Wednesday, 16 September 2015

Not All A Bed Of Roses

Lest you think I am not being transparent, I thought I should share the trials we have faced along with the good things.  Finding a place to live has been beyond challenging. The rental housing market is difficult and quite expensive here.  I found what I thought would be the perfect house for us and put in an application. The agent indicated that the house had been empty for some time. The agency became very hard to work with and later I found out they had a reputation for being difficult. They lost our application and called us for another one. Then after couple days, when we followed up, they said they would let us know as soon as they knew something. We did not have much time and needed to keep looking. Finally they came back and said the owner had decided to sell the house.  I was sure that was the house for us but God had other plans.  

I began searching again with Johanna and nursing Annabeth in tow.  The only time you can see houses is from 9-5 on weekdays!  It was quite stressful on all of us.  I found another home that again seemed like a good fit. The parking wasn't ideal and the bedrooms small but the view was awesome and the living space great. The agent was sure we would have no problem moving in on Monday.  I found it on Friday.  This was perfect because our corporate housing was over on Wednesday and paying $300/day to stay there was not in our budget.  On Monday late afternoon the agent called and said, to her surprise, the owners didn't want to rent to us because we had kids!  This is not common thinking here.  We were shocked and under pressure!  Tuesday I began the mad hunt again with Johanna and Annabeth in tow. I found this older home owned by an older couple who lived two houses down. The couple was amazingly, sweet and kind, so I thought. The husband was a bit goofy but I thought it was fine. The house was older but it would do for now.  They allowed us to move in on Tuesday. We moved over some items on Tuesday. Wednesday morning we woke up, I checked us out of the place we were staying and moved us over to the house. I started cleaning the house.  It was really quite dirty which is not normal to find in NZ rentals.   While cleaning I noticed mold on a wall. I took a picture and sent it to Jeremy. He wanted us out of the house immediately not knowing what type of mold it was. It was especially concerning because Annabeth was with me.  We had to give three weeks notice to be out of the contract. So Jeremy decided we would just go ahead and give the three weeks notice and lose the money. When he approached the people, the man turned into "Mr. Hyde".  It was scary.  He told Jeremy that Jeremy was lucky he was not dead!! When we asked other Kiwis if this was normal behavior, they said no it was very threatening and you could actually call the police. We just wanted it settled and done, with no more drama. Eventually they agreed, via email, to call it even with the three weeks pay. This was what we were legally obligated to pay.  Rent is done by the week here.  Jeremy and I were beyond worn-out and stressed. A house we had looked at earlier was so kind and offered their townhome to us to stay in until we found a place. Jeremy's work offered to pay the cost of the town home ($1800 for two weeks).   This same couple's house was still available for rent  and we decided to rent it for 6 months.  It is a nice house except the bathroom isn't ideal and it is farther from Jeremy's work than we wanted.  However, Jeremy can take a bus.  It will be a good safe location.  Through this difficult time, I did learn something. 

We had visited a church one time and the people at the church found out the troubles we were facing. They were so kind and offered so many things to us. Even finding us housing if we couldn't find anything. I really learned that the body of Christ is around the world and that they help serve each other no matter if they know you are not.  It was amazing to see the provision God supplied including Jeremy's work paying for more temporary housing without us asking.  

Since our struggles with housing, Jeremy has talked to the bank and we know that we will buy or build in the next year or so. Renting is quite costly here. It has been a trying week to say the least.  Through it all we are once again assured of Gods provision and love.  

This past weekend we did go to a museum. It was a lot of fun and the kids enjoyed it.


The butterflies were everywhere and would land on you. 

Each of the kids got to do this!

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