In preparation of having a child, they say expectant couples need to nest. When we first found out we were expecting, not only was I shocked by how quickly it happened (oh and the terrifying prospect of actually delivering the baby!), but I was also worried that we had no nest built for baby bird.
We were living with Jon’s parents, and while it was great to have their support and be able to save for a house, we wanted our own place to bring up baby. I had visions of decorating our little one’s nursery (a theme around owls, bright green and dark wood baby furniture has since evolved to the very Spring combination of mint and peach, with clean white crib and change table…owls still welcome of course!). I wanted to make the kitchen my own: bake my beloved cupcakes and cook meals to freeze in preparation of the first few weeks post-baby. I also wanted to enjoy the summer by planting a garden before my belly got too big to do so, and for Jon to enjoy having his very own yard: a place for him to BBQ and eat meals outside. And I couldn’t forget about our fur baby: Akira needed a place to call his own inside, and to be free to run around outside, climbing trees and making friends with other felines. But more than anything, I wanted Jon and I to settle into our home before baby arrived: to make the most of our time just us two, by watching movies and cooking together. But we hadn’t really even began looking for a place of our own.
Well just as quickly as we got pregnant, we bought a house. It seemed an emotional, stressful ordeal for me, but I think that was just the pregnancy hormones speaking. Any sane person would say it was a pretty painless process, when compared to house-buying horror stories I’ve heard. It is just perfect for us: modern updates with old character, shiny new appliances, and a big yard. Two signs it was for us: there was still a crib and toys in the second bedroom, and they happened to have our same big red and black dishes that didn’t fit in my old kitchen, sitting comfortably in the cupboard. Kismet.
I have never owned my own home, and neither has Jon, so in terms of major life experiences, this came second only to finding out we were going to be parents. We couldn’t stop smiling at each other; for days we looked around at our cozy little house, goofy grins on our faces, so pleased that it was all ours. Jon was already out in the yard the weekend we moved in, so excited by all the space; a deck to BBQ and sit and have beers on, and a garage to furnish with tools (and a beer fridge he hopes!). While he dreams of a man cave basement one day, just as I dream of a jet tub and a walk-in closet, our house is great as it is, and just what we needed. I was loving the size of the cupboards in the kitchen, organizing places for appliances and food, magically fitting in all my cupcake gadgets and decorations. And I loved looking around at how we could decorate the TV room and dining room: pictures to frame and hang, walls to brighten with art. I can’t wait to someday get a beautiful dining room table like my mother had, have dinner parties and entertain. And the bedroom I have started to make warm and romantic with pops of red.
Then we had a hiccup in our home-owning bliss: Jon discovered water leaking from the washing machine downstairs and found that something was clogging the drain. Then everything flushed or emptied down the drains upstairs came flooding up in a gross mess in the basement. It was stressful, living in our house for four days like we were in fact camping (try telling a pregnant girl she can’t have a bath or not to use the bathroom quite so often!). Ever the worrier, I immediately started to stress about how much it would cost to get a plumber out. I felt I couldn’t look downstairs at the mess for fear it would drive me to tears. As always, Jon was calmer under pressure, telling me not to worry, working tirelessly to try and fix the problem himself. On Saturday, I started planting flowers to make our yard pretty, and sat reading outside on our deck. Meanwhile, my poor British beau was stuck dealing with crap, literally; crouched over a drain in the basement, he was hoping to save us some money and any more inconvenience. I am beyond lucky to have a man who not only does more around the house than me, (of course he is thankful for the fact that I cook almost all our meals) but also works hard to make sure our home is comfortable, and leak-free. His connections at work may have also got us a plumber in record time, following the long weekend, and they fixed the problem in no time. While discovering a flaw in our beloved new home only a month into moving in it wasn’t ideal, it is one of the drawbacks to owning, and something I knew we would encounter at some point. I just didn’t think it would be quite so soon. It did show me again that in stressful circumstances, Jon is my perfect match: the calm to my little bit of crazy.
So the joys of owning a home haven’t been overshadowed by this icky experience. Friends and family have showered us with housewarming gifts, cards and well wishes, helping us celebrate the excitement of owning our first home. I am so thankful for their love and support, as they all know how special it is to make a house a home.
Even before we moved in, I began ordering prints to frame for our home, and then custom ones to make it even more special. My love of prints has come dangerously close to an obsession, but I blame it all on bestie Jen ha ha;) I am in fact very thankful to her for introducing me (and countless other girlfriends) to Autumn Grey Designs and Pixel Paper Hearts. You can find them on Instagram, and online at:
Both of these very talented women create beautiful, inspiring prints, cards and invites, and both are so sweet to correspond with. I framed two custom prints in our kitchen that just scream Bree: “You are the cheese to my macaroni” and “You are the icing on my cupcake”, and an extra print from Learzi at Autumn Grey: “You are the bread to my butter”…placed near the toaster! I can’t wait to start decorating our baby room with two prints in peach and pink from Pixel Paper Hearts: the alphabet and “Come live in my heart and pay no rent.” Our baby girl will hopefully appreciate these prints…once she can read of course;)
So while we still have the baby room to tackle, and projects around the house to complete to make it all that we want, it’s the journey that I am again learning to enjoy. The work we do together to make our house the home we want is part of the fun: from hanging pictures of our loved ones to shopping for new items to decorate it. I love cooking in our kitchen and snuggling on the sectional, watching a movie…with Aki cat…and our daughter snug in my belly, who will call this house her first home.