A Love Letter to Our Future House

Somewhere in a big city sits an old house.

Its current occupant lives lightly, her world condensed into four rooms on the ground floor. The dining table is covered with a lace tablecloth and then plastic to protect it, the wood well hidden. In the enclosed front porch, tiny green shoots grow in long planters. A statue of Jesus overlooks the dim living room, where she watches television, alone.

HallwayThe second floor is entirely empty, light falling unobserved across the honey-coloured wood floors. Clues to previous lives persist – a closet that used to hold a water heater for the radiators, faded rainbow wallpaper in a bedroom, an empty red-and-white kitchen. In the back of the house there is a room filled with sun, windows on two sides. It is this room that made me fall in love.

An unassuming door in the second-floor hallway leads to a tiny staircase, its walls covered in ancient wallpaper. The attic is partially finished, one room painted in 60s mint green, the rest open to the bones of the house. I have always wanted such an attic. Behind the house stretches a long yard, dirt waiting for a garden, spanned by clotheslines. She must have been a great gardener once, growing tomatoes and hot peppers, then drying and canning in the basement. The garden remembers; it yearns for green again.

This house will be ours soon. I hope we can do it justice, treat it kindly, take care of it. I hope it will welcome and shelter us, a retreat from our lives out in the city, full of spaces to curl up and write in. I hope the elderly woman who is leaving it finds comfort in knowing a young family is receiving it from her, the first piece of land we have ever owned.

 

What drew you to the place where you live now? If you’re a homeowner, how did you feel when you bought your first house?

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8 responses to “A Love Letter to Our Future House

  1. I can still remember the feeling. Possession day. With two folding canvas chairs, we headed out to get the keys. The real estate agent met us, gave us our keys and a housewarming teapot, and left us there. We put up the chairs in an empty living room. We sat in them. We were in our own house. Wow.

    After a while we got up and started tearing the horrible pink carpet out of the basement rooms. But for a few minutes, before we got busy, we just sat there. Home.

  2. Candas, that’s lovely. I’ll try to remember to take a moment to let it sink in, too. The photo above was taken yesterday while we were meeting with contractors, who are going to spend more time in the house than we will for the first few weeks. So we’re going in with no illusions…well, okay, maybe a few!

  3. This is lovely! May your new home shelter lots of love and laughter, and bring lots of good memories to come. I’d be interested in reading more posts about this home. :) Your mention of that room makes me curious to see what you’ll end up doing with it.

    BTW, this is my third try at getting this to post. *wry* I keep trying to just fill my details, but WordPress keeps asking me to login (even though that particular email doesn’t have an account, d’oh).

  4. Thank you! If you mean the sunny room, the plan is to make it into a sitting room and my study (it’s quite large, at least relative to the other rooms in the house), but that may change once we start living in the space and see how it all fits together.

    Apologies for the WordPress issue. It’s not a setting on my end, it’s a thing that WordPress has recently changed. (If your email is associated with a WordPress account, you have to sign in. Not sure why it’s asking you to…you can see that Candas didn’t have to.) I don’t like it either. Glad you persisted!

  5. We loved the neighborhood, as well as the lovely hardwood throughout our house. We took possession a month before we actually moved in and did renovations, then painted. Our deadline for being in was our housewarming on my 30th birthday. Having that date as a hard deadline made sure we got done what we needed to before people came over :)

  6. Simon, we’re doing almost the same thing with the renovations. Having a housewarming deadline is brilliant — will have to remember that!

  7. Congratulations, Siri! May you live long and happily in your new home! It looks like a true treasure! Blessings, blessings, blessings!

  8. Noreen, thank you from the bottom of my heart! I hope our house becomes as filled with wonderful, whimsical crafts as I remember yours being…

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