On the 11th of June, several of our dearest friends came to our house to brave a storm of cat hair and dust. We packed the U-Haul, and, in the midst of still-ongoing last-minute contractor repairs, moved in to our new home in Holy Cross.
I thought I'd get goosebumps typing it, but it's all been such a blur, and the first week, especially, was so chaotic that I am just relieved and a bit tired, even. Simon said of our now-official home-ownership, "It'll never be finished, will it?" and it certainly feels that way. Today he is off buying a stud finder so we can hang curtains. I'll be unpacking clothes and books. This weekend we plan to deliver barge board to a furniture-maker on the Northshore who will make us a dining table, and we are crossing our fingers that we will have enough money to afford a new fence.
No, it'll never be "over," but I am loving the initial nesting, at least. My favorite room is the kitchen, which shouldn't surprise me, since I spent forever and ever designing it. My biggest dilemmas (after the layout, which I drew and redrew at least a dozen times) were whether to install matching upper and lower cabinets. I don't generally like upper cabinets, but I'd seen a couple of kitchens where the uppers were white and lowers were wood, and I really liked it. The uppers from the place where we got the lowers were crazy-expensive, though, so we had some IKEA cabinets delivered, which, even with the additional cost of delivery, saved us a lot of money.
I also agonized over appliances. I've just never considered myself a "stainless" kind of girl--too bourgeoisie--but the white appliances were all textured and generally less attractive, and I am not going to lie about wanting everything to look good (and last long). Because our countertops are black, I didn't want the high-contrast of white, either, so stainless it was. (We did get all Energystar appliances--and we had some serious sticker-shock, but we are sickly in love with our appliances. Gawd, we're so old. Or yuppy-fied. Or American. Whatever it is, we're it.)
Anyways, if you are at all interested in hearing/talking about any or all of our layout and design choices, I am happy, happy, happy to discuss every last decision--and to hear advice for ways to improve. I researched every little thing, all of it, and I could have continued to do it for ages...
...Here's the other side of the kitchen (plus cat Ray):
The hoosier on the left is an antique from England, complete with menus for the 1930's British homemaker. How does this sound for a "Plain Winter Day Menu Dinner": Cold beef; Tomato Sauce; Mashed potatoes; West riding pudding"? Breakfast, anyone? "Porridge; Potted meat on toast, breakfast sausage; toast; lemon marmalade." Mmmm. Potted meat. Simon says no one eats potted meat, really, just like hardly anyone actually eats SPAM, but we have both gotten a kick out of these Brit-ahem-feasts, and I am happy we bought the hoosier for pantry-space, too.
I want to take pictures of every room in the house, but this is the only one that is really unpacked and clutter-free. All the rest are filled with boxes. I'll post more pictures as we settle more. And I will write more about what it's like to live down here, one block from the levee, on a quiet cul-de-sac, with my wonderful neighbors and a sense that things can--and are--getting better. (Hint: it's wonderful.)