Animal Being a Mom Life Among the Rockies

Homeless: It Happened to Me

The hows and whys leading up to my family becoming homeless.

Concerning home (or lack of):

We all have heard about situations or experiences that could happen to anyone and yet we just assume it will never happen to us.  And most of the time for most of us we’re right. It never happens to us.  But they do happen to someone.

Someone like me, apparently.

How my family ended up living in a motel.

Homeless: It Happened to Me

Being homeless is not something that ever registered on my scale of things that could, or could not, happen to me.  It was beyond implausible; it was simply impossible.  Or so I thought.

I got the news that I would need to move out of my rental house with plenty of time to find a new home.  It was at least two months.  I didn’t worry about it overly at the time because:

A) I was already searching for a new place to live.  In fact, I’d been searching for the entire 2+years we lived there.  The house didn’t have a yard and I really wanted a yard.

B) I was quite preoccupied with the upcoming birth of my second baby, due one month and one week before our move-out date.

So naturally time sped by with record-breaking blurriness and before I knew it there were only two weeks left and I had yet to spot anything that looked doable, much less promising.  I dedicated more time to searching yet was still successful.

Why??  Why couldn’t I find a new home for us?

The main problem was our affinity for pets.  I sold my rabbit, Boo.  I attempted to convince Hubby that the cat and/or dog would have to be rehomed. He stoutly refused to consider giving up either animal and I was forced, time and again, to remove non-pet-friendly listings from my short list of possible homes.

The second problem is that I am on maternity leave and getting squat for pay.  To be exact, my maternity pay is little more than $600/month. A family of four cannot rent a home for $600 (unless they are willing to all sleep in one bedroom or a studio/bachelor suite), much less rent a home AND eat.

We had a small nest-egg (and I do mean small) so when our move-out date was just around the corner we admitted defeat and put all our belongings in a massive (yet borderline too-small) storage unit.  An expensive storage unit.

Next we checked into a pet-friendly motel.  We had to leave our cat at our old home because the motel only allowed one pet and it had to be the dog.  Luckily, the landlord agreed to feed our poor kitty until we figure something out.  Luckily, again, our landlord is awesome and even allows our cat into the house and has set up a little spot for him on the bookcase.

We stayed 3 nights then checked out, praying and declaring that God would provide a solution.

God answered our prayers.  By saying “not right now.”

So we checked into another pet-friendly motel and stayed 5 nights.

By now our so-called “nest egg” was looking more like just a nest.  So we checked out again on the hope and faith a family friend would put us up for the weekend because, once again, we were going to put it in God’s hands that one of our calls, emails, or searches would turn up a solution.  We just wanted to save ourselves a night or two of paying for a motel.

I really didn’t want to ask the friend in the first place but we did.  And we were turned down.  Not only turned down, but our trust was betrayed when this friend spoke about our situation to someone we had explained we were trying to keep some distance from, for personal reasons.  And the cherry on top of that situation was the friend miscommunicated some information to the person we were “time-out”ing from, who then contacted us with hurtful accusations, refusing to explain where they were coming from.

Now we find ourselves in a third motel.  The first two motels provided a play pen for Doll to sleep in and Poni slept in the bed with us (as she would if we had a home).  But this motel doesn’t have a play pen.  It does have a couch.  So every night we turn the couch to face the wall and that is Doll’s “crib.”

Our nest (egg)?  Now just a couple twigs.  So we are now not only needing to find a pet-friendly rental, but now it needs to be cheaper than ever.

The prospects are slim.  We find ourselves looking in an ever-widening perimeter, considering housing that is truly unsuitable but at this point, better than a motel (and certainly cheaper).

Yesterday I made 5 calls to 5 different offices and individuals attempting to track down the owner of one extremely rundown and seedy-looking apartment that was available.  This after having already emailed the person no fewer than 6 times (over the course of 10 days) without reply before we finally went knocking on doors in the neighbourhood asking if anyone knew who owned the place.  And after all that effort?  There was no answer on the phone so we left a voicemail.  Today I called the person’s work (can you believe he is a real estate agent?!) and also left another voicemail on his home line.  I’m thinking this person may have died?  That is the only excuse I’m currently willing to accept for the lack of response.  Besides, if he died perhaps we can just “squat” in the empty apartment.  Home at last!

And this is the effort put into just one possible apartment.

Can you sense the desperation?!

I have contacted every non-pet-friendly rental that is (or at least was) in our price bracket begging them to allow our dog.  I have contacted many too-expensive rentals (non- and pet-friendly) asking if they would consider renting to us for less, even for just a month or two.

In my area, there are just as many listing for people looking (and begging) for pet-friendly rentals as there are available rentals.  It is nearly impossible to find a house, duplex, four plex, or apartment that allows a pet, much less a large pet. I myself have 3 “need a home” ads posted online.  250 combined views but no response.

But to end this downer of a post on a lighter, happier, more exciting note: starting Monday I will be taking part in the Flats and Handwashing Challenge!  I will be diapering Poni using only flats and covers for one week.  I will be handwashing and line-drying them.  The challenge is meant to show that people on a budget and without a washing machine can cloth diaper too, if they want.

In our current situation, we are practically the target audience; I cannot cloth diaper except by this method (can you imagine how long pocket inserts would take to dry hanging on a shower rod in a motel? Not to mention how hard they are to get clean handwashing? I know, because I have handwashed my pockets in the past!).

I’m excited because I’ve never used flats before (which is also the reason I will not be doing this challenge with Doll; she tries too hard to escape diaper changes and I don’t think I’ll be able to get it on her while still holding her down).  It’s going to be an adventure!  On top of our homeless “adventure.”

If I’m successful at this challenge I hope to get back to cloth diapering (as both girls have been in disposables since we started motel-hopping, which is not helping the pocketbook).

Check back often or subscribe to get updates on both these adventures!

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  • Reply Mama Grace May 14, 2017 at 01:31

    Sorry for your predicament. Hope a good long term solution comes. #Blogstravaganza

  • Reply RawMum May 14, 2017 at 01:49

    This sounds like an awful situation. I hope you find a place soon. Can’t begin to imagine what this would be like so this post helped me understand your plight #blogstravaganza

  • Reply The Tale of Mummyhood May 14, 2017 at 07:39

    I’m so sorry that you’re in this situation. You’re so right when you say that you never expect it, we just don’t know what’s around the corner though. I hope somewhere comes up soon! Thanks so much for sharing with #Blogstravaganza xx
    The Tale of Mummyhood recently posted…#Blogstravaganza #19My Profile

  • Reply Ellen May 14, 2017 at 11:04

    What a stressful situation. Very tough and I’m sorry this is something you’re dealing with.. I hope there’s light at the end of tunnel soon.
    Ellen recently posted…5 Simple Ways to Celebrate Mother’s DayMy Profile

  • Reply Dilraz Kunnummal May 14, 2017 at 12:06

    You are magbificebt to keep your spirits up even through this ordeal.
    I truly believe there is a fabulous place with ur name on it. Hopefully doon it ll be yours! definitely will be keeping an eye out for positive updates!

  • Reply keepmum May 14, 2017 at 14:29

    We had a similar situation a few years back, we had a friend to stay with whilst we found somewhere pet friendly though.
    It is very hard to find people who accept pets. We ended up moving 40 minutes away from the area we were searching in!! you can see how people just don’t mention their pets !!!!
    Good luck!! #blogstravaganza

  • Reply ejnosillA/RedefiningHERstory May 14, 2017 at 14:30

    Truly sorry to read about your housing situation… but it is inspiring that you have a wonderful outlook about your situation… I truly believe that your positive attitude is going to get you a blessing that is beyond your wildest dreams… You are in my prayers… Stay blessed!

  • Reply Kayla O'Neill May 14, 2017 at 17:16

    Sorry you are having such a hard time. Good for you to continue with cloth diapering and making it work! 🙂 That is very impressive!

  • Reply sarah May 14, 2017 at 17:43

    Oh man I’m sorry for your situation. I hope everything works out for you! The diaper challenge sounds awesome! I wanted to try cloth diapering but my husband just wasn’t about it.

  • Reply Kyler May 14, 2017 at 19:08

    I’ve been there honey. It’s rough, we’re very lucky to have family nearby who helped us out and we (finally!) found a place to rent and moved in a week after my son was born praying something works out for your family soon!

  • Reply Bailey | Simply Mom Bailey May 14, 2017 at 19:45

    I’m totally excited you are taking the Flats & Handwashing Challenge! I take the challenge, but in my life its not a necessity. I can’t wait to follow along with your journey <3

  • Reply Maria May 14, 2017 at 20:05

    I’m so sorry for this predicament you’re in. It’s not fun or comforting. I don’t know how to be in that situation with my children, but I do however know how that feels as a single person back when. I would never want that feeling or situation for anyone. It’s tough. I hope that it gets better. The diaper challenge sounds really awesome though. Good luck! Maria |

  • Reply Kristen | Kandy Apple Mama May 14, 2017 at 20:57

    Sending up prayers. So proud of you for finding the light! ❤️

  • Reply Rambling Mum May 14, 2017 at 22:34

    Wow that’s a terrible situation! But I shows that this can happen to anyone, even those who don’t expect it unfortunately

  • Reply Jasmine Hewitt May 15, 2017 at 07:33

    I’ve been in this situation, but it was years ago without children, and I made plenty of money to afford a vacay in a hotel for the sake of my animals. I hope it changes soon!

  • Reply Jamie @ madrediem May 15, 2017 at 08:16

    Oh wow, this is quite the predicament! It does sound like you have a good attitude, or least as good of an attitude as a person could be expected to have and I’m sure you will have good tidings hit very soon. I have 2 cats and a dog and we currently rent, so I understand how difficult it can be to find a rental with pets. Good luck!

  • Reply Lexie May 15, 2017 at 10:10

    It sounds like the stars just aligned not in your favor on this one! I’m sorry to hear about your struggles.
    But on that happy note, good luck with your diaper challenge! ❤️
    Lexie recently posted…How to Save Big with Amazon Subscribe & Save: May 2017My Profile

  • Reply Kate May 16, 2017 at 01:36

    I hope you find a pet-friendly place to live soon. Good luck with that and your diaper challenge! #TriumphantTales.

  • Reply Lisa May 16, 2017 at 02:38

    My heart really goes out to you, I really hope that someone has just the right property at the right price for you and your family and pets #TriumphantTales x

  • Reply Kiki May 16, 2017 at 22:30

    Oh my word, what a horrible predicament to be in! I really hope something comes up in your price range allowing pets. Its the same in the UK regarding renting somewhere thats pet-friendly. #TriumphantTales

  • Reply chickenruby May 17, 2017 at 05:39

    Popping over from #TriumphantTales to say Hi.
    I’m so sorry to hear about your current situation, i hope you find a solution and very soon

  • Reply Jaki May 17, 2017 at 13:50

    What a dreadful predicament to be in. It’s when I hear stories like this that I am so grateful for our housing system in the UK. I really hope you find a long term solution soon. Keep us posted. Thank you for linking up to #TriumphantTales 🙂
    Jaki recently posted…Not-so-New Year’s Resolutions: Never Too Late to Make a ChangeMy Profile

  • Reply ohmummymia May 19, 2017 at 13:43

    Can;t imagine how it is especially with little kids. Hope you will find a nice place soon

  • Reply Mrs Mummy Harris May 21, 2017 at 14:28

    oh lovely, I am so sorry to hear about your situation. I hope you get a solution soon and back on the up! Im looking forward to reading it and i’m sure you’ll be looking forward to writing it!
    Thank you for sharing this with us at #TriumphantTales. I hope to see you back on Tuesday

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