Tuesday, May 11, 2010

I never thought I would end up HERE!

all gone!

the big ole sycamore!

On my last visit to Florida, I passed the property we lived in before moving to Alabama. I said property, not house, because all that is left is a huge sycamore tree that was on the side of the house. The county leveled our house in order to widen the road!
Several years ago my mother in law moved in with our family after having a stroke and needing a little looking after. She quickly recovered from the effects of the stroke but we wanted to be able to keep an eye on her to make sure.
When looking for a home to buy around 5 years ago, we needed a four bedroom, with one of them big enough to have a sitting area for Mom who loves cats which I am allergic to, and space for a TV since she is more sports crazy than my husband and needed a nice size space so as to not feel claustrophobic.
The realtor showed us several houses, but only one had a Florida Room type porch that had real windows, air and heat and was a pretty decent size for Mom and Kit. So we purchased that house which was on a side street that bordered what we thought was a moderately busy street that was very busy between 2:30 -3:30 when the schools down the road let out. Traffic would be at a standstill right at our side yard every weekday.
It didn't actually bother me so much, but when I would see it , I would joke with my husband that the county would probably want to widen the road and offer to buy our house and we would probably make a huge profit! He would chuckle at me, saying that that was silly, the county surely wouldn't be doing that, and I would joke back that if I was right, he could just make me a prophet!
Well, low and behold, after less than a year of living there,we received the first of several letters from Hernando County, first about POSSIBLY widening the road, would you be interested in selling, but not sure which side of the road to buy, then choosing our side, then beginning the negotiation process, closing on the house , then being allowed to live in it RENT FREE for 10 months before vacating!
We had purchased our home in Florida during the real estate boom when house prices had jumped significantly and our mortgage, insurance and taxes were very high, and cooling off such a large area gave us very high utility bills, so the house sale was just what was needed! We made a significant profit on the home while property values were dropping all around us!
I really do know that Divine leading was going on for us at that time!
Meanwhile, a good friend of our daughters moved to Gadsden, Alabama and we went to her wedding there, then visited when she and her husband bought a home. I went to Alabama with her mom to help paint their new house, and a while later, visited again to go to her baby shower and each time I was there I just loved the town, the houses, the climate, the mountains, etc. When her parents who lived in Florida right down the street from us purchased a home there we began to seriously consider making a move there. After much prayer and consideration we felt that was the right move to make and we looked for a house there and moved right at the end of our 10 month rent free time in Florida.
Our mortgage is very low (including taxes and insurance) and my husbands business is doing better than it ever did in Florida. He started it from scratch here, just pulling in to car dealerships and giving out business cards!
The only drawback is missing Christina and her husband and my adorable grandson! We hope for them to move here as well, but the housing market in Florida is not very cooperative! So, we visit them every 6 weeks or so and learn to enjoy every minute with them!
That's the story! How we ended up in Alabama, which many of our friends laugh about, but they just don't know how really beautiful this state is!
(Oh, and by the way, we moved here with my daughter Jenny, Rachel who has lived with our family for over 10 years and is like our third daughter, and Mom, who is thrilled because she has her own apartment at the Baptist Retirement Village which is only three miles from our house and has plenty of room for herself and her cat!)


  1. wow, that would be so strange to see where your house had once been! what a blessing that you were able to benefit from such a thing though and i loved finding out about your backstory :)

  2. Very cool! My cousins had a house that was purchased by a Native American Casino- they were the last to budge and got lots of cash!! I wish someone would want our house- but we are on a cul-de-sac so I doubt it :)

  3. how weird to have your former house gone... but i'm glad you got such a good deal out of it! i hear gadsden is quite lovely (jillian talks of it fondly!) hopefully, doors will open for stina's family to move there one of these days!!