When I first came out here to look for a house, I was overwhelmed and underwhelmed and completely disappointed. Nothing really seemed right, and it was hard not having Joel with me to help. My mom was with me and she helped a great deal, although she wasn't going to have to live in the place we ultimately chose, and that's just different.
Anyway, I did visit our house while I was here. It and another one I saw were the only ones that I could imagine my family inhabiting, but I wasn't really sure. Both homes were old and needed work. Both weren't anything like what I envisioned I wanted. But, there were no other choices.
Once I was back in Utah, Joel and I prayed a lot about which house we should buy. For a while, we just thought that maybe nothing I saw on my visit was right for us and we diligently checked the real estate listings every single day. Still nothing was right. Wrong location, wrong price, wrong size, wrong feeling, wrong everything. And I couldn't stop thinking about the house on A---- Street.
Finally, after much prayer and fasting and discussion and prayer (and did I mention prayer?), we called our realtor and had him measure the garage. We decided that if that teeny tiny garage would fit our minivan, then we would make an offer on the house. Because we couldn't not have a garage. Not with the winters here.
Not surprisingly, our van fit perfectly. I mean, it's a snug fit, and it always scares me a little bit pulling the car into or backing out of the garage in the winter, but it fits. (We won't talk about how I knocked the side mirror off this past winter while backing out.)(Oops.) And so, we took a deep breath and we made the offer.
Then we eventually moved in. Like I said, the house needs a lot of work, you can see in the photo how badly it needs a paint job. But, we've done a lot of improving and it has always felt perfect for our family despite its many flaws and the tiny garage. I know this is where we were meant to be.
This summer, Joel and I took an interest in learning more about the genealogy of our home. After all, the real estate documents say it was built in 1920 so it is a pretty old house that has a lot of history. We just didn't know any of it. Joel, being the genealogist that he is, managed to put together a fairly detailed and complete history of Snow Cottage (that's what we named it)(okay, I named it--nobody else seems to care) up until about 1960.
I will not bore you with the entire history, except for a few things that were particularly interesting to us. Firstly, we learned that the house was not built in 1920, but earlier. We aren't sure of the exact year, but it was probably 1906-ish. It was built by a mining engineer (copper mining was the thing that brought people to this area). But on the side he was a musician. A musician! He played in the YMCA symphony orchestra in Ohio before he moved here, and he even composed music in his spare time.
Since music is what brought us here, we think this is pretty cool.
In 1917, a French-Canadian family moved in. They owned and ran a local grocery store and they had three daughters: Precelia, Marguerite and Stelia. Three daughters, spaced and aged the same as our three daughters.
There are other cool things, like the first woman to graduate from our University lived here. So did the first Electrical Engineering professor/department head. But the musical example and the three daughters thing sort of took my breath away. Joel's, too. Kind of like the house chose us.
Maybe that's a strange thought, but it just further confirms my knowledge that this is the house we are meant to live in.
(Even if it is in terrible need of a paint job. And new windows. And new carpet. And. And. And.)
Two postscripts today:
1. I am very excited and extremely honored to be a Featured Blogger at TOFW.com! (That stands for Time Out For Women, and I love their website.) Go here to read my post.
2. I have an exclusive discount code for my readers. If you are in the market for a new dress, click here. Maybe you could even get a new dress to wear to Time Out For Women. I hear there are presentations coming up in Phoenix, St. George and SLC in November. Hilary, I'm looking at you.