I love our house here in Denver.
Not everyone knows the story of how I came to this house...My husband rented it with a bunch of guys for years before buying it himself, then continuing to rent rooms to his friends.
About the time Brian and I were talking to each other, but not really dating, me in Seattle and he here in Denver, he bought the house. And within a couple of years, he moved out to Seattle, we got married, and eventually we moved back to this house in the Northwest corner of the Mile High City.
I love this place in a lot of respects. When we got here, there was a dartboard in the kitchen, a keg fridge on the front porch, and no one had dutifully painted anything, fixed any fixtures, or uncluttered anything. For years.
There were a few guys here sharing our house over the course of a few years. Some were more horrified than others to find a girl among them. One in particular would rather I just hadn't shown up at all, as I immediately took charge of cleaning out the house of things no one owned, and making space for the truckload of stuff I brought with me.
I remember asking as I pulled a large, dark and foreboding painting of a knight in full armor off the wall whose it was, and the answer was "I don't know. It was here when I moved in," by all three of our guys. OK, so it goes to the dumpster, I'd say.
Not everyone was thrilled with my get-the-crap-outta-here attempts at decluttering.
Not to mention the constant construction zone I created when I started making all the improvements.
To make it easy for you to picture how bad things were: When I arrived, the toilet in the lone bathroom was held together by a chopstick.
I've painted every room IN the house. I've painted the exterior. I've replaced all the light fixtures except maybe one. New kitchen flooring, new front porch flooring, bad panelling down, new moulding up, new fixtures in all sinks, tubs, and toilets. All things that desperately needed to be done.
I'll never forget Bob Gray coming over after having been gone for a few years to teach in Taiwan, and his exclamation over the house's transformation.
"I didn't think this place could be saved!" he said.
But it was saved.
I can say that I'll miss this house. I love old houses in general, because they're quirky, and the result of many different people having lived in the same space, though not together. There are upgrades that say something about each person, or lack of upgrades, and still others like mine that perhaps someone will notice, perhaps they won't.
But in the midst of all this bragging about what I HAVE done for this house, let me tell you my downfall. I am a horrible duster.
As I'm going through my house deciding what stays, what goes, what sells at the garage sale tomorrow -- I'm finding that my lack of dusting in this house has done nothing but kick up all the dust that's gathered in those hard-to-reach, often-not-perhaps-never dusted spots. And so I sneeze.
But I will miss this home, sweet dusty home.