Our Home Wish List

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One of the first properties we viewed– way cooler on the outside than the inside!

Our family has lived in a little apartment in Southern California, a tiny (tiny!) farmhouse in Oregon, an ancient but enormous flat in Bavaria, and another tiny house in Oregon. All of these, with the exception of our German home, have had good yards and gardening space. I really missed dirt living in the center of town in Amberg, so a yard is high on my list of wants. Preferably one that I can grow food in and have chickens, with a bit of wildness that will engage Amelia year-round. We know that we want room for guests, and that the kitchen is inevitably where I spend most of my time. But what else? As we’ve looked at lots of properties, we’ve come up with our “list” of needs, wants, and then the extra pleasures.

What I think we need in a home:
Three Bedrooms, so we can have guests.
Sunlight– not optional for me!
A yard– the bigger the better, within reason.
A bathtub– life is just better when you can take a bath.
Proximity to a market, so I can walk to get the things I need, in a pinch.
A view out most windows of something green.

What we really, really want in a home:
Interesting architecture. Jeff and I would both feel really depressed living in a modern box, and love old-world details.
A great kitchen, with sunlight and ample workspace, and no tacky tile or black worktops, please!
Wood floors in at least part of the house. Carpet seriously creeps me out, but is OK in bedrooms.
A patio– I love to eat outdoors whenever I can, even if I have to do it picnic-style. But a place for table and chairs would be great!
A bathroom near the bedrooms (this one should be self-explanatory.)
Access to neighbors– I love getting to know the people around me, and would be a little sad not to have any, or to have neighbors I never saw.
High ceilings– it’s very much about the feeling I get in a room– smashed in, or with room to breathe…

What would be amazing, pure luxury:
A sun room, or as they call it here, a conservatory. This would make life in England much, much better for me. Even if there isn’t actual sunshine, to be able to have all that light would really help.
Fireplace(s). We love fires, and foresee plenty of fire-appropriate weather ahead.
Some tile floors. I love tile.
A location very close to the center of town, without being right in the middle of the action.
An extra bathroom.
Basement or bonus space for an office/ work room.

So, maybe it’s a tall order. We’ve looked at more than ten properties, and most of them have had all of the “need” criteria, and maybe one or two items from the “want” list, and more rarely, an item from the “luxury” category. One kitchen really wowed me, but in exchange it had a yard the size of a postage stamp, and I would never see any neighbors. We have had to weigh our priorities very heavily, really considering what is most important for our family, and it hasn’t been nearly as much fun as we had expected. But now it’s over, and I am happy. So happy.
Tomorrow, I will show you the home we found last week!
Have you looked for a home recently? Care to share the top items on your list?

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3 Responses to Our Home Wish List

  1. Gretchen August 31, 2011 at 7:52 pm #

    Right now we live in a back house with one bedroom and no doors. The upsides are that that living room is so spacious that part of it became our bedroom with some creative curtaining. There is a HUGE back yard that we share with other kids for Anders to play with, two large picture windows that look out at trees and high airy ceilings. On the down down side there is no bathtub, no dish washer or garbage disposal. Workable downsides if I do say so myself! =0)

    I hope you find the PERFECT cozy bright space!

  2. Ariana August 31, 2011 at 8:35 pm #

    Gretchen, your big yard sounds like the perfect feature for Anders, plus your amazing neighbors! I’m also hoping for a dishwasher and garbage disposal, but it looks doubtful. I’d be happy to trade those nuisances for a green view, though!

  3. Anonymous September 1, 2011 at 9:25 pm #

    seeing some green from the house is a must for me too, and tall ceilings always make things seem larger. I like to put mirrors in rooms to make them bigger too, with moderation. You are so amazing at making a home–I’ve seen the pics of kitchens you posted–that you will make any place wonderful.–Lisa Taylor (Kelly)

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