You may not know that the home we currently own used to belong to David's parents. When David was youngster, they moved into this house--a 1942 Craftsman style cottage-y bungalow. To help pay for their older children's college, his parents sold this house. A few years later, they bought it back, paying much less than it was worth because the previous owners had allowed it to fall into disrepair. That was 10 years ago.
After a significant amount of remodeling, which included electrical work, turning a back bedroom into a walk-in master closet, a major master bath reno, all new carpet, the kitchen ripped out and put back together with new cabinets and counter tops, and a few other not-so-minor changes, the house became a home once again for the entire Dietz family. We have celebrated every Thanksgiving and Christmas here for the past 10 years. My children don't know another home for the holidays. I joked with my in-laws that one day, when they were old and couldn't take care of themselves any longer, we would buy their house, move in, and take care of them. I've always loved this house.
|Our 2013 Home for the Holidays|
So when their lives began to shift last year and we were searching for a house (because we needed to relocated to be closer to my hubby's job), it seemed very natural that we would buy this house.
And we did.
As good luck would have it, my in-laws didn't even have to leave their home to sell it. They simply relocated to the two bedrooms in the finished basement and endured the noise and dust while we did some remodeling ourselves. The in-laws hadn't done much to the house since they remodeled it a decade ago, and we needed to make some changes to make it feel like our own.
I haven't gotten to post as much as I probably should have about the process of our remodel, but suffice it to say that we microwaved it. Starting in March and winding down around mid-June, we refinished hardwood floors, painted every square inch of wall space, added a wall and a closet to our basement master suite, painted and stenciled concrete floors, put up crown moulding and new baseboards, ripped out carpet and installed new carpet, installed a new dishwasher, put in some new lighting, and gosh, I'm probably leaving out a lot. But we did all that ourselves, in the span of about 3.5 months, and for the price of half of our savings account and a lot of blood, sweat, and tears.
And right around Thanksgiving, this house started to finally feel like it was OUR HOME. Our entire family came over Thanksgiving Day for what ended up being my favorite Thanksgiving ever. It was a perfect day.
David's mom and dad lived with us for a delightful 9.5 months. I am so thankful for the time we had with them, the memories we made, the late-night conversations, the meals, the kitchen clean-ups, the laughter and tears, and the way we made fun of David's dad and his addiction to Fox News.
They moved out on Thursday. And suddenly, this big house feels empty and quiet and not quite like home anymore.
It's just not the same without them. This was their house. And as much as we changed the paint colors and the floors and hung our pictures on the walls and filled the rooms with our furniture, it's not ours. With them living here, it belonged to our entire family--to all four kids, their spouses, and all 10 grandkids. Now that they're gone, it doesn't seem right. It's too big and quiet.
It needs the sound of Andy's echoing tenor voice singing O Sole Mio or Bless the Lord Oh My Soul. It needs the sound of Becky's gurgling laugh.
They've moved on and are in a new house and a new job and it's only natural that our family will gravitate to that new place and the Dietz family story will continue to be written in a different house. And that's ok. I can only pray that my children will want to be with David and me when they're grown and have their own families the way Andy and Becky's children and their families flock to them for togetherness. What a testimony to good parenting and strong family!
|The sink I've been waiting for since 2009.|
Main floor = 1479 sq. ft., 2 bedrooms, 3 closets, kitchen, open living and dining room, original fireplace, bathroom with jacuzzi tub, washer, dryer, full-size shower, and double vanity.
Basement = 1479 sq. ft., 3 bedrooms, 2 closets, 1 walk-in closet, bathroom, large utility room, under-stairs storage, basement landing, fireplace.
Attic = approximately 200 sq. ft., 3 closets, our schoolroom.
That's 3,158 square feet altogether, and we've done something to all 3,158 square feet. And it was totally worth every dollar, tear, and drop of sweat.
|Our Master Bedroom|
|Closet that my husband built|
|My side of our closet|
|Addie Belle's Room|
Change is coming to this Dietz house and soon. I can't believe what's about to happen! But while it's still ours--and because this is long overdue--I wanted to give you all a glimpse into our home and what our everyday looks like.