Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Year of the house(s)

Our new house mid-summer

my favorite room: the flower room

patio with setting sun
So much of this year has been tied up with houses that it seems I barely had time for anything else. This whole business began the end of June 2014 when I saw the Moose and Squirrel house (name of sub) on a bike ride. It looked very nice and bonus, it was quite affordable. Our offer was accepted but inspection showed a myriad of problems. Worse, the day we were to drop the inspection contingency, we finally got a report on the septic field. It had totally failed. To fix it would mean the entire lawn would be dug up with no guarantee the problem would not return. We backed out of the deal. Everyone seemed to be lying to us including our realtor, who we fired shortly thereafter. I would have been happy to postpone our search for another house a year or at least until we could fix the many things wrong with our current house but Steve just would not let it go. Every weekend, we went to open houses. There was always something unacceptable about each one. Lots of tension between us as we were never on the same page. He found our house around Thanksgiving of last year. I really couldn't find much wrong with it other than it was very expensive, much more than the Moose and Squirrel (but way better built with better fixtures) and it was sort of boring. So December and January were devoted to packing. We moved in early February right after a huge snow storm. It took four months of hiring various workers to fix the old house. The first painter was the absolute worst working in slow motion as we had agreed upon an hourly rate. Fired him especially after he unilaterally decided to paint the oak paneling we put in  our skylight tunnel.

Houses in our neighborhood would be sold within a week, every house except ours. Meanwhile as summer came, my once beautiful gardens were becoming seedier and seedier. It was so depressing. We'd get promises of offers which would never come. Our realtor was absolutely useless and we would have to beg her to do certain things. Finally after 4 months and lots of lowering the price until we were almost giving it away, we got an offer. And for the next 10 weeks, more demands were made and more concessions. I came to hate everyone associated with the sale. But it is finally over and we can move on. No more worrying about two lawns. No more running back to the house to make sure the lights were out, the doors locked, the heat or air conditioning not blasting as it often was after a showing. No more checking the DTE outage map to see if the house still had power.

On the other hand, it has been fun seeing what has been planted. She had lots of flowers coming up every season. I planted my first vegetable garden though I made the mistake of putting the plants too close together, I still had lots of tomatoes, chard, kale, squash, Brussels sprouts and a few red peppers. Next year I should be able to harvest my rhubarb. I even harvested some chard yesterday putting it into a veggie omelet. Lots of kale left. As it turns out, no one here is a fan. And I've been able to attract lots of birds. If only the squirrels hadn't discovered us.

Decorating has been fun. I initially tried to make all my old items fit in somehow. We haven't bought much aside from some rugs, a breakfast table, the master bedroom set and some bar stools. Replacing the old sofas will come eventually. Meanwhile I've been collecting glass, though I've yet to buy the floating shelves I need and various art works mainly from thrift stores and garage sales.

My year will be continued tomorrow.

1 comment:

Elephant's Child said...

Definitely your year of the house(s). I am so glad that the albatross has been replaced by other birds. And squirrels.


Blog Archive