Not My Promised Land
We closed on a ‘new’ home Friday evening. Here’s a cross section of the months that have lead to this, and how I feel about it all.

Early this spring we began looking for a home, there hasn’t been much on the market that met our criteria–the older the better. Then, a few months ago I almost shared a dream come true. This farmhouse had been on the market for over a year and we decided to put in a bid. Before we could even make our offer–that same day–the sellers dropped their price by $20k. It was meant to be.

Or not. The big, beautiful 1896 farmhouse on 5 acres in a quaint little town just south of us went to a cash buyer the morning we were to sign a contract. Devastation. I’m tearing up thinking about it because it’s very painful. Extremely painful. It felt very much like an intentional jab from Someone who had been stringing us along. That place was the kind of home we envisioned for our lives from the beginning–the very epitome of old country living. A house like my grandmother’s, a big barn and several acres to homestead. Not in our cards.

Meanwhile. At the beginning of the summer I took Naomi to the eye doctor for a regular exam. She’s worn glasses for a few years, and she needed new ones so we thought it time to get her re-checked. Nothing could prepare me for the news the optometrist would give; that there is something more wrong with her vision than standard near-sightedness. He was concerned that some genetic disposition is at work and he dropped the name of a degenerative eye disease that could leave her blind in a few years. We still don’t know where that will end up. There are more tests to do. Again, I tear. But, the farmhouse idea that was falling into place seemed like a place to put our hopes; it could have been the perfect respite from this difficult issue, a place to distract us and to prepare for what could be. 

Whatever is in the cards for Naomi’s eyes and her path, that house isn’t part of it. It’s gone and the hope we had for it lingers a bit. For Naomi we still wait to know, or not know. Whatever her situation is we have to continue praying and knowing that she will be ok in any case. A difficult thing for parents to do.  (here’s where you say, ‘aw lacey–that’s a lot to deal with!’ and with resolve i say, ‘yes-it is, but we can’t even begin to list what we’re grateful for’ while thinking in my head that I may have a nervous break down–now’s the time, folks might really think it a reasonable response).

In terms of the house, we have moved forward, in a direction I can’t say I’m really truly thrilled about. It’s a house. 1986–the character is lacking, the smells abound. It needs overhaul and imagination and I’m terrified at the work that lies ahead. It’s on 10 acres, mainly wooded. No barn, no more square footage, nearly zero charm– save for the pond. It’s not the vision of nostalgia and farming and beauty I’d fallen in love with at the farmhouse–my Promised Land. No one has loved this house in a long time–if ever. It more closely resembles a ranger station than a residence. One bedroom appears to have been used solely for a kennel, and there’s much water damage from untended holes in a leaky roof. The bid we put in was one part whim, another part rebound thinking only if it works out this time it’s meant to be; obviously, if it’s not it won’t. And, after all, it is a beautiful lot in a great location not far from the city. And, there’s the pond…

the front of the ‘ranger station’, seriously the smallest windows ever. might make sense were it not for the surrounding beauty…

the pond

This week, as over 60 days of paperwork neared an end, we read about the Israelites not entering the Promised Land on account of fear. While I’m questioning our decision to jump on this property we read about how the people sent in spies to make sure the land they were told to enter was good enough–safe enough. The spies returned scared; afraid of work, giants, hurdles, hardships and challenges. Surely, this was not the promise they’d been preparing themselves to find. So, they didn’t go and they missed their opportunity, they saved the battle for their children and lived the remainder of their days in the desert just a day’s travel from the promise they refused to see. 

going to need some lightening up.
and, there should be a self-destruct button installed with carpeting–30 years is just too long…

I’m at the very least timid about this new property. It is not my dream home, right now it feels like a project I didn’t even think I wanted to take on. We are ready to move on, but this place is not what I’d envisioned. The timing of this reading was meant for me. We have closed and it is ours and I will go in and to my best. I can see in the distant future an amazing place, hopefully sooner a home that is comfortable and peaceful and the callous on the place in my heart that was holding out for perfection is softening. Who knows what will happen here, or what miracles might take place. The plans He has could far surpass my own, and for all I know my dream would have been limiting. It’s obvious I don’t understand, and maybe I won’t, but I’ll blog about it none-the-less.

the kennel room
leviah peeling paper. say goodbye to the wreathes…

So, welcome to our humble abode. I will share our progress as I can, and I hope one day you come to visit! And, anyone have good suggestions for solar panel installation? We are seriously trying to wrap our heads around that idea…


  • Joy Posted July 30, 2012 7:26 pm

    Wow, Lacey! That's so much to deal with all at once. You are handling everything so much more graciously than I would, I fear. ((hugs)) I can't wait to see what you do with the ranger station. 🙂

  • arianne Posted July 30, 2012 8:07 pm

    I'm sorry things have been so disappointing and stressful. But I know you have the magic in you to create beauty wherever you're planted. Hugs.

  • school house oils Posted July 30, 2012 10:56 pm

    thanks ladies! ultimately all is well, just trying not to be distracted by these things…thanks for the encouragement.

  • Anelle Ammons Posted July 31, 2012 1:22 am

    Oh, I'm so excited for you guys! It looks like a lot of work will end up paying off because I have faith that you will turn it into your new fabulous home. Can't wait to see what you do with it! And I hope it does keep you distracted from the stressful news about Naomi.

  • Sunny Posted July 31, 2012 4:36 am

    Oh sweet friend- that is a lot of burden to bear! I know that you can spin pure gold from even the humblest circumstances. I'm glad to hear that you will be blogging through it, I can't wait to see your family's new adventure.

  • Anonymous Posted July 31, 2012 7:01 pm

    Hang in there, Lacey! Yes, this is a lot to have to deal with at once. And YES…you are an amazing woman who will have the yard and inside of the "ranger" house beautiful in no time, with happy kids in tow. 10 acres of land….plus pond…seriously drooling right now.


  • Crystal Garvin Posted August 1, 2012 2:16 am

    Wow, that is a huge undertaking, but I am excited to see it take shape and become something beautiful. I love the analogy of the Israelite spies. God is up to something good . . .

  • Nicola Posted August 2, 2012 6:33 am

    Ah, Lacey. That is a lot to deal with all at once. Looking forward, sending you huge hugs, lots of courage, lots of healthy vibes for Naomi, and lots of elbow grease.

  • Tamela Posted August 4, 2012 5:41 am

    Lacey, I have no doubt that you and Drew will make your new home a wonderful place. I am sorry for all that you have gone through and will pray for Naomi. Hang in there!

  • school house oils Posted August 6, 2012 2:51 am

    Thanks so much everyone! Things are already looking worlds different at the new place, and a road trip to see family brightened our spirits even more (though we really should have been here working) so much love can likely make anything bearable…

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