Country Living...Island Dreaming

September 24, 2014

My Affair With a House

There are a few houses in my neighborhood that I have had a crush on over the years.  Whenever we pass one of them, I always tell my husband, "If that house ever goes up for sale, I want it!"  He just brushes my comment off with the rest of my hair-brained ideas.

(not the house)

Then recently, one of my favorites went on the market.

I know the house.  In fact, I know the house well.  I was friends with the previous owner and when she put the house on the market a couple years ago, I had to restrain myself from putting a bid on it.  It just didn't feel right.  It was her house then and it would be strange to buy it from her while she was so sad to be leaving the area due to her husband's job transfer.

But now...now the current owners have been there for a couple years.  I have never met them (and have no plans to at this point!)  From the real estate listing, I can see that they made a few changes such as adding some hardwood floors where there used to be carpet and painting the kitchen island a different color.  It no longer feels like my friend's home and is far as I am concerned, it's fair game to whoever wants it.

The house is about 1/3 larger than mine, has an updated kitchen, a ridiculously large master closet and ALL of the bathrooms have been remodeled.  It has a gorgeous walk out basement and huge living area that leads out to a screened in porch.  It is completely move in ready.  The only thing I would change would be some paint colors and a few window treatments.  It's perfect.

Sure, it is a little out of our price range, but if we consider the money we will have to put into a full kitchen renovation in our house (and a full master bathroom renovation after I break that one to my husband), it isn't that much more expensive...
(A tile example...)

So, the other day I mentioned it to my husband.  "Well, go look at it!", he says.

What?  Who is this man?

Well, apparently, he knew exactly what he was doing.  After 16 years of marriage, (wow, has it been that long?..) he knows me.  He knows the house will probably be sold long before I make a decision.  He is still waiting for me to pull the trigger on this whole kitchen renovation...Yes, it's me, not him stalling on that one.

Anyway, that night I fell asleep with visions.  Visions of cooking in my new huge kitchen, visions of the boys playing in the massive lower level (which I really can't even call a basement!), visions of cocktail parties and gatherings in our cozy new screened in porch....all kinds of visions.  I actually had a dream that I was moving all my furniture in.  In the dream, I was standing in the front hall as various pieces were placed in the new rooms.  I was giddy with excitement.  The dream house was becoming a reality in my mind.

But the next morning, instead of feeling excited, I felt sad.  As I lingered in bed,  I could hear the kids rustling around in their rooms and I thought about how this is the only house they have ever lived in.  This is the house that has evolved with them.  I still have marks in the doorway from the baby gates.  There is still a stain on the carpet from something that spilled years ago, dents in a couple walls that still need to be fixed...

Yeah, you might think you know where this story is going.  If you read my blog, you know I can be very sentimental and I do tend to get attached to things.

But you have to realize, I am going through a mid-life crisis here.  Some people may buy a sports car or have an affair...but my affair is with a house.  A house I may or may not ever have but the thought of never buying another house makes me feel like I am getting old.  It hit me one day that I may never own a beach house.  How devastating that would be, especially since I regularly pin images to my Future Beach House board!  And the thought of never having a custom "dream house" is a little heartbreaking.  I'm not getting any younger here!

Ironically, a few weeks ago, someone accidentally called me by the name of my friend who originally owned "the" house!  How weird is that?  No one even knows that I have considered buying the house!  I took it as a sign...

After all, it's not the house that makes a home, it's the people inside.  I know that I will feel at home as long as I am with my family.  And that family of mine would just love all the additional bells and whistles this beauty has to offer!

Will I really be happier in that house?  I don't know.  I am pretty happy now so I don't know what I would really be accomplishing.  Does every single dream in life have to be fulfilled?  Probably not, but it is fun to imagine sometimes.

But then again there is also a certain comfort in knowing that you have put down roots in one place.  That your children have memories of growing up in one house, chasing their dog around in the yard they have become familiar with over the years.  Is it that important to chase every dream, or is it more important to appreciate what you do have?

Yeah, you were right.  You did know where this story was going...I think we are right where we are supposed to be.  

I didn't even bother attending the recent open house...




But,...even though I didn't waste my time attending that open house, I did attend a couple other open houses in a new subdivision recently... just for decorating ideas of course!  But hey you never know!  I will show you those pictures in my next post.  I gave you a quick peek of the front porch an bathroom above.  Yeah, I am such a tease....

Have you had an "house affairs" lately?


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18 comments

  1. I totally know what you are going through, Shelley. We went through this very thing, and we DID buy the house….and then we were sorry because more didn't end up being better. We eventually sold the big house with it's bigger yard, beautiful kitchen, all the bells and whistles… even though we love architecture and pretty houses, it definitely didn't make the quality of our life better. We ended up not loving the neighborhood, and the house was SO much work and maintenance, we are glad we sold it in the end! I bet if you did what you want with your kitchen you would fall in love with your current house all over again! :)

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    1. You are probably right, it just seems like so much work...not that moving wouldn't be!

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  2. Shelley, as I was reading your post, I wasn't sure exactly where it was going! Since you have given it so much thought already, maybe it wouldn't hurt to actually visit the house as it is now? On the other hand, I am sure the kitchen isn't EXACTLY how you would do yours. If given the opportunity, I always prefer to be the one to pick out every last detail in my home. Maybe you should make your new dream kitchen your mid life crisis? Selfishly, I hope that is what you do, so I can follow along :) Love that quote at the end of your post!

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    1. I didn't know where I was going with it either Courtney! LOL...

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  3. we recently were able to purchase our house and now after living here (renting) 10 + years are finally able to make it our with our style and all the updates we need or want. I know exactly what you are saying as I look around at other places that seem better
    come see us at http://shopannies.blogspot.com

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  4. Your funny Shelley! I do love looking at other people's houses, for decorating ideas of course ;-), but I don't think of buying a nicer house at all! I know how you feel about the house you have now (which is beautiful by the way) because I am still IN love with with our house now despite my wishes and dreams for certain areas and rooms. Its ok to have those affairs once in a while, but man, just thinking of another mortgage, turns me off right away. Lol!

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  5. Shelley, just wait someday the real dream house will "knock your socks off" like our current home did to me nearly 26 years ago. Thankfully, it did come with nearly double the size of our previous home. I had sold real estate when we lived in Texas and I had gotten over the dream until we left the home we lived in behind. That day in November, I simply called my husband's office and said, "my socks just fell off" and he said he'd be right there! We made an offer and went out of town for T'giving as we didn't up our offer. Instead the company, who was handling it for a transferred employee called and said we could have it at our price. All this to say, that the wait is often worth it. We talk of downsizing, but we have loads of great memories with family. Keep focusing on how you're feeling. You will know when and if you really want to part with your memories and those of your kids. The nest is empty, but wait the family is larger and we love having rooms for our grandchildren to enjoy. Best wishes for your home!

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  6. I can totally relate. While my husband and fantasize about winning the lottery and buying a bigger home, our expanded cape is so perfect for us. We have put so much into it and all that we have done to make our own. I look at other homes that I think are perfect and go through all the motions of what it would be like to live there but, I like you have fallen in love with a house!

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  7. I love the quote you posted. Whenever I fantasize too much about a new house too much, I pause and practice gratitude for what I already have. I also try to come up with creative solutions to the issues I'm having with my current home.

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  8. Hi Shelley! I too can relate! My husband and I recently bought his sister's house. It was bigger then our home had more closest space had the pool and hot tub we always wanted but now that we live there we realize this home isn't our dream home! So now in the near future we plan on selling it . The funny thing is we always wanted to buy it if they ever moved . Sometimes the grass isn't always greener on the other side!! That quote is so true! Be happy and God bless!

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  9. I love looking at different houses around town. And when one of my favorites comes on the market, I am always so curious to peek inside. It's good that you can find contentment in your current home though. Thanks for sharing at Fridays Unfolded!

    Alison
    Nancherrow

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  10. what a great quote to end your post on Shelley. I have to admit, you had me guessing until the end. but I totally get it. Moving homes is a big deal for sentimental types like you and me. I had to get through the milestone of launching my kids from high school before I could do it. And I think, that timing is everything in life. You sorta feel when it's right to make big jumps like that. Although it's so fun to dream, isn't it?
    You've got the right attitude.
    xo
    Leslie

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  11. I am having a house affair with one in Tewksbury right now.. but not in my price range.. one can dream though!

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  12. I have homes in all of the surrounding towns that I often drive by for a little fly by affair. lol! Sometimes it's just to see their pretty gardens. OIther times it's to imagine what the inside would look like if the outside is so pretty. But no plans of moving. Perfectly happy where I am, but a little affair on the side now and then can be a good thing! Hee-hee! Thanks for sharing with SYC.
    hugs,
    Jann

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  13. Cute and funny and something I think about myself occasionally! I want to re-buy my old house!!! I am so afraid of what the new owners have done that I can't even drive by. But I keep saying if it ever goes on the market, I want it!! I would be sad to leave my current home but...you never know!

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  14. So cute and funny, Shelley! I'm having a "If we win the lottery house-affair!" I think of it as my "happy place" when I need to be transported away from reality, like when I'm in the dentist chair....lol! My "house" is one that we strolled through as a model home, and I instantly fell in love. We would definitely have to win the lottery, because at about 4000sf, I would need a cleaning crew. It is fun to dream, and I cannot think of a safer "affair" to have!

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  15. There's a house nearby that aspects of it I would adore - over 6,000 square feet - gorgeous and old! Anyhow - I went through the same thing and we've put our roots down! Great post! I do appreciate you sharing with Home and Garden Thursday,
    Kathy

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  16. There are houses I dream of too, will never own them...but fun to dream. Thanks so much for sharing at AMAZE ME MONDAY...
    Blessings,
    Cindy

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