• Learning to live in the now and bloom where I'm planted in the house I am already in {Gypsy Magpie}

    Living in the Now and Blooming

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    When we first bought our home, 5 years ago next month, I was so excited I couldn’t handle myself!
    The possibilities seemed endless and the property was a life long dream come true, or so I thought…

    Our little starter home had been a labor of love and years of hard work had finally started to turn into something good. We had buried sprinkler lines, removed walls, survived babies, toddlers, and floods, finished the basement, painted, laid wood floors, installed base boards, tiled bathrooms, planted fruit trees, flowers, berries, and grew a beautiful productive garden among a hundred other things. Then, our darling neighbor, Nellie, passed away and her beautiful cow filled pasture behind us was developed.
    We lost a large chunk of our backyard, including my little garden, in a property dispute.

    I’ll never forget the night that Dan, my kind neighbor, found me on my hands and knees, with tears streaming down my face, pulling the soft loamy soil I had put so much energy in to for years from the lost side of the yard to the side I had left. He must have thought I had lost it, and in a way I had. Like a true friend, he got down on his knees and began to move the dirt with me. The next thing I knew, construction workers were peeking in my bedroom window and I had become so claustrophobic I could no longer breathe. We put our house up for sale and in a matter of weeks we were moving our things to a storage unit and bunking up with my in-laws.

    Somehow fate smiled on us and we happened to ride the housing market crash just right, selling our starter home for a profit and then buying a wonderful house when prices were down. We purchased a 3,000 square foot two story with an unfinished basement on nearly an acre and a half of land and I was giddy. The house was well above our price range, but we could see the investment potential and had faith that with hard work, saving, and living frugally, it would all work out in the end.

    My trucker husband moved us in, dropped the boxes, and off he went. He was gone for a large part of our first 2 years in the home. I kept myself sane by doing house projects, chasing around 4 kids 7 and under, and tormenting my new forever friend, Jaime. Who, by the way, I am still mad at for moving but that’s a post for another day.
    Just teasing, I still adore her.

    I constantly had something going. I fiddled in my daughters’ odd shaped closet trying to make some sense of the space available. I painted and installed board and bat. I switched out mismatched hardware and spray painted light fixtures.
    I found plans for building a washer and dryer stand and enlisted the hubby’s helping hands when he was home for the weekend.

    Living in the now and blooming where I am planted {Gypsy Magpie}

    Christmas came and I begged for wood to start our laundry/mudroom project.

    I sold things we had around the house on yard sale sites and used my DIY/crafting skills to create fun pieces to sell. I helped out at my parents’ store and did odd jobs for them at their home to earn some cash. I saved up my pennies and cut out extras like new clothes and cute shoes. I used the extra money to buy craft supplies, tools, material, used furniture, wood, and paint.

    Living in the now and blooming where I am planted {Gypsy Magpie}

    I framed out the builder grade mirrors in two of the bathrooms, painted the dark cave of an office, and spent hours at my sewing machine making curtains, bedding, and pillows.

    Another set of wonderful new friends even helped me plow a patch of sage brush with their big tractor and then worked along beside me as we planted a rough but happy little garden plot. Farmers are forever my favorite people.
    I love them with all my country girl heart.

    Living in the moment and blooming where I'm planted {Gypsy Magpie}

    My mind was always whirling and moving on to the next challenge.
    I loved it!

    I had big plans for our land.
    Land, wow for the first time in my life I owned land! My childhood dream of a barn, a huge garden, an orchard filled with chickens, and a small pasture with horses was right in front of me and I could almost touch it!
    And then, I realized something I hadn’t until that point.

    I lived in an HOA and HOA’s are bossy.

    The type of barn we had planned on (that dots the streets of our neighborhood) was no longer permitted in our subdivision. Out-buildings now had to be designed by an architect to match the roof line of the house and be made using the same exterior material. The cost would be far beyond what we could ever afford. My son was told he couldn’t ride on the open trails we were so excited about when we bought the house. Dirt bikes are dirty, you know. Due to a misunderstanding between the developer and the county, there were no water rights and we could not water over 1/4 acre of our promising property.
    On our budget, the tick riddled sage brush covered earth was not going to become anything more.

    I felt cheated and angry.
    I started to take offense to all the little things the well to do neighbors would say about my hand-me-down furniture, my kids, or my blue collar husband.

    I’m embarrassed to say, I let a chip grow on my own shoulder and I nursed it along daily.
    If they wanted hillbilly, I’d show them hillbilly.
    Oh, Missy.

    My dreams went from my head to my Pinterest boards and there they sat.
    I searched home listings and drove the valley looking for older homes on acreage that we could fix up. On the bitter days I’d send my friends a string of texts telling them how much I hated it here.
    Instead of creating a happy home, I was creating a very depressing one.

    I was knee deep in self-pity, trucking, church service, and health problems and I was desperately looking for a happy, since I’d squashed my other one. So I started posting more on this blog and began rehabbing and selling more furniture.
    Occasionally I would rearrange a room or make a new pillow but for the most part my house has sat. My bedroom is still not fully furnished. The main floor is still that rusty penny orange that makes me want to hurl a hammer through the wall. My laundry room is still lacking cabinets. Our garage is a death trap and our basement has become a DIY version of the 6 Fingered Man’s pit of despair.

    With all the changes that have come in my life the last few months, I have been trying to figure out my new normal and have again been trying to find that “happy”. I’ve been praying a lot about where I go from here in this new season and who the Lord wants me to be.
    I have felt more than a little lost.

    Learning Moment…

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4 Comments
  • Aliza B
    8 October 2015
    Reply

    What a good reminder to be happy in the now. So often I think to myself, “Things will be good when…” and I should be focusing on making good memories and finding happiness today. Thank you for the reminder.
    Aliza B recently posted…DIY Watercolor Flower BouquetMy Profile

    • Missy
      8 October 2015
      Reply

      I think I get stuck in the I’ll be happy when rut a lot. We silly humans.

  • Jenny
    8 October 2015
    Reply

    Oh missy! How I needed this. I’ve been dreaming for the day that we can buy our own house. And aside from the HOA factor (I hate HOA’s) you have my dream. But this post reminded me that someday that will happen and right now I’m thankful for everything I love about our little town home. Thanks, as always, for showing me the good.
    Jenny recently posted…Race Week WorkoutsMy Profile

    • Missy
      8 October 2015
      Reply

      I never really understood what an HOA was or how much control they had until we moved here. Life is a learning lesson for sure. It’s a wonderful home and I need to be more grateful for it, even if it didn’t turn out to be what I thought it was going to be. Love your little town home while you are in it, my friend. Good things will eventually come.