As Jasmine pointed out on Twitter, this blog post is almost like it was pulled straight out of my brain and put onto GGC. Rusty and I have been swimming in the real estate waters for oh about...our whole lives. And for real swimming for about 6 months. And for no serious swimming in the deep end for like 2 weeks now. And while I hesitate to write about any of this now since you never know what can happen between the signing of a contract and the actual closing date (or so I hear from people and TV since I have actually never owned a house before) reading about other people and their real estate endeavors just makes me so excited to talk about my own experience that I can't take it anymore. Plus, the time I spend here writing means I am not on Pinterest decorating not just my potential new house, but also my winter cabin in Scandinavia, my summer home in Bali and my fall home on the west coast. None of which I will ever likely ever have to actually decorate.
(Side note: I have spent the last three days at work saying things like, "How many times has she puked?" "Uhhh, the little one puked. How do I know? Because I just stuck my hand in it." "The evening started out fine and then suddenly, BAM! Down with the pukes" "We are all dropping like pukes flies" "The whole world is exploding in puke germs" and my personal favorite, "I am the last man standing! I will not be defeated!" So yeah, talking about ANYTHING is better than what I've been talking about since Sunday.)
A few weeks ago we went to the bank to be pre-approved to by a home. We walked out of the bank elated, pre-approved, and ready to start the hunt. Two days later, after pacing around in circles waiting to get started, we saw our first house. And what appeared to be a dated but workable 70's era ranch style home with an awesome yard, turned out to be a dark, cave-like rat nest that wasn't just dated, rather it was like someone filled the whole thing with 70's leftovers from someone else's renovation.
The second home was totally updated Victorian. Totally updated to be wrong for me and additionally, owned by a fairly shady looking dude in a fairly shady looking part of town. Not really a person I would want knowing the ins and outs of my abode. He probably put a secret passage from his junk shop to my living room so he could come in my house and peek and my underclothes.
But honestly, those two houses didn't get me down. Because I was holding out for Mr Wright, specifically a house on Wright street. A 100+ year old pile of seemingly awesome historic charm and wood floors and built ins. Sure, the kitchen looked about as big as my current bathroom and it was mauve. And there were no pictures of any of the bedrooms or bathrooms, which probably meant they were similarly tiny and mauvish. But who cares! It was previously the Methodist parsonage! And it is OOOOOLLLLLD! We went to visit this house, and despite the very awkward fact that the renters were actually there while we were looking through, a very crabby woman in trendy hole-y jeans and grating Southern accent along with her five kids all hanging out in their lives while we wandered through trying not to be too obnoxious. Despite all this, I was so set on loving this house that I very nearly convinced myself that it was the perfect house for us. I could FEEL it, Rusty! I could see us living here! And don't worry about the mauve shoebox kitchen, we can fix that along with the tiny bedrooms and weird/nasty bathrooms.
We walked outside, Rusty was not impressed, Norah stepped in dog poop, and I was pretending that I was in love despite the blaring sirens saying NO NO NO! (Listen, I am a gut-listener, one of those people who walks around saying "Nope. It just doesn't feel right thanks. Except when I get so worked up about what I think I want, then I ignore those feelings. And usually regret it.)
So we go around the corner to a house for sale by owner, a giant red house that was just out of our price range and I forgot about Mr Wright and fell madly and stupidly in drooly love with Mr Cornell.
You guys. This house is amazing. The whole experience has been amazing. I sit down at night and still feel like this is not really happening, there is no way we can actually afford a house this nice, this wonderful, this...everything I want. I mean good grief, a year ago I was choosing between oil changes and paying the cable bill. But we fell onto the (wraparound) porch of this beautiful house, into the laps of some amazingly kind and helpful people and I am seeing stars. Which is exactly why I haven't talked about any of this yet, because if something falls through my heart will break.
This house has no carpets, just beautiful and original hardwood floors. It has an under the stairs closet for toys and games and hiding out from tornadoes. It has windows everywhere, with wavy old glass. It has a freaking pass-through from the dining room to the kitchen and built in shelves all over the place. And, wait for it....a dang clawfoot tub. It took everything in my soul not to sit down in that tub and offer on the house the first time we walked through. It is lovely and sufficiently old to have developed the charm and yes, soul, that I required in a house that we would buy. And to top it off, the plumbing, wiring and roof were all updated 4 years ago so Rusty doesn't have to have a panic attack every time someone takes a bath. And sure, Rusty will have to use a downstairs closet for his clothes since they are all too small to share and we will have to install a showerhead before we can shower in the clawfoot bathroom, but really that just fits perfectly into my quirky little life.
So we have made an offer, have signed the contracts and everything else is moving from there starting tomorrow. In the meantime I am going to back my current house and try not to buy every thrift store chair I find to re-finish and put in my new giant house. Please keep up and Mr Cornell in your thoughts and prayers and good vibes. We are terribly excited, and honestly, just overwhelmed by the goodness of the people we have met through this process.
So as things develop, I will let y'all know. And if things go as planned you can expect lots of pictures of the process of making this lovely old house, our home.