We have a home!
So it might seem sudden, and it all did happen really quickly, but here's a recap...
We've been feverishly searching houses for sale with just the right features in just the right neighborhoods. We got to the point of feeling like we'd seen every single house listed in Sacramento. I was feeling more and more anxious, knowing that the timeline of actually buying a house and moving in could realistically take 60 days (visits, inspections, negotiations, closing, moving), and it was already November and the baby is coming in February! I had visions of us being trapped in this little two bedroom apartment with rented furniture, all of our baby things packed away in a storage unit...and it was not good for my stress levels. Or my instinctive need to nest.
A few weeks ago we started looking at rentals. If we couldn't find a dream house now, maybe we could rent for a year or two, save the money we would spend on a down payment now, and get to check out a neighborhood we thought we liked without seriously committing.
Last Saturday we saw a listing for a rental house that had only been put up that same day. We visited the house the next morning and were pretty sold. A few phone calls and a background check later, and we are now renting an adorable house in the East Sacramento neighborhood, which is super charming and family-friendly. (Seriously, though, in the 10 minute time that we were standing around in front yard, a pack of friendly neighborhood kids rode by on their bikes and a dog walking club went by.)
Driving into East Sac:
Now I present pictures of the house without anything in it yet!
From the curb (with the house number edited out)...
I think it's so cute! We'll have to get used to only having a one car garage (which is very common in this part of town).
The front porch...
The homeowners have someone that takes care of the landscaping, which is likely for the best. June and I had a moment where we sat on those chairs and I looked out across our new street. It was chilly outside, and the neighbors had all these autumn decorations out, and the leaves from the mega tree across the street were drifting down, I was just overcome with contentment.
When you walk in the front door (which would be in the back right-hand side of this picture. I took this pic from the doorway into the main living room), you come into this space. We're still deciding what to do here...have the dining room table? Put in a cute desk for my space? Have second living room? There are two spaces, the one barely seen in the foreground and the one in the back. Love the huge window that looks out on the street.
Here's what I think will be the main living room. (The rooms in the last picture are through a doorway tucked behind the fireplace.)
There's the kitchen in the background, our breakfast nook will likely be in the foreground...
In love with this white brick fireplace. I think it brings a nice dimension to the room since the floors are so dark.
Speaking of floors, most of the house has the original hardwood floors. There's one room (the converted sunroom) that has carpet, and then the main living room has large ceramic tiles.
I didn't take many pictures of the bedrooms, mostly because bedroom pictures always end up looking pretty boring with two walls captured and maybe a window or two. Like this:
But there are three for-sure bedrooms, one of which June has already staked out.
Then there's the old sunroom, which was converted and insulated and is now this big old room that could be anything really. Playroom, another living room, a bedroom (it has its own closet).
You enter it through the French doors off the living room, and it has its own door out to the yard. The funny thing is that we are very seriously considering making it our master bedroom. It's by far the biggest room and our huge furniture set would have a hard time fitting in what is now the master bedroom. It would definitely take some adjustments and getting used to. For example, there's only one medium-sized closet in this room, and it's not directly connected to a bathroom. I don't think I'll mind walking an extra 15 steps to get into the bathroom, but who knows?
We did close all the blinds to see if we could deal with how bright it gets in there. The wooden blinds are surprisingly effective at keeping light out, so we're willing to give it a try. Besides, nothing can be worse than the eastern-facing window we have in our current apartment, which has blinds as thin as paper.
Baby bump shot in potential new bedroom/sunroom! 26 weeks pregnant!
(So by using this as a bedroom, this is technically a 4 bedroom house! Meaning a guest bedroom for us to have visitors stay with us!)
Bathroom shots are also tough to get good angles on. But this will be the kids' bathroom, which I might commandeer for my own showers.
(Not pictured - a little hallway off the intended master bedroom 'wing' that has the laundry space and ends with another door to the back yard. We have to buy a washer and dryer for the spot, which is one of our critical pieces before being able to move in.)
And then there's the back yard. SIGH. I'm sort of...obsessed?
There's just a little patch of grass, just big enough to have a small tutorial on soccer techniques or a tiny game of two-on-two. (BabyShock, I hope you're ready to team up IMMEDIATELY after birth.)
In the back right of this picture, there is also a raised bed for gardening. The owners said that the previous tenants consisted of one of their sons and a group of college boys, and their other son and his wife. Combined, this garden bed has seen peppers, tomatoes and sunflowers that shot up well past the fence. I can't wait to plant some things and see if I can keep anything alive!
There's also a Meyer lemon tree that is positively laden with ripe fruit. One of my first things I want to do after moving in is try preserving some. A coworker gave me a jar of her preserved lemons once and I ate them in/on everything imaginable. You all know what you're getting for Christmas this year!
There's a big patio, which isn't covered, but has a really cool-looking tree that I imagine will provide lots of shade in the summer.
And then there's the shed in the back, or what Michael referred to as the "Mother in Law Quarters." (It's not heated.) (But does have electricity! Don't worry, Mom, I'll get you a space heater.) Because of the tiny garage, this will definitely be storage central. Unless I can convince Michael to make this into my craft room?
As I'm sure you can imagine, my mind is going at 100 miles per hour thinking about furniture placing and decorating and Christmas tree locations and nursery themes. Our furniture gets moved in next Saturday (the 23rd) and we have to be out of our apartment by December 1st! Things are happening quickly now and my To Do List is going to be hard to prioritize... hang Christmas lights or unpack vital living items? Preserve lemons or buy rugs for a million rooms? Buy all of the nursery things or sit on the front porch with a glass of fresh-squeezed lemonade? Decisions!