God is good. He has blown us away with His generosity and graciousness in giving us this home as our own!
From the first time I walked into this house, I fell in love. We had just survived four days on the road with three kids, a giant moving truck full of our earthly possessions, and a car in tow. We had braved the intense Arizona and Nevada heat of the desert sun, admired the changing scenery of Utah with its mountains and meadows of green grass, felt welcomed by the farmlands in southeast Idaho, and watched the landscape transition to brown cowboy country. Finally we arrived in the eastern side of our new home state—Oregon. The mighty forests and high mountains eventually dropped off pretty abruptly to the river valleys of the western half of the state.
Arriving in Portland, we came to Beaverton and kept oohing and aahing over the green. “Look at the vines on the sound barrier next to the road! Look at the trees! There’s so much green! This is amazing!” We were giddy.
Stephen drove us into our new neighborhood, and we found our rental house—blue/gray with white dormers at the head of a cul-de-sac. We hopped out to see it, and a neighbor pulled up. Much to my surprise, she talked to us! She asked about us and said they’d been praying that a family with small children would come to the vacant house. When I told that same neighbor just a few weeks ago that we were buying this house, she cheered and said, “That’s what I wanted to hear!”
This house is more than I could have asked for. It’s not just a house—a box of four walls—but it has a personality and a soul. There are nooks and crannies to be discovered. This home tells a story. It was built in 1987, so not only does it come with some character and charm, it comes with a neighborhood culture that’s a throwback to the 80s. That’s irreplaceable!
I have to say that the back yard is fabulous. Not too big and not too small. There’s a potting shed and five raised garden beds, including a grapevine. The open fencing visually extends our backyard to include the neighborhood greenway, bike trail, and community garden. But, then, our shrubs and trees give us enough privacy that we can enjoy family meals on the back patio almost nightly in the summer. I love eating under my outdoor lights strung from house to tree. The little wooden gate opens to give us easy access to the playground. On the other side of the patio is our grassy yard with two trees just the right distance apart to hang a hammock.
My top two favorite times of day in the house are Sunday mornings and late summer evenings. On Sundays after the kids are dressed, and I’m doing my hair in our upstairs bathroom, Stephen plays worship music. I adore looking down from the second floor at my little family rejoicing and dancing to songs about Jesus. I also love the golden light that gilds the heart of our house at the end of summer days. The boys are usually free-ranging it out in the cul-de-sac and the neighbors’ back yards, while Stephen works on some project outside. All feels right with the world.
We’re thankful that we get to continue the relationships we’ve built with our neighbors and friends and staff at school. It’s an undeserved blessing that we’re reveling in!