Sunday, January 31, 2016

Andrew and I's Next Step

Family Planning Part 2:

I already talked quite a lot about Andrew and I's reasoning for starting a family now and choosing Foster Care in this post here! But, we have a few steps we need to take before we can actually become Foster Parents. 

1. Move (hopefully buy a house)
2. Take the classes, etc.
3. Prepare our home for Children

Realistically we have our lease at our current apartment through August. So at the earliest these steps will not be finished until at LEAST September. If we find a house between now and then, get classes taken, etc then we will right on track. We aren't too concerned about the classes or paperwork yet, we want to get the new place and move first.

Why do we need to move before we have children?

Well, a few reasons. First being we want to foster more than one children, preferably foster-to-adopt siblings. I do know we need 1 bedroom per child and currently we have a 2 bedroom apartment. Secondly, this apartment with all the stairs and lack of garage is really tough on me (lung wise and particularly around winter). Thirdly, we have certain school districts and areas we want specifically want to live in (so that our children will go to certain schools). 

We had discussed starting a family a couple months ago, but then I got pretty sick and saw some really bad lung function numbers. Of course, I started questioning whether I was healthy enough to take care of kids and myself, plus work as a Realtor, etc.. But Andrew always calms me down. We decided I would focus on my health 100% and work really hard over Jan-Feb and see! Well, it paid off. As you read in my last post here, I'm at the top again. Which is practically a miracle.  So I will keep up with 10 nebs, 3 vests, 20 minute workouts, 3 meals, 2 snacks, calorie counting, and fitbit! Maybe I will continue to climb this year and I will be able to do things I havent in years (carry heavy object, laundry, or even jog for more than 2 feet). Andrew and my future family are keeping me focused!!!! Which means we can start the process and take the steps we need to become Foster Parents.

The part that may hold up the process is finding a place to live. We would rather buy than rent, but if August comes around and we haven't found a house, then will have to look for month- to-month rentals that are more conducive to what we need until we find a home. Again, since I'm a realtor, I'm hoping that we will find a house before then.

Here is my wishlist:

1. 3 bedroom ranch
2. Garage- a must have!
3. Decent size yard
4. Be within the town/school district we want
5. Be a big cosmetic fixer upper, but no health hazard fixes. We will fix it up as we go along, project by project :-)

I'm a simple, modern-ish, minimalist, constantly-purging-old-clothing-and-items kind of girl. I don't own knick-knacks and have very little on display. I am pretty minimal in my design.

1 story homes makes sense too. I don't want a ton of extra rooms to clean. I can't really do stairs that well anymore (not on a daily basis anyway). Logistically, a ranch is the way to go for us.

Since I'm an architecture buff and want to be environmentally friendly. I want a small eco footprint. I want a fixer upper in order to upgrade items myself, so I can make them energy efficient as we replace them.   Also, I want to enhance whatever era/style of feeling of 1 story home it is... Whether Industrial/Modern or historical/1920 (even a bungalow would be okay, if most rooms on main floor)-or 1950s charm ..If we built a house it would inspired by prairie style - concept by Frank Lloyd Wright (who I LOVE if you didn't know).

(pictures of me at the Martin Home- by Frank Lloyd Wright in Buffalo, NY)
Most 1 story homes we have found in our area have been updated with new (but cheaper non-energy efficient) appliances and white carpet with white trim everywhere..As you know not my style. It's nice, pretty, and great for lots of people. But it isn't my cup of tea, ya know? We don't think building is for us. I love fixer uppers. I have helped various friends fix up their homes & want to bring an old home back to life!  Although, Andrew did find a house that looked like hoarders lived there, but I think we would need to save up a bit more for the remodeling/cleaning up costs. LOL. Sooo that might be taking it a little too far for our first home.

Finding a balance between too much work/renovations and the right amount of work for us is difficult within the small area we are looking. But that is our problem to deal with, so I'm not too much in a rush to buy the first home we come across, unless it's like that "Tah Dah" moment... Similar to the feeling of my wedding dress! LOL - Home buyers all are very different, some laid back, some particular, some practical, some dreamers, I'm trying not to label myself. It's hard, not to though. I think, I may be my hardest client.. Granted, I've only been a realtor for 2 months, so I have only really had a handful of clients so far.

We plan on going to the informative "Fostering"  night next month, so we can see the typical timeline to proceed for this area and go from there!  Sometimes the classes are 1 night a week for x number of weeks (up to 6), sometimes its multiple nights in a rows for multiple hours. Depends on where you take the classes, so we will have to find one that works with Andrew's schedule. Hoping to have classes finished by August, a home purchased by then, and then we can make our home "kid friendly" - child proofing, etc. Although we don't need baby proofing (our children we are accepting will be between 2-10 years of age). 

My wish is to be ready and settled by August our wedding Anniversary and ready to accept children into our home that fall with hopes to have a kid in our home by Christmas! 

Crazy to think Feb 16th is our 6 month Anniversary!Wow, time has flown by!  6 months already. It's near Valentines Day, haha.
Oh and my blog will be 4 years old that week too! I'm not the biggest fan of Valentines Day, Andrew and I still usually make a nice dinner or go out to eat, exchange cards. But no fancy gifts etc. He'll usually buy me flowers, a new nail polish, candy, or something small and sweet. I make him a card and get him a little box of candy or something. Actually since we got married I have been saying no gifts, just keep putting money towards our future home! So we will have to discuss what we want to do for our 6 month Anniversary/Valentines Day! Wow, time has flown by!  Read all about our wedding in this post here!

Some upcoming posts include the topics below (which I started writing),  but feel free to ask me questions or let me know if you have topics you want to hear about!
 -Blog's 4th year post
-my personal FitBit reveiw (not sponsored)
-Great Strides Season is Here & my National Fundraising Team
-my eye surgery

      Hope you all had a fabulous weekend and enjoy your evenings! We will be watching Downton Abbey! 

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