Wednesday, May 13, 2009

The Big Pack-Up!!

The Destination.

Yes - it IS happening :) We go offline for a month as of Friday. Really looking forward to the space of the new house. Many boxes already moved over to the garage so that we can actually move here! As you can see from the girls room - it's a pretty mammoth job. Getting thoroughly exhausted, but the end is in sight. Tomorrow I pack the kitchen and it's fish & chips tomorrow. Then it's odd and ends and we're done :D Then it's just the legistics of getting it all over there!!

If I don't blog tomorrow - see you all in a month :D

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Yet Another Change of Plan..!

Some people are just unbelievable - and for all you facebook-ers out there you know some of the story, but basically it goes like this...


Only this time she didn't even bother to let the Letting Office know that the Sales Office were processing a sale and it was only when our agent rang to confirm go ahead on the tenancy agreement for us (just to double check) that she found out! Poor woman, you can imagine how she felt having to break the news to us AGAIN - just one day before we were due to sign the papers!
So here we are (Friday), one week to moving day, surrounded by mountains (you think I'm kidding..!) of boxes - and no-where to go!! I called P home from a planned counselling session to discuss what we should do (kind of urgent really!!) and we agreed to take another look at a previously viewed property where we knew the LL was not averse to our troop of kids and was willing to make the propery 'fit the bill' for us. We all trooped off up there to chat with him some more and agreed that this was the best option for us all. Having been very angry at first when we told them about losing the 'big' house again, the children soon fell in love with this new place when they saw it and more-especially where it is. I JUST KNOW we are going to be very happy and settled there at least for the next year (or so...). We are surrounded by fields and countryside. The next closest neighbour (aside from our milkman LL) is an older couple who breed rare breeds. I know the lady definitely sells goats milk and likelihood is, eggs too. Of course our milk can come from our LL :D I'm hoping too that there might be opportunities for the boys (if not just J1) to earn a bit of pocket-money helping on the milk-floats - you never know :D And I know the little ones are going to love all the animals around the place - sheep, cows, goats, geese, chickens... all within close walking distance. The best of it is though that it is a short stride into the village, where there is a good little shop/PO and a school with a pre-school. That said, it may be a bit too far to walk every day with all the children - there and back remember (esp in the winter as it's all across fields and/or tracks). I think we will be somewhat reliant on our wellies wherever we go come winter month ;) All the same, IF I can actually go through with my plan to learn to drive this summer, that would solve that problem and N would be able to go to pre-school, as it would only be a 15 min round trip in the car (that's including loading times)! Other than that I'm going to have to get Jake strong enough to collect him on his bike (just kidding)!

In many, many ways this house is much more 'our thing' and I am actually really glad of it. It has been a roller-coaster ride getting here, but now the papers are signed, the house is being 'finished off' according to a list (quite a long one!) of things that will make it livable  & comfortable for us and we STILL move on Friday :D
Thank you all for your many prayers that we know you have been sending up for us. They have not gone unheard and we now know, with a great amount of peace in our hearts,  that this is God's best for us :D  - Oh and did I mention - the rent is SIGNIFICANTLY less than the original house would have been - so that's one less stress and a lot less of a stretch for us too.

We will be going off-line on Friday 15th (hope to blog again before then though) for about 20-25 days while our phone-line changes exchange and the B/band moves over - then I guess there will be a lot to talk about!. I might just blog-offline and post it all up when we go back on.

Thursday, May 07, 2009

House Decisions...

The decision has been made. The landlord of the 'better' house said he was concerned by the number of children, so basically said 'no' ! So back to the original house it is - and we move next Friday

We trust that this decision is in God's hands and we will trust Him every step of the way :D

"Stop the World...

...I'm getting off!"  - If only I could sometimes!

It's been a long and confusing week. We have continued to pack boxes - in faith for a move. We have looked at two more houses. One today was a lovely Farmhouse on 8 acres of land - gorgeous - idilic - cheaper than the one that got sold! But probably expensive on maintainance and a bit 'in the sticks'...
There is another one available to let that we wanted to see today, but current tenants are being awkward about viewings - 6 DBL beds, extra room downstairs too - £200 pcm cheaper, but not empty yet! Not far from original house (same village, but other side) but closer to current location and more easily accessible for village itself, park and local playgroup...
Meanwhile the sale on house 1 has FALLEN THROUGH (no suprises there then)!
"Great!" I hear you shouting, but it's really NOT that simple! You see we have lost our peace about that house now. We thought maybe, as there are other comparable houses (if not better) out there for less, we might be able to negotiate the rent a little - but no, she is not willing to reduce at all! We are just not sure we like the way the relationship with her (the Landlady) is looking atm and so are not sure we want to stretch ourselves - and it will be a stretch - to rent HER house over one of the others - the 6 bed particularly.
SO - we have some doors to knock hard on. We are due to sign papers for the house 1 at 11.30 on Saturday morning (well we did tell ourselves the end of the week for a decision- and that is very definately it) and we will if we are absolutely certain it is our only realistic option. 
Our other main struggle is the time factor. We had told our current LL's we were aiming to move OUT on the 15th (which we still might of course) and they have booked decorators for the first week of June and want access the week before to 'do stuff' that needs doing. BUT if we don't take the original house and decide that the 6 bed is a better (and definately viable) option then we will not be able to move in there as soon. That houses current tenancy ends the 25th May. We are away for 3 days 25-27th. We are then away on Conference as of the 30th! So we would have 2 days to move in and then would have to leave everything in boxes until we got back!! Also on the 29th P has to go and collect 3 kids from camp which will take a few hours of his evening. It will be a real SQUEEZE to do it then, but if we don't (or we can't for any reason) then we will not be able to move out of here till we get back from conference - and that might mean paying another months rent here and pleading to the kindness of our current LL's. 
It is really all an awefull headache, but we NEED to make the RIGHT decisions for our whole family and for our finances for the foreseeable future.

If you are so inclined - please, please pray for us - this might just expediate my turning grey at this rate (no signs of that yet though ;) )!!

And for your pleasure - here is N - conked out on the grubby lounge floor - expressing exactly how I feel atm!!

Sunday, May 03, 2009

JA turned 12 today!! One more year to teens - how did that happen?!

When he was small I used to call him my 'little man' - now he is 5'2" and wearing size 6 shoes! I guess that makes him not-so-little anymore :(

I love him to bits - he is funny, stylish (to the point of ridiculous at times!), kind to his siblings, increasingly loving and thoughful - and I even got a hug from him the other day (which made me well-up a little..soppy old mums eh!), creative and sporty. He has boundless energy and zero attention, but he is who he is and I see his promising future slowly unfolding before me.

His birth marked the landmark election of a Labour government - 12 years ago today!

Today possible marks the last year of his 'real' boy-hood. By this time next year his voice may have broken and he will probably be taller than me!

I often wish that time would stand still and allow me to savour these fleeting days of childhood for just a little while longer, but the other part of me really enjoys this roller-coaster ride of motherhood, with all its massive highs and sometimes deep lows. I enjoy the thrill of watching my children's lives unfold before me; their talents developing, their gifts flourishing, their interests deeping, their personalities as mini-adults slowly beginning to emerge. I am looking forward to these teenage years - I really am. I don't want them to arrive too fast, but I don't dread them at all - there's nothing I love more than a lounge full of young lads messing together - it's really funny (and bewildering) to watch :D!

At some point I will have a 19, 17, 15, 14, 13yo in the house (just for three months), so it's probably just as well I'm not dreading it really ;)

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Friday, May 01, 2009

Can We Just Skip Today...

...pretend like it never happened!? What is it with us and our dreams just lately?!

As any of you who Facebook know, we received a phone call this afternoon to say that the lady who owns the property we were moving into in just 2 weeks time has decided that she will accept an offer of SALE! She has said she wants 2 weeks to see how things progress... like right up to our moving day then!

So what do we do? We have given notice on this house and packed up 42 boxes already (most of downstairs living spaces). Our current Landlord has booked decorators for the first week of June...and didn't seem keen to cancel! Looking much like if we don't find somewhere fast we could find ourselves in a very uncomfortable situation. NOT FUNNY! 

We are looking at at least one other house tomorrow - and I am hoping to try and organize a couple more. We need to find somewhere FAST... BUT... at the same time we STILL feel like the original house might be the one for us (not that it seems we can hang our coats on that atm) - and we are not sure if we should just sit tight and wait it out - is that wise? Probably not, but it might still be right!

We are praying about what to do and would love it if you would feel able to join us  - that we would find the RIGHT house (be it the original one or another) and it would be available to us very soon. 
- more specifically (because we do really love that house) that the sale would not progress and the property would become available to us again.

Thanks everyone! There's not much else to say about today. Some comfort could be sought in a packet of plain chocolate HobNobs and some Chunky Monkey Ben & Jerry's - and 7 kids dozing off in front of a DVD (Garfield) to prevent me having to chivvy them all to bed (they just went coz they were so tired by the time it ended)!

What will tomorrow bring..? It can't get much worse - can it?