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Happy Birthday (AKA Happy One-Year Anniversary, House)

September 15, 2011
One year ago, we moved into our house! It just happens that today is also my birthday. Makes this anniversary easy to remember.
Happy birthday, mom. Time for breakfast?
Where it used to be just grass, now there are two garden beds.
End of the season for the tomatoes. These will come out this weekend, I think. Time for winter crops. We had some corn, too — but the squirrels harvested it for us.
Annoying, but they were awfully cute sitting up on the fence happily eating their ears of corn. Maybe now I can finally finish putting the garage in order. Aiiieeee!!We still love the yard, with all its trees and beauty. It’s a little crazy right now, overgrown and messy, but I kind of like it that way. 
Some other thoughts, one year in.
  • I still love the dishwasher. And the washing machine and dryer. And the garbage disposal. I still marvel at the ease of these modern inventions. Oh how I love having our very own washing machine…
  • And the HEATER! And the AC. Holy crap, it was so nice to be warm last winter. We only turn on the AC when it gets really hot (like, over 95) — thankfully the house stays relatively cool most of the time. But when we need it, it’s so nice. The heater holds an honored place in our hearts, however. Dear Central Heat, we love you so much.
  • I’ve done so much work in the yard, but I feel like I didn’t get very far. Although I did make those garden beds, and put up the trellis and so on. I also fell behind on a lot of the chores. Our dream of “wild, unkempt garden” inadvertently came true! I do love having a yard. It’s currently very messy with end-of-season brown tomato plants and lots of overgrown grass around pots and planters. I’ll clean it up later this month.
  • The birds. We love the birds. Definitely a plus. The other night-time critters: not so much. Raccoons, rats, possoms, other mysterious nighttime visitors, please go away.
  • The paint situation is bad. The bedroom walls are not covered in paper swatches. Now they are covered in PAINT swatches. It is really, really, really, really, really ugly. I will post a photo later. It’s kind of sad. No, it’s really sad. We just can’t decide. It’s bad. Hopefully we will decide soon. I do have a paint chosen for the hallway bathroom. Maybe when my mom comes in November, we can do some painting.
Overall, we are so very, very happy and blessed to be here. My dream of having a house to fiddle around with and adore has come true, and it’s been everything I wished it would be. I just love our house so much.
  • Some sad things too, from the past year. We lost our very very sweet and very beloved elderly kitties this year. Sweet Katie and Cleo are bitterly missed and can never be replaced. The loss of them has definitely cast a pall on recent months, although the New Babies are much-loved and starting to help heal our hearts.
  • We miss Oakland. I don’t miss the daily traffic, or the crowded stores and parking lots (or the violence in surrounding neighborhoods), but we do miss the diversity and the easy shopping and the urban feel. However, when it takes me just five minutes to get to Trader Joe’s and I’m outta there in 20 minutes tops, or when I’m walking Chelsea at night and feel safe, I can suppress the Oakland nostalgia.
It’s been a good year, very good in so many ways. But hard and sad too. I am very tired. I’m working on cutting back on my other jobs so I’m not so tired. The new pets are amazing and adorable but it’s a little bit stressful, getting to know a new kitty and a new doggie and managing two cats who do not get along yet. But it’s okay. We are managing and sooner or later, everyone will get along and settle in and it will be the new normal.
And someday soon, our bedroom will be painted in one or maybe just two colors, rather than… oh, there has to be at least 25 different paint samples on the walls. I can’t wait to show you.
Happy 37, self.
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10 Comments leave one →
  1. Mom permalink
    September 15, 2011 4:11 pm

    Again, I am so DANG proud of you, and all you’ve accomplished in your 37 years. To have your very own home is nothing short of amazing. HUGE goal accomplished!!! You’ve got the rest of the time you choose to live there to get all the “fix me ups” done. Yes, let’s paint when I come :). And decorate. And shop. And cook. And shop… …..

    • September 15, 2011 6:51 pm

      Thanks, Mom! I couldn’t have done it without Terri! Would love help painting. And shopping. And cooking. And shopping. 🙂

  2. September 15, 2011 5:28 pm

    You’ve got a good perspective and handle on things. Houses evolve with their owners and you’ve got plenty of time to make your mark. Look at how far you’ve come.

    • September 15, 2011 6:50 pm

      Thanks, Jodi. It’s nice to be able to take the time, knowing that (finally) we don’t have to move anywhere anytime soon.

  3. September 16, 2011 7:34 am

    If you figure out a way to not let the garden chores get away from you let me know! Every year I think, this is the year I stay on top of things and at some point something happens and next thing I know I’m looking at a jungle. I forgot along with your birthday was your house anniversary! I am so glad the house has turned out to be everything you’ve wanted. Your bedroom rainbow made me laugh. James and I have been trying to decide on a paint color for the bedroom for 10 years and we are still looking at dirty white walls. However, we finally decided a few weeks ago and bought the paint. Now we just have to paint it!

    • September 16, 2011 5:05 pm

      No…. don’t say 10 years!! But at least you just have white walls. Ours are…. kaleidescope.

  4. September 16, 2011 10:05 pm

    Happy happy! So proud of you and your lovely home

  5. September 18, 2011 8:55 am

    agreeing with jodi, you really do seem to have a good handle on things. When we had our last house, there was always so much to do and it became a major stress point in my life and i just didnt handle it well. i think im just someone who likes to have things DONE and the fact that there was always something UNDONE, wore me out. jay likes house projects though so i think with our next house we’ll have to find a way to compromise.maybe a house just needing comsmetic work and not so much structural work? but yeah, i cannot wait to see what paint colors you guys finally choose. 🙂

    oh, and of course Happy Birthday.

    • September 18, 2011 9:25 am

      Thanks for the vote of confidence. I’m trying to keep a cool head. Sometimes the to-do list gets the best of me. I tend to go crazy for short spurts (cleaning, organizing, driving everyone in the house nuts) and then I come to my senses and collapse on the couch to watch back-to-back episodes of Glee. 🙂

      I have to say that I think our house is that perfect combination of plenty of things to do (which I do enjoy) but nothing that HAS to be done, so it’s okay if I don’t get to things for awhile. I’d go that route again for sure.

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