Exactly one year ago today, we signed our lives away on the dotted lines and walked away with the keys to our new home.
At closing, the seller (a friend of Walter, it was an estate) gave us four photos from Christmas 1948. It's snowy and the house looks much, much prettier than it does today. We used this photo on the cover of our Christmas card for 2010. The photos are now framed and waiting to be hung in the foyer for all to see when they visit.
We knew from the moment we walked into The Anniversary Home that it was for us, despite all the terrible carpet, non-functioning kitchen, leaky roof, 70's paint colors and on and on. It would be a labor of love and it would be our home.
I wish I'd saved the list we'd made one evening over dinner when debating whether we were ready for the risk and the reward. It was on the back of an envelope and went on for miles. It ranged from complex and expensive like "renovate kitchen" to the easy and inexpensive like "superglue bathroom floor tile". The kitchen has been completed. The linoleum tile in the bathroom is still not fixed. Go figure.
A year ago today, I wondered: "Will we like living here?" "Will we ever get all this work done?" "Will this bring us closer together? Will this be a strain on our bank accounts?"
The answers, without a doubt, are: yes, yes, yes and yes. And that's a good thing. We've spent many a weekend holed up in the house doing goodness knows what repairs and cosmetic alterations. The greeter at Lowe's knows us. Our neighbors are impressed with our tenacity and ambition. I have to say I am too.
During a long car trip over the weekend, Mr. B. and I recounted the long list of major achievements in just one short year.
A new septic system.
(Partial credit only - it was mostly handled by the estate but there was lots of supervising involved!)
A new roof.
A new kitchen.
Every. Single. Room. Has. Been. Painted.
That darn rhodedendrum was removed.
(Still lots to be done in the landscaping department though.)
Those rocking chairs are on the front porch.
If I started listing all the "minor" projects that we did in the past year, you'd all get ridiculously bored and stop reading this entry. (Washing machines, pot holes in the driveway, wasp nest in the porch eaves, etc. etc. etc.)
I'm going to do a more comprehensive before and after photo tour of the house, but for now I'll leave you with this kitchen gem:
Thank you little house for being a roof over our heads and a place we can call home!