I think some people must think that I enjoy moving house a lot, or that doing so has been a conscious decision of mine, but I promise you it hasn’t.
It is the curse of the renter that you are at the mercy of your landlord. If they want to sell up, if they don’t like animals, if they don’t like you (!) then you have to move. We have come a cropper of this a few times: on three occasions our landlords have decided/needed to sell up while we were living in their property and I had one landlord, when Beth was just a toddler who liked to let himself into my home…..no I’m not joking!!
Another difficulty with renting is snobbery. You don’t get it everywhere (thankfully), but there are neighbours who will think less of you because you don’t own your home or use the fact that you have a landlord who can be complained to as a way to feel superior. I’ve experienced this too and it made me want to move out faster than you can say ‘not in my back garden’!
I have only owned a house once and it was the most secure that I’ve felt in my home until we lived in this one. Phill and I have wanted to buy a house together, but there are difficulties when one of you is self employed and so renting has been our only option. But this house was renting with a difference. In every other rented home, I’ve been afraid of changing anything. I hung my pictures on the hooks of the previous tenants and worried disproportionately about marks on the carpets or chips in the paintwork. This house was different. A three story town house, who’s decor was in such a bad state that it had sat empty for months: we agreed to move in on the condition that we could decorate, however we wished 🙂 All of a sudden, as I painted my favourite colours on the walls….I felt more at home than I have for years!!
It’s amazing how much happier you can be when you have control over your environment. I planted the empty garden until is was lush with flowers and foliage and we replaced the grotty carpets with beautiful wooden floors. This house was ours!!! With our chintzy prints and painted wooden furniture, it felt like a cottage in the sky! I swore we wouldn’t leave until we were ready to buy somewhere. Why would we? We have moved so many times that even our pets seem to know the drill and people have stopped sending ‘new home’ cards. It makes me feel irresponsible, flighty, even cruel to have uprooted Beth so many times and I didn’t want to do it again.
But here I am, in a half packed room! Actually it’s more than half packed…the only things left are the desk, computer and a massive television and that’s all unplugged and ready to go. (I’m not dodging the work by the way, I haven’t stopped for three days and I’m taking a well deserved couple of hours break!)
We’re moving for work. Phill has started a new job as an employee (woohoo normal life!) and it’s in the Greater Manchester area, so oftentimes his commute means getting stuck traffic and it’s just not ideal for the way we like to live our lives. He leaves the house at stupid o’clock and doesn’t get home until after Beth and I have already eaten dinner. So we are moving closer.
We were buying a house but then after 5 minutes the surveyor told us it was probably going to fall down and the garden was riddled with Japanese knot weed :-S But by then we were set on moving. I think when you decide you’re going, you ‘leave’ a property long before you move out don’t you? After viewing many…..many…..many houses, we found ours and she’s beautiful!! Well….she has a few ugly bits but I’ll show you those later!!
So this is probably the last post that I’ll write in this house and what a journey it’s seen. When we moved here we were unmarried, Beth was much littler and I was still a new comer to the blogging World, lacking in confidence and just testing the waters with my love for vintage and pin up styles. We leave here married (!) with an almost 11 year old and I’m the editor of Modern Vintage Magazine and an award winning blog writer.
So thank you ‘cottage in the sky’, you have been our safe place in a crazy world 🙂 We go on to pastures new…to a 1940s dormer bungalow with a huge split level garden and a host of original features. When I first stepped foot in this house, I had tears in my eyes, it felt like somewhere we were meant to be…..and now we will be.