If you would have told me a year ago that our greatest blessing in the next year would be that we owned a house, I might have believed you but not totally understood. Over the past six months, I can’t begin to express the number of times we said “Can you imagine living through all of this in our apartment?”. I’m sure we would have managed, as we would’t have had another choice, but we are so grateful to have spend this time distanced in our house.
This past Sunday marked one year since we closed on our precious home. Jody and I celebrated with an in-home brunch, followed by (finally) installing lights on our patio, watching TV in the garage, and ending with an alfresco dinner on the patio (which was then followed by the collapse and shattering of said patio lights). Ah, the joys of home ownership.
I remember sitting on the previous owners’ couch last July with my realtor as we wait for the home inspection to be completed. I was surrounded by their decor, their furniture and it was so hard to imagine their house feeling like ours. Two months later, when we unlocked our front door for the very first time, the house felt big and bare, especially as we ate pizza on the floor and wondered “Is this real? Did we actually buy a house”. It felt more like playing house, in the most exhilarating way. I remember waking up, on an air mattress in the middle of the living room floor, forgetting momentarily where I was and feeling like I was on the edge of a cliff – surrounded by adventure and thrill but still longing for a smidge of familiarity.
Later that weekend, my mom and I spent 14 hours covering the walls in “Agreeable Gray” and we all agreed that the house now felt more like a home and more like us. Six days later, we moved our furniture in. Our dishes had their own cabinet. Our room had our bed. Our towels had a space in the closet and we no longer were eating off styrofoam plates. We also had a washing machine and a dryer for the first time since I had lived at my parents house. I have never felt such a joy doing laundry before.
Our new couch arrived and we ordered a few floor rugs. I bought way too many (ahem, never enough) throw pillows and finally hung some pictures on the wall. Add more doormats and wreaths and I started to realize we may run out of space in this big house if this pattern continues.
We learned that cleaning a three bedroom house is more than a notion and cannot be done in under an hour like our apartment. I attempted to learn about plants to give our home a little more curb appeal. I only managed to fully kill one plant – still no ruling on our leafless tree in the back yard.
We hosted friends, we hosted family, we even hosted a holiday dinner for the first time! Watching our friends drift from the kitchen, into the living room, to the front sitting room, and beyond filled my heart in a way that I imagined our house would feel – full of love and warmth. We also felt a bit of emptiness when we had to close our doors to those same people back in March but now have such an appreciation for sharing our space with others, something we hope to always have and share.
We have already created so many great memories in this home, and sometimes, I honestly forget that we once lived other places. Especially with another homey season ahead, I am anxious for all of the beautiful, hilarious, challenging moments to continue to add to the history of our home.