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What does your dream home look like?

So, yea, Tuesday ended much better than it started. And after all that, all I had to do was laugh when, on Wednesday, the boys and I headed to Walmart to finish the groceries (it takes about 5 different stores)(Costco, Walmart, Bulk Barn, Safeway)(okay, four stores)(yes, I’m insane), and I got to the check-out till and realized I’d forgotten my wallet in the van. And then when I ran out carrying both boys (who had taken their shoes off, and I’d left their shoes in the van because they wouldn’t be walking anyway and I didn’t want to keep picking up shoes when they kept kicking them off)(and I couldn’t exactly take my cart back outside since it was filled with un-paid-for groceries) and got my wallet and went back in and paid for the groceries, I came back to van to find that the Chariot stroller WAS STILL IN THE TRUNK.

It’s just laughable at this point.

Anyway, here’s hoping I don’t screw anything up today, which, well, I’m not planning on leaving the house at all (I have the cold from hell), so that should cut down on opportunities to embarrass myself.

As I write this, I’m sitting in my living room, wishing that there was more natural light shining through my front windows. The house we live in sucks for natural light. And every time I start complaining about something about where we live, I try to put it in perspective with the people I usually see on Thursday nights, many of whom sleep in a shelter at night and are on the street all day, because, yea, I get annoyed with first-world problems, but really, I have it good.

But let’s just pretend for a minute that I could create a house/yard that I wanted. I’ve been renting places for the last 12 years (10 of them, to be exact) and I sure know what I don’t want. The house we live in now is pretty cool, but I don’t think I’d ever buy it. Why? Mostly the lack of natural light, but also the way the bedrooms are set up.

So what do I want in a house? If I could design it? I’ve never given it much thought beyond knowing what I don’t want, from all the rentals I’ve lived in, because I don’t like to let myself think about things that aren’t going to happen for a long time. I just don’t see the point. I’m a professional at not thinking about things, which, well, sometimes isn’t a good thing, but just go with me here.

I’ll break all my rules, though, and think about this now. Things I want in a house:

1. A large entrance area. One that does not open up into the living room or onto stairs, and one that can fit at least five people. One that can easily fit a stroller (although this is less of an issue for me now than it used to be). One that is big and open.

2. A basement. There is a basement (suite) in this house, and we did have the opportunity to rent it if we wanted to, but we didn’t want to raise our rent (even though we were offered a more-than-reasonable price). I want a place where I can send the kids in the winter where they can run and yell and just have space. Winters are long here. In the summer, we have the back yard, which is fantastic, but when it’s 30 below, there’s not much space for them to burn off energy.

3. An attached garage. We do have a garage, which is great, but it’s not attached to the house. I’d love to be able to go out in the winter and not have to walk through the snow carrying babies who are unable to walk because the snow is over their heads. I’d also want the garage on the side or back of the house, because I’m not a fan of the garage-at-the-front-of-the house thing at all.

(I’m realizing that some of these things could also be solved by living in a place that does not have winter.)

4. The kitchen and living room on a different floor than the bedrooms. Right now, the bedrooms line the back of the house, while the kitchen, dining room, and living room line the front of the house. There isn’t a room you can go in to have quiet. You can hear everyone in every part of our house from every part of our house. It’s a bit frustrating when I have two sleeping babies in two separate bedrooms. It’s also frustrating when one of us needs a space for bit of quiet time to decompress, because such a place does not exist.

5. Walls that are not white. One great thing about our current house is that there are no white walls. (Thanks, Venessa!) I guess maybe white walls are nice in a place with lots of natural light, so the rooms are nice and bright, but let’s just say that after so many white-walled rentals, our first place that we own will not have white walls. And maybe it would be great to have one white-walled room, but not ALL THE WHITE-WALLED ROOMS.

6. I’m torn between carpet and hardwood. I like the coziness of carpet, but I’ve only lived in one house with hardwood and it was horrible. It was the first house Noah and I (and Kaylie) lived in after we got married. It was old and things kept falling through the cracks between the boards and it was nearly impossible to get all the dirt out of said cracks, and it was just really frustrating. Maybe new hardwood would be different? I guess it would also be cleaner and maybe my allergies wouldn’t act up so much. Maybe hardwood with a big, soft, easy-to-clean area rug would be the best.

7. A big kitchen with lots of counter space. And maybe an island. I love cooking, but I always run out of counter space much too quickly.

8. A fire pit. We’re not allowed to have a fire pit here (I’m not sure if it’s our landlord’s rule or a zoning thing), which is totally ok, but I would love to have one for sitting around on summer nights.

9. A place for chickens. Maybe we’d have to live a bit out of town for this (which I guess wouldn’t be the worst thing ever, but might be weird for this always-lived-in-town girl), but I’d love to have chickens. Fresh eggs! Fertilizer for my garden! My grandparents had chickens when I was growing up, and since then, I’ve always wanted some of my own.

10. A place for a big garden. I have this already, and it’s fantastic, but I wouldn’t buy a place unless I could have a garden.

That’s all I can think of at the moment. I’m sure if I thought about it more, I’d be able to come up with more points. So tell me, what does your dream home look like?

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  • Angella Thursday, May 30, 2013, 11:47 am

    You’ve just described my house, without ever being here. You can’t have it, but I can find you one in Summerland. :)

    • jen Thursday, May 30, 2013, 11:59 am

      I have so been to your house! About … four years ago, I think? I stayed with Amanda, and we hung out at your place for a bit. I don’t remember what your entranceway looks like (big, I’m assuming), but yea, I guess your house totally would fit into my “dream house” mold! And Summerland is totally a possibility in our future!

  • Becca Thursday, May 30, 2013, 10:56 pm

    First thing we did when we bought our house – paint the walls. Not all of them, but the bathroom (which was pink) and the bedrooms (which were off-white). And while it was a pain and it did slow down our moving in, I ABSOLUTELY LOVE THE COLORS!

    We still have white (off-white) walls in the rest of the house, which is probably a good thing since our bedrooms are strong colors.

    I want hardwood floors SO BAD. And chickens.

    • jen Friday, May 31, 2013, 11:10 am

      I’d totally be ok with some white walls if others were full of colour. :)

  • Cynthia Friday, May 31, 2013, 11:03 am

    My dream house would be a character home with a huge green house where I can plant tropical fruit trees!
    A corridor all around the house. Huge windows and a sun room
    A huge old fashion kitchen with gas stove and a stone oven.

    • jen Friday, May 31, 2013, 11:11 am

      Oh wow, that sounds fantastic. I’d love a character home as well. I don’t like the new ones, on the streets where all the houses are the same.

  • Sonja Friday, May 31, 2013, 11:07 pm

    BATHROOMS. Many of them. Definitely more than one measly one. Also, closets. Deep, deep closets with lots of storage space. And a kitchen that’s big enough for a table.

    • jen Saturday, June 1, 2013, 6:03 am

      YES. I think I forgot to mention bathrooms. We only have one FOR FIVE PEOPLE. We manage, because it’s all we know, but more would sure be nice!!

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