Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Mi Casa

Those of you playing along at home may recall my angst over the housing search. It's been daunting, to say the least... And with every moment I spend in this apartment (sorry, "condo") listening to the sink drip (and by "drip," I mean steadily stream) and randomly opening the oven door to check the ever-growing Cobwebs Of Disuse (yep, still there), I've grown more and more restless (and, perhaps, miserable) on some fundamental level.

Those of you playing along at home may also recall that I have intermittently extolled the virtues of Ellen-The-Wonder-Woman-Realtor (ETWWR)...and with good reason! Aside from the fact that this woman has been buying me lunch periodically for the last five years and become an awesome friend, she's also helped me buy and sell my first house in the area. I've never questioned whether or not she'd be a part of any house search I undertook. It was just a given.

So over one of our now-famous lunches last Friday (which means Santa Fe Chopped Salads and Diet Cokes at Chevys), my conversation with ETWWR turned to houses... and I told her my angst about schools and location and blah and blah. She listened...as she always does...and asked if I'd consider widening my net a bit. Perhaps, she said, she could find something closer to where I'm working...given that with the promotion I'm going to be there for awhile. I said sure...but reminded her that "promotion" did not equate to "made of money"...and the area she had in mind had always sort of had a Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous aura to it... But what the heck. I certainly wasn't finding anything around here.

That was Friday, friends. As of this afternoon (Tuesday, for the calendar phobic), ETWWR and I have finalized a deal (with a ratified contract and a notional blessing from my lender, a.k.a. Hal-Hal-My-Mortgage-Pal) on what can only be described as "My Dream House."

Welcome to the future Chez Monkey:

Why is it My Dream House? Ok, well, clearly it's cute. I mean...brick house with bay window and flowering azaleas is kind of a recipe for instant cute, I think. And see that little brick bit on the ground on the right there? Yep. That's a flower box. Aww!! See? Cute!

But I'm a woman of substance, so cute alone is never enough! So let's add to the "cute" proclamation that My Dream House is a mere 5 miles (15 minutes or 2 metro stops) from my work -- so my commuting time and cost will drop to, um, zilch. My Dream House is also in a fan-freaking-tastic school district...so I know the Monkey will be well taken care of (he will also, I'll note, be a walker for 2nd through 4th grades). AND...My Dream House is only 2 blocks from the "downtown" of this awesome little community -- which means the library, city hall, coffee house (for liberals! ETWWR pointed out), credible sushi and an Irish Pub are all in walking distance. Give it a couple of years and we can add Harris Teeter to the "awesome stuff in walking distance" list. I would never hinge My Dream House on cute alone!

Did I mention, however, that it's cute?

...and I'm using that word very deliberately because this house is, by most modern standards, teeny! It's 864 square feet on each level ("each" consisting of 2 -- a main level and a basement)...so it has all the features you'd want in a house, only sort of in miniature. Since my greatest joy in life is divesting myself of "stuff" and living in absolutely no more space than I really need, this house is perfect. Granted, closets built in 1954 are in no way prepared for the clothes I'd like them to contain in 2007, but therein lies the challenge!! And I can't wait to get busy conquering it!

No house is perfect (not even My Dream House)...and my only regret about the location is that it's not as close to Monkeydad as I might have liked to stay (yes, TOWWAS, it's in "Delaware" -- and now MissS and I have both moved there so you have double the reason to venture over the borders and come visit!!). Fortunately, Monkeydad has been great and very supportive (as always!). We've agreed to a new schedule (at least notionally) for the Monkey that will, I hope, work out pretty well when the time comes. I will miss the convenience of having him just down the street -- for both the Monkey and I. Thankfully, we're both committed to putting our son's well-being first...so I know we'll work it out.

And speaking of the Monkey's best interest...yes, there is a nice little deck that leads down to a flagstone patio and out into a nicely sized, but not overwhelming, happily flat back yard. There's plenty of room for a swingset...already a bolt or two in the established trees for a hammock...and a nice shed to house, I hope, my electric lawnmower (whenever I get one). I can go back to being green...recycling, using My Dream House's programmable thermostat to its fullest, maybe even planting a little garden next spring. I'm just...so incredibly excited.

In the five years that I've known her...and through every house we've wandered through and nicknamed (The One Where She Found A Tootsie Pop, the Water Tower House, the Close Encounters House, the Salt Palace, etc.)...ETWWR has never sold me a house. She's always been neutral and balanced and fair and supportive...but she's never sold me a house.

...until this one.

And with the ink barely dry on that ratified contract and a million miles of mortgage paperwork to dive into, I can already say with great confidence I'm thrilled that she did.


towwas said...

WHAT??!!?? Friday night you were at "I think I might look in [Delaware]." Now you're freaking BUYING A HOUSE? That is awesome, dude! Congratulations! E-mail me the address so I can look it up!!

And when you say "steady stream" from the faucet, I think what you mean to say is "gush." And also "those bastards had no right to charge me rent for this crappyass condo."

Mike said...

yay.. looks great.

J.Bro said...

Wow - what a great house! And the rest of it sounds pretty fantastic too! I share your enjoyment of stuff-divestment - I don't think it's going out on too much of a limb to guess that you're a fellow Dwell-reader. Am I right?

miss shirley said...

Oh hurray for "Delaware" locations!!! And even more than that hurray for a place to call home. Play date here we come!!!!!

ImpetuousProse said...

But, but.. how are we supposed to spend an entire day raking and then jumping into leaf piles the size of your house from nearby trees?!?!

Just kidding.. Hooray! It's beautiful! I can't wait to see it!