You can read previous posts on our road to the simple life here and here.
When I left off in my previous post about our road to the simple life, we had gotten an offer on our home and had started the moving process. The time had come for our house inspection and for making plans to move our family to our new home. We had a giant yard sale and sold nearly half of our belongings… furniture, accessories, clothes, decorations, and ‘stuff’. It felt so liberating to let go of things that we realized were not important in our lives anymore. It was also time to start preparing our new home, creating a space for our family’s future. Luckily, the home we were buying was currently owned by my mother and her sisters… since it was my grandmother’s home before she passed away. That gave us the freedom to get in and get going with cleaning, painting and moving. We knew there were a lot of things we wanted to do with our new home and we were excited about it. If you read the previous simple life posts, you might remember that one of the strong points of our marriage is the ability (and enjoyment) of working together. We were anxious to get back to doing projects (and dreaming!) together. The things we had talked about for months were finally getting ready to begin. We started with painting the living room and kitchen areas. Then moved to paint all the bedrooms.In the midst of our initial home improvements to our new home, we were packing and moving out of our current home. Here’s a picture from the day I backed the trailer into the garage ALL.BY.MYSELF! while Justin was at work. To save money, we moved everything ourselves instead of hiring a moving company and with the help of family and friends everything was moved in and unpacked by August 3rd (and it happened just in time for my birthday! What a fantastic gift!).After moving in, we went back to our old home to clean it up for it’s new owners. They were moving to Hickory from MI and had purchased our home over the internet. They had NEVER stepped foot in our home — they had not ever even driven by it. I’ve promised a post on how we sold our home by owner and I will keep my promise. Look for that in the near future… But, through a series of pictures, facetime and phone calls, they fell in love with our home and we started to really like them too. They are the sweetest couple and were moving here because the guy (I’m going to leave their names out) had gotten a job working with the ‘entrepreneurs’ (like myself) of Hickory with Lenoir Rhyne College. We finally got to meet them face to face at the closing table on August 9th and they were perfect. I felt so good leaving our old home in the hands of these wonderful people — it only solidified further that we were making the perfect move in our lives. And to make the situation even sweeter, this sweet couple got engaged on the front steps of that home that weekend. God really has a way of blessing so many people in so many ways, with so many circumstances, with one single decision.
Life was finally getting back to normal. Through the ante-partum depression, the life changing decisions, the stress of selling a home… we were moved and we were (are) elated. Debt has been paid off. We no longer have to have my income. We have more family time, more space in our lives for the things we love most. More margin. And a life living for God. Truly, I tell you this not to sound arrogant or bloat, but life has never been better. We once struggled every month, trying to make sure ends were met. We always tried to figure out what to do next and worried about saving for our future. While there was too much room in our house, there was no room in our lives. Instead of stressing to pay for that formal dining room, we are playing more. We are vacationing more. We are giving ourselves more. We are giving ourselves the opportunity to live the life God meant for us to live and we are giving to others in every way possible. Our hearts have never felt so full of love and grace. And it’s all because we listened to Him and took a big step in our faith.
We have been doing a couple projects around the house — after painting, we started on the kitchen and did a lot of the work ourselves. I’m not sure what we will start on next and it doesn’t matter. We are enjoying ourselves, our children, our church, our time together.
Things really are SIMPLE.
The only thing left for me to figure out was how photography was going to fit into our new lives. My full time job is raising our children. That will never change. I also knew I wanted photography as part of my life, so how do I make it all work. The ‘new’ way of doing business and photography for us will be in the next post. Things have changed — but our lives are just so great that I don’t want to blink. We recently had Thanksgiving in our new home and it started snowing while I was making preparations… I bowed my head and said thank you to the One who has made all things possible.In His Love, Terra