When we moved to Jacksonville, we hoped that this apartment would last us the duration of Eric's two-year teaching contract. However, as the past year wore on, we started talking about the likelihood of staying in Jacksonville for a third year. Although we still don't know for sure what Eric's next step will be, it seemed pretty plausible that at least the third year of this new career would keep us here. So, when we realized we were adding E.J. to the family, we started tossing around the idea of moving to a three-bedroom place. We have no problem keeping E.J. in our room for a while, but we figured that in another year, we'd be ready to get our space back. So, we'd most likely be moving next summer anyway. The question we asked ourselves was, if we're going to have to move in the next year anyway, should we just do so now and then hopefully stay in the new place for two years?
We were tossing that idea around, weighing the convenience of getting the move out of the way now with the hassle of trying to move just weeks after having a new baby. But then, our apartment complex sent our lease renewal documents and made the decision for us by raising our rent significantly for next year. So, the hunt was on for a new place.
We decided we would really like to rent a house, so that is where we focused our efforts. Eric was, as usual, a housing-search all-star, tirelessly searching for the perfect rental home for us. Right after E.J. was born, he found it: a three-bedroom, two-bath house in the San Marco area of Jacksonville. It has wood floors, a fireplace, washer/dryer hookups, a separate dining room, a big screened front porch and fenced backyard (with lawn care included in the rent!). It is much closer to both downtown and Eric's school (probably cutting his commute in half), and is walkable to downtown San Marco, which is a very cute neighborhood. And, the rent will be a whole $200/month LESS for this house than it would be for our apartment if we stayed put! So, I mean, wait. A house, with a room for each child, and a fenced backyard, for significantly LESS than we're paying now? Yeah. Let's do that.
So, we are! We'll be moving late this week. The house is "ours" as of yesterday, but we don't have to be out of our apartment until August 26. However, we'd like to get ourselves into the new house as soon before Eric goes back to work (mid-August) as possible. Of course, E.J.'s hospitalization threw a little wrench into our plans, but we'll make it work!
Want to see a few pictures of the new place?
Eric and the kids checking out the front porch
The living room
We were all able to go look at the house during our week at home before the hospital (our first outing as a family of four!), and after checking it out we hit up a nearby park to sample the neighborhood a little bit.
E.J.'s first playground experience!
Four thumbs up for family playground fun!
I will be sad to leave our current apartment - it's in a nice location, I love the unit itself, and we love the "backyard" and amenities in our complex - but we're all very excited about our new house and our new part of town. The kids, in fact, could hardly contain their joy after our fun morning in our new neighborhood!
May this be indicative of things to come in our new home, right?
So, if (when) this blog goes quiet for a little while, you'll know why - we're busy, busy over here!