We Bought a House

Thursday, October 20, 2016

One week from today, at exactly 12 p.m., we are "closing" on our new home. Our realtor just emailed us the official closing time yesterday. I was going to wait until we actually had the keys in our hand before I shared anything, but I'm too excited. We are home owners in Chicago!

When we moved here six years ago I never thought this would happen. In fact, during that first year I contemplated a move back to Omaha more times than I can count. Everything seemed so much harder and more complicated here. Everything was just .... so beyond my comfort zone.

And six years later my feelings have completely flip flopped and all I can see is the ease of living in a city. Stepping out of my comfort zone was the best thing I have ever done.

But let's back up to our first "vacation" here about seven years ago.

Chris and I took the train from St. Louis (where he was living) to Chicago for the weekend. For some reason I thought trains were fancy and we would get onboard and magically it would be 1945 and the men would be in suits with hats, and the women in skirts with stockings. And we'd drink champagne in our private cabin while we snacked on whatever nice treats the magic train from 1945 was serving.

Have I mentioned lately that my brain leans more toward imagination than logic? Because if you've taken the Amtrak after 1975 you know that scene I described above isn't quite how it is...

Regardless, our tickets were $40 each and it was still a fun time.

We stayed at a hotel called the Inn of Chicago because it was cheap and it was downtown. The rooms reminded me of Europe (because they were tiny and no nonsense.)

We had no idea what to do, or where to go, we just scampered around like two lost tourists. I remember we ate at a terrible Mexican restaurant simply because it was next to our hotel.

Here we are at "the bean." Look at our cameras. Our CAMERAS. So tech savvy.

I also know for a fact that we ate brunch at Grande Lux Cafe. And if you know what this means, yes we can all giggle about it. I still do.

I'm pretty sure it's Quartino in the background of this photo, the "fancy Italian" place we ate our last night before we boarded our train the following day. I know I'm feeling good because that navy and white striped dress was my favorite dress. It only came out for special occasions.

"Can you ever imagine living here?" Chris asked at dinner.

I said yes, but I was lying. The thought of living in Chicago terrified me. Sure, it seemed exciting. But also really scary.

After St. Louis, Chris's job took us to Topeka, a place I don't speak too fondly about. But in hindsight, I know it's Topeka that ultimately brought us to Chicago. Had we landed somewhere a little more familiar, like Omaha or Kansas City, we'd still be in Omaha or Kansas City today.

But instead we're in Chicago.

We had to go to our realtor's office the other day to drop off a check. Thanks to being able to sign everything online these days, it was our first time stepping foot in his actual office. As we walked inside I looked to the left and noticed the hotel, The Inn of Chicago.

It was one of those moments that gave me goosebumps. It felt like someone pulled the curtain back on time for a second and I was able to peak back on 2009.

Hey you! I know you're on vacation now, but in seven years you'll be at this exact spot signing papers to buy a house. Can you believe that?

No, me from seven years ago can't believe it.

I also can't believe the road it took to get here, and the experiences I've had along the way, but I wouldn't change it for anything. Because hey, we just bought a house!

And by "house" I mean condo, which means the third floor of a building. No one really buys entire houses here.

Oh, and guess what? Our new fridge has an ice maker!

And IN UNIT LAUNDRY. Ice and laundry on me for 2017!


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  2. Congrats Taylor! That is so exciting and I'm happy for the both of you. We are looking to buy after our wedding next year so I can imagine how pumped you guys are. And I'm sure Harlow is going to love it, too.


  3. Congratulations! Such a daunting task, but so worth it once those keys are in your hand!!


    but fo' serious. an ice maker. that's legit. dare i ask - the washer dryer situation...!?

  5. Congrats girl!! Buying is such a fun process!! My husband and I have been in our home for almost a year now. Hope you love yours as much as we do ours! It's so different actually owning! So worth it :D

  6. Way to go girl!! So exciting!!

    Her Heartland Soul

  7. Congratulations on the new house!!

  8. Congratulations to you guys (and Harlow, as I'm sure he was instrumental in the closing process)!! So exciting!

  9. Ahhhhhhh. I'm so excited for you! Cant wait to see the new place.
    I'm also a little bummed because I just love your apartment aka the room with the giant windows.

  10. Super super exciting!!! Congrats!

  11. Awesome news!! Congrats! Here's to many, many happy times in your new home!

  12. The real question: where is it???

  13. Congratulations - awesome how things come full circle. You're an adult, gahhhh!

  14. Yay! I'm so excited for you guys. It's eerily poetic that the realator's office was right next to the hotel you stayed at for your first trip to Chicago. My boyfriend and I are beginning the "house" aka condo hunt right now and I feel so overwhelmed (and excited) by it all. Congratulations!

  15. In unit laundry is happiness. Well done!

  16. Having an ice maker and an in-unit washer and dryer are worth their weight in gold. Congratulations!

  17. Yay!! Congratulations!! We close on ours tomorrow!! I can't WAIT to have laundry IN MY HOUSE.

  18. Congratulations on your new home!! I can't wait to see pics and hear more. I love when life brings you full circle like that :)

  19. WOOT WOOT, you go Hillis fam! Movin' on up. CONGRATULATIONS!!

    Coming Up Roses

  20. OK now that I'm actually in front of a computer now instead of my phone, I can comment properly. That convo with you from seven years ago .. so wild. And 7 years is really not that long of a time! I can't even tell you how many times I want to go back to past Christines and say hey, it's all gonna be OK and so cool!!

    AHHH so thrilled for you!!! Congrats!

  21. Congratulations on your place! So exciting :) & an in unit laundry?! Cheers to that!

  22. Congratulations! Love the whole serendipitous deal with the Inn of Chicago!

  23. Congratulations!! This is so exciting!! It such a sweet story and something to talk about for years to come.

  24. Yay, congratulations! That is so exciting!

  25. HOW EXCITING! Congrats you two! And I might be a little biased, since I am a Kansas Citian, but Kansas City wouldn't have been too bad ;)


    Fallon // Mountains & Mimosas

  26. I love this! I love how life goes full circle. Congrats!

  27. How exciting, congratulations!


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