Everyone tells you that moving house is one of the hardest things you ever do.
I’ve moved house before, so I probably should have remembered… but for some reason our rose tinted spectacles were well and truly on. We thought it would be straightforward, simple, hassle free… we should have remembered – it wouldn’t be easy!
Finding a house – not easy!
Falling in love with the house and hoping nothing happens along the way – not easy!
The months of solicitors, conveyancing, checks and paperwork – not easy!
Packing – not easy!
Moving day – not easy!
Basically – you get the idea. No matter how organised, on top of it and prepared you are there’s always going to be a hiccough along the way. It’s just how these things seem to go. But when you can’t wait to move and settle, it’s all amplified by the emotions of becoming emotionally attached to the bricks and mortar of a prospective future.
We’ve lived in our current rental home for about three years. It has been a brilliant home. Great room sizes, big windows, close to work… but it wasn’t ours. There was no desire to improve it or make it ours because it was always temporary. The red flowery wall paper, or even worse – the fake brick wallpaper – wasn’t ours to fix. So we just looked past it and thought about where we’d like to end up eventually.
We seemed to have two choices. Either stay in a similar area with a larger house, or downsize to a nicer area. We were meticulous, we drove all over Huddersfield trying to find an area we felt comfortable in – one that felt like ‘us’. We looked at local pubs, shops, stations and walking routes – all important of course. The area was key. We love hiking and being outdoors and I didn’t want to be crammed in a ‘back to back’ feeling place. I love space – I feel like my head can breathe and the stress just melts away.
How do you approach finding space? It’s a tricky one… Us… We bought a Huddersfield A-Z map – no seriously. Then we spent Sunday afternoons driving around with a red sharpie and a green one too. I like sharpies. Nice area – green tick. Bad area – red cross. I won’t tell you what we ticked or crossed, just in case it’s where you live. But we’d ticked a few and then, then we drove through Slaithwaite.
We’d seen Marsden and loved it, but Slaithwaite just sang with perfection. It was a village, a country feel, pubs, a sense of community and was surrounded by hills. We loved it. Then, Mike’s mum phoned us about a house she’d seen she thought we’d like – in *drum roll please* Slaithwaite.
Well the rest as they say is history. We were over the next day, the vendors were lovely and have become friends of ours and the house was just fabulous. There were all the usual stresses and strains of the fussy paperwork, but it all seems worth it now. Really – it does.
We bought a 1900’s end terrace house five minutes walk away from village centre. Village Centre kind of sounds like Centre Parcs – and it kind of is. It’s got everything!
We downsized slightly when we fell in love with this home of ours, in that we lost a double bedroom for a single. But the area and the garden are just lovely. We’ve got big windows, lots of light, and open plan feel and and AMAZING view from the top of the garden. It’s fabulously fabulous.
What I didn’t anticipate, was the emotion attached to moving house. Yes, it’s hard to make a rental house feel like home – or at least it in in my humble opinion… but still it’s where you’ve lived. Where you’ve brought Christmas trees home, kicked off shoes at the end of working weeks, sunk into squishy sofas, laughed, cried and grown up a little.
There’s the hallway where we scratched the wall with the Christmas Tree and hoped no one would notice. The living room we didn’t use for months because we didn’t have the furniture to fill it. The dining room with the brick effect wall paper we were embarrassed of and laughed about – a LOT. The tiny damp kitchen we managed to cram ourselves into and all cook at the same time. Bedrooms full of bed time stories, den making and laughter. And our bedroom, where we’d listen to the pitter patter of rain on the skylight, or look out across the rooves on hot summers days.
I felt nostalgic watch the rooms empty. Moving our things out and seeing it become void of personality. The rooms became bare and I think I realised that our memories would move with us. It’s us and our things that made a house a home and all of that moved with us. So when we handed over the keys to number 33 – or three and three as Holly called it for so long – it just felt like it wasn’t ours anymore. Slaithwaite was ours.
It really was ours – thanks for that Santander!
Everything feels different now. We’re excited about making a house a home. There are plans, and sketches and watching Monty Don talk about gardens over and over…
Because we’ve invested in something. Something lovely. That needs a lick of paint and a lot of love here and there but we couldn’t be more excited to do it!
I drive home from work thinking about eggshell and gloss (eggshell of course) and wondering just how good a colour match on Valspar is to Farrow and Ball… all things I never considered before. At lease not in the last few years. It’s a wonderful feeling.
Holly took to moving house like a duck to water. She was number one (wo)man in the van. Riding up front and giving instructions. She mucked in with the rest of us, carrying boxes and chairs and I’m so glad she was involved in the process. Especially seeing at this point I was in the stages of early pregnancy and feeling exhausted. She was a little ray of positive sunshine. See below for evidence.
So we’re here. We’re in. Keys in hand. Boxes that will never get unpacked in the garage. You know the ones I mean…
We’re talking paint, carpet, patios – big plans. It’s all change and I love it.
Happy New Home indeed…
If you don’t believe me just swing by Slaithwaite on a sunny Saturday. Once you’ve been to the bakery you’ll never leave. No, seriously…