Back in July, I promised that I had Big Plans underway but I wasn’t ready yet to talk about them. I wouldn’t have guessed it would be three months until I was. You guys, I bought a house!
Home ownership wasn’t something that I ever thought would happen in my life, and I was content with that. I have nearly grown children who lived their entire lives in apartments, from the tiny garden flat of their baby/toddler days to a two bedroom townhouse with an impossibly difficult kitchen (not just tiny, but L-shaped and you had to go into the hall to open the fridge) to a three bedroom townhouse that we absolutely loved. On the rare occasions I thought about the fact that it wasn’t a house, I consoled myself with the fact that I didn’t have to do yard work. I also had an idea that I hadn’t yet decided where I was going to settle down. Fast forward to 8 years in that townhouse and “I just don’t know where I want to live” sounded downright silly.
As my 40th birthday approached this summer, my husband got it into his head that we were getting a house. We put an offer on one about a week before my birthday back in July and closed on it a few days after his birthday a month later. I’d looked at several that were empty but of course we had to complicate things by choosing one that still had a family living in it, so we had to wait for them to move. The last few weeks after closing and before getting the keys was like the last few weeks of pregnancy, when you keep hoping labor will finally start.
Labor is what did start after we got the call to come pick up the keys — the huge physical labor of moving! After spending months decluttering, I was shocked at how much stuff a household of four (plus dog!) can have.
There was an advantage to buying a home that someone was still living in. The sellers loved the house and walked us through all the updates they’d done, the maintenance schedules, the projects they would have done next had they stayed (they even had materials for a few!). To anyone sensitive to “energy” you’ll know how much it matters that the house was loved and that the previous owners were moving up in their lives (as opposed to the negative energy that can get left behind when the previous owners had to leave against their wills). The sellers even gave us our first housewarming gift. The feeling of love and warmth is what elevated this house above the others we looked at, despite it being quite small and having a couple of strange quirks.
We’ve been here a month and we’re still getting situated.
One of the things cape cods do well is utilize space efficiently. They can fit four bedrooms into a house that looks tiny on the outside. On the other hand, there isn’t a master suite. We took a random bedroom whose gray paint looked nice with our bedding, only to realize that it was the loudest placement for a bedroom — especially since my husband works nights and sleeps during the day. I’ve never had hardwood floors before and although I love the way they look, boy does sound travel! We got almost no sleep in that room.
Over the weekend, the kids traded bedrooms with each other and we moved the master bedroom to the finished basement (which is where the sellers had it — now we know why!). We’re sleeping peacefully in a much quieter room and the house is finally starting to look like home. We’re converting the room we’d originally intended as our bedroom into a dining room, since it’s off the living room and since one of those previously mentioned quirks was that the house has neither a formal dining room nor an eat-in kitchen. Lots of houses don’t have both but few houses have neither! We didn’t mind at first since we could eat out on the deck, but in Ohio that doesn’t happen year-round. The weather here is already dipping into the 30s at night.
We were able to have our housewarming party on Autumn Equinox, which, given Mabon’s alternative name of “Witches’ Thanksgiving,” seemed appropriate. Now we’re getting excited about our first Halloween here (apartment complexes don’t get trick-or-treaters!).
Now that I’m getting settled here, I’m making plans to write more and to do NaNoWriMo this year. I introduced my kids to it and my older son has gone on to complete it three times while I have yet to complete it once.
I also am in the process of changing my diet (toward paleo — I’ve already been gluten free since 2012 but even gluten free lasagna is fattening!). I will be revamping old recipes and experimenting with new ones. I will start posting recipes once in awhile, which is, after all, part of the original idea I had when I started this blog.