The biggest bit of news is that we have bought a house in Savannah! Or rather, "commissioned" (is that the right terminology?) a house to be built. And we LOVE IT, LOVE IT, LOVE IT! The location is perfect (Isle of Hope area, just off Laroche, for you Savannah folks). We have been looking at two neighborhoods since around Thanksgiving, knowing that for a new house, we didn't have much time. I took a whirlwind tour of both developments during Ryan's on-call week-end in Savannah in mid-December and after that, we both new which was our first choice. So we went down to Savannah again last Thursday and Friday and looked at house plans and already-built versions of those plans in other neighborhoods all over Savannah; we discussed financing with the lender; we met with the builder and the agents; we walked around the property and finalized our lot choice; and at the end of the day on Friday, signed a contract. AAAHHH! We still have to finalize the exterior and some other details but basically, our decision has been made. We have another trip planned for the 21st to do our pre-construction meeting and pick out our floors/cabinets/counter tops/colors/etc and then we wait. They are going to try to have the house ready in June but it might be July before we can get in...which brings me to our next bit of stressful news: Ryan's job...
We had been thinking that he'd take July off to move, settle in, etc but just found out yesterday that that is not the case. His contract specifies a July 1 start date and they really need him to start then. So considering his fellowship technically ends on June 30, this is going to be um, interesting. This the end of medical training and the beginning of Ryan's "real job" is a monumental change / milestone for Ryan and for our family, the importance and significance of which is hard to describe and cannot be overstated. This is probably a bigger change than the others I've described and one that makes both of us more nervous than the others put together...
And then tonight, we met with the agents who are going to be (HOPEFULLY!) selling our house here in Augusta. For buyers, life is good. For sellers, not so much. And we are both right now. If we sell our house in the timeframe we need, it will be a miracle. Everyone, go ahead and put this on your prayer list right now. I don't want to own a vacation home in suburban Augusta! We are putting the house on the market on Jan. 28, as in the week after next. AAAHHHH! And we have to get it ready before then - clean out closets, clean the exterior vinyl siding (??), clean out the garage, deal with the carpet, etc. And then I'm going to be responsible for keeping the house in "show-worthy" condition while caring for a newborn and a wild 2-year old? I can't even think about that right now! I really can't believe that our 3 years in Augusta is nearly over...our first house, place where both our babies will have been born...but it's true - we have the FOR SALE sign in the garage to prove it!
So you can see why the last few weeks have been quite a blur and why I have been so absentee. My last really clear memories are of the week we were all sick (weeks like that are not easily forgotten!) And at 34 weeks, I'm feeling quite pregnant and am really starting to feel the stress of December / early January. I have been having lots of contractions and lots of just, um, discomfort, mostly due to being climbed on and kicked and pulled and pushed by wild Charlie! I have a sonogram tomorrow so we'll know more about how little Elliot is doing after that! From my perspective, he's strong and active! :)
Thankfully all of the tasks and trials that are before us do not have to be accomplished on our own...we have a God who goes before us; who fights for us; who is strong when we are weak; who promises to be our our Strong Tower, our Helper and our Shepherd; who loves us with an everlasting love and holds us with everlasting arms. He is also the One who accomplishes all things for us and works out all the details of our lives. We have decided that our verse for '08 is Psalm 127:1 -
Unless the LORD builds the house,
They labor in vain who build it;
Unless the LORD guards the city,
The watchman stays awake in vain.
We are clinging to these promises and really praying for grace to trust in the face of so many changes and such intense stress. We hope you'll come along side us and pray for us and rejoice with us!