I’ve been MIA for months, and it’s really made me feel bad, but to be fair, I’ve been a little overwhelmed.
I sold my condo, and Gil and I bought a new house on 7 acres that needs some work, and uprooted our lives in the city to move 3 hours south and become country people. Which, honestly, I thought just meant being able to not wear pants with the drapes open since there are no neighbors close by, and having sex really loud with the windows open. Gil has informed me that sound carries out here since there are no buildings to absorb it and since it’s pitch black out here, a neighbor could easily see in at night when our lights are on.
Fine. Country: 1, Courtney: 0
Although our neighbors across the road (it’s not even a STREET out here guys – we live along a mile long dirt road we share with a handful of other houses) have a for sale sign up and are planning to move, so if they happen to see my butt through the bathroom window while I’m getting ready for bed, I think I can live with that. And the sound traveling thing? I am currently choosing to believe that is false, and proceeding with zero caution.
There are other things I don’t think I was prepared for out here as well. I envisioned basically having a very glamourous farm property like Chip and Joanna Gaines on Fixer Upper, and that I’d magically develop the design chops to make the inside of this place look like one of the “after” houses on their show within the first month or so. Turns out, shit is EXPENSIVE when you’re trying to furnish a whole 2100 square foot house and make improvements because the previous owners did a lot of weird, questionable stuff. So you’re damn well going to keep the high quality pieces you already have, and then work around those. We’re making progress, but like everything we’ve encountered so far, it’s more work than I thought it would be.
Plus, it’s like this twisted catch-22 with everything. There are cracked tiles in the master bath and the tub leaks. Well, they only way to access the tub for repairs is to rip up all the tiles. (Nice work, whoever installed that). So we could do that… but then I’m paying to have tiles I don’t even LIKE repaired, to fix a tub I want to replace eventually. So maybe we should replace the whole tub then. And maybe just rip out ALL the tiles and replace them with ones I like. At that point, why not just renovate the whole bathroom? Then it starts to sound like a huge, expensive project, and I decide maybe we should wait. Now I finally understand why my mom hasn’t changed out the flooring in her kitchen in the last 20 years. She’d basically have to renovate the whole first floor.
It’s this same logic that is the reason we don’t have door handles on some of the rooms. They were so old and defective they would lock and stick, and then I’d start screaming from my office because I couldn’t get out, and claustrophobia aside, it was inevitably when I was trying to get out to the hall bathroom to pee, so things got a little dicey. Panic and a full bladder do not go well together. Finally Gil just took the handles off.
So, a normal person would just replace the handles. No. I hate the doors. I don’t want to spend money on something I hate. We’ll just get new doors. But that means picking doors I like that don’t cost a million dollars and that Gil doesn’t hate. And then priming and painting those. And picking out all new hardware. And sanding and painting all the door frames. There are like a million doors in this house. We’re both working a ton of hours right now, so instead of all that, we choose to live our lives without door handles at the moment so at least I can pee without having to break through a window or ruin the carpet in my office.
And then there are the little things that I didn’t think about. I can’t flush tampons out here. I know, you’re not really supposed to flush them anyway, but I definitely do that sometimes. No wet wipes for my tushie anymore either (and I ALWAYS flushed those)! Which if we’re being honest, those are pretty clutch after sex, so I’m bummed about it. BUMMED…. get it?
In the past, if there was a plumbing problem, one quick call to the landlord or home warranty company, and they’d come clear the pipes (although I never really had that issue with any of our toilets in recent memory). But NOW…. now if I accidentally flush anything other than the bare minimum, I risk DESTROYING our septic system and triggering a poopacolypse. Because we have our own septic system now. I mean, I knew that when we bought the place, but now I’m realizing I never really thought through what that actually MEANT. I basically live on top of an underground poop farm. Or lake of poop? I admit, I have no idea how a septic system works, but that’s how I envision it and now apparently if I anger the septic gods, there could be a poop eruption on our property. Gross.
So OK, no flushing things. But now I have to research things like whether I can use bubble bath. I can live with throwing my tampons in the trash. But I don’t think I can live without bubble bath. Also, by “research,” I clearly mean that I will tell Gil I’m going to to it, and he’ll research it to tell me if it will destroy our house or not.
Spoiler alert – it’s been a stressful couple months and I AM going to go buy bubble bath today because bubble baths can solve almost any problem and we have a second bathroom with a non-leaking tub I can use. I’ll report back on how that goes.
But honestly, even with all the adjustments and new challenges we are encountering along the way, I wouldn’t trade this house or experience for anything. We finally have a home where we both have seperate space to do our own thing (even if those spaces are works in progress) and we are basically alone out here, which was the goal. When I stand on our deck at night, I can see more stars than I realized there even were in the sky, because there isn’t light pollution out here. The only sound I hear is the whinny of a horse or two on one of our neighboring properties. No traffic, no sirens, no screaming babies. Just quiet.
AND I’ve gotten to see deer up close and personal – which for a city girl, feels weirdly magical, like something out of a Hallmark Christmas movie.
It really is everything we wanted for ourselves at this point in our lives. There is always work to be done, but when I look out our kitchen window to the views and realize that this really is all ours, I have zero regrets.