Here are the facts. Our house is located in an awesome neighborhood in a suburb just northwest of Chicago. The trees are giant and gorgeous. The yards are big. The schools are fantastic, and the neighbors are second to none, many having lived here for generations. The houses are a mix bag of styles dating all the way back to the early 1900s, (think cape cods, bungalows, colonials, etc) with new construction sprinkled throughout. Our home is a 1950s ranch. An adorable red brick ranch. And I love it. I love everything about it, except all the things I hate about it.
Basically, it’s like a member of the family. I love it, but it drives me INSANE! I have a laundry list of issues with this house (I’ll save those for another post), but if anyone else dare say a negative word….not okay. You get it…unconditional love, blah, blah, blah….total pain in the ass.
My husband and I bought this house back in 2003. At the time, we were itching to get back to this community where we both grew up, and a 1200 sq ft, 3-bedroom, 1.5 bath home was more than enough space for a newly married couple. We’d have a couple babies here then move into a much more spacious home on account of all that money we’d be rolling in a few years down the line (so young, so naive). The housing market was booming, we lost 2 houses in bidding wars before buying this one, the one that was meant to be.
Having those babies took longer than expected, so we stayed longer than expected. In 2007, our son was born. So, we turned our home office into a nursery and moved the desk into the guest room, which was actually more of my closet than a guest room (ahhhh….a 13 x 12′ closet, those were the days). In 2010, our daughter was born, so we finished the basement, and moved the office and toys down there (bye, bye closet space).
And then, life happened. And as the saying goes, with kids the days are long but the years are short. Somehow, it’s 2016 and we’re still here. For years we’ve mused about moving or adding on, but never had the energy to even fathom what all that would involve. Until now.
I think it’s finally happening! We’re debating between building a new home (there are few empty lots in the neighborhood) or completely gutting and expanding our beloved little brick house. It’s all confusing and complicated, but I think we’re finally in the season of our family’s life to figure this out. The kids are on board, we’ve had actual meetings with contractors. And, I’ve started several Pinterest boards, so that pretty much guarantees it’s a go. Stay tuned for many updates on all the details.