Our Humble (and Temporary) Abode



I mentioned a couple of posts back that my husband Matt and I are living in communal housing that is provided by his employer. I thought I'd give you some more deets about this interesting situation.

As I said previously, it's a decent-sized older home in deeply rural Illinois. The property is located several miles away from main roads, and the house itself sits in the midst of a gorgeous, wooded, natural preserve. Lush green trees canopy the front yard while the backyard and the forest converge into a peaceful retreat perfect for birding and thoughtfully sipping tea.

It's pretty perfect.

Aside from the communal part. And the fact that we can't decorate the interior however we want. Oh, and and the cable and Internet do go in and out unreliably.

Anyway, since it is communal, we're currently sharing the house with two other guys, both of whom are ornithologists, like my husband (He's the crew leader; the three of them head out around 5:00 each morning to survey the birds in a few nearby state parks). Having four people in the house isn't bad, but of course, we have limited privacy. The wonderfully serene silence of the house unfortunately enables everyone to hear every word, cough, or poot emitted within its walls.

But hey, the kitchen has two refrigerators. That's pretty awesome.


Matt and I share one while the guys share the other. So it's kind of like having our own place.

And though the other guys have bunk beds, we are fortunate enough to share a full bed in our own bedroom. This was the photo I posted before:


We've gotten more settled since then and have crammed the tight little space to capacity:

My side. A homemade soy candle, a framed engagement pic, and IKEA artwork make it feel homier.
Matt's side. The plastic drawers by the nightstand show just how thoroughly we've utilized every available nook and cranny for maximum storage ability.
A window curtain, a $3 bird print from Walmart, a case full of books, and personal photos and mementos make it ours. As does Matt's insane board game collection.
It's quite a short commute to our home office. 

That's it. Our wall-to-wall tour. As you might assume from these photos, it is often a challenge to move from one side of the room to the other (so many knee and shin bruises from running into the bedposts). But who cares? We have a comfortable, rent-free, shared living space. We're together. It's our first bedroom as husband and wife. So it really has that going for it.

But, like the post title says, it's only temporary. Matt's job is through August. There's a chance the university could renew him for another year, but we won't know until his current post ends.

So. Yes. That puts us in a weird and uncertain place. We have no idea where we'll be at the end of the summer, which makes it very difficult for me to pursue work at this point. I don't want to begin the tedious process of obtaining an Illinois nursing license if we're only going to be here for two more months, you know? And there is always non-licensed work, but the pay will be around minimum wage, and the long commute from the house to the nearest town may not be worth it. It's easy for me to stress over this, but I'm trying to stay calm and trust that God will open up the right doors for us soon.

Matt had an interview in early May for a more permanent job in Missouri (a three-year crew leader position with benefits!!!), but we're still waiting to hear something. And I admit, as the wait continues, our anxiety rises. In the meantime, we've locked away our credit cards, composed a strict monthly budget, and put a cash envelope system into practice for our spending. Hopefully we'll find work soon, but if not, we want to be as financially prepared as we can be.

That's it for now. Keep us in your prayers as we seek steady employment!

2 comments

Jessica said...

How fun for me to see the house! It's not what I expected but looks cozy none the less. Haha. Miss you!!

Lacey said...

It's so pretty outside! And so quaint inside! It's pretty different from what you'd expect for a newlywed but it seems so special and unique too. I hope that new job plays out for Matt!