A year ago this week (last Monday I think) was the day that I got the keys to this house! So I have owned it for a year now and how brief that is, yet it feels like it has always been my home, I just didn't know it.
Although I got the keys a year ago, I didn't actually move properly until mid-January. I use the Christmas holidays to get started on cleaning, wallpaper stripping and painting, and slowly my home was born.
Living room before and after.
I would like to say that I knew the moment I walked in that this was the house for me, but that would be a lie. Usually I am good at seeing the potential of a house, whatever the state is, but this one was a stumbler. I knew it was right on paper, it had everything I wanted, but on the two viewings I had, I was unsure. Empty, uncovered floors, grubby and cold, it seemed pokey and empty of life and on both occasions I went away unsure and slightly disappointed, but then would look at it on paper again and realise that it actually ticked every box. I loved the views, loved the location, but the garden was empty and lifeless and the house seemed totally without love.
Kitchen before and after
But once I got my own stuff in, begun to get the dingy wallpaper off, and my colours up, give the house some personality it began to transform into my home. In the last 20 years since I left my parents house I have lived in 9 houses/flats and this is the one they were all leading to, the one I call my forever house, (unless life takes unexpected, exciting turns)
Bedroom before and after
I have worked really hard, every room has been done (except the bathroom) on a shoestring. I have done all the work that it was possible for me to do, alone and only called in help on really difficult or dangerous stuff. I am proud of the things I have done and if you knew how little money I had really spent you would be very surprised. Paint, elbow grease and a strong back don't cost much money. I have begged, borrowed, stealed (well free-cycled), I have used imagination and I have spent hours working on a project rather than buy something new.
Garden before and after
It is fun to look back on what I have done to the house, I am not done yet, the bathroom never gets photographed because it is SO hideous, but one day I will re-do it all myself (give me strength!).
I have big plans to convert the garage into a room one day, but it will be years until I do, woodburning stove would be a dream come true too.
But I keep my eyes and ears open for good deals, ways of learning new skills and cheap or free items to help me on my way. let's see what my second year here brings......