Friday, March 14, 2014

:: All The Birds Sing A Song ::

I'm sitting here in this apartment reflecting on how I got here.  This move happened so quickly, that I feel like I really haven't had time to fully process it all. 

If I'm not busy, the loneliness starts to creep in.  I miss my friends.  I felt sad yesterday that I had no one to call to watch the kiddos so Ryan and I could go shopping to buy a washer and dryer.  Date nights, girls nights are all halted for now. know what??  I'm fine with that!  I'm actually okay.  We are spending more time as a family, which has been so very precious and needed.  I feel lucky that this transition has gone so well for the kids and I feel that part of that is because of how much time we spend as a family now.  Walks, trips to the city and fun restaurants to try have all been so much fun.  Sure, we'll get to the point where we need that date night, but for now...we put the kids to bed and spend the evening together watching House of Cards in our jammies.  For's good.  A time of slowing down, reconnection and rest never hurt anyone.

A few people have asked me how this all came about and what the heck we're doing down here.  I thought I would share a little bit of how we ended up down in Portland.

First of all, we always have loved Portland.  We visit here a few times a year and have loved the city, people and the "vibe" of Portland (for lack of a better term).  We've always said we'd never move anywhere except Portland (and Hawaii ...that's a given).  

Back in November, Ryan got an email from a recruiter about a job at Nike.  He offhandedly mentioned it to me and I don't know what came over me, but I said, "You should go for it."  So he did.  And here we are.  :)  He began the process of interviewing, which included a trip down to Portland for one of the final interviews (he had a couple more after that).  He came home happy and encouraged, which was a good sign.  Honestly, we were open to anything at that point.  Our prayer during the process was that God would shut - no, slam any door we weren't supposed to walk through.  But we had incredible feelings of peace that we were walking in the right direction.  We agreed that we would take it as far as we could and if there was an offer, we'd see what it was and decide from there.  Meanwhile, we'd keep walking through any open doors.  Ryan moved along through the interviewing process and, obviously, ended up with an incredible offer that we just couldn't ignore.  It was a great move for him and his career, as well as a challenge for him, which was good.  His commute had taken a turn for the worse in Seattle - with most days well over an hour each way.  It was just not sustainable in the long term.  I know, there are jobs in Seattle too...we considered that.  But have just really felt led this way.  I can't explain it.  Anyway, after some contract negotiation, we put our house on the market and left for the weekend to go to Portland on an previously scheduled weekend away with our friends.  That was a Friday.  We got a call Monday that our house had an offer for over the asking price.  We decided to show the house the rest of the weekend in case any more offers were made.  Our friends left that Sunday to go home while Ryan and I stayed a few extra days to look at some houses.  The first couple of days were really hard and a bit discouraging.  The market here is really hot and any houses in our price range were gone really quick.  Except for one house.  We looked at a house and loved it, wondering why it had been on the market so long (still no explanation).  It was priced right for the area, but was a bit out of our budget, much to our dismay.  So we left and looked at a few more.  We decided to look at a house by the same builder, but it hadn't been finished out yet.  Our realtor found out that the house next door to the one we loved, but was too high, was finished out in the same style of the unfinished one (you following?), so the next day we went back and looked at that one.  It had been sold already, but the builder let us in to take a look at it.  We liked how it was finished out and were considering the unfinished house, but decided to look next door again to torture ourselves.  As we were walking up to the (beautiful) porch, our realtor said, "Hey, I got a phone call this morning that they lowered the price!"  We took it as a sign and put an offer in that day.  We accepted a counter offer, and here we are!  We're looking to close a week from today - possibly sooner, which would be awesome.

We've been staying in some temporary free housing from Nike - a three bedroom apartment in Beaverton.  While we're grateful for this beautiful apartment, we cannot wait to be back in a house. We're anxious to settle into our "new normal" and begin our lives here in Portland.  We can't wait to find a church, make new friends and, well, live here.  We're so amazingly blessed and grateful.  God not only didn't close any doors, he led us through each one so perfectly.  We're incredibly at peace and confident that this is where we're supposed to be.  We miss our friends and family dearly.  That is true. And that is the hardest part.  But three hours is nothing.  (Do you hear me, all of you?!?!  NOTHING.) We can't wait to host our friends and show them our new surroundings.  

This was a huge decision for us - not one we took lightly.  But there has never been (yet, anyway), a second of doubt.  

So, that's it.  We love it here.