Today, we closed the sale of our first home. It was a fantastic 9 years in the Houston Heights. I’ve gone through the home selling experience with mixed emotions. I’ve been wavering between some excitement for the new house and mostly mourning the end of a really great chapter of my life. It didn’t really hit me that my Heights historic home was no longer mine until Friday when I was packing the master bathroom. There was only enough stuff on the counter top for one night and one morning. We were just transients for one more night in a home that was no longer ours.
9 years ago, my mom and I stumbled across the Ashland house on accident. She was my proxy real estate agent and we were going from one open house to another. We had gotten lost and as fate would have it, we saw the Open House sign in front and thought, “Sure. Why not!” We walked in and immediately were taken away by the high ceilings which are rare in a 1920s cottage. And next thing I know, I’m moving into a 1017 sq ft house with original hard wood floors and having my family come over to help with painting over the purple ceiling.
Fast forward and a lot of great and not so great things happened within the walls of that house. Richard proposed to me in the living room after cooking a 3 course meal. The church where I completed my sacraments was down the street. My (then) recently deceased grandfather’s spirit, I’m pretty sure, knocked on my headboard when I had slept in on the morning of a big meeting at work. My extended family stapled wedding programs on the kitchen floor. I put my wedding dress on here. We hosted a few rowdy crawfish boils. Grace spent many nights here especially when we went out Thurs-Sun. It was a central location for Richard to have some sort of normal life while I went to b-school in the evenings and we did a major remodel. I peed on so many sticks only for them to scream NEGATIVE for 2 years before getting a wonderful positive for our Kara. Then 16 months later a surprise positive with Ray. Our babies came home and cuddled in our arms here.
Thinking through those life moments, it’s clear that the house is a pneumonic for young adulthood. These were the carefree days where I could be really fluid with my time and money (obviously, not too careless). Maybe it’s a sort of wistfulness that’s making me sad to say goodbye to my first home.
Could we have stayed longer in the Heights? Sure. But the writing on the wall was that public school wasn’t going to work for us from where we were. And the reality was that our daily routines of dinner, baths, and early bedtime dictated our weekday evenings leaving little time to optimize our urban living experience.
Now we’ve looked forward and moved westward. We are less than 10 minutes away from my parents which is key since my mom keeps the kids during the day. That means my kids will have an even better relationship with their amazing grandparents. We are also now zoned to exceptional public schools at all 3 levels. In fact, we can walk our kids to school until the 5th grade. And, our commutes are only about 20-25 minutes (versus 10-15 for me). The past decade’s theme was individual freedom and fun. The upcoming decade’s theme appears to be upbringing and establishing roots for our little family.
As we settle in and unpack boxes, I’m excited and anticipating the joy and love that we will experience as a family in the next chapter within this new home!
Cheers, Ashland Street. You’ve been good to us.