hole in the back corner of our lot, buried Mr. St. Thomas head down - face towards our house, and said a little prayer for a quick sale. Sure enough, just three weeks later we had our offer, and the rest is history.
And what a whirlwind life was and still is. From swimming lessons to baseball season to inspections and appraisals and house hunting and packing and the end of the school year and busy jobs, life has been a circus act. It's crazy how much change and progress can happen in just two month's time, and now here we are settled into our new digs, absolutely loving our new neighborhood, our half acre lot, our much larger home... and our open floor plan! We have so many projects to work on that I'm having trouble prioritizing them, but it's still amazing to me that this space of ours felt like home from the very first night we tucked ourselves into our covers... and that we all feel so at peace being in a home surrounded by half painted walls and tool boxes everywhere. ;) I told my friend and realtor Becky at church on Sunday that God has given us a dozen or so signs just in the past week since moving in that we are indeed exactly where He wanted to plant us. And I've told a number of people that I'm grateful our house didn't sell two years ago because we wouldn't have ended up where we are now.
But - before I move forward in this blog space and talk about our present, I still have a number of moments that have yet to be shared from our busy spring season. Moving is such an emotional roller coaster, and though we were so ready to move on, closing the chapter on where the boys were babies and toddlers and preschoolers had it's sad and tough moments.
So here we go... final moments from Rainbow Drive...
//Jaden started baseball practice in April and had his first game six days before moving day. He's with the Angels again this year, and it's been fun to see how the kids have grown in size and skill since last summer. I love our baseball family, and our hours spent on the bleachers as the sun goes down is some of my favorite moments of our weeks.
//Brandon's interest in golf grew - to the point that we signed him up for summer golf league and took several trips out to the driving range to get him started. Even Jaden got in on the action and asked if he could take golf lessons, too. I told him he's busy enough right now!
//We celebrated the warming temperatures with several s'more and bonfire nights. We joined family in Cassi and James's backyard, grilled out with the Grahams' after spending an afternoon helping them put in a new basketball hoop... and spent some final moments on Kristi and Austin's back deck before saying goodbye to our favorite neighbors.
//We visited the boys' new school and its playground and then later found out that they are adding on to the playground this summer!
//We spent final moments reading, eating and playing games on our old back deck, a spot that was like our little sanctuary for so many springs, summers and falls. I remember when we bought that house, still so young, we were so excited about that big back deck. It definitely got its use.
//We took a lot of trips to Goodwill and sold off old favorites, like this train table that went to a high school friend of mine. Funny how they hadn't wanted to play with it in so long - until the realization came that it would be leaving us.
//We ate a lot of pizza and had several picnics, with dishes packed and a refrigerator we were trying to clean out over time.
//We spent a night at Panther Caravan, cuddled on the recliner a few more times... and finally learned to shoot our BB guns once all of the other toys were packed away.
//We said final goodbyes. To neighbors. To our tree swing. To our bedrooms. To our home.
I pushed him on this swing our final night. I feel like he grew up under that tree branch, and some of my fondest memories of him will always be from right there - where the grass is worn thin from his feet.
Final night in their old bedrooms...
...and that's a wrap.