homeless in boston.

our family spent much of the summer *scattered all-over the world. when kiana and i headed to nyc for dance nationals, we were there almost two weeks before we took a train to boston to continue our house search. husband went to the philippines for a three week work trip. sela, kj, and myla headed off to southern nevada with family. these younger three spent time jumping between auntie’s and uncles homes, then eventually their aunt nancy drove them across the country in my suv to meet up with kiana and i in boston. {best aunt ever, eh?}

the week kiana and i were house-hunting i put an application in on the second home we tried to get here. we were the third people to apply for the home, they interviewed each of us – i thought for sure we’d get it – then they turned us down to give the home to a single gentleman who is a museum curator. i have no idea what this guy is doing in that home that would have comfortably fit our family of six! anyway, to say the time spent house hunting was emotionally exhausting is an understatement. we were continually told, “ohhhh. you have four kids? that’s a lot.” or “we’re worried about the wear-n-tear on the home with THAT many people in the house!” now that we’ve been here a couple of months, i’ll just say that this city has an interesting interaction/phobia/almost-lack-of-acceptance with families. which, after living in utah for so long this is a real shock to my system most of the time. No one said that this process of looking for a home was going to be easy, but I would have at least thought we would have found a place by now. A friend of mine did recommend we checked out homes in Castle Oaks, as there were quite a few properties on sale in that area. We couldn’t be homeless once again.

the third try is the charm, right? it worked for us. on the third home we applied for – we got it. renting a home out here is totally different than anything we’ve ever done. first of all, we’ve been home-owners for twelve years, so returning to the renting game is new. in this area, you must have an agent to rent a home much like buying a home and the process to apply is very similar to buying too. and, the agent gets a big fat check when you’re done – this part of the deal drives me crazy because i feel like i could do the work they are doing and save this fee. it’s frustrating. anyway, with renting – you pretty much have to decide what is important and what isn’t – for example, did we want a home with a garage? or could we do without? because many of the old homes out here, don’t have garages… was air-conditioning important? 3 bedrooms? 4,5,6,7,… 8 bedrooms? storage space and good closets or awful closets and no storage. yard or no yard? updated kitchen and bathrooms or no? there was no perfect balance of all of these in the homes that are available.

our first priority was location. our second was space. so, we have a new-to-us-home that is in an AMAZING suburb of boston – new england charm just oozes out of this place. and, the public schools are ranked top in the nation, so that is HUGE for this child-raising phase of our life. we have enough space – we really can’t complain for this area, BUT… we have no garage {which is interesting} and no a/c.

while we were house-hunting and looking at hotels that rent by the month {a very wacky psychological roller coaster}, we became experts of the hotels in this area. not boston proper – but, the suburbs that we were searching for a home in – so, if you are going to visit us & would like to stay in a hotel… we recommend {from experience} “hotel indigo” in newton. it is one mile from our home in wellesley hills, so if you’d like to be near us – you are! …it is updated, contemporary, and in the summer has one of the best local swimming pools. swimming pools are not very common out here, so this is kind of a big deal. hotel indigo offers day pool passes to locals for $60/person – is that crazy? i can’t imagine paying $360/day for our family to just go swimming!!! sticker shock! and, they sell-out EVERY day! you might as well just book a room & enjoy the pool included in your room rate.

we stayed at this hotel for a couple of weeks, and by the time we checked out – the staff knew us really well. they could predict what we would order for breakfast/bedtime snacks/etc. i actually think they tucked-away the lobby candy bowl because my kids were raiding it too often!

by the time we checked out of hotel indigo, kiana and i had been staying in hotels for four-and-a-half weeks, and as glamorous as that may sound. trust me, it wasn’t. my friend told me to check out what estate agents in Wimbledon have to offer but i wanted to stay in America. at this point, we had our new home documents all signed, we had keys, and we were waiting for our moving truck to arrive…

so, rather than wait for our stuff – we moved in without our furniture/personal belongings! we made a couple of shopping trips to IKEA, purchased what we needed & set-up our new beds so we could sleep in the house rather than keep paying for a hotel + have our new home sitting empty.

we had no idea if this would balance out financially in the end, but it most definitely did! thank goodness. because… our moving company was three weeks+ late with delivery! {another story – for another post.} so. those IKEA beds were more-than-paid for vs. 3 more weeks of hotel rooms.


* until our babies are all grown-up, i refuse to be separated from them this long ever-again. big papi & i were both miserable.

3 responses to “homeless in boston.”

  1. I can totally relate to this experience! We had to live in a hotel for 6 weeks after our initial rental fell through and we had to search for another. No one ever believed me on how challenging it could be. Yes you get maid service, but no place for the kids to play. You at least had a great pool!

  2. Oh, Jane… I am so proud of you! What a mess to wade through all of this… And what a cruel waiting game… And with 4 kids in tow!

    You are right… NO ONE outside of Utah knows how to handle a family of 6! Restaurants look at you like you are crazy! (“How many kid’s menus? WOW… Are they all YOURS?!?”)

    And I know what you mean about miserable without your babies… It’s just NOT as fun as it might sound. Families are meant to be TOGETHER and we Mamas were meant to have room to nest, I think. It actually makes me worry about how miserable Empty-Nesting might be someday! :S

    I am glad you are settled and ALL TOGETHER again!!!

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