We recently acquired a new neighbor in the apartment next door. She is a lovely single woman with two cats. She works regular hours, and has been very kind, gregarious, and has added lots of aloe plants to our back deck.
Problem #1: she is a chain-smoker.
Problem #2: Our apartments are old and poorly sealed.
By themselves, these problems do not really effect our daily lives. Sure, the place chills easily in winter and swelters in the summer, but we have central heating and cooling to keep us in relative comfort. We also have no problem with people who smoke. In fact, many of our friends smoke cigarettes. While Thomas and I do not smoke, we don’t hold the activity against people.
But, together, these problems amount to a difficult obstacle: the smell of second-hand smoke has infiltrated our little abode. We have managed to seal our front door (which opens up onto a stairwell hallway that we share with our lovely neighbor), but the smell is still everywhere, and now we can’t use our front door either. We also cannot use our AC, because that will simply pump the smell from our hallway (which we can close off from the rest of the house with various doors) into all of the other rooms of the house. And now, the smell is in the kitchen and bathroom, which makes cooking, cleaning, and prepping more uncomfortable that we like.
The result? We are moving. Now, we have said this before, and then reneged, much to the confusion of many. But this time, I’m positive. Why? Because we have already paid the deposit, and signed the lease. It’s a lovely, two bedroom apartment about four streets North of our current situation. It has a washer and dryer in unit, wood floors, and a larger kitchen. We begin painting it this weekend, and start moving in after the first of March.
What have I learned from this?
- Small apartments that smell like cheap cigarette smoke make excellent incentives to get outside… a lot.
- God might just be making things uncomfortable for us to help us move more efficiently and quickly.
- Living in close proximity to someone who is making us uncomfortable also provides an excellent witnessing opportunity.
- My husband is amazing. He knows that house-hunting stresses me out, so he volunteered to take over ALL of the moving process, as long as I came along for any major walk-throughs and start purging/packing the house.
So, that is where we stand.
How does this work with fostering/adoption?
We are now allowed to take in up to two children under the age of 3. We might be providing respite care more often, but are still heartily praying for a very young child who needs a forever home.
We thank you for your prayers and words of encouragement. Hopefully, there will be more book reviews coming soon, once I finish a few more bigger crochet projects with fast-approaching due dates…