An unbelievable thing happened yesterday morning. I got a call from our realtor's office saying they were likely getting an offer for our house. That offer indeed came in a little later. Full-price offer, and we don't even pay closing costs. We accepted the offer (of course!) and the house is expected to close in mid-March. The most unbelievable part - the house hadn't even gone on the market yet! We hadn't cleaned it. We still have to get an electrician in to solve a circuitry problem. But another realtor's client begged to be allowed to have an early viewing, so they went ahead and let them in just as the contractor's truck was pulling out of our driveway. Apparently, it was exactly the house they wanted. So the total time it took to sell the house? Negative two days. WEIRD! This can only be explained by Hashem's intervention. And lots of davening. So, there you have it. I'm still in shock. I scooted out an hour before shabbos and faxed the acceptance paperwork back. Then stopped and got a bottle of champagne on the way home. Got inside one minute before candlelighting.
And as for dinner last night? I think Hashem must have prepared that too, because as of 1:30 I hadn't done anything! I had made challah the night before, and breakfast muffins. Somehow we ended up with a nice meal of challah, bbq sauce crockpot chicken, roasted black sesame cabbage, mixed green salad, carrot ginger puree, baked potatoes, and chocolate cake. We were going to have lunch out today, but that family got sick and just as well since we're still winding down our own bugs, so I gathered up some cold cuts (cheaper than in Portland!) when I picked up the champagne and we had delicious sandwiches and salad for lunch. We were going to have tuna, so at least this was a step up. Lunch was really delicious.
Dean is the only one who has made it to shul so far. Last shabbos he was sick in bed, and the rest of us were a little ragged (from time zone changes, not quite sick yet) so none of us got to shul. He's been to daily morning minyan and loves it there. This morning (his first shabbos morning there) he came home from shul beaming. He feels so at home here. It's just a really good match for us. The rabbi's entire drash was focused on ehrlichkeit (the laws that govern the interactions between men, as opposed to frumkeit, the laws the govern man's relationship to G-d). The entire congregation exuded ehrlichkeit. Dean has felt it everywhere. Yes, frumkeit is just as important, but it often seems that in the pursuit of frumkeit, ehrlichkeit often drops by the wayside. Not here.
The kids and I are still battling our colds/coughs, so we stayed home all day, but I'm looking forward to going sometime soon (and seeing the 25-foot-tall aron kodesh!) and meeting more people. It's very easy to do here and we are all so very happy to be here. I'm looking forward to being healthy again soon (please, hashem!) and getting out and meeting more people. B"H I'm not too bad today, so hopefully by Monday we'll all be back in business.
Other exciting news - one of the people who had advertised a van on craigslist finally got back to us (a relative's death had called them out of town). They have all the records for the van. It's a 1995 GMC conversion van, but only has 65K miles on it! Two owners, and both only used it for vacations. They're going to bring it over sometime tomorrow so we can take a peek at it, and if it looks good, we'll take it to a mechanic on Monday, and if that looks good, maybe we'll buy a van. If not, we'll give up on buying from an individual and hit up the used car lots. There are a few Honda/Toyota minivans available so we'll just downsize our fantasies and do that. :)
Other random things... the sounds here are very interesting. First, the deafening rain. Then there's the excitement when the military helicopters fly overhead (we're pretty close to a base here). We're also just a couple of blocks (barely) from a hospital so we here several sirens every day, but they're not terribly loud. Then, most nights, from 10:45 to 11:00 I hear someone playing bugle calls and it usually concludes with "Taps." Can't figure that one out! There must be a story somewhere...
We continue to love our house. We feel like it's our 1950s vacation cottage. It feels so homey. Yesterday, I dragged the second refrigerator into the kitchen. It had been sitting on the back porch, but we figured the cost of keeping it cool out there in the summer might be a bit high. The fridge that came with the house is on the smaller side, so it's really nice to have the other one. The double refrigerator look isn't going to win any awards, but it's eminently practical, as is the industrial shelving and I am one happy cook. I love being able to (AH! There's "Taps," right on schedule!) swoosh everyone out of the kitchen and close the doors.
Earlier I mentioned these odd brick planters that serve as space dividers between the entryway and living room and the living room and dining room. After we own this house (please hashem) we want to install shelving on top of both of them. I think it will look kind of neat. We want to put bookshelves between the living room and dining room (facing the living room), with one open shelf in the middle. On the open shelf we want to put in a handwashing station (for the ritual handwashing before bread) - a basin, pitcher, washing cup, and towel. Probably a mosaic too! :) It was kind of bummer at lunch to leave our very peaceful dining room, and wash over a giant mess of dishes from the night before. (More giant than usual since there's not much counter space!) On the other planter we'd love to install cupboards to store office and learning supplies since that's where the computer is, and it's not far from the learning table. Anyway... that's just some fantasy about the future... Oh, and we HAVE to yank out all these rugs so we can have the lovely wood floors beneath (at least, what's showing now is lovely!).
As far as NEEDS go on what needs to be done with the house if we are the owners, there are really just two things - replace the front and back doors and remove an oil tank. The doors both have keyed dead bolts, which aren't good in case of fire. I can't leave the key in them or little Avi hands will whisk them away. Plus the doors would be pretty easy to kick down. I'm sure I could do it with a few good kicks. So that, and a peephole would be nice. The oil tank buried in the back yard may also have to be yanked out. We'll have to look into that. So... we'll see! Fun things, and nothing major that's obvious. We love the modest size and the good bones this house has. It's really perfect for us. And we all love the HUGE yard!!!!!
Savannah gets twelve thumbs up from the Earlix Family. It has truly exceeded our hopes so far. B"H!