It’s begun: our house hunt. After saving for the past four-plus years, we are ready to buy a house. Well, we’re ready to start the process of preparing to buy a house, with the goal of moving by the time our lease is up on August 1. That seems like a really long way away, but it’s not when you factor in six to eight weeks for closing. So it’s time to start the hunt.
Today we drove out to Maplewood, NJ, a pretty town that’s surprisingly close to NYC—we got there in about half an hour, which means Andrew and I could conceivably come into the city to do fun things on nights when we have a sitter or visiting grandparents. The commute for Andrew is humane, and the community for me seems, from preliminary observations, very nice. We were anxious about making the drive with both kids, but they did great: no carsickness from Lucia, only minimal fussing from Greta, and a manageable amount of whining from Lucia that focused on her desire to go either home or to a playground. Both kids ended up asleep by the time we got to the first open house.
Andrew and I alternated going into the houses we’d selected, which won’t be a really viable way of operating once we’re actually looking to buy; but it was fine for today, since our objective was just to get a feel for what’s out there and to see what it’s like to be inside these suburban houses, looking out. We didn’t see anything that fit our idea of Our Suburban Life—the main problem in Maplewood is that the yards are really, really tiny—but it was pretty exciting to imagine eventually finding the right house on one of the pretty streets. And to realize that within a year we are going to have space, space, space. We’re looking at 4+ bedrooms, and some places even have a finished basement—all have formal dining rooms, most have fireplaces, many have dens in addition to living rooms. It is going to be glorious, just glorious.
I know we’ll have to revise our wish list eventually, but for now, here it is:
2+ full bathrooms
at least one wood-burning fireplace
space for a playroom
space for an office
a craft room! a laundry room! walk-in closets! a hoooooooouuuuuuuuuussssssse!
We are excited. And we did find a playground for Lucia once the open houses were done, where she happily collected stones and sticks until it was time to go home.