One Year Later
A year ago this coming Saturday, after a very long wait, we moved into our new home. I am in a much better place now (literally and figuratively) than I was then. A year ago, still reeling from new parenthood, we were sitting in our tiny one-bedroom apartment, surrounded by boxes, filled with both excitement and angst. Excitement with the possibility we would move into our house in time for Cakes’ first Christmas. Angst, because of our daily visits to said house. It was a disaster: it was filthy; there was still no counter in the kitchen; the basement was completely unfinished. Everyone said this happened when you bought new but you don’t realize just how frustrating it is until you do it.
We bought the house in April 2003, before we were even married. At the time, we worried we were rushing things. We had a lot of reservations about the neighbourhood, and the house from an investment perspective (turned out to be a great investment). Because of some zoning issues, a municipal election, blah, blah, blah, our closing kept getting postponed. April 2004. September 2004. The next thing you know, I’m pregnant. Will the house be ready before I give birth? Nope. Cakes spent her first seven months sleeping in her pack-and-play in the dining area. We had to cook our dinner three feet from her head. The television was four feet from her toes. (This is why she can sleep through house parties today).
So, a year ago today, after another visit to our unfinished house, I was on the phone with our builder who was trying to postpone the closing yet again. He was met with this:
“You aren’t serious about moving the closing date.”
“I want my baby to spend her first Christmas in her home.” *sniff* *gulp*
“The basement won’t be finished and we’re having trouble getting the guy doing the granite counter…”
“Put a fucking piece of plywood on the counter to carve the fucking turkey on. We don’t need the basement right away.”
“We’re moving on December 16. I refuse to move the date again. I don’t care what isn’t finished. I mean it!” *choked sob*
So, we did. They did get the counter installed and cleaned the place up. We spent the next couple of months living with trades working on the basement, but it was OK (we actually do have a great relationship with our builder. He did go above and beyond in a number of ways; a lot of the delays weren’t his fault).
While we were happy to be here in time for Christmas, it was not the most relaxing holiday. We were hosting, so BP was out on the 23rd hunting for trees and tree stands and everyone was sold out of all that stuff. We didn’t have much furniture, and nothing on the walls. But we had a good time. My parents came and we drank wine and listened to carols on Christmas Eve. The guys next door (the only other ones to browbeat a pre-Christmas closing) knocked on the door and invited us over for drinks (it turned out to be the first of many occasions). We were home.
But this year will be even better: as I sit here, on December 12, gazing at the tree, with shopping done and stockings hung, I’m in the mood for Christmas.
December 25, 2005
Labels: the homestead