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An Update

In case someone out there in the huge world wide web is actually reading this, I wanted to give an update on our current status across all fronts. Hold on to your seat, it's going to be fast....

  • Our current full time job is itineration- which means we are traveling to churches almost every Sunday to share about what Chi Alpha is and to ask if those churches would partner with us financially and through prayers. Phone calls, meetings, trips, etc are also part of it all. 
  • We are currently sitting somewhere between 52-55% of our budget. We need to crunch some numbers to get an exact percentage. So you don't have to do more math than necessary, that means we have somewhere between 43-45% left to raise. 
  • We are still basement dwellers. Our temporary digs were supposed to last only 4 or 5 weeks. So far, it's been two months. Here's why....
  • We have attempted to purchase 4 homes. House #1 failed because the bank & real estate agency were holding out for someone to offer more than us, typical short sale situation. They never progressed on the sale of the home, so we had to make a choice to wait it out (which could be forever) or move on. We moved on. House #2 was cute and I liked it a lot. We put a bid on it the day we saw it, which was a friday. Monday morning Gil went to sign the contracts and upon signing it, he learned that it was also a short sale. This information was on NONE of the paperwork- even our agent didn't know. House #1 and #2 are being sold by the same real estate agencies. Armed with that knowledge, we immediately wanted to look elsewhere since it would be the year 2057 before either of these houses actually sell. House #3 was another cutie in a great little town on a corner lot. It was NOT a short sale or being represented by the previously mentioned agency. We were ready to step further with the house until we learned that a previous buyer had completed a home inspection on it and backed out. We were given a copy of that report and also backed out. The house needed >$30,000 worth of work to make it safe and livable. We were very thankful to have received this information without having spent a penny on our own home inspection. At this point we were getting very discouraged. Our agent was determined and hopeful. (She rocks and is the only real estate agent I trust.) 
***pause quick rundown for a brief rabbit trail***

During the week we walked through house #3 and backed out, Gil went to a meeting with a handful of other pastors. One of our colleagues prayed specifically for a home for us. Gil said he prayed that God would provide a home that would be our dream home and a sanctuary for us, a place we would love to be. This prayer was on constant re-run in my head and pushed back the feelings of discouragement. 

The confusing part was that we had seen every stinkin' house on the market in our price range-at least 30 homes. Our list of expectations/must have's for a home kept shrinking. We were tired of spending hours walking through homes and never feeling at peace with them for one reason or another. How can so many houses be on the market and none of them be within our budget, be healthy and safe to live in, be within a decent radius to campus, and not be purchased the day before we find it? But, the prayer kept running through my head. 

Armed with the last strands of hope, we hit the house hunting command station again. Gil searched on his laptop, while I did the same. We shared mls numbers and cross reference different websites to find out all we could. Then, I'd take the address to and look at it from their bird's eye view map option- a 360 degree view of the house, sometimes as close as 40 feet from the ground. We sent our agent another list of homes to check out. She quickly gathered her agent-only information sheets and emailed them over. 

**Ok, back to our regularly scheduled programming***

  • We left for a morning of housing hunting with 3 on the list. The first house we looked at has officially been called House #4. It's not a short sale. It's safe and healthy for our family to live in as it sits today. It has appliances. It's as close to campus as we can get. It's (barely) in our budget. It had only been on the market for 23 days as of the day we walked through it. It had a few other perks that we had previously crossed off our wish list. We did not look at the other 2 house on the list for that day. Right now, we are still in the home inspection/final contracts/appraisal part of, but we are hopeful this is our house and I am clinging to the prayer that was prayed over Gil. Will you pray with us? 
  • We found and became members to a gym that has adequate childcare and a pool. This was harder than expected. Exercise and interacting with others in our community is an important family value of ours, so this was a huge win. 
  • I have made friends with a handful of other moms in the community. 
  • I know where multiple grocery stores are and the perks to each one....I think. 
  • I still find comfort in knowing that UPS is here. It's like a taste of home for some reason. That brown truck is a warm fuzzy. 
  • The girls have decided they want to unpack their dress-up basket first. I can't decide whether I want to laminate something or cook everything imaginable first. I have a few weeks to debate.
  • The girls are happy with their new classes at church, Daisies and Rainbows.
  • I am gathering necessary winter clothing for us...and trying not to worry about the serious amount of snowblowers, extreme ice scrapers for car windows, snowshoes, and ski shops I see around. I think they are trying to tell us something. Someone told me that school kids aren't allowed outside for recess unless they have snow pants to wear. Are you kidding me???? I am used to a half inch of snow=no school. Boy, have I got a lot to learn. 
  • We are sending out email newsletters now, so if you did not receive one a few weeks ago and would like to, please email me your preferred email address and we will add you! 
  • We were able to see the other Chi Alpha staff (from Boston U., UMass, Brown, Yale) in our district on Wednesday. That was fun! Go XA Nation. 
  • I have become a loyal Patriots fan and discovered the fun of investing into an athletic team. Why didn't I know this before? (I've been told I was too stuck up? Probably.)
  • Homeschool is still going well. You can read about that on our homeschool blog. Sometimes, when people ask Adison if she has done her schoolwork for the day, she tells them "no". I hope they realize that she often has no idea she's done her schoolwork. Ha! 
  • New England fall is OFF THE HOOK! lovely. 
Shoooo! That was a lot. Did I miss anything?


  1. My friend just invited me to Michigan over Christmas break. I think she waited until I accepted to tell me it would be below the whole time and asked if I owned snow boots! I don't know if MI is ready for all this Southern!
    I LOVE Banton updates :)


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