67 Miles

A few weeks ago I made a conscious decision to keep something from my blog readers. I haven’t felt guilty about it; I don’t feel like I “owe” my readers anything but my gratitude, which you certainly have.

Still, secrets and half-truths are a real pain in the ass. My favorite Judge Judy saying is, “If you tell the truth, you don’t have to have a good memory.” And when I began keeping this one, I thought my silence would be needed only for ten days. That was November 3rd.

It’s now five weeks later, and I find that keeping one secret has really stalled me from sharing other things, too. So without further ado…

Seth and I found a small farm where my mom and our animals can live. It seems to meet most of our needs, and it’s less than an hour and a half from our home. Can you imagine?!

We made an offer, and it’s been accepted on contingencies. The time issue is that it is a bank-owned foreclosure; so paperwork that should take days is taking weeks.

Yes, weeks! For five weeks, we have been holding our breath (insert lung cancer jab here) and hoping that the building and septic inspections don’t turn up anything devastating that we can’t afford to fix. (Like most foreclosures, the bank plans to sell “as-is”.) Perhaps this would be as good a time as any to begin building my contractor contact list for the Delaware/Maryland Bay Area!

I’m not a superstitious person, so I can’t say that I was afraid of “jinxing” the deal by blogging about it. But I was trying not to get my hopes up until we got through inspections. After all, if we have to install a new $20,000 septic system, the deal is off. But now my hopes are up, and both my mom and I will be devastated if this falls through. (sigh)

We are waiting for the bank (owner) to approve a quote and make repairs needed after they un-winterized the house. Then one Saturday or Sunday very soon we will head down to Maryland to meet the inspectors. The bank originally wanted to close before the end of the year, but with their self-imposed delays, I doubt it will happen until early next year.

Now that I’ve spilled my guts and shared all my deep, dark fears that we’ve found the perfect place that could have hidden, expensive problems, allow me to say… I’M SO FREAKING EXCITED!

Less than an hour and a half south there sits an empty farmhouse and some assorted outbuildings on four acres of land.

It’s just about perfectly square and was fenced for animals which hopefully now have happy homes elsewhere. The two acres around the house is mowed, but the rest of the property, mostly in shrubby pasture, hasn’t seen a deck mower in a few seasons. Looking at the aerial map I can almost imagine the horses grazing out in the back pasture.

The house was built 95 years ago and is small compared to some others of its era. Inside it needs a lot of cosmetic help, but it’s always what you can’t see that concerns me.

You can tell it was loved once; even recently you can see where new pavers were laid for a back patio that never saw its first summer barbecue. There is granite, probably rescued from remnants, atop the old, painted beadboard cabinets. And someone started to drywall a room upstairs, presumably for a master bathroom. This place feels right.

Of course, if this all works out (it just has to!), the pressure is really on to sell the existing farm in West Virginia. Yes, we know that will be stressful. But having my mom close to me couldn’t be more important!


19 responses to “67 Miles

  • Gail

    This is so fantastic for you. I have everything crossed!


  • Sjoukje

    oh wow!! How wonderful!!! Fingers (and paws) are crossed for you and your mom!!!!


  • Mary Ruggiero

    Wonderful news. I am so happy for you all. I will keep my fingers crossed.

  • Robin

    Congrats! I hope the transition goes smoothly! I’m in Maryland so keep me posted where you’ll be.

  • Kathleen Hoffman, PhD

    Like others, keeping my fingers and toes crossed on this one! Thanks for sharing this with us 😀

  • Ann Cowan

    So happy for you! Wishing you God’s blessings in health and your new home. Just to let you know, I am a Real Estate Broker in MS and I specialize in selling bank REO properties so I do know what you are going thru. Hope all goes well! ( I am also a 5 year lung cancer survivor after being told I had 3 months to live in 2008)

  • Pam Gregory

    Jessica, I am so excited for you! God bless!

  • Tori

    How wonderful! Moms are great, and I hope you get to have yours close by really soon!

  • kimmywink

    Fingers and toes crossed for good luck! xoxo

  • Sabina

    Oh, Jessica. I can feel your excitement vibrating through my screen and now I can feel the soft flutterings of a single butterly in my tum. Will pray for a perfect outcome for you.

  • Debbie Malaczewsk

    Wow Jessica! I am definitely saying prayers so that all this comes through for you! You are an amazing person! I have a question . . . I believe Seth works for ARAMARK. What is his last name? xoxo

  • Colleen

    Yeah! I hope everything goes smoothly. You deserve it.

  • Laura Olumstad

    Good for you! I pray that all goes well! I too am a lung cancer survivor. I Just reached my 5 year marker. Dec.8, 2008 I was diagnosed. Keep up the positive attitude!!

  • Jacki

    Hi Jessica. I read your entire blog this week-end after finding it. My father was diagnosed six weeks ago with stage IIIb lung cancer (pancoast tumor). We live in Cecil County, MD, so we have taken him to Johns Hopkins for treatment. Not to keen on local doctors. They had been treating him for pulled muscles, pinched nerves, spinal stenosis, etc., because of radiating right shoulder and arm pain. Turns out it was the tumor pressing on the nerves. Only found from pre-op chest x-ray for the surgery they were about to do on the “spinal stenosis”.

    Sounds like your farm may be somewhere near me in Maryland! Ironically, I also lived in WV from 2005-2010 when my hubby was transferred to Charleston!

    Keep up your fight! You are an inspiration!

    • Jessica Rice

      Hi Jacki,

      I’m glad you found me, although the circumstances really stink. It’s sad to learn of your father’s diagnosis and freakin criminal he had to go through so much to get it. The farm will (hopefully!!) be in Queen Anne’s county, just south of you.

      Maybe your father would get joy visiting with the animals once we’re settled in. 😊

  • Arrin Crain

    Mom and I are keeping everything crossed for you and your family – come on, you so deserve this!! Merry Christmas to you guys and a happy, healthy 2014.

    Arrin & Cindy

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