We expect to have some pretty dramatic before and after pictures!
Porthole! Takes me back to my cruise days. ;)
I started getting nervous in December while in the US, thinking about finding a house in time. My Dad once searched for 12 solid months (all of 2008) before finding our current location, and that only once we drastically expanded our search area. I was going to have just 3 weeks, and we did not want to consider an expanded search field.
The one plus was that we need less space than before, with 6 children instead of our former 12-15 in CDA II. Desiring to both better our care and focus our attention on our "specialty" (babies) , we will keep numbers low at Casa de Amor II.
It's a hard balance. We want a large house with a large yard. We do not want fancy or high quality fixtures that will be hard/expensive to replace. We want to be in the great locations everyone wants, but without the expense. Houses further out have bigger yards but normally smaller, older houses. If you find a house near downtown, you deal with traffic and small yards. If you find a house over 15 minutes from downtown, Bolivians (or we who have lived in Bolivia too long :) will protest the distance and won't visit.
And then you have to feel out the owner, who occasionally react badly to the thought of having their house packed with children - from the street, from violent situations, with dangerous family members. I don't blame them one bit! There's also something to say for the power of a group of children, even very young: two will always wreck more havoc than one (an amen from a mother of multiples?!).
(Why do we go through this rather than build? Glad you ask. I've done both and let's just say there's NO comparison financially! We rent our beautiful houses for between $250 - 350/month. Plus I want my children planted in the community in small groups, not cloistered away on private property with buildings and high fences, institution-like. And we usually have terrific relationships with our house owners and enjoy our interaction.)
So last week on Monday, I told my office staff "THIS is the week to find the house, that's my top priority this week." Well, we visited this house on Friday, three times! Then we slept on it, talked on Saturday morning, and called back to take it. Shew, deadline met!!
The downstairs is very nice. Kitchen just so-so, but I've seen worse and at least our appliances should fit in there with some creativity.
The upstairs needs work, but we look at it this way: if a child does something there, no one will notice. :)
A huge benefit is the yard!! We love it and I know the kids will spend many happy hours playing and exploring there.
There is a formal dining/living and a casual dining/living. We can use one of those spaces for storage and another for meetings and adoptions!
There's no set up for our clothes washer but we'll work on it. Until then it will be hand washing, Bolivian style!
We're in a tucked away "gated community" (makes it sound fancier than it is) right off a main "highway". Great for transportation needs!
Thanks to those who prayed for our new home! Your prayers were heard. Watch for more pictures soon......