We Get Our New Home Today: I’m A Basket-Case

On Friday my wife Cat and I went The Escrow Office, and while a notary watched and directed us signed a trillion papers attesting to the fact that we really and truly wanted our new townhouse; that we could pay for it; that we would pay for it; that it was insured; that we wouldn’t sue anyone if it suddenly sank into the ground or floated off into space.

Today all of that should come to its fruition, and we should at some point today, in some way, from someone or other (the seller’s Realtor, I think) receive one key to our new front door and one remote control for our new garage door. At that moment the place will be ours. The months of waiting and hoping and waiting and waiting will finally be over—and we’ll nary be renters again. (We won’t move into our new place until the last week of this month. First comes the air conditioner install guy, then the painter, then the cleaners, then the carpet cleaners. Then comes we. Us. Whatever.)

I’m now a bit of a basket case. Nothing is staying in my head. I can barely imagine living in a place I actually own. Living in my own place involves an emotional paradigm shift I can ride—but that’s about it.

As a kid, my home was taken from me. That fact fed informed and helped solidify what I had already learned about life, which is that Everything Changes: Nothing is permanent; constancy is illusory. To me, the moment has always been where it’s at. That’s always been my Big Philosophy of Life—my bedrock assumption, my Constant Context. “Everything Changes” is an excellent philosophy; throughout my life it’s served me very well indeed. It definitely altered when I became a Christian—and now it’s undergoing another Major Overhaul.

Signing a 30-year lease will do that.

Anyway, today’s the day the place below becomes Exhibit B in God’s effort to present to me evidence that some things do, after all, last at least a little while.


Casa de Shore, almost
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  • Dan Harrell

    So John, a thirty year lease at 50. Hmmm, I hope you sell a lot of books when you get older. It looks great! Congratulations and have many happy years in Casa de Shore.

  • Leif Sr.

    Congratulations!. To ease your mind a bit, you don't actually own the house. The bank does. So no worries, except you have all the responsibility and liability. But other than that, you're home free…as long as you pay, of course.

  • Ellen Gomez


    It truly IS a beautiful home. I love the look of it and you must have a nice view judging from its position. (Did I get the possessive it right?)

    We doubled up on payments 15 years ago and our house will be payed off next year! That's another concept that's hard to wrap your brain around! Anyway, congratulations!!!

  • Judy

    It's all good, John. And, when the rates go down, you can refi to a 15 year!

    And of all man's felicities

    The very subtlest one, say I,

    Is when for the first time he sees

    His hearthfire smoke against the sky.

    ~Christopher Morley, A Hallowe'en Memory

  • Lucilia

    Don't worry about the mortgage John…we never really own anything anyway. I just turned 50 this year AND bought my 2nd home! I'm on the 30 year plan as well…big party at my house when I turn 80! 🙂

  • Candace

    Well, and whoever made the point about doubling up made a good one.

    I was really really blessed, and was able to pay my 30-year mortgage off after 10 years (Thank you, Lord!). It saved me almost $200K in interest.

    Congratulations, John 🙂 I'm so happy for you and Cat.

  • Candace

    That would be Ellen who recommended doubling up payments if possible.

    I'm so used to there being a lot of comments. Was abashed when I realized that in this case I only would have had to look through a few to identify the person with the good advice!

  • Candace

    Ooops. And Yvette. Gosh, I'm lazy 😉

  • Candace

    Bless this house, O Lord, we pray,

    Make it safe by night and day;

    Bless these walls so firm and stout;

    Keeping want and trouble out;

    Bless the roof and chimney tall,

    Let thy peace lie over all;

    Bless this door that it may prove

    Ever open to joy and love.

    Bless these windows shining bright,

    Letting in God's heavenly light;

    Bless the hearth a-blazing there;

    With smoke ascending like a prayer;

    Bless the folk who dwell within;

    Keep them pure and free from sin;

    Bless us all that we may be,

    Fit, O Lord, to dwell with Thee.

    -Helen Taylor

  • No worries John…you'll probably always be able to think of something to change/repair/improve about your fantastic house. You'll just have to pay for it yourself now.

  • Congratulations on your new home!

    My sister makes extra house payments, and has knocked off quite a few years of her home loan. If this is something you can do, it would be great. I can´t imagine being 80 and making a house payment!

    Don´t forget to buy light bulbs when you move in.

  • Cibola


    All those papers! That reminds me, I was going to read them and try to figure out what they mean. Maybe I’ll do that…if I can remember where I put them…ten years ago.

  • I presume it’s three stories high?

    Would the top floor be your ‘bedroom in the sky’? How romantic!

    Looks awesome, John… Congratulations to you both.

    “Bless this house, oh Lord, I pray…keep it safe by night and day…..(shoot, another senior moment….forgot the next line!)

    But my heart’s right anyways . . . and the two monthly payments they all speak of certainly does bring the mortgage down quickly!

  • Hey, guys! Thanks for all your comments! (Except for you, Leif.) Everything you guys said is here is great. (Except for you, Leif.) You wouldn't BELIEVE what actually ended up happening yesterday. (Well. You would. But I couldn't.) I'll do a post about it later today–or even this morning. I have to get this outline for a book done, so I need to work on that a bit—and then I'll bore you to death with my unbelievable story of How I Almost Got Tagged Out Just As I Was Sliding Into Home.

  • Everything changes, and this is just another very nice change! Congrats, John! Don't let yourself go too crazy…

    …well, crazier.

  • BJM

    We never truly own our homes until the MORTGAGE is paid, the bank does.

    The root words for Mort = death (mortician, mortuary, etc.) and gage is a contract. So to truly define it is a contract until death due to the fact most never outlived their mortgage although we do live longer today.

  • John,

    Here's hoping for a happy homecoming for you with no more hitches.


  • Sharon McKee

    Congratulations! What a Beautiful House…

    Your blog brought me back to my first experience buying a house as a single parent. Back then, I didn't know the Lord…and, was I ever scared.

    Now that I know Fear is contrary to Faith… by God's grace, I spend more time in FAITH. As my relationship with Him grows, so does my experience of VICTORY in each battle. Change is difficult, but once we embrace our need to change, it gets easier. By meditating on Jesus, Who is our Prince of Peace, our focus moves off of circumstances and onto Him Who is Faithful.

    Since God is conforming us to the image of His Son, we have many changes yet to go through BUT, we've been promised VICTORY as long as we keep our eyes on HIM! 🙂

    Thanks, Candace, for the House Blessing. I'd like to pass that on to a friend who just bought her first house as a widow and single mom. We're helping her keep from some of the pitfalls we've learned about the hard way.

    We've found a proven plan for paying off mortgages in 1/3 to 1/2 the time thus building equity fast. It works without refinancing or changing your present lifestyle. Paying double payments is not as effective as this program. I can send you a link to a 15 minute video, if you'd like it. Let me know, as I won't send it unsolicited.

  • Leif Sr.

    A cup of cold water on a hot day is refreshing, isn't it? Unless it lands in your face…or maybe not?

  • Elizabeth

    Congrats, Dude!!! Soooo happy for you and Cat! Happy mortgaging!!! 🙂

  • Sabina