A year ago today, we got the keys. A year ago today, we became home owners.
I had wanted for so long to own our own home, and for me the excitement is still there. I absolutely adore being able to do whatever we want in this house. After renting for 9 years, and having to stick with fairly plain decor and limited choices I am in my element.
This was us a year ago, on moving day. The neighbours must have thought we were crazy
when we rocked up with a tripod to take a photo!
It has been one hell of a year that’s for sure. We have barely stopped to take a breath. In fact we got to the summer holidays and said to each other, enough’s enough, we need to just take a break and enjoy the holidays.
But still, even a year down the line it will suddenly hit me, this is ours. We own this. I mean its nothing fancy, just a normal house, but its our house. And even when I am just stood doing the dishes, watching the children in the garden I just feel happy.
The progress we have made
Our first job when we moved in was to have the downstairs flooring replaced. We both wanted wood effect flooring, real wood would have been too expensive. We picked the luxury vinyl tiles and nearly a year down the line I still love it.
Next on the list was the bathroom and kitchen. Our rented home had a old and worn out bathroom and I really wanted to create a room I could enjoy. We spoke to several workmen and really enjoyed planning out what we would have. The bathroom and downstairs cloakroom was finished just before Christmas and it really has made such a difference.
We always planned on ripping out the kitchen, we looked at so many different kitchens. But then we got into talks about a garage conversion and plans changed. I haven’t yet blogged about our completed kitchen, as the final painting has only recently finished. It is surprising how a little paint, some new tiles, sink and work top, can completely transform a room.
That takes us up until Christmas, and by mid January the big building work started on our garage conversion. It feels like forever ago now, but at the time it felt like it took months. Months of dust, building noise, clutter everywhere. Cold draughts from doors left open. We converted a small dark garage into two workable rooms, I have an office in the smaller half and we have a gym for James in the bigger half. My office is my sanctuary, the one room in the house not overrun by small children. Decorated just how I want it, full of all of my little finishing touches.
Our most recent project in the house has been our entrance hall. We had all of our downstairs doors replaced, from plain brown doors to white panel doors. If budget allowed I would have loved solid oak doors, maybe one day. I then painted the hallway in Navy blue, and finished it with gold and copper accessories. It has made such a big difference when you walk into the house, I really love it.
In the garden
Outside we have left the front garden as it is, its just a single driveway, and laid to lawn with a couple of bushes at the front. Simple and easy to maintain. The back garden had more bushes and ivy around the edge, and had become quite overgrown.
We have a 10 ft trampoline and I had always wanted to have it sunken in the ground. So this spring James spent weeks, digging up the old grass, taking out all of the bushes and ivy, levelling the ground and digging one huge hole. We managed to sink the trampoline ourselves, and then James laid new turf. On one of the hottest weekends of the year. Which made for interesting work keeping it alive.
I couldn’t be happier with our garden now. Again it is simple and low maintenance, giving the children room to run around. We added a few flowers in planters, and plan to get a couple of small potted olive trees to put by the back door next year.
Probably not the best photo, when the grass was freshly laid and still stripy, and the fences weren’t painted. But this shows roughly what we done, and wow do I love it.
Whats next on the list
It has been such a busy year, and I can happy to have had a bit of a of rest from it all over the summer. The big jots are pretty much done, but now the autumn is drawing in I am looking forward to getting some decorating done.
We have painted the children’s bedrooms, we need need to decorate our bedroom, the living room and dining room and the upstairs hallway.
I bought this clock last week, it is the first piece towards our new bedroom.
Once the decorating is done I feel like we will have a nice break from it. But the reality is there is always something I am going to be planning, because making plans for our home makes me so happy. I am already making plans to save for new external doors and windows, although that will take quite a while to save for.
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