How could I forget this important update… we bought a condo!
Decorating and settling is has been pretty joyous. We spent our first three years of marriage living in 400 square feet–along with a 50-pound dog–so things were cramped and caused some fights. Now owning more than twice that is quite a relief. We have space for all our fun kitchen gadgets, I can go grade in a separate room (hey, we finally have DOORS to other places!) if Jeff’s video games are annoying me, and, of course, all of our books finally have a home.
This is my favorite of our four bookshelves:
The space under our stairs is made of bookshelves, too, which honestly was one of the features that made me notice this condo in the first place!
What really gets me, though, is the view from the balcony:
Isn’t it glorious? What you may not be able to tell from the picture is that a creek runs through the complex. When I sit out on the balcony to grade, write, or read, the peaceful sounds of a flowing creek greet my ears. The Transcendentalist in me adores it.
It took a while to find wall art that fit both of our tastes (Jeff was not cool with my original plan to cover our walls in Van Gogh paintings… but remember this blog post of mine? The dude has deep meaning to me!). I’m really excited by what we found, though: pop culture travel posters! Our stairway has Hogwarts, Hyrule, and Tattooine. Above our television has Rivendell and Winterfell. Our hallway is still blank, so we may purchase more for that, and we have no art whatsoever in our bathrooms yet, so we could expand into those, too.
Mostly, this has been a good experience… but not perfect. It’s amazing the extent to which people are willing to criticize you about something that doesn’t concern them, sharing opinions such as “a condo instead of a house? You might as well rent!” or “a real estate purchase in this economy?!?”, but I have to let them roll off my back. We were approved for a home loan of $80,000 more than we spent, and our mortgage/HOA payments are below the 30% of income suggestion, so I think our choice was good. Yes, the drive to work is long and trafficky, but it’s California… we’re used to it. AND Jeff and I have the opportunity to carpool most days, which is nice for me, the overworked teacher who can read, grade, or sleep on the drive.
And then I come home to a happy dog and a world of trees!