Thursday, September 4, 2014

Then we decided to settle down and buy a house...

So 2010 was a good year for teacher trainings for me. I did more than I mentioned but 2011 was more fun! We decided it was time to settle into one place and prepare to really be a family by buying a house. It took us months to get everything set up to search and weeks to find the right one but in the summer we finally did! We also took a trip to Hawaii but let's focus on the house for this post!

We decided that the economy had gotten to just that sweet spot that two people who were solidly middle class could afford to buy a home in our state, which was kind of exciting. After looking at tons of houses we found one that just felt right. Single-family in a nice quiet neighborhood, two-stories with 4 bedrooms, 2 and half baths, a nice kitchen and a good sized great room all added up to a good option, but the house had something special which helped to sell it.

A "painted" rose at the front of the house gave the first hint of whimsy. I mean how does this not bring up the ides of Wonderland?

Unusual plants abound in this garden. Still haven't fully identified this African flower but it might be a throne tree variety.
So what sold us? The cool plants helped and the amazing garden. You walk through the house and suddenly you are in another world. The garden is surrounded by trees (at least 20 of varying sizes, types, and shapes) and it feels completely separate from the rest of the world. We go out there and feel like we are on vacation because there is no way this could be close to work or any of the problems we need to deal with day to day. Plus it is just a fun place to entertain, not something we do enough of if you ask me.

The living room area is nice and shaded but also allows a nice space to screen movies outside with easy access to electricity.

Here you can see the dining room area. Great place for food or crafts! Plus a nice little plot of grass the kids and dogs find big enough to play on but that doesn't dominate the backyard or take an electric mower to control.

This back corner really feel like it is something out of Wonderland too. The tree smiles at visitors and the mirror (you can't see it because it is covered in this pick) feels like something you could fall through.
The backyard is awesome and something worth buying the house for but we also got an outdoor room with it. The house has an added 300 sq ft sunroom! It is a nice amount of extra space and the perfect place to read or write (or grade). Over time we have made it more cozy but it is an amazing place to enjoy the rain as well! I can't imagine the house without this room or living in a house without it. It will be great for kids to do their homework in too, as long as they don't get too distracted but the views outside.

The sunroom, during set up. There have been loads of good things made and read in this comfortable room.

The only problem with a backyard like this is the amount of work it requires. Yes we try but I think we need to do a big clean out this year to help it along. It also floods when it rains heavily but having our own little lake it nice.

Our little lake! How pretty filled with leaves in the fall. 

We now host our extended family for Easter, which is perfect in the garden and the immediate family for Christmas at our house. It is so nice to feel like we can keep traditions alive even as family moves further away. Plus I love entertaining and feeling like I contribute to the family holidays! Sorry I can't seem to find any pictures from Easter.
Our first Christmas tree with presents! Which ones are mine?

The staircase gets to light up in holiday spirit! Plus it holds the Christmas cards!
I hope to update again today so I can try and catch up after two very unproductive days!

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