I’ve been putting off blogging anything about our housing situation…knowing that a million things can shift in any real estate deal, and when you’re pulling off two real estate deals in a funky economy with Christmas a week away, it’s way easy to speak – or blog – too soon. So let me preface this by saying the ink is not dry, the cement is still wet, the cow is in the barn but the door’s still open, etc.
We have a contract on our house. We have owned this ranch style home a little over four years. When we bought it, it was a granny yellow with rust colored shutters. The next summer, when we painted it a trendy khaki and black, neighbors literally stood in the street and cheered. The main living area of the house has all the walls blown out. The dark hardwood, brown and blue walls, and killer stainless steel kitchen make for a sort of uber-hipster loft look. It’s the sort of place you would expect to find a wifi signal, good coffee, and a lot of Mac products….all of which makes our next home that much more unusual.
We have a contract on a home that is nothing like our current home. If the ranch house was the Jetsons, we’re moving into John Boy’s house. Situated in the middle of a subdivision built in the late 80’s, it’s the original farmhouse for the surrounding acreage. It was built in the late 1930’s and features gorgeous hardwoods, crazy cool original art deco tilework, these eetsie-beetsie porcelain door knobs and a lot of…potential. OK, it needs some work. So now, rather than flipping through the Ikea catalog, I’ll be surfing eBay for hardware.
Speaking of work, long time readers will remember the Kitchen Rehab Series of 2006. It read something like Dave Barry Goes to Home Depot With Joe Biden. It looks like 2009 will feature a similar effort, although I’m looking at the ’06 rehab as practice and hope to organize this effort in such a way as not to have a kitchen without water for 91 long days. (Note to self, please accentuate at the time of order that you want those cabinets installed, not abandoned in the garage).
The yard is kid heaven, featuring a low stone wall, a hidden tree fort, a wrought iron gate and a gargantuan flag pole. The gate, the concrete lions out front, and the flag pole all contribute to me dubbing the place “The Compound”. I would love to have two flags – a LIFE flag for most days, and a Jolly Roger to worry the neighbors from time to time. We joked about using the flagpole as a fundraiser – you could charge people $20 to fly their flag over The Compound for a day…give them a certificate or something.
I’m uncharacteristically excited about this house. By my count, it’s the sixth house we’ve owned, but none of them captured my imagination like this place.
I was talking to the boys this morning about the fact that FDR was President of the United States when this house was built. People sat in this living room – staring at these floors – and listened to the radio reports of Pearl Harbor. D Day. This house has roots that go far down and back…and we will add our own memories, our own scuffs to the hardwood, our own notches on the closet doors to mark how tall the kids are.
We’ll do our best to honor it’s history even as we write our own future in the shade of it’s screened in porch.
Good night, John Boy.
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