Friday, May 6, 2011

Putting Down Roots

When we left our beautiful old Victorian house, we arrived here at our new house with so much promise and anticipation. It has some serious improvements over our old house--like no drug dealers for neighbors, or hoarders for neighbors, the ward doesn't seem quite so needy, and we have those wonderful 20th century inventions called air conditioning, a garage, and storage rooms. Really, we have a lot to be thankful for.

BUT...this house isn't IT. This house and neighborhood brings with it its own issues. There are actually fewer kids in the neighborhood than our old neighborhood. So the drama that occurs every day after school when my kids want to find friends to play with and there are none continues (especially for poor Beck who has four boys his age nearby and they are ALL anti-social with anti-social mothers who have no desire to make play dates). Also, a good portion of the neighborhood is still very rural, so there are smells you never bargained for in a suburb, flies galore, and even the crowing of roosters and braying of goats every morning.

The problems we had at our old house with heating and cooling are just as bad here! Hard to believe it for a house built in the 1990's compared to one built in the 1890's, but it's true. Our old house pre-dated vents, so radiators were our only source of heat. And they did OK in the rooms that had them. But several rooms didn't, leaving them freezing cold and requiring space heaters all winter. Then in summer, we had a swamp cooler, but it was noisy, required the windows to be open (i.e. more noise) and didn't make it to the main floor very well. Eventually we put externally vented a/c in half the house, but the other half remained 20 degrees hotter then the rest. Well, here we have a super crappy vent system so that the 3-4 rooms closest to the furnace get all the heat and cold air. And the ones furthest away are 20 degrees colder in winter and hotter in summer. JUST LIKE OUR OLD HOUSE. It's ridiculous.

Other little things include doors that don't seal, walls and floors that have no insulation or sound proofing, and the fact that our yard isn't fenced off, so I still have to worry about my kids when they're outside. Anti-social neighbors abound. And a newly-wed/mostly dead ward mimics our old one almost exactly. So, ya. A lot of the things I thought I was leaving behind seem to have followed me here.

But this time of year, the time when everything starts shooting up out of the ground, bursting forth out of buds, turning green, and flourishing, I want to plant. I want to plant strawberries and vegetables and flowers. I want to dig in the dirt and see my handiwork blossom and produce. But (beyond the fact that I'm not physically able to do it at the moment), I feel the futility of it here. Our lease ends in a year and 3 months, we're not likely to renew it or to buy this house, and so it just seems dumb to put all that effort into a yard where I won't be here to see the results.

But tell that to my gardeners instinct. It doesn't want to listen.

It's sad knowing that we'll most likely be moving again in less than a year and a half. But it's also exciting to think of what lies ahead--maybe we'll build our dream house. Maybe we'll move out of state. Maybe we'll find a place that's just right for us where there are lots of kids, and nice neighbors, and big shade trees, and a perfect space for a garden.

I hope so. I can't wait to put down deep deep roots.


Financial Aid for College said...

Please, please, please move to Austin! Then I can see your kids all the time. And the wards around here are BURSTING with social moms and multitudinous kids. (I know, tell it to Big Daddy...)

Besides, you can sell Cutterpillars from anywhere!

Marin said...

i guess i have to feel lucky that my only heating/air conditioning problem is in my room. but, in the summer, boy am i miserable and that makes everybody miserable because i can't keep my mouth shut. but i feel lucky after reading your blog. i'm sorry. those issues are major issues. when you can't be comfortable in your home?