Months after moving from our 2-bedroom condo into this 4-bedroom home I carried around a nervous ball of dread in the pit of my stomach.
I distinctly remember my husband and I walking in the neighborhood one afternoon with our (then) 4- and 1-year old that chilly fall day, wishing I could share with my husband the anxiety building up over buying this house and my feelings of “OMG-what-if-we-can’t-afford-it-what-if-something-goes-wrong-why-did-we-buuuuuyyyyy-this-house?!”
But I couldn’t say a thing.
Wasn’t it me who pushed and shoved, arguing that it was the right move for our growing family?
Wasn’t it me who fought against my husband’s “Dream Killer” comments, accusing him of always being negative and never seeing the positive side of what a real home could be for us?
I couldn’t very well tell my husband I had my doubts and wished we could call up the Realtor and shout, “Dude, we want our cozy little affordable condo with no problems back!! WAAAH!!”
There are just some things you don’t do as a strong woman, including, admitting when you may have been wrong!
We Paid $2,200 For a Pile of…..Dirt
Oh–yeah, we paid $2,200 for a landscaper to regrade around our house….with a pile of dirt that we could have done ourselves. But we were clueless homeowners.
We also paid $14,000 for 22 new windows throughout the house…
Throw in $10,000 for a new kitchen after moving in because I didn’t realize the old cabinets smelled like stinky butt after we moved in—no way we were putting our dishes in there…
And we paid $1,500 for this rip-off E-Z Breath “dehumidifier” from some shady basement waterproofing company that promised to “freshen” the air in the basement when all we needed was a $200 traditional dehumidifier. (We were bullied into accepting their offer and were told the discounted price was only good while the man was standing in our home–what suckers we were!).
We can’t forget the $2,000 “Wizard of Oz” basement door we had to replace because it was leaky.
Nor can we forget the $1,250 tree that we got removed last year because it made my house as dark as a cave in the spring and summer (best.money.ever.spent.hands.down).
With all these repairs within our first year or so of buying the home, it’s no wonder we had no money left to decorate.
We were too busy fixing what was broken to even have any left over to actually make this home look good!
Oh, For the Love of Thrift!
When you grow up thrift, you love thrift.
I spent weekends shopping thrift stores with my mom and sister, getting up early to find yard sale treasures with my mom, and later, going thrift diving while pregnant and looking for affordable baby furniture for our first born.
So I knew that thrift stores were the answer to my dilemma on how we were going to afford to decorate a nearly bare home and turn it into a cozy oasis.
And soon, our house became full of thrifted goodies, like my vintage drafting table, chair, bookcase–you name it!
I taught myself how to refinish them, to put them together as nicely as I could, and create some sort of “home” that felt less cold and unwelcoming!
And since I’ve always been a writer (started in notebook journals), then later blogged about becoming a mom on my family blog, blogging about improving and decorating our home was the next natural step!
The Real Reason I Write This Blog
Six years later, here we are, at what has finally started to become our lovely home.
I’ve learned how to refinish almost anything (or will at least attempt any project at least once!).
I’ve put up my own crown molding.
And when I think of that scared little girl who bought “too much house” I chuckle at her!
She had no idea what she was getting into!
She had no idea how to use a power tool! (Click here for my recommendations on what tools to buy and how to use them).
She had no idea not to trust the first waterproofing company that comes to her house (or better yet, not to trust those crooks at all!).
I write this blog because hopefully, someone learns something from my experiences.
Maybe you’ll read something that happened to me and will save yourself time, money, or headache.
Or maybe you’ll be inspired to tackle your own house head-on instead of being afraid of it like I was.
I Want You to Be Creative and Confident
But I also write this blog so that you, my fellow creative woman (or man–hello to you few!) who also didn’t have the confidence or motivation to feel comfortable in your home, can begin to feel less anxious about your home.
I write this blog so you can create the home you’ve always wanted and not have to wait for someone to do it for you.
I write this blog so you don’t get taken for a ride, too.
I write this blog because sometimes, good enough, is good enough. No one cares about making it look Pinterest-worthy. Comfortable is my goal.
I write this blog so that you know it takes time to create a home. If it’s been years and you’re “still” working on your house and you’ve got wallpaper up and parts in your house you’d never want anyone to see, I understand. I’ve been there. I still am, in fact.
I write this blog so that you feel the same pride I feel when I get done a project I never thought I could do.
I write this blog so that as I learn from my
experiences mistakes, you’ll learn right along with me. 🙂
I write this blog so that we can hold each other accountable for transforming our home and feeling accomplished and proud of how far we’d come.
Our homes are our oasis. Our lives are created between these walls. So why are we not improving and enjoying every square inch of our home?
We may have been scared, intimidated, or nervous about decorating, improving, or maintaining our home, but over time, we’re becoming comfortable.
And the beautiful part is that, now, it takes more than a leaky faucet to keep us up at night!
We got this. 😉
How do you feel about your home? Have you grown comfortable with your home since moving in? Or does the thought of tackling it still scare you? Leave a comment below and let’s chat about it!