a house becoming a home

We are at four weeks since moving and three weeks into sharing 700 square feet of living space. All the boxes are unpacked – at least what made the cut as high enough priority to be allotted a bit of space in this small condo. The nooks and crannies have their residents. The routine is becoming just that – predictable and second nature. The top to bottom weekly cleaning of every surface is an easy 60-minute job start to finish. The short stroll to the trail that winds along the water and drops us at the best beach with the best park and lends itself to a dock that weaves into the cutest of artsy towns you ever did see is becoming like a walk to the mailbox. Just another one of those things you do.

And, it’s good. So damn good. This place we’ve plopped down for a bit. It’s not “home” and I still refer to it as the “condo”. It’s not a pretentious description but a bit of safe guarding for a term that is special and dear to my heart – home.

The thing is that we have jumped off the treadmill for a bit. We were running for so long and so hard that we had overlooked the toll the robotic movements and rhythms of daily life were taking. But, now we are here.

There is one utility bill to pay. One single bill. It’s bizarrely simple.

There is a confined space of 25 feet by 30 feet. Just that. And a single wall of windows with a 180-degree of the bay.

The garbage gets picked up and the recycle taken away. What day the big truck comes – I don’t know. My bag and waste head down to the dumpster and bins every other day.

The laundromat downstairs with its assembly line of multiple machines has become a welcome addition to the crazy volume of dirty clothing rambunctious, free wheeling kids create.

Household items have become multi-taskers. The salad spinner the perfect home for runaway Tupperware lids. Four mugs for four people jokingly means one hot drink per day.

The simple life is good. It is just right.

The skinny budget with uncomfortably tight margins is remarkably loose. Account balances are heading upward instead of holding steady.

Then there are the touches. The luxurious finishes in the bathroom and kitchen are top notch. Silently closing doors, solid granite countertops and full tiles that artistically wrap around and flow from floor to ceiling. The expense was not spared when this condo was remodeled. I am savoring it all because I don’t know if I will ever live like this again.

A month ago a cute (cuhhhhh-yooooooooot is a more accurate description) came on the market. We drove by and looked it over. But, we honestly scoffed at the asking price (gulp!) and the lack of opportunity to realistically react because of the ridiculously fast pace houses are moving around here.

But, here we are 30+ days later and it is still on the market. And, the price is threatening to drop.

It is near perfect. That dreamy list of must-haves and wants mixed with pipe dreams has more check marks than anything we have found so far. There is potential. There is the possibility of real return on our investment. And, it is adorable. All the quaint character of a true craftsman.

An offer means the possibility of a new “home” and one very deserving of that sacred word.

It also means another hop, skip and a jump onto that crazy treadmill. An endless to-do list of things to improve and fix from the small mundane pulling of weeds to the bigger projects that turn a weekend into work. It’s as turn key as we will get for being almost 100 years old and I know that the to do list is a matter of preference – high standards and ideals that we hold our home and our possessions to.

It is homeownership again. It is weight and responsibility.

I like this. This place where we are at. This ease. The opportunity to have other people take care of stuff for a bit. It feels good. It is settling and comforting.

This condo isn’t home. That much I’m sure of.

But, I don’t know if this house is either.

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