Sorry about the review post bombardment lately (still open for giveaways here, here, here, and here--holy cow!) They've paid for my backsplash-to-be, though! ;) The house is coming along nicely, but still has a couple more weeks to go before we can move in...and start unpacking. We sold all of our couches before moving, so if you pop on over, please feel free to bring a cushion for the floor. I thought I'd share a bit of our house buying history and the beautiful before pictures to let give you a glimpse of what we will be moving into.
Buying a house is a strange thing. Selling one is even stranger. Putting a price on a piece of land where you've created memories that have helped shape you and your loved ones. I don't consider myself an overly sentimental person, but it was hard to move out and know someone else is making breakfast on my stove and receiving birthday wishes in my mailbox. It feels so silly to be sad. But, it is necessary and a good thing. This will be our third house, but our 6th move.I remember the first house we bought in Texas. In most of my memories of house hunting, I am the one finding the house, to whittle down the possibilities to show Ryan. Our realtor and I had looked at so many houses that they all started to blend into one giant collage of a mansion.
Then, she said she had one last house to show me, not in the area we requested, but it was in our price range. We made the drive with my oldest (and only) 3 girls, and within the first three steps into the house, I knew it was the one. It just felt instantly like home. How we loved that sweet, little Texan house.
Our second home, moving across the country, even further away from family. Ryan got a new job and I flew out to find us a new house. Prices were higher, houses were smaller (because everything back in Texas is bigger! ;) I felt the pressure of just getting one and went against many of our "unwritten house buying rules". I just found one and settled. We made minor cosmetic changes to it over our years living there, and I grew to have a soft spot for it, but we also outgrew it quickly. We never planned to live there very long, but a couple of years turned into 6!
So, the time came to commit to living in this area, and we began the hunt once again with me going out with the realtor. I really liked this house and another one on the complete opposite side of the city. I took Ryan to both and we were both leaning toward this one, but tried not to get our hearts involved just yet. We didn't want to become emotionally attached to something that might never be ours.
The previous owner was an older, single man who was planning to retire closer to his sister. He taught piano lessons (with a grand and baby grand in one room!) for years to those in the community. He was well known and loved in the music world. The above and below photos were the "waiting" room for those who came for lessons.
The house itself was built in the 1957, but has had 2 additions added. My contractor has loved discovering the different layers. That little door above leads to the first, original roof. Perhaps one day we'll turn it into a little loft for the teenagers. That's where they found a whole bunch of stuff from the previous owner, including the lamp I posted on instagram (@nobigdillkaty) that will be getting a little makeover.When I brought Ryan to look at it, we just kept walking around and around, exchanging excited glances that revealed what we both felt. This was the house for us.
We overlooked the teal carpet and the kitchen that was badly in need of beautifying as well as the outdated, wallpapered bathroom, although being the seamstress I am, I can appreciate how nicely they matched the pattern on the lightswitch plate ;).
We saw all the potential. I could hear creaky wood floors under much of the carpet. Those will have a new chance at life, I thought to myself. Even when my contractor repeatedly shared doubts and concerns about keeping them, I was stubborn. When we got closer to having work done on the floors, Ryan texted me, make sure they don't fix the gaps and the creaky floors.
We finally put in an offer and waited on pins and needles to hear back. We negotiated until the day finally came to sign papers. Halloween. All the kids were dressed up in their costumes, on our way to a party, but first came "the signing". Ryan took his time and actually read what he was signing, I just wrote my name as fast as I could.
We finally got that little key in our hands.I took these photos at the estate sale that was held at the house just the weekend before it became ours. It was odd to have all these people walking through, picking over things. I wanted to tap them on the shoulder and whisper, we just bought this house! But, instead, Divine, Pearl, and I walked through together, deciding whose bedroom would be whose.
The layout is unusual, putting it mildly. We have to walk through Pearl's bedroom to get to the master bedroom. A nice time to tuck them in one last time and kiss before we retire for the night.I have already built a box garden and planted some little seedlings. I use that (watering my garden) and feeding the bunny as an excuse to check up on the work being done ;).
It's been so much fun to be able to pick out almost everything I want to go into this house.
We're not doing much to the master bed/bath, other than painting (oh, and getting rid of the floral, swoopy curtains), but one day I hope to redo the ubiquitous beige tile floor. Tile in bedrooms is a "thing" here. Keeps things cooler, maybe? All in good time, Katy.
My parents are getting ready to build their home soon, sadly not by us :(, so we've had fun exchanging ideas about fixtures, appliances, and even thermostats (I never knew I could love a thermostat so much). I might have convinced my mom to trade her dreams of gas stove for induction...
The flooring gave us the most difficulty. If you want something besides non-carpet brown, the options are limited. But, I think we'll be happy with what we chose, even if the whole world thinks we're crazy. 'Cause we kind of are.
It might be a while before we have it furnished, but we may grow to enjoy ultra-minimalism and leave it that way on purpose!
So begins The Magnolia Manor era, aptly named from the giant magnolia in the backyard that will become the new celebration backdrop for us, just as soon as I wrap it with lights.
Below is where my new sewing studio/music room will be. Minus the teal carpet and the swoopy curtains. Again with the swoopy curtains!It gives me excited butterflies in my stomach to picture me sewing away in this space while Divine practices her flute and Pearl works on her latest project, sprawled out on the floor.
Just another space to build more memories: meals, birthdays, celebrations, heartbreaks, evening duets, hopefully trios and maybe even quartets, clothes sewn, stories read, movies watched, dates greeted (gasp!), science projects completed. It will be good.