Well, technically the escrow for Willow Creek Estate closed on Friday, the 16th.  But today, the escrow closed on our former home in Orange County. That little bit of real estate and financial detail is important because it signals the end of the first chapter of our story.

And what a first chapter it was. Stumbling across the Willow Creek property as we did was the spark that started this fire. We didn’t know at that time if the fire would sputter and die out, or burn warmly to keep us comfy, or completely burn down everything we own. It reality, it nearly did all of those at one time or another.

The road was certainly bumpy. Several times it looked like we would never get a deal done on any of the properties we looked at. There were so many variables and moving parts. At least five times we went to bed thinking we were out of options, each time waking up the next day to try yet another angle.

And, oh the drama!

In the end, all properties did pretty much what they were supposed to do. It just wasn’t textbook.

I am compelled to give huge shout outs to a few people …

First and foremost, if you need a real estate agent in Orange County (or anywhere, really), look up Kevin Klein. Or better yet, just do yourself a favor and call him at 949-500-6406. Our seven-month journey was guided by Kevin. He helped us review properties, analyze business variables, negotiate deals, and manage nearly every detail of every transaction across multiple properties. He was awesome.

Our loan agent for Willow Creek was Matthew Graham at United Security Bank. He found a way to make the finances work when so many others gave up and walked away. He was a magician.

And Matt’s boss, Paul Thaxter, deserves a little love, too. He took a risk on us. That will always be so much appreciated.

So after lots of hard work … Chapter 1 is in the books. The financial dust is settling. It’s time to start writing the next chapter. I wonder how it will turn out!

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