Thursday, March 21, 2013

House #2: Lots of Space, Lots of Wallpaper

I was really excited to see this house, because I'd been stalking it online for weeks. It was a little above the top of our price range, but we were hoping that because it had been on the market for a while, the sellers might be willing to accept less than they were asking. I think I took the virtual tour of this house about fifty times before ever stepping foot in it, so I felt like I knew it before I even walked through the door.

I loved the turned staircase with the oriental rug runner, and I loved the airy two-story entry. I hated the wallpaper... and there's lots of it.

When Greg and I were buying our first home, the one we fell in love with had many rooms of wallpaper. No problem, we both said enthusiastically and smiled at each other, imagining long Saturdays as newlyweds telling jokes and stripping wallpaper. Just like those musical interludes in the romantic movies, we would get that wallpaper down in no time as we laughed and bonded and tossed tiny scraps of paper at one another.

Ummm, after about one hour of scraping horrible granny-flowered wallpaper off the walls of our master bedroom, we were hurling insults at one another and seriously considering putting the house back on the market.

So I hate wallpaper.

But I love this study off the kitchen... Chloe and I have already dreamed of all the hours we could spend in front of the fire during those long Rochester winters, reading great books and sipping our tea. Oh, how I love this study.

The kitchen has its goods and bads. I'm not usually a dark-cherry cabinet kind of girl, but these cabinets are very good quality, and it might actually be nice not to have white cabinets that show every speck of dirt and splash of spaghetti sauce. My children are not the neatest eaters, and I'm not the neatest cook.

The granite looks green to me. I hate green. Greg insists it's black. I think it's green. It also has black appliances, and I hate black appliances. First world problems, people. I can deal.

Yes, that carpet is new. Yes, that carpet is green. Enough said.

The master is really nice. Not huge, just the right size. The best part is that there are two closets! His and Hers. Pretty swanky, huh? Not sure if we really have enough clothes to warrant two closets, but it's a convenient space to lock naughty children store things.

The basement was one of the things we loved about this house. It's fully finished, and it's a walkout. Walkout basements are highly coveted in Pittsburgh, where so many houses are built on hills with integral garages. Because our kids play so much in the basement, both with eachother and with all their friends, I would love to have a big, bright space that didn't feel like a dank dungeon. You can get crazy creative with paint and lighting, but at the end of the day, if a basement doesn't have windows it usually looks and feels kind of cavelike. The basement in this house is awesome. It's not fancy, but it has lots of space and lots of light. It walks out onto a patio in the back yard and would really be a wonderful place for the kids to play and host homeschool gatherings.

There's even an efficiency kitchen!

And last, but certainly not least, the piece de resistance?

Oh yes, that is a pool. A pool, in Rochester? My thoughts exactly - at first. But over the last few weeks I've learned that Rochester really isn't the frozen tundra I thought it was. Its weather is in fact eerily similar to Pittsburgh's. They probably get more snow in an average winter because they're on Lake Ontario, but believe it or not, people, they do have summer! And though I never thought I would want the maintenance of a pool, the idea has grown on me greatly as I've considered the fact that I would no longer have to drag four children, twelve floaties, three pairs of goggles, five beach towels, five sets of dry clothes, three pairs of sunglasses, one giant bag of pool toys, and five lunch bags into my minivan, out of my minivan, back into my minivan, and back out of my minivan, every day - all. summer. long. I could just walk through my yard, open my nice secure fence, sit down on my lawn chair, and watch my kids play. No longer would we have to race to the pool as soon as it opened, stay for two hours, and then drive home like maniacs as we tried to keep Charlie from falling asleep before we got home. I could put him down every afternoon, bring the monitor out to the pool, and watch my kids splash and play all afternoon. 

Suffice it to say, the idea of a pool is growing on me.

So there you have it - House #2. What do you think?

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