Friday, May 16, 2014

Our Village

Closing time
Every new beginning comes from some other beginning's end

Closing time

Four years ago, my hubby and I sold our house, moved into a rental, and agreed to "watch the housing market" for a year. That lasted all of four months  Nearly every week, I'd drive to my "dream neighborhood" and pray that a house would come on the market. I remember one day, as I was taking the tour of the hood, I met a lady and her daughter... the same age as Chris. They were playing ball in their front yard and when I stopped to ask questions, the ball rolled down the hill and that was the end of the ball.  I immediately clicked with this lady, and I left the hood knowing this was where I was meant to be.

A week later, a foreclosure popped up in this neighborhood.  My hubby and I were there within hours, but couldn't get in  Yep, it was one of those shady deals and I was so bummed... until my soon to be next door neighbor told me to go take a look at the front door of the house one door down.  Yep, it had been served with foreclosure papers.  I peered into the windows and saw a two story fireplace with stone from the floor to the ceiling and almost wet myself. 

Fast forward a week, the house came onto the market and that was all she wrote.  With the help of some amazing realtors who went to bat for us, we landed our dream house. In our dream neighborhood.  And that's why today is a hard day.

The week we moved in, my next door neighbor had a wine night on the front porch.  Brendan and I moseyed on over, stayed until the wee hours of the morning, I broke out the vagina guitar, they still talked to me the next day, and friendships started.

Today is a hard day because the foreclosure house that became our home through blood, sweat, and tears isn't ours anymore.  It was the house with the most beautiful staircase ever that I knew for sure  Addie was going to want to invite people over for prom pictures on.  It was the house we painted, added a deck and patio, hung trim, installed a backsplash... the list goes on and on.  It was the house that I created my dream nursery in and rocked my last baby every night.  It was the house she was conceived in... It was the house that we added a sprinkler system to and I fought tooth and nail because I just needed my Japanese maple tree.  It was the last house of mine that my grandparents came to see.  It was the house that my kids made sweet memories in and where they made best friends.

And while the house was perfect for us, it's not the house that we'll miss. I got to the point where I was just over the big house. I'm learning that a house is just a place to lay your head and does not define you... but it's those precious relationships that matter so much. Courtland became our family.  The CRV was our hood, and full of our people.  It's the neighborhood where everybody knows your name, where people genuinely care about one another, and where you want to raise your children. 

Sure, the hood has problems- ya know- like when you are running late to meet the bus and your kids get off without you and you then look like a fool because you have to go door to door looking for them because they could be at about ten houses... because they would be taken in by anyone and wouldn't mind at all.  Or when someone sets off a firecracker, you better believe you're gonna have a hundred new emails... because there is a gunman for sure trying to take out all 300 houses and the messageboard is on fire.  And occasionally, there might be a loud motorcycle (ha!), a pack of wolves keeping you up at night, or a cornhole game and drinks down at the neighbors that causes you to win parents of the year by face-timing your sleeping children so you can get rowdy with your friends.  We only did the last one once... or twice. :)

So, today is a hard day.  It feels like a part of me is gone.  I shed tears thinking about sitting out with my neighbors, my children having the time of their lives just being at home in the yard with their friends, or how I won't be able to run up to my bestie, Danielle's and just walk on in through the garage and hang out. 

I'll miss looking out and seeing my kids setting up shop to sell loom bracelets, going door to door picking weeds to save for Papa John's... and I might even miss the times where they took bottled waters from our garage and mortified us by walking door to door selling them for $3/each without us even knowing.  Entrepreneurs, I tell ya, and nice neighbors that support our kids.:)  Today is a hard day because I'll miss Chris being able to run up the hill and grab Mason, or down to Stephen and Spencer's to play outside.  I'll miss picking up my friend that now plays soccer with me because I was crazy and posted to the crazy messageboard that we needed players.  I'll miss Ms. Kaye having all the kids over for sleepovers and Addie being so excited.  Ya know, how that was my goal to be the house where everyone goes, but then when your kid gets invited somewhere else, you just resign to the fact that being able to chill and watch HGTV sounds so much easier and letting someone else put up with the chaos.  Hell, I'll even miss the neighborhood bitch (so kidding)... who taught me so much about life... and at times, forgiveness. :)

Today is a hard day because I'll miss how my neighbor would always seem to know when the hubby was out of town or I was having a bad day and send the best homemade quesadillas over so I didn't lose it at dinner.  I'll miss Sarah's chocolate chip cookies. I'll miss hanging out with my girls Kelli and Heather on our redneck decks... Sure we all had beautiful decks (shout out to Builders Fence, heeeeyyyyyy), but there was nothing better than nights where we popped open our $5 chairs on our driveways, caught up, and watched the wonderful "shows" our children put on... or didn't really watch out children at all because we knew they were having a blast and so were we. And I'll even miss the young familes that have moved into the new section.  Yep, over the past couple of years, Brendan and I went from always being the young couple in our neighborhoods, to now being the "older" couple... and I'll admit, it's been a changing of the seasons.. I might, might- just come home from get togethers and cry how I'm a fuddy duddy, old, and need botox.  Issues.... thank God that man puts up with my crap.:)

I will miss days at the pool with the foreign lifeguards, Erik and Natasha always making it a hoot, and crazy nights with Tonia- when we are together- watch out.:)  The list could go on and on with so many families who know who they are... and that's why today is a hard day.

So, yes, today is a hard day.  But we are McCullers, and we can do hard things.  Holding on to faith that we are making the right decision for our family...   and that Every new beginning comes from some other beginning's end. 

It's just a little hard when you aren't sure you wanted it to end.

Courtland, you will forever be in our hearts.  It's been real.  And I know we have made lifelong friendships, and for that I am so thankful.

P.S.  If anyone posts pictures on Facebook of y'all gathering with the new owners of our house doing s'mores, I might be institutionalized.  :)


  1. We will miss you all! Come back and visit, often please!

  2. awwww...when we moved we lost the best neighbors ever, too. I think that was truly the hardest part. Now we are renting and searching for our "next" forever home...with awesome neighbors. They are really important - I totally get it. Great post :)