I started writing my annual New Years reflection post this morning and I ended up writing so much about our house and the move and our old apartment that I thought this topic deserved its own post!
The biggest and most spectacular thing that happened in 2010 was buying our first house! 2009 was full of house hunting and the ups and downs that go with that. In October, we were feeling pretty down about the whole thing and were about ready to just find a better apartment and give up. On my way to DC for Crafty Bastards though, my realtor called and asked if we’d like to put in an offer again on a house we’d already lost. Sure. Might as well. So after the craft market was over, I searched high and low, with friends Becky and Kurt, through Adams Morgan for a fax machine to send an earnest money check. I finally found a very nice bartender who sent it off for me.
Never did Davis and I image that we wouldn’t find out if we got the house for a full 5 months. I ended 2009 rather depressed about the whole thing, just trying to ignore the situation. At the end of February, I was told we would close by the end of the week. After waiting 5 months, this news seemed really sudden and out-of-no-where. Who knows the mysteries of how banks and short sales work!
We went to the closing and met the owner of the house. Through the whole experience, I imagined a bank owning the house, but come to find out there was a real live human involved. He was really personable and we had such a great time talking and laughing with him that our realtor later told us that had been the most fun closing he’d ever attended. He said they are normally very quiet, solemn occasions. Of course it was the personalities involved, but also I think both parties were just so relieved to have an end to the ordeal. It was such a relief.
So many people struggled so much this past year with housing issues and while I know the outcome was not ideal for our seller, I do believe it wasn’t the worst scenario for him. He put a lot of work into our new home and I don’t take that lightly. I really appreciate his efforts and investment. I don’t know all the details, but from what I gathered he was not someone who made a foolish investment and agreed to something there was no way he could ever pay back. I think the work he did on the house just ended up exceeding his budget. Since we’re reaping the rewards of his renovation work, I genuinely hope something great comes his way.
We closed the last day of February and spent March painting the new place and packing up the old. A month sounds like a long time but it flew by and the move ended up being a bit traumatic. I used to move at least once a year, but we had lived in that apartment for 6 1/2 years. A really long time. Needless to say, stuff had accumulated! It was not my best packing job or move. Thank goodness for my mom, brother and a few friends who really helped us out tremendously. We finished moving out of our apartment at 5:30 am. Ugh.
It was a sweet little apartment that we moved out of, but too small for two people and honestly, my least favorite of all my apartments and yet the one I lived in the longest. When we moved in there, we vowed to not move again unless we were moving to another city or buying a house. A few years later I thought, I’m glad we made that vow because it broke us of the habit of moving all the time but I don’t think either of those things is going to happen. Then more years passed and we actually kept the vow. I don’t believe it!
It has taken awhile to get used to living in a house. One day we pulled up a corner of the carpet in the living room and discovered hard wood floors. I jumped up and down with excitement and then thought, “Oh man, Ms. Eleanor is going to be so mad that I’m making so much noise.” Then I realized, “Oh man, I don’t have an 80-year-old neighbor downstairs anymore!” So I jumped up and down again for hardwood floors AND for not having downstairs neighbors to worry about!!! Yay!
I miss my old neighborhood (Poncey-Highland) A LOT. But I’m also falling in love with my neighborhood slowly. It feels like we are out in the country sometimes, it’s so quiet without Freedom Parkway outside my window and North Avenue at the end of the block. The quiet is growing on me though and if I concentrate I can hear I-20. I feel like we live really far south because we’re below 20, but seriously, we’re not. We moved a whopping 3 miles.
I’m so thankful for the location. I thought once we moved into a house we’d end up way deep in a neighborhood and there would be nothing we could walk to. We actually ended up in East Atlanta and can easily walk to the village where there are bars, restaurants, a coffee shop, my bank and a library. I’m amazed that this is how we ended up. My whole entire life I’ve lived where I could walk to something and I had been mentally…er emotionally…preparing myself for a major change in lifestyle. I had also been majorly stressed out since high school that by the time I was able to buy a house everything would be so overpriced that I’d have to move to Gwinnett or Cobb county. Proud to say we live in the City of Atlanta.
When I’ve been out of town, I still imagine driving to my old place when I get home. I haven’t quite gotten used to living in my house yet. And we’re certainly not settled in. We’re still painting and ripping out carpet and living out of boxes. It’s so exciting to see every bit of progress and I looooooooooove our house. More and more every day.
A little progress: