03 June 2011

Shiny and New

We have a new house.



(Sorry, no pic with the kids, but more to come.)

It's not the brand-new, LEED-certified home I blogged about months ago. Instead, it's a new old house, with bones from 1910 but delicious, recently added modern amenities. It has four bedrooms and three bathrooms (SO POSH) and a freestanding garage and a castle playground in the backyard (why did I not mention that first?) and best of all, even though we've only been there a week, it feels like home.

I obviously didn't blog about the buying process, and I only minimally mentioned it on Facebook. (I never mentioned it on Twitter because I still can't figure out why I should want to be tweeting.) The short explanation for my silence is that I was overwhelmed by writing about it. I could not figure out how to start, so I never did. And now it's done.

It's not that there wasn't anything to blog about during the process of buying the house. I don't think any home purchase is without some drama. There was elevated radon and contaminated soil and shenanigans with mortgage lenders and city permits that had not been closed. Then my landlord went off the deep end and I had to have some heated negotiations with her around renters' rights. As I am awaiting the return of (some? all? none?) of my deposit, those negotiations may not be over yet. Dealing with my landlord was the most frustrating of any of this ordeal because I think she and I both felt hurt and hoodwinked, and each of us felt in the right. So icky. But mostly over.

So, yeah, the stress of the whole process played into my silence as well. But I also felt, for the first time in a long time, like keeping this one close to the vest. This was a huge thing for me, buying this house. It was an emotional sea change to want to own, a huge financial step, and a logistical mountain. I've never felt so much like a legitimate grown-up as I did when I signed those papers, got those keys, and walked in the front door for the first time. I did this myself, for my little nuclear family, and while I certainly talked about it quite a bit with my nearest and dearest, I wanted to make this decision and see it through on my own, for me and Maddie and Riley. As I write about it, it sounds selfish or fearful or something; I just don't know how to explain it. I was so fully present it getting it all to happen, and so focused on how it was going to change our life that I wasn't able to write about it and evidently I'm still struggling.

Nothing I have done since John's death, even including moving back to Oregon, feels so much like the start of a new life as buying this home does. Nothing made me feel so trapped as owning my condo in Boston, and it's shocking to me that buying this house has given me the opposite feeling. Well, no, not the opposite exactly; I don't feel free. But I do feel grounded. Settled. It's a choice rather than an ensnarement. It's happiness.

49 comments:

Anonymous said...

Congratulations!!!

JudithNYC

erin said...

That is so nice. Congratulations on your beautiful new home and your beautiful new life. Can't get any better than this:)

beyond said...

wow, that's big and good news! congrats!

c.kim design said...

I can imagine wanting to keep it private. It's hard for me to tell a story when I don't know the ending, but even more than that, for you, this is truly the beginning of a different era. John visited Oregon with you (right?), you had your childhood there, there was overlap with old memories, but in this new house, there won't be any John overlap. It's the official 'new' you: single mom, two kids, house (dog?). Not sure if any of that is in your head, but those are things I imagine I'd be thinking about.

The house looks wonderful. I'm really happy for you and your family.

c.kim design said...

I always forget to log out of gmail and log back in, but I think you can guess who these comments are from! ;-)

Janine (txmomx6) said...

Beautiful!! Congrats!
:)

Meegs said...

Wonderful news. Congratulations.

And ditto everything c.kim said... she said it better then I could have!

devo said...

that is one gorgeous looking house.
in hebrew we say titchadesh to someone who is wearing something new, or bought something special, meaning enjoy it. I thought of saying it while looking at your picture, because literally it actually means "renew yourself", and you look happy and young sitting there.

Christie said...

Congratulations!! We're so very excited for you! And, seriously, castle playgrounds are AWESOME. (Almost as good as the happiness that comes with 'em.)

Keen said...

Yay! Congratulations! I love the picture, and I'm so happy for you, Maddie and Riley. Enjoy your new home, it sounds absolutely amazing!

(another) karen said...

Congrats!! Wicked happy for you ;-)

Anne said...

Fantastic! What a great feeling! I'm so happy for you!

mek said...

Awesome - so happy for you!

And...CASTLE PLAYGROUND?! You just become the coolest mom ever!

Lyndsay said...

Congratulations! It looks beautiful and sounds FANTASTIC!

Lori said...

Congratulations! I'm so impressed that it feels like home already. And what a bonus to already have a castle playground set up. Sounds like the perfect place to make some memories.

Heather said...

Congratulations!! It sounds just perfect.

Gina said...

First off, the house has an excellent front porch!

I find it difficult to write whenever I am in the midst of a big good thing (I am pregnant now - and very excited about it - but find it almost impossible to write about).

Congratulations on your purchase. It looks like a wonderful place for your kids to grow up.

bostongirl said...

many congratulations! Mostly I'm glad you're OK. I kept checking back here to see if you've written. I'm delighted to read that you feel happiness. You deserve that!

Goddess in Progress said...

So excited for you and your (lovely!) new home. Especially glad to hear that it feels so right.

And JEALOUS of your three bathrooms! Ha!

Catherine said...

Love your house!! So cute!! That would likely not have been afordable in Boston...so glad you are feeling more settled.

haitch pee said...

Congrats! It looks like a beautiful home and I'm very happy for you and the kids.

Anonymous said...

I come here often (don't know when and how I found your blog), I really admire your strenght, your courage and your writing.
I was worried something had happened because you didn't blog and know I'm just happy for you that something has happened indeed and that it's something really wonderful.
If English was my mother tongue, I'd say something more but I find it difficult to express certain things in a foreign language and I don't want to ruin what I really want to say: Congratulations!
ELM (all the way from Europe)

SarahB said...

Congratulations! The house looks gorgeous.

jill said...

It's wonderful and makes me miss my old house. Congratulations on being such a grown-up. I would love some photos of the inside if you would like to share.

Aimee said...

Congratulations!

julie said...

you rock girlfriend! good for you!

Val said...

Wonderful!

Sylvie said...

So happy for you. It all makes sense, congratulations on your new beginning. Enjoy settling in and making it feel like home!

Kristin said...

WOW! The house looks gorgeous and the castle playground sounds pretty amazing. Congratulations on making such a huge decision for your family. I don't know you, but I am really, really happy for you.

BiancaW said...

The most massive of congratulations to you. I totally understand you wanting to keep it quiet. It is such a huge decision to make and the last thing you want, or need, is some chop coming along and saying something that you don't want to hear (what ever it is - fees, renting vs buying etc etc).

Well done you! I am very jealous. We rent at the moment and my hearts desire is to be able to buy a home.

jo(e) said...

Congrats!

Susan said...

Love your new home. Beautiful!! Congratulations.

Angela said...

What an abslutely beautiful house! Congratulations and wishing you and your children many years of very happy memories in your new home.

mommo4.5 said...

When we didn't hear from you for a while I wondered if something like this was in the works. So happy for you. God bless your home!

mommo4.5 said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Snoopyfan said...

I was also thinking something big must be up since you haven't posted in so long! Congrats to you, Maddie, and Riley!!

django's mommy said...

So excited for you- yay!!

And what an AWESOME front porch- I covet it! :)

Misha Leigh. said...

So, so, so happy for you (and love what devo said!)

Anonymous said...

Beautiful. Charming. Perfect. Congratulations! I missed your blogging.

Andi said...

Delurking to say congratulations on your new castles!

Mizasiwa said...

Wow!! im so happy for you!! the house looks beautiful!!!! and I wish you and your lovely kids all the best in the wonderful HOME!

Kathy said...

Catching up on blog reading and wanted to add my congratulations! The house is GORGEOUS. I wish that type of house existed in Miami, but... However, we are closing on a new house of our own next week and we would love to have you for a visit sometime!

Left-Handed Housewife said...

Congratulations! What a beautiful house!

kathy a. said...

yay! happy housewarming! i had not checked for a while, and was fearful about the silence, but all to the good. xoxo

Anonymous said...

That sounds wonderful. Congratulations.

Anonymous said...

Congrats Snick!

Cheryl in MI

Erica said...

Congratulations! That's good news!

Homeowner Insurance

~ Jolene said...

Oh my goodness - congratulations! So happy for you and the kids...it sounds like my dream house. It looks gorgeous. :)

kyouell said...

Congratulations! I'm very jealous that you have more than 1 toilet.

I don't know if you remember, and not exactly sure what our status was the last time I brought it up, but I was pestering you for neighborhood info because we wanted to be carfree in a good spot in Portland. We finally moved from Hillsboro, bought a bakfiets (!!!) and are living our dream.

Except for the 1 toilet. ;-)