Moving. Again.

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Tomorrow, we'll be putting our little yellow house up for sale. 

I write that and the reality stings a bit, but the sadness is so quickly outweighed by relief that the hurt can't linger long. (First things first, we aren't leaving Raleigh - just moving across town.)

We've been making it work, the ministry salary + working-from-home salary + mortgage and string of home repairs that we can afford if we both work hard. But when we take a look at our schedules and acknowledge that I'm working during every nap time, every evening after Liam goes to bed, and we have very little family time that's not laden with guilt that I really should be working - we realize that something desperately needs to change. We knew this setup wasn't going to work forever, but didn't realize how quickly burnout would come. It has come.

The change we need to make is obvious: our house. As first time homebuyers, I think we had in our heads, "How much can we afford?" A few months into the experience as home owners, we're thinking: "How little can we spend so that we can really feel financially free?" When there are townhouses or other homes a little further out that are the same size and half the price, that means we'd be cutting our mortgage in half, which means I would potentially have to work much less, if at all. These other homes may be completely carpeted, have dated kitchens, or not 100% our taste - but the fact that we would be enjoying much more time together and not worrying about our house payment makes that all so worth it. (And we can always pull up carpet and paint kitchen cabinets.)

I actually love to work, as I've written plenty about before. Right now, though, I feel like a full-time worker and a full-time mom. With 8-10 hours of childcare per week, working 30+ hours requires a lot of sacrifice. I'm ready to be a full-time mom and a part-time worker. These years are short and so fleeting, and I don't want to spend them in guilt that I've put Liam in front of his third episode of Daniel Tiger so I can finish sewing an Etsy order before the post office closes.

So, clearly, this is a bold step. We're actually going to attempt to sell our house ourselves (without the help of a realtor), which is even bolder.

That's where you come in.

We covet your bold prayers.
Prayers for stamina in keeping our house clean (with a tornadic toddler around) and opening it for showings again and again. And prayers for energy to move yet again. This will be the fourth time we've moved within one year and it's just plain exhausting.
Prayers for wisdom in negotiating a contract.
Prayers that it will sell quickly and that the Lord will provide something else just as quickly. We're open to renting, but Raleigh is not cheap, and it looks like buying something else will actually be a less expensive option.

I feel most sad when I think about leaving our beloved neighbors. It feels so unnatural to have only been here 8 months when we all expected years.

Otherwise, though, I only feel relief. Relief that I'm not going to have to sit behind the sewing machine or the computer for literally hours a day in order to pay our bills. Relief that we might even have disposable income again. Brighter Day isn't going anywhere. I really do love it. I just don't love how much we've had to rely on its income and, in turn, how it's consumed too much of our lives.

This process is humbling and stretching and exhausting. But we pray that through it, we grow in faith, in wisdom, in character, and in empathy when we see others who are walking the same road.

Thanks for sitting beside us, on the edges of our seats, in anticipation for what our good God plans to do.


  1. You have my prayers!I faced a similar decision when my marriage sadly ended in 2014.This house is compact but I love it -easy to clean and maintain.

    I helped my daughter through a language degree, a career change for her and a 4 year midwifery degree and health visiting MSc.She now has her own home, but when job loss and unexpected illness struck in 2010, I was more than OK! My little home and haven was paid for,no added stress during a stressful time.

    Rest easy,your decision is right and God will provide,

    Very best regards,

    Ann Marie

  2. I meant 2000!I have been a single parent since then and God has carried me throughout.

  3. So excited to see the fallout of difficult as it may be to move again, the possibility on the otherside seems like a great fit for your family. We've chosen a similar route, smaller house/smaller mortgage, since my husband runs his own company and I stay home, and it has been so freeing, not too mention less stressful! Blessings:)

  4. I've followed your blog for several years and have admired your commitment to the Lord, your family, and your art. My prayers are with you in this effort to sell your house and be able to have more family time. I'm older and wish I had learned to simplify and want less things when I was younger. God bless you and your family.

  5. I will be praying for you! I worked full time as a mortgage loan processor from home for the first 3 months after giving birth (which was horrible) and then went back into my office, putting her in full time childcare with a dear lady from our church. We were not planning on getting pregnant that quickly (honeymoon) and had not made provision for me to stay home. Thankfully when baby reached 6 months my husband took on an additional part-time job as worship leader and we moved out of our beloved townhome into a super crappy apartment and sold my sports car BUT I was home with my baby which was everything to me. A month after we moved we got pregnant again! It has been such a blessing to see God make our needs less and less on this journey as we trust Him with our provision and what He feels we need (run down cars, ugly carpets and all). 5 years into this we are still renting but now a modest home in a working class neighborhood that is fertile soil for the Lord! I pray that God will give you peace and joy through this process as well as the physical and emotional strength you'll need. Sending love from Wilmington! --Wendy

  6. I feel so sorry for you and your Family. But I think, your dicision is wise. A heavy Charge can denature your live. I hope, your new place will become home. Elsa

  7. Stopping to pray right now, Whitney! I'm so thankful that God has provided a clear answer; I know He'll follow through with all provisions necessary :)

  8. I am moving now after 10 months in one place and I totally feel your pain. Praying for you and your family this week!

  9. Good for you...I don't know you but I am so encouraged by your testimony of willing to do with less in order to gain what's truly important. God bless your family in this process of moving and may He do far beyond what you expect :)

  10. Prayers can be answered in so many ways. A friend led me to your blog; my son has been looking and waiting to find a house in your neighborhood. Your home seems like the perfect fit. I hope he will be able to see it soon. In any case, I will lift your family up in prayer on your next stage of life (and for my son that he finds the perfect home...maybe yours!)


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