Thursday, June 10, 2010

Happy House-a-versary!

It’s June 10, 1986. I borrow my college roommate’s car to meet the mother at the bank.

I am young (not even old enough to legally drink), stupid and completely overwhelmed by the volume of papers which I am signing. Oh. My. God. I've just become a part homeowner! I am completely clueless as to what I have just signed on for …

June 10, 2010

Dear House,

Just over two years ago, you officially became ours, free and clear. You will continue to be ours – as long as I pay the taxes, of course.

It’s been an interesting journey to say the least. The mother threw body and soul into you before the ink was dry. Back then, you were white with black shutters and had those oh-so-lovely black wrought iron supports. Even so, she saw the potential in you. I did not.

Moving day was fun. We’d had some help early on with appliances, a few dressers and bed sets but just about everything else (including the dining room, living room and other assorted furniture) were left to the mother and I. In a borrowed truck.

My late aunt, who had a boat of a Lincoln at the time, packed it to the gills for two trips with boxes and clothing. And then we drove away from the old house for good.

I should have known how rocky our relationship was going to be from the very first trip though. The trip where the mother and I managed to load and then unload a sofa – only to have it get stuck in the front door, the mother trapped between the arm of the sofa and the jamb, thanks to the then 32-inch front door! (She would later have that entry widened to 36 inches and put your original door on the back where it remains today.)

I had a cow a year or so later when she announced plans to have you painted gray. I just couldn’t see it. It ended up being one of my favorite changes and, as turned out, the first of several in an ongoing series. (On the second painting, we messed up. SO sorry about that! But, we corrected ourselves back in ’07. Hope you’re happier now. I know I am!) Columns replaced the wrought iron and a carport replaced the garage which had burned.

My very first jobs were painting and wallpapering the kitchen and shuttering nearly every window in the house. (Ultimately, I would shutter them ALL.) Our first Yorkie, Scruffy, was a puppy then, just five or six months old. I was painting in the kitchen and he came and walked in the paint ... tracking tiny Yorkie prints all over the recently tiled kitchen and dining room floors.

You gave us fits those first few years, house. During the first five years alone we replaced the water heater, water main and furnace. (The water main was fun. My dear sweet cousin Dago and I dug a trench the length of the backyard in pouring rain and temps in the 50s.)

In the ‘90s, it would be new carpet, the first major redo of the bathroom, a complete redo of the downstairs family room and, on the outside, newel posts and railing were added.

Little by little, piece by piece, you became what you are today. (Currently, on the interior, a dream feature for The Hoarders.) But it won’t always be this way. There are many things to finish and several more projects waiting to be started. But we’ll get there. I'm game if you are!

Stick with me, house. Don’t throw any curveballs, and we’ll get there.


jb said...

great reflection, happy anniversary, and continued success. jb

Ty'sMommy said...

Congratulations, NV. You and the Mother have come a long way! I knwo a house can be an overwhelming and time consuming, endless list of projects, but you sure take it in stride. Great job!

Elaine said...

Congrats, Hon!

BeeHive said...

happy houseiversary :)

modernemama said...

Total envy of your journey,,, but the projects never stop, do they?

Kate R said...

Happy House-a-versary! I'm sure it appreciates all the TLC you've given.

Why S? said...

That was touching. I'm sure your home appreciates the love.

Happy, happy House-a-versary to you both.

NV said...

Thanks everyone for all the kind wishes. Really hoping that this place is back in some kind of order by its 25th house-a-versary!