We finally made it...
In the past couple of months we've managed to buy a house, move into it and -- most importantly -- get rid of the landlords whom we rented the old apartment from. And the things I could tell about the landlords are unbelievable, but I will just summarize it into this: they are a bunch of selfish, snotty, manipulating, money-grubbing, antisocial gangsters and I'm EXTREMELY relieved that they're now out of our lives. I think that says enough.
As for the house, it comes of course with all the responsibilities and tasks that a house brings with it, but it's really remarkable how I've managed to get rid of loads of stress, regardless of the leaking kitchen roof, the moist outer wall, the cellar staircase that practically falls apart, and the monthly down payments eating through our budget. Having a house of our own (and getting out of that evil infested apartment) has turned my life completely around -- for the best. We still have lots of boxes to unpack, two weeks of laundry to catch up with, and two extra cats to take care of, but I sleep a lot better than before and I can now find the peace and time to practice my hobbies again. I actually signed up for a drawing course!
For the first time in four years, I feel like I'm getting on top of my life again. And it was about time too.