Hello my friends!
Hello month of September (dear August where did you go?)
Hello Impatience and the rest of all my nagging character flaws.
Oh it’s so good to be back.
Ok. Here’s the question of this post. Do you want to learn about yourself? Do you want to dive in, get a deeper look at your state of mind? Discover your true level of optimism? Learn all about your inner peace (or in my case, your level of neurosis?)
Here’s what you do.
You relocate three times in five months. You spend the summer in a tiny, two-bedroom condo with your hubby, two (big) college age sons and an anxious German Sheppard next to a busy, insanely loud street while you search for a home in a surprisingly tight real estate market. And then--- you finally move into your new home which happens to be walking distance to the ocean—yayyyy-hallelujah-thank you Lord-pass the champagne- and did I mention?
It’s a bona fide fixer upper.
Isn’t life funny? But the real truth is, we decided to go for location which meant giving up a “few” things with the place.
Although I’ll be honest. It’s been a LONNGGGGG… time since I’ve lived in a fixer, …as in, when you actually wake up with someone else’s old carpet and their strange design choices and they don’t go away.
Let’s see, where do I begin?
Light dimmers in all the bathrooms (what?) …but none in the dining room. Ahem.
A mysterious unfinished wall in the living room which is half real rock and half sheet-rock with a protruding fire box…
A concrete wall that runs across the entire backyard that was never covered with vines or greenery in twenty-five years-making it the ugliest view in the world from the kitchen window?
I know, honestly I’m annoying myself now. After all, how many times can I walk around my house looking at oddities and think, “What is that?!
Although I am discovering that living in a fixer upper is a fascinating life lesson. It’s making me take a long, hard look at my ability to tolerate glaring imperfections even when they really-truly-bug me. It means acceptance of the NOW. It means a healthy dose of humbleness that comes with the realization that no matter what state of prettiness or ugliness our house may currently be in, it is not us.
We are not our stuff.
See? I know these things, but still, it’s hard.
Maybe I can blame it on the pinkish taupe-colored walls in the new house. OK. I admit this color was so much of a downer to me that on moving day, I was already slathering my walls with BM’s Simply White. So that even Mr. M shook his head as he carried stuff inside and said, “Really Les, really? Painting right now?”
I know, but I couldn’t stop myself.
Remember this scene from When Harry Met Sally?
I’m just saying, I might--just might be able to relate…a teeny weeny bit ..…
I don’t know. Maybe you’re living in a fixer right now and you’re secretly thinking. Oh Leslie, please. Get over yourself. This is part of the process, and I totally get it. I really do. I agree I have a lot to be grateful for…
We’ve got incredibly friendly (and funny too) neighbors. A sweet, tree-line neighborhood with a distinct beachy vibe. We’re surrounded by a constant source of happy activity with tanned, smiling people riding by on pastel colored bikes and my favorite? The cutest three year old twins who live two doors down and ride by daily on their tiny tricycles to the beach with their young, blonde Mama. Talk about a visual joy. And of course, there’s that waft of salty, ocean air that flows into our home from my open Dutch door.
(yes! I love my Dutch door)
(my entry from the future)
Ok ready for some real pictures?
I still have to upload my cell phone photos, but here’s a few photos taken before the previous owners moved out….
Here’s the original mystery wall.
Except today it’s got a light coat of white and holes in the drywall because various contractors were trying to figure out if the rock is behind the entire wall. IF you were closer you would see the wall isn’t flush. The sheetrock protrudes four inches over the rock like someone just decided to stop mid-job.
And we’re still trying to figure out what’s under this ugly tile “hearth” …the demo process will be SO much easier if it’s not concrete….
So as I was saying….the entry is a bit tight.
(can you hear me giggling through the computer?)
The house was built in 1969 and evidently clearance requirements were different.
Here’s another view. As you can see, the rails are not code and luckily I don’t have little ones that could fall through the gaping spaces (i.e add new stairs and railing to our things- to-do-list)
If you’re new to my blog, this was my entry in my old home.
Now you can see why I was a little taken aback. But hey, I love a good challenge.
Back to the new place:
The previous owners had furniture in the other side of the kitchen but the good news is that now that it’s gone and the walls are painted, the kitchen looks surprisingly bigger.
I have so many projects going on right now I can’t wait to share a few with you.
Since the dining room is so small I decided to go with color, maybe do something bold. Only I felt like I had two personalities when it came to picking the color.
In a beach cottage the softer gray-blue hues seem perfect….
But I’ve been wanting to do a room in BM’s Kendall Charcoal for awhile…it’s such a deliciously, dark color.
So which do you think I picked?
There’s so much you could do with either.
But here’s a clue.
Which color do you think would look most dramatic with my mirror?
(from my old office)
You guessed it. I’ve got more pictures coming.
And as always, I SO appreciate your visit. You have no idea how much I’ve missed you. Before I go here’s a few shares:
a house down the street. (love the picket fence)
So tell me. Did you have a good summer?