Maddie Rae Gotcha Day

Saturday, March 15, 2008

This one's for you, Carol

My Hong Kong sista, Carol, has been on me to post pictures of our soon to be home. Let me give you a bit of background on my elusive phantom house, as I have started calling it over the last few years. When Jon and I bought our first house, it was the typical "starter home." We lived in it for 3 years, and then when Jonah was 2 weeks old (yes. You read that right), we sold it and moved into a McMansion. A colleague of Jon's had taken a two year overseas position and asked us to move into his house and take care of it for them while they were gone. Seeing as he was graciously offering to let us live in his home and only pay utilities, it seemed like a no brainer and we went for it. What's two years, right? After the first year, we found a great deal on a house in the neighborhood I had always dreamed of living in: old homes with tons of character, good school district, and close to local university sporting events. We loved it and bought it with plans to rent it out for the remaining year and then move in. The day after we closed on it, we found out we too would likely be moving overseas. So here I am: a woman who can border on being obsessed with decorating, a nester who loved my home, and a certified homebody who has not had a "home" in nearly 6 llllooooonnnngggg years. Jon and I have moved every 2 years (with the exception being our "starter home" which lasted 3 years), and I have basically decorated, renovated, and lived in every corner of my phantom house in my head for 5 years now. Not to mention the fact that Jon has toyed around with the idea of continuing to rent my phantom house while we buy another house. He finally decided that his marriage was more valuable than any kind of financial gain, and I am starting to think that it may just happen. My phantom house may become a reality. Be still my heart. So, if any of you are still reading my housing diatribe, I will now take you on a "tour."

Here it is...with it's new paint job. And it's not pink (or yellow, as Jon claimed it was when he saw it last week). Note: blue, smog free sky.
It was built in 1935, and one of the reasons I love it so absolutely is that it still has most of the original fixtures. I can't stand it when people renovate old houses to make them look new, and I love that so much of its vintage character is still intact.
This is the living room. Those built-ins around the fireplace (circa 1995) are the first things to go. They are built over two windows, and they are getting ripped right out. Notice the original light fixture though. Oh yeah, the red paint. Gotta go.
The kitchen. Love the floor, but the kitchen needs reno. I'm going to live in it for a while and try to decide the best way to go about it. Take out a wall...leave the wall in...reconfigure? I don't know yet. Love the french door to the back mudroom, pantry, and utility room.
Ah, the sunroom. Can't wait to have morning coffee in here. Lino on the floor is going, going, gone.

The boys are the most excited about the attic. In fact, they call the house "The Attic House." This is the third floor, and the steps go down to what will be the boy's room. We are going to finish the third floor and it will be a playroom/extra bedroom/fun space.

I fell in love with the glass door knobs on every single door in the house. Ah, love that charm.

Upstairs landing looking into what will be the master and a renovated bath. I will keep the original tub, toilet, and herringbone tile in the bath. Glass doors are going, pedastal sink is coming, and I'm not sure about the original tile yet. Gotta see what kind of condition it's in. All paint is changing in July. There is a really cool vintage chandelier hanging right above out of sight in this photo.

View from the living room into the dining room. I LOVE that front door. Love, love, love it.

Hallway looking from the breakfast area in the kitchen down to the sunroom. Basement door is on the left and there's a half bath next to it which we call the "airplane bathroom" because it's teeny tiny.

So that's the phantom attic house. It presents a lot of work and a few glitches. It is after all, an old house. But it's an old house with the school right down the street, friends a block away (yes, Nancy...we really are moving in this July!), and everything within walking distance. Our season tickets to a certain football team which plays three blocks away are finally going to see our bums in them, and I'm finally going to throw my first tailgating party. I finally will not be 24 hours away from my family, and I will get to have my niece sleep over and welcome home my new niece or nephew in September. I could go on and on. Bottom line: We're coming HOME!


Raegan said...

I am tearing up as I am reading this "Post of Hope and Promise!!!!" I can't wait!!!! Your house is so bright and airy and is still so cute! I had forgotten a lot of those things about it...I enjoyed the photo tour! Glad you liked the exterior paint, although I wasn't worried! Come on July 1...Raeg

chaddial said...

I am tearing up as I read it, too, Raegan, but they are happy and sad tears!! It's soooo beautiful and I can see you all very happily living there. But I realize if you are living there, you won't be here, and that causes me to feel sick to my stomach!! Your time has come, though, Retta, and you deserve every bit of the blessing this house and friends and family will provide. All my love right back at ya, HK sista, Carol

mel said...

The doorknob and key image haunted me all day after reading your post. You have such a different life waiting for you - promises of a wonderful life, in a new chapter. Thank you for sharing what is and what is to be with us!