Since moving into the new house two months ago, we’ve have created an inside environment that is a warm, friendly reflection of our family. We’ve made peace with the brass fixtures and ugly faux tiling for now. Even the forest green and mauve master bathroom gets a pass. As soon as the money tree blooms, we’ll tackle the tacky.
The outside of the house is another story. We haven’t even let the boys play in the backyard because it was overgrown with thorny weeds, inhabited by ant colonies and speckled with rebar. It was going to take major blood, sweat and tears to get the yard in playable shape, and we finally dragged our lazy butts outside this weekend to start the process.
This is how the backyard looked when we bought the property. The pool had been removed. What remained was the decking, sand, cement trim, and a myriad of sick roses bushes and weeds.
Space-wise, our new house is wonderful in every way, even in the driveway. It’s long and level, which means the boys can ride bikes and run around far enough away from the street without me worrying.
The front yard, too, is a large enough space in which to run and play, and that will suffice until our back yard is decent (i.e., sans rebar, ant hills, prickly weeds and all the other ugly things). Have I not shown you our backyard oasis and spa retreat?
Well here you go!
Don’t you just want to dive in for a swim? I sure do.
We will not be reinstalling the pool. Instead, we’re thinking pavers, a fire pit and a circle of seating for friends and family. I’m seriously considering submitting pictures to HGTV.
Speaking of swimming, today was the end of swim lessons. (Hurray!) Pictures forthcoming.
Buying a foreclosure has been very eye-opening for us, everything from negotiating with a bank (Grrr…) to discovering the hidden treasures (i.e., problems) left over from the previous owners. For example, there are light switch covers on every light switch, but there are no screws attaching the light switch covers to the wall. There is some sort of magnetism keeping them in place, as long as you don’t haphazardly flip on the light switch and send the unattached cover flying across the room.
But I digress.
The closets in the master bedroom were empty. By empty I mean there were no shelves, no hanging bars, nothing on which to place our clothes. The closets consisted of walls and carpet. Instead of buying the crappy wire stuff or forking over big bucks for particle board units, my handsome handyman got to work. He designed and constructed a built-in for each of our closets. (That’s right – separate closets!)
Here he is at work in mine:
They aren’t completely done but they are done for this week. Our clothes needed putting away so we could manage ourselves around the bed and bathroom, so we’ve saved the trim work and painting for another weekend. I am so impressed and pleased.
Other tidbits about our foreclosed house include randomly placed rebar sticking out of the ground, a kicked-in bathroom door, and cigarette burns on the kitchen countertops. Plus, a young man named Willie was well-loved by someone who used to live here. I’ve got proof:
These little love notes are written all over the place, some more well-hidden than others. We are gradually painting over them.
Despite it all, I love this place. LOVE it. It just oozes potential. Today I’ll start painting the two-toned green kitchen. The faux Grecian linoleum will have to stay a little longer.
Not to ignore the monumental importance of turning six years old, let me start by reveling over finally having internet service. Six days with no email, no blog, no Googling, no PINTEREST. It was like the 90′s all over again.
Anyway, today my littlest love turns six and he’s been enjoying all the attention. Fortunately for him we are mostly moved in and I was able to find the mixing bowls and birthday candles.
It’s the best I could do – Iron Man is hard to replicate on the fly. Jackson only licked the icing off anyway. (We all went to see The Avengers again yesterday afternoon in celebration of our first day of rest since the move.)
Jackson is still my happy blissful boy whom everyone adores. He charms every cashier, waitress and passerby in the grocery store. His charisma is hard to ignore. Jack is the most friendly and giggly child I know. Today was the first day of swim lessons and it so happened that there was another boy named Jackson in his class. When the instructor asked my son for a nickname to keep order, Jack quickly said, “You can call me Tony Stark.”
This photo was taken yesterday. I was organizing the kitchen and Chuck was building shelves in his closet, so Jackson decided it was a good time to roll down the hill in our front yard. With a light saber, of course.
We’ve been in the new house for more than a week now and it’s already starting to feel like home. I’ve taken so many photos already, so there’s is a lot of editing to do. For now, I’ll just send greetings from the Miller Family and a big Happy Birthday to Jackson.
It’s about that time to disconnect from the world for a few days. There’s nothing overly exciting to report right now anyway, unless you want to hear about leaky pipes and an obscene heating and air conditioning expense. Oh yeah.
The boys have nearly lost their minds. They’ve gone from being super excited to super helpful to painfully bored and restless. It’s too tempting to run around and wrestle in an empty house, and the lack of structure in our lives this week isn’t helping. We’ve been falling into bed close to midnight for five days straight, which has wreaked havoc on little bodies. Still, our optimism remains, and frankly it’s the only thing keeping us from running for the hills.
So I’m unplugging now. Next time we chat it will be from my library, which has freshly painted chocolate brown walls. It was like painting with Nutella.