Wednesday, September 14, 2011

You say Goodbye, I say Hello

Hello.... hello....

C'mon, sing it with me folks.

I'm thinking that song really isn't about going or arriving or any of that. I think it's more about two people who can't agree. And maybe in some twisted way, this post is about all of that.

You may have read in my previous post that we are leaving Texas

Yes, I'm sad about it. Yes, I'm stumped as to what I will do about my name. No, I'm not planning to make snowblowing my driveway sound any sexier than it actually is. Which is zero. Maybe even sub-zero (which, coincidentally, will be the temperature up there in January! Goodie!) Texan Papa and I just got back from a house-hunting trip in Wisconsin. We saw it all, people. We saw the good, the bad, and the ugly. We saw the smelly, the once-underwater, and the destroyed-due-to-forclosure.We saw the too small, the too big, the too expensive, and the too much work for us to complete in a lifetime.

In the end, we "agreed" on a house that I don't love. Okay, I don't like it. Okay.... I hate it. I'm not going to lie (do I ever?) The upside? It's a fairly new house (45 years old) and it's got decent structural issues. No mold, good roof, sturdy foundation. It's in a very nice part of town. And, it is really really affordable. The downside? It's a mess. The flooring will ALL need to be removed & replaced. The bathroom will need to be gutted. Yes, I say bathroom because there is only ONE full bathroom. (There are 2 half-baths, one of which we intend to make into a full bath). There are only 3 bedrooms, but we are planning to build more bedrooms in the basement (which is massive and not stinky.)

When I say that we “agreed” on this house, what I mean is, I simply cannot disagree with all the very good points my husband has brought up. We will be able to remodel, creating a house with many brand-new elements. We can do this and still easily afford our mortgage. Its resale value, should we decide to sell later, has a much better chance than a 100+ year-old house. It will hold the heat better than an older house. It has an attached 2-car garage. All the cosmetic things can be changed.

Blah blah blah. All I know is that the house has nasty light fixtures, the tub and toilet are PINK with turquoise carpet in the bathroom, and the kitchen has an inch of grease on all the surfaces. I have told him, I WILL not move into the house until some things are remedied.

*sigh* still, we have to live somewhere. We have to find something that’s a good value. This, this is a good value. It’s not pretty but I’m hoping that it will be when I’m done with it.

Have I mentioned that I have horrible decorating abilities? I am afraid to even hang a picture in my house because I can’t stand the idea of it not being a cohesive part of the room-furniture-ambience-feng-shui.I'm banking on the hope that I can pull my act together so that I can stand to live in this house. I guess, no where to go but up from here, right? yah. 

(That's Wisconsin-speak for yes.)

I don't want to put the spin on this like he's calling all the shots and I'm standing 3 feet behind him, saying "yes dear, you're so smart." I have a voice, and I let it be heard on this one. But the truth is, I am being stubborn and maybe I can't see the forest for the trees. Maybe I'm having some difficulty getting excited about moving into a house that's basically gross. Everyone we spoke to about it, who knows the house, says the exact same thing, 'OH! Great neighborhood! But that house... ooh... it really needs some TLC." which is code-speak for "that house is a shit hole on the inside".

I guess maybe it will feel good to transform a shit-hole into something nicer. It's also hard because the house we live in now is pretty nice. We're going to a smaller mortgage on purpose. We want something we can live with, not something we can barely pay. It will be hard to move from the house we live in now, which is the nicest house I've ever lived in, to basically the... um.... least nice house I've ever lived in.

Okay, enough belly aching. I am going to try really hard to be Positive! And optimistic! And I will start warming up my Menard's Credit card! (Menards is totally the Home Depot of the upper midwest, folks.)

Can't wait to share pictures with you...

Texan Mama

19 comments:

That Janie Girl said...

You gotta keep your name….you can take the girl outa Texas…but you can't take the Texas outa the girl!

And another plus - this old house will make for some good blog fodder!

Gigi said...

So when do you leave? (I still can't believe you are going)

I think once you get into the house - and start making all the changes then you might begin to like it....and as Janie said, it will provide some blog fodder.

Ellen Stewart (aka Ellie/El/e/Mrs. Seaman) said...

I think Menard's is based out of Wisc, but there are HD's and Lowe's too.

You know what I'm thinking, making this totally about me...ROAD TRIP!!!

It sounds lovely. I love the smell of sarcasm early in the morning.

Jen said...

Welcome to MidWest. I am glad to have you closer to me. :)

Karen Harrington said...

Wow, you have a lot going on. I like what JanieGirl said. You must keep your name and bring that Texas spirit north. Good luck with your move! I once moved into a house that I didn't like and it felt like I was in a bad-relationship until one day, we came to terms with one another after several fights. By the time we sold the house, I'd developed genuine affection for it, mostly because we'd put blood, sweat and tears into making it our own. Hope you will have the same experience.

Jennifer said...

I love my neighborhood, I love my school district, I love that I'm about 15 minutes from work, and we got a GREAT deal on our house.

We had to basically gut and redo everything. All new floors, all new lighting and electrical, all new paint. I really want new kitchen and bathroom cabinetry, but we can't afford that right now. The house wasn't great at firs, but I knew I could make it a home. Now we love it. Still some things to change, but we love where we live.

I'm sure you will do a great job of making that ugly stinker a home.

Bear and Bones Mama said...

Um. Wow. Ok. I'm with you on this one - all parts. Remodeling is exciting tho! Ikea baby. Their kitchens are nice. Baths too! And not terribly expensive. Anyway, I'm sure the house will be awesome once you put some work into it. I'm sure it's got pretty neat bones and some architectural features? eh?

Good luck! Maybe think of this as the blank slate to discover your latent design talents upon!

rach said...

oh wow- I know what its like to settle for something you dont like at all!! Well the good thing is that it fits well into your budget- I know for me that would be the biggest plus because it means that there will be the money for those necessary improvements and when those are done wiggle room in the budget!! I'm hoping this house is a diamond in the rough and turns out great for you guys!

Melinda said...

Good luck on your move. I'm sorry that your house is not the house of your dreams (yet). Some people thrive on remaking a house into a home--and some people suffer through it but truly enjoy the results. Which ever case fits you, I hope it all goes well. And I can't wait to see pictures!

Rachael said...

Gosh, moving is so hard. We moved last week and I love the new house. There's something about having to DO a bunch of stuff after moving in that just feels so tiring. We're renting and nothing needs to be done, but after we moved in we found that our cat brought along something of his own - FLEAS. So now we have to worry about trying to eradicate the fleas from our new house. BUMMER.

BUT, at least once you get the improvements done, you'll have a home where you got to choose things you wanted. And that's kind of cool. I wish you the best of luck with your move and settling in in Wisconsin.

Doojies said...

My heart goes out to you girl. I'm a kidnapped Texan for the last over 20 years. Born and raised in Bryan/College Station. My heart is there. My soul is there. My husband is from NYC, we live between Balto and DC-oy. Texas is a very special place. I've lived in 4 different states in the last 25 years. I'm also an artist and a natural at decorating. I would love to help. I also have a good friend who follows you (not sure if she's official) who is very creative and a great decorator. Perhaps you could let us "virtually" help you with your new home. Dude, you have your hands full!!!! The first thing I would suggest is that you put your foot down and not move into that house until-it has been scrubbed clean (it should be part of purchasing anyway), a new coat of paint (start with an off-white all throughout for a clean palate for later), and that bathroom floor replaced-at the least. There is never an easier or better time to do these; once you move in, it is so much harder. I'm so glad you asked my opinion just in time!!!! If you share photos here, if you would like, we can walk you through moving, prepping, and getting settled in. I would love to help! Sorry if I come off as though I'm trying to sleep with you on a first date. You hit on several subjects that are close to my heart...

Doojies said...

P.S. Keep the name; once a Texan, always a Texan.

SuzyQpon said...

You need to look at this as the opportunity to finally make your house exactly what you want! Get some decorating magazines - go to Home Depot - they have lots. Go online, watch some TLC "home" shows and figure out what you like. Remember, if all else fails, go neutral - you can add different colors in accents later and pitch them when you hate that color! LOL This will be wonderful...just give it some time and thought! Also, this might be a good way to make some friends there - go to the church and put out a decorating SOS to some ladies! You might find 1 or 2 cool ones along the way. If all else fails - remind yourself how nice it will be to sit on a toilet no one else has ever sat on (when the new ones are installed)! :)

nicole said...

I say keep your name, as other have said too.

Good luck with the renovations. Do you use Pinterest? I really like it, although sometimes the ideas are really overwhelming. Maybe you can find room in the budget for design consultation? Not full on interior design, but some help to get started and get a plan? Anyway, at least it will make for blog fodder, right?

Bridgett said...

Ok, if it is a great neighborhood for real, you can live in a shithole. Really. Location really does matter especially when you're new (as you know, I am confident). Thirteen years we've lived in this shithole and every time I fix something that durned woman ruined before me, like the wallpaper, the entire dining room, the kitchen, the downstairs bath, etc., the house and I both breathe a sigh of relief. But I wouldn't change my neighborhood for anything.

Swizz said...

I haven't written in awhile...I'm in denial about your whole move thing. (sigh)

Keep the name. Just cuz.

And I'm with Doojies (maybe cuz she's FROM College Station and I live in College Station?)...let us help! I so wish I could take a few minutes and run up there and help you choose what changes to make. I totally love that stuff!

Wanna get together before you go? :o)

Michelle said...

Leaving Texas? Why?

Glad to hear your house hunting trip went well. House hunting trips from across the country are a nightmare. We bought our house here in Colorado at the end of June while I was still living in Maryland. I LOVE our house and we completely lucked out in regards to house, neighborhood, and schools, all for the same price we paid for rent in Maryland but we spent the entire first day looking at a lot of bad houses before my FIL pointed out maybe a small increase in budget would get us closer to what we wanted. All it took was $15,000 more in the search (we negotiated it down to only $5000 more than our original budget) and we got the house of our dreams. Sounds like your new house has great potential which is wonderful and I bet you'll love it once you make the changes you need to. Good luck!

Michelle said...

I have been exactly where you are. We bought the crap ass house with good bones in a nice neighborhood. It turned out fabulous. No, it wasn't done quickly, but seven years later we sold it for a wonderful profit. We were really able to make that house our own. I still miss it today. My new house lacks all the character we put into our old house. By the time we were finished it was really "us".

Oh, and keep the name!

Ash said...

Booooo hissssssss!

Just promise me you'll put register to vote at the top of your to-do list. Wisconsin? Oy.

Can't wait to see how you transform the new home. You're going to do great.