Another year, another move. There was no question about trying to purchase a house this time; we looked for a rental back in our old neighborhood. The church house was occupied, so it was not an option to move back in. How I was kicking myself; we should’ve just stayed there to begin with, paying $600/mo rent and saving money.
We looked at several properties and narrowed it down to two. They were similar in style (3 bed, 2 bath ranch) and age (30-40 yrs). One was in beautiful condition, cost about $100/mo more, and no painting or decorating was allowed. The other was a little more run down, closer to church, and they told us they would pay for the paint. We went with that one.
As it turns out, I don’t have a lot of photos of this house. Mostly just pictures of people that happen to be in the house.
This is the only full exterior shot I could find. The front door is behind the flag; the window to the right of the flag is the living room, and to the left of the flag (partially hidden) is the dining room. The window on the far left is the garage; there is a door in the garage entering the kitchen.
Here is a view from the other end of the driveway, which was a half circle in front of the house. To the right of the lemonade stand (it was neighborhood garage sale day) at the base of the house you can see the anemic air conditioner, I’m guessing original to the house. If it got over 90 degrees (and it does a lot here during the summer; we have several days 100 or above) it couldn’t handle it and the house would not be below 85.
There was a large backyard with shade trees and a brick patio. Stepping inside the front door, there was a decent entry area with a tile floor. To the right was the living room and to the left, the dining room. This shot is taken standing in the dining room doorway with the front door to the right.
This is the dining room. We used it for the computer, kids crafts etc, and part of the time a homeschool room. The door way on the right goes to the kitchen and you can see the hinges of the door to the garage.
The kitchen was a pretty good size. I liked having the peninsula with breakfast bar. I did not like the blue countertops or the lovely white/gray faux wood cabinets. (That’s my niece talking to Skippy. She’s about 2 feet taller than me.)
You can orientate the photo below by the trash can in the above photo. This is Christmas morning and we didn’t normally have the bench there. I mainly just wanted to point out that there really was room for a little dinette in the kitchen, but instead I put my island there and used it for storage.
Open to the kitchen was what I guess would be considered a family room, but we had our dining table there. The vertical blinds are sliding doors to the patio. That’s my sister, brother in law, and their youngest.
I don’t have any good pictures of the bedrooms. There was a full bath in the hallway and three bedrooms. The boys shared.
I do have this before picture of the master bathroom. More blue counter, faux marble this time. Dingy ditsy floral wallpaper, a dropped ceiling, and a homemade light fixture. Behind that yellowed plastic panel (the kind you find in an office building) was a wooden box that housed one florescent tube. That’s why there are two dark stripes on either side of the bright yellow one.
Craig took out the dropped ceiling, which raised the ceiling a foot to a normal 8ft. He tore down the wallpaper and painted a light aqua blue (there were one inch tiles on the floor in a white and aqua pattern). He crawled up into the attic to fish the electrical down the wall and put in a normal light fixture over the medicine cabinet we put in place of the mirror. We took down the oak cabinet over the toilet and put up decorative white shelves. He even replace the faucet. But I don’t have an after photo.
This neighborhood was two connected cul de sacs, with a total of 25 houses. There was only one way in or out, off a very busy street. In fact, the house from Part 3 was directly across that street from this neighborhood. There were a lot of older couples in these older homes, but there were three children that became friends with ours.
We put Firstborn, and then after Christmas Skippy, into public school for the first time while we lived in this house. The following year Pinkerbelle started kindergarten at the same school. I have since come to realize that that was a particularly nice school, with involved parents and friendly staff. Leaving that school may be my one regret.
In January 2008, we sort of stumbled into an opportunity we never dreamed would be possible, and one last time, a move was in our future.
To be continued…