Thursday, January 24, 2013

A Moment's Folly

I have been reading books and trying to educate myself about the next steps in the building process.  While there are bright spots, it began to seem like the entire process was one of trying not to get robbed (by the contractor, the plumber, the lumber yard, etc.).  It also began to feel like it was likely that we would be nickle and dimed until we had doubled our budget and we wouldn't be able to afford the home we built.  On top of those threats, my trailer is causing me extreme frustration these days.  Not only is it small, but things are breaking all over the place (all the shelves in the freezer, one of the elements on my stove, the toilet, the kitchen outlets, the constantly foggy windows).  I had a severe case of cold feet and began to think buying an already finished house with enough bedrooms to house everyone, including the new baby, would be a better option.  I plopped myself down in front of the computer and began searching.

Most of the houses for sale were not appealing to me, for one reason or another, and I refused to look for houses with fewer than four or five bedrooms.  
This is what I found:

Look at the awesome vertical orange glazed tile and the galley-style hood cover.  Amazing!

Lava rock fireplace in the sunken living room--complete with 70's beams!  I'm in love already.

Pass-through peninsula cabinets and a fireplace in the breakfast area.

Then it starts getting really good.  Original green shag carpet and more wood paneling that anyone could hope for!

Yes, even a wet bar.

I knew we had to see the property.  My husband is about the most nostalgic man on planet Earth and this is his dream home.  I contacted the realtor and made an appointment.  Once we were inside, we could hardly believe how perfectly this time capsule had been kept.  It was an estate contract and it was the same couple who had built and owned it for the past 40 + years.  They were careful housekeepers, to be sure.

Just LOOK at this laundry room.  My heart squealed when I saw the same linoleum that my parents had in their 70's house (though long-since replaced, in their case).

A sunken tub in the master bath.  Also, carpet in the master bath.

Orange mosaic tiles over the peach bathtub in another bathroom.

Wrought iron and bad wallpaper throughout.

One of my favorite features of the home was the red library with this massive, old chandelier.  Oh, my gosh.  

But, the coup de grac was in a hidden corner of the basement.  
Yes, it is.  A sauna!

We fell in love with this house!  You cannot find this kind of perfectly preserved history unless it is recreated for a movie.  While I loved it, Justin was in fits of ecstasy.  He ran and yelled out in delight at each new discovery.  It was everything he dreams about!

However, the back yard was very small, it overlooked the noisy freeway, the oven in the kitchen was too small to cook even a 12 pound turkey and the average winter heating bill was over $500 each moth.  

In the end, it was the wrong choice for us, but, man alive, were we tempted.

Fast forward a few days and I am holding our house plans in my hands.  I expressed our worries to our architect and he carefully reassured us.  It will be a big project and will certainly include some high-stress days, but we will make it.

But, isn't that a great house?!


  1. Wow- what a fun nastalgic trip!

  2. My grandma's house had that same linoleum flooring, which happened to be the first house Shay and I lived in when we were first married. I never thought it would make me happy to see that flooring, but it did! :)