It occurred to both John and I - at different times - that we signed on our house today five years ago and became first time homeowners.
I'm torn, part of me feels like we've been here forever and the other part feels like we just moved in. There are definitely a lot of things that work for us in this space and definitely a few things that could be better. We've made several improvements - some out of necessity and some because we just wanted to. I will say though that each improvement has put a little more of our thumbprint on our home. There are still a few rooms we haven't (and really need to) paint and a couple rooms we still haven't "finished" and aren't using the way we would like to, but we're getting there and it's always a work in progress right?
Always one for a list, here are my top 5 favorite things about our house:
5. Hardwood flooring throughout the first floor. Ok yeah I hated the reason we "got" to do that project - a major leak through the kitchen ceiling, but through pinching pennies and doing a bunch of work ourselves we ended up with gorgeous flooring. And really a whole new bathroom. But the flooring? I love it very much.
4. A bigger dining room than living room. This sounds super weird, but our dining room is really our multi-purpose room because of the extra square footage. Which, allows our living room to just be a living room. Homeschooling has been a perfect fit for that room.
3. Our yard. I love that we have space for a garden and flowers and grass. The kids can putter and I can putter and John can rock in the rocking chair on the back porch after he's done mowing. It's been a lot of work, but frequently it's not work I mind doing. And there are lots of birds and squirrels and now a dog. I have a chair that I can see the whole yard from and it's very satisfying to sit and watch all the activity - like a queen bee :)
2. The kitchen. Ok 2 things about the kitchen. 1. we replaced the faucet in the sink and got one that has a removable sprayer at the end of it - instead of a spray nozzle on the side. Seriously single best thing I've done to improve the quality of my time in the kitchen. It even reaches the stove so I can fill my canning pot while it's on the burner. Love it. 2. is the stove and oven my family bought for me the Christmas before last. Such a meaningful gift.
1. Homeownership. John and I will vastly disagree on this, but I love owning our home so much more than renting. Renting was one of the most stressful experiences of my adult life. Not even joking. So incredibly stressful. I mean granted I had one landlord that was great and 4 that were kind of awful, but still I would so much rather be responsible for my home than depend on someone else. Also not a fan of the authority of landlords. Give me a mortgage any day.
I have no idea how long we'll stay in this house. I think the next few years are holding some new adventures for us, but I have no idea what they are. I hope they're nice adventures though! But I wouldn't mind staying here for awhile yet. I vacillate between being satisfied in our space and not - but then I just rearrange something and I'm good for awhile. I really like our neighborhood, it's a good fit for us.
We've learned a lot since embarking on this journey. I'm better at plumbing than I used to be. I can get an aquarium rock out of a garbage disposal like it's nobody's business. I can install light fixtures. I know what's under all the subflooring. I know that things you think cannot be fixed actually can if you find the right person to help and teach you. Also youtube is invaluable.
I think some of the best personal growth that has occurred in this house have come from the mishaps that come from owning a 100 year old house. In the midwest. You know? And I'm thankful for all of it. I love that my kids are growing up here. That we have so many memories held in this home.