Most of you who know me, know that my house has occupied a lot of my creativity, time and money for the last year and a half. I wanted to have a place to put all of my frustrations, joys etc about this house. I was inspired by this lady to blog about it.
Howard and I moved to Denver Colorado in February 2009. We left our little Virginia Rambler in Centreville, Virginia, where we lived for 19 years. We raised our two children in this single story, no basement, no garage, 3 bed 1.5 bath home in a great neighborhood, with a large, shady wildlife filled backyard. By the time we left, we had replaced almost everything in the house except for the brick. Both of our kids were out on their own; our son in New York City, and our daughter finishing up her masters degree, and planning on staying in Edinburgh, Scotland.
That last picture is our last Christmas together in Virginia 2008 (funny how both kids are wearing cowboy boots, though neither of them had yet been to Colorado!).
In Denver, we rented this beautiful craftsman house for almost 3 years —
Check out that front Door!
It had beautiful wood work, window seats, and a sun porch that ran across the front of the house. It was nicely remodeled and felt very grand compared to our little rambler in Virginia. When we moved in, I toyed with the idea of making an offer to buy it so we wouldn’t have to move again. But the longer we stayed, the more we realized that it had been remodeled only for show. It was like a whited seplchure, full of dead mens bones.
During the three years we were there, the owners had to —
- rebuild two of the bathrooms (1) because the tub in the master bath leaked into the dining room, and (2) the main floor powder room was built outside of the house with no insulation, so the pipes would freeze each February when the temps got below freezing for several days in Denver.
- Replace totally rusted out rain gutters (after I told then that rusted through wasn’t fixable)
- Remove a rotten apple tree before it fell on someone
- Replace the backyard fence, which was a hazard as well.
On top of that —
- the sun porch across the front was falling away from the rest of the house — the owners didn’t seem concerned about that
- the finished basement was scary and stinky — previous tenant had a dog that didn’t get out much
- the windows, while beautiful, needed major work and lost a lot of heat. I made heavy insulated curtains for almost all of the windows, which had to be opened each day to allow the abundant Denver sunshine to come through all of the south facing windows & window seats.
- There was an ugly little slum apartment next door (on said south side), and though the tenants there were fine, the building was pretty depressing.
But despite all of those challenges, I spent many hours in the yard, digging up sumac seedlings, mutant dandilions; clearing and beautifying the backyard, and flower beds. Sadly the new tenants have ignored the yard, and I want to cry every time i drive by and see that the yard has reverted to what it was when we moved in. At least while we were there we made it better than it was when we got there.
So after renting for three years, we sold our Virginia house and bought this Denver Square house in the Cheesman Park neighborhood of Denver.My intention is for this to be the focus of my blog. I also have a great family life and a beautiful new grandson, who will also merit a number blog entries as well.