ZOMG! New! Haus! Until now, we’d been living in a one bedroom apartment in the middle of downtown Providence with the young man. To say that it was getting a bit cramped is an understatement. At first, it wasn’t too much of a problem… but as time went on and Mr. Whuffles became less and less content to view the world from the vantage point of his bouncy seat… we all started getting a little frayed around the edges.
We had always planned on moving this summer – Nuno is finishing his PhD and the odds of getting a teaching job in his field in Providence were exactly zero. It would have been nice to stay in the area, but it wasn’t in the cards. We were very lucky that he ended up with a job in western Massachusetts! I’m a native Vermonster and very, very happy to stay in New England. I’ve never lived anywhere else in the US (I went to college about twenty minutes away from where we’re living now!) and was a bit daunted by the job search that threatened to send us to Wyoming or West Virginia. It all worked out for the best, and here we are.
So, yes, we’d always planned on having a baby and moving at about the same time. Unfortunately, one of us can’t do math. That would be me. Not only did I never plan on getting preggo right away (I thought the earliest I’d be due would be June… which was a year, not nine months, after we started trying.) and apparently I can’t count to 40. I thought a June pregnancy would have an April birth. GOOD JOB THERE, SELF. For the record: we got pregnant in June. Paulo was born in early March. So, this meant that the baby was quite a bit older than the original spreadsheet suggested.
As soon as I realized this and Nuno mentioned that he wanted to push back the move date from the original plan of July to August, I knew that Paulo and I would end up spending a chunk of the summer in Vermont. I totally couldn’t see any other way to do it, and truly, we were making each other nuts in the tiny apartment with no easy access to the outdoors. Did I mention that we lived above a bar? And there were no parks within walking distance of our house? Add in extreme heat and my general hesitation to put a baby in a hot car any more than necessary and it was a really claustrophobic summer.
We’re very, very happy to be here now in an actual three! bedroom! house! With a backyard! OHBOY! We finally have space to do things like get Paulo a real crib. He’s been perfectly content to sleep in a Pack N Play since he outgrew the co-sleeper, but that’s not a very good long term solution as he’s about to outgrow the bassinet attachment and I’m not eager to be bending down to floor level to put him to bed every night.
Anyhow! Pictures! From move-in day!
Being that we’re moving from Rhode Island wherein the anchor is king (seriously, there’s one on the state flag; so you see anchors pretty much everywhere) this door knocker makes me feel very at-home.
Starting from the top: this is the attic. As you can see, it’s finished and could possibly be used as a fourth bedroom (which indeed it was in its history). I’m pretty much in love with the exposed beams. It’s no secret that my ideal house is a barn and this (save for the carpeting) has a very barn-loft feel to it. We debated using this as our master bedroom, but decided that at this point in Paulo’s life, I don’t want to be an entire flight of stairs away if I have to get up and feed him in the middle of the night. So, this room is going to be my art! studio! So I can make art! Which I haven’t done since before I was preggo! The room is plenty big enough that I’ve already set aside one area (as far away from the stairs as possible) for a play area for Paulo – once I get some baby fences and such – so we can hang out together while I work. It’s really a HUGE space and I’ll even have room for his Pack N Play for possible naps, if necessary.
Moving on down. The bathroom. Or rather, the bath tub. Oddly, the entrance to the attic is through the bathroom, so this is the first thing at the bottom of the stairs. It’s a pretty excellent tub. Very deep. Our tub in Providence was designed for midgets, so even though this one’s not long enough to lie down in all the way (we had a tub that big in Boston and it was the best thing ever and I almost cried when we moved I loved it so much) that I can get my elbows in it is a definite improvement. The bathroom itself has a strange tile/wallpaper combo going on that makes me wonder about the design sense – or lack thereof – in whoever put it up. It doesn’t line up! It’s making me twitch!
Bedroom doors as seen from the hallway. The room on the far left is going to be the guest room/library and is currently where the boxes reside. We’ve been here over a week and have hit a wall in the unpacking process as our bureau has yet to be delivered and there’s no place to put my clothes. Once we get over that hurdle, we should be able to finish this room wherein the books will live. I’ve always wanted to have a room dedicated to books, and hopefully our occasional guests will enjoy it as much as I do.
The room in the middle is Paulo’s room. He has his own room! It’s a rather dark room being that it’s on the North side of the house and is surrounded by the most trees. I choose to view this as a plus in that it’s cozy for naps and hey! TREES!
The room on the right is the master bedroom. As you can see, our doorways are close enough that when I leave our door fully open and crack Paulo’s a bit, I can hear him just fine and we didn’t need to put a monitor in our room for me to be able to get up with him in the night. I was worried that since we’ve spent his whole life in the same room thus far that separate rooms would be a tough adjustment, but I can report that we both sleep so much better this way. I’m able to get him right away when he wakes up, but we can also both rest so much better not constantly hearing each other’s sleep rustling. As for Nuno… he was always oblivious to The Whuff’s sleeping and waking habits in the night that this really makes very little difference to him.
The bedrooms are all pretty much the same: two windows and a closet in each. This one is Paulo’s room, which we had painted yellow to brighten up the dark space. We’re going to be doing a “woodland” theme for decorating and there are lots of greens and dark browns, the yellow really works nicely as a nice warm background. (And TREES! outside of the window. Having previous had a view of the roofs of semi-industrial buildings, this pleases me to no end.)
Stairway. Nothing much to say about that. It’s got stairs.
Living room. That door you see open is to the gun room. That’s right. Gun room. We live in a house with a built in gun room. Do you know what this means? Yes, it means I get to say “I don’t even own A gun, let alone many guns that would necessitate an entire room!” on a daily basis. There’s very little in life that gives me greater joy than quoting the great philosopher Wayne Campbell. We’re clearly not using the room for guns (not even owning A gun) – this is now Nuno’s nerdery and electronics projects storage area. Which he filled up right quickly, I must say.
The area on the other side of the arch is the dining room, which didn’t get photographed as the movers came while I was still documenting the living room. The overhead lights are on as this is a very, very dark room. There are no windows directly to the outdoors in the living room – it looks out on an enclosed porch, which we’ve turned into a room for the kitties and also the ficus trees – and with all this wood paneling, even in the middle of the day it’s kind of a black hole.
The other side of the livingroom with built in book cases! We hemmed and hawed and decided to use these for general storage, rather than books. Paulo’s going to be crawling soon and will be pulling stuff off shelves before we know it – easier to have these be clear for his own toys rather than constantly chasing him from pulling books down. Also, it gave me an excuse to have a LIBRARY! PS: If this were my house and not a rental, those crazy “candle” sconces would be the first thing to go. I can’t decide if I’m supposed to be in some kind of crazy Versailles knock-off or a hunting lodge and either way, not my vibe.
Lastly, the view of the back porch from the kitchen. ZOMG PORCH. ZOMG TREES. ZOMG ZOMG. We currently don’t have any chairs or anything out here, so we haven’t been spending time on the porch, but we’re definitely making that a priority as autumn is pretty excellent porch-sitting time. I totally look forward to using this backyard to play with Paulo this spring when he starts walking around. To be able to get outside simply by opening my door is something that’s really important to me, as someone who spent as much – if not more – of her own childhood outdoors as inside. It was rough for me to have it so hard to get to green spaces in Providence, so having a yard in our new house was near the top on my priorities list – right after Paulo’s own room, bathtub, and ceiling.
So, there’s the bare bones of the house. More posts on what we’ve done with it to follow!