Thursday, February 28, 2013

Two Years Ago..

Two years ago today I officially became a homeowner. I can't say the journey to purchasing my first home was always easy because sometimes it was far from it. The process was by no means foreign to me as Mr. Picky Eater aka my Big Bad Dad and I have bought more than our share of homes and from the time I was a little girl he always fully included me in the process. It's always been the two of us, and I'm Daddy's Little Girl. Where he went I went, what decisions he made I was a part of. It has always been that way, and always will be.

I'm getting a little offtrack though. That does happen when I mention our relationship. It's such a huge part of who I am. Wait, what was I talking about? Oh, becoming a homeowner, right. At nearly 30 years old I was still living at home, don't judge. We lived in a beautiful house that had become our home more than any place we lived prior. It was the home where we felt we had finally really put down roots, but it was way more house than two people needed and truth be told, we felt we were at a place where we should downsize. After living with dear old dad for 30 years I decided it was time for me to call the shots. Just kidding, because really I've always called the shots. Okay, not really. I would say it's always been 50/50.

Truthfully, I wanted something to call my own. As much as every home we've had has been mine, his, ours, having my name on a mortgage, I just knew it would feel different. I knew wherever the move took us it would still be ours, but at the same time the next house would truly feel like mine, the place I put down roots of my very own.

The search for a new home seemed to take forever, and there was more than one occasion where my hopes were dashed and my heart a little broken. I started out with one real estate agent, and one finance company, both of which seemed like a good fit at first. You know how they say first impressions are everything? Well, sometimes they're totally wrong. I am not demanding and I don't have unrealistic expectations, but I give any relationship and every situation I'm invested in my all and I expect the same. When I don't get that in return I move on, which in short is why I ended up with a different agent.

Looking back, my vision for my first home changed quite a few times. I started out wanting a country home on several acres, then I wanted a home in the historic area of a local small town. What did I end up with? Something I didn't envision, but turned out to be exactly what I needed.

My house is a little 1950's brick ranch on an acre lot in a quiet little neighborhood in the city. Yup, no small town living for me as it turns out. The house is literally across the street from my Nana and Pop's old neighborhood, which was my second home as a little girl. I traveled the streets of this neighborhood everyday as a little girl, and my dad ran these streets as a boy. During my search I found several houses that I thought were great and could see us in, but none fit quite like this one. It was a freezing cold January day with snow on the streets and ice covering the backyard when I realized my dream. The house had been on the market just a few days. As soon as I walked in I saw my childhood and felt my Nana and Pop surrounding me. I knew I was home. The house was immaculate, and totally original. I wanted a project, no, I needed a project and knew I had found it.

After leaving, we were sitting in a restaurant minutes later preparing to make an offer. Little did I know that when I signed my name that day I was truly starting a new chapter in my life. The purchase process was not without a few bumps, mostly centering around getting repairs done before the closing date. But, two years ago today I signed my name, got a set of keys and started an amazing journey. The next day was the beginning of months of hard, dirty work that filled me with joy. I won't lie I cried a few times from the stress and dear old dad and I had our share of heated disagreements, okay, I'll be honest, they were fights. But, that's who we are, both passionate, strong-willed, stubborn people. What can I say? I'm the female Mini-Me of my old man, and I couldn't be more proud to admit that.

As I look at our home today, there isn't much that resembles the house I purchased two years ago. Sure the hardwood floors still look exactly the same, maybe a little worse for the wear of my babies running around on them all the time. Except for a new deck and some other changes to the landscape it looks the same on the outside. Inside? Not so much, and I love it. My Dad is an amazing carpenter and the muscle behind all the renovations. Seriously, except for a few plumbing and electrical things he did it ALL. He is the creativity behind the woodworking projects and even some of the paint colors. But, the kitchen and bath designs, those are my babies.

I intend to share all the changes with you. I'll give you tips and tutorials on many of the projects and thanks to my amazing Dad I'll do my best to provide easy to understand instructions for even the novice. Stay tuned! And along the way if you have questions on any of the projects or even things I haven't tackled but maybe you hope to do in your home let me know. I am no expert, but I live with one of the most skilled I've ever met!


Um, where is the shot of the inside flower planters that were fully plumbed? I mean, what you have done with some of that stuff has been really great. I forgot all about that lovely fireplace with the plant holders! Did you ever find the blue irises?

I can't believe I didn't think about the flower planter! I'm not even sure I have a photo of that, surely I do. I'd be crushed if I don't!

Funny you should mention the blue irises, I never did find those and I actually mentioned them to my next door neighbor last week and she said she's never seen irises here period, so I think maybe they made that up lol

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