toward a new home


I've lived in apartments all my post-adolescent life. Apartments and duplexes and triplexes. Studios and one-bedrooms and two-bedrooms with roommates and boyfriends and cousins and friends. For the past four and a half years we've been busting at the seams in a tiny-roomed duplex with peeling floors and a kitchen so small, I have to use the ironing board as a counter.

Not that it hasn't been a lovely place to live. It has been. Lovely like the place we lived when Archer was born. Lovely like every place that feels like home.

When we found out Friday that we got the house, we were elated. Burst-into-tears in public, jump-up-and-down on the phone with one another, just-won-the-lottery elated.

And not just because our names had been called.

For us, it was about so much more.

When we first started this journey - as a couple of practical strangers, six-months pregnant, walking down the aisle of the Little White Chapel - the odds were very much against us. We were broke. We were young. We were strangers. We gave it a shot anyway. Because we didn't know what else to do. Because we hoped we'd be able to pull it off. Because we were both impractical and stubborn and everyone around us thought we were crazy. They were right. But so were we.

We spent most of the past six years, struggling to make ends meet as a couple. Climbing up various ladders professionally and personally, falling off, getting back on, broken and bruised, fucking up and making up and growing up.

Hard work, that is.

And then, this year happened - a magical year - when switches flipped and all the work we were doing between day jobs started paying off. Tides turned and doors opened and life just sort of... changed. Graduation day -- like the universe giving us its blessing to exhale into a space with higher ceilings and doorknobs that don't fall off when you try to open the doors.

And a yard. A YARD!

Last night after hitting up a movie with Hal, we parked in front of our new home in our new neighborhood and watched it sit still in the darkness out windows of the same car Hal first picked me up in not six years ago -- him in his pageboy hat and me in my blue-black hair, cigarettes extended out windows cracked, kids trying to impress each other with dreams and hope.

After a long and loaded silence, Hal squeezed my hand.

"Honey? We have a HOUSE, now. This is our house."

And when I looked over at him, and he at me, we found that we were staring into the eyes of adults.

GGC

79 comments:

The818 | 11:50 PM

What a beautiful beautiful post. I'm so happy for you guys.

Meagan | 12:01 AM

So beautiful. Don't you love it when life just works out like that? Like it was meant to be from the start, all of those rough spots just part of a long journey.

Elena from Greece | 12:11 AM

wonderful! happy for you!!
good things always happen to optimistic people!
about the yard thing, well it s a saviour with kids, you ll see!

mrsgryphon | 12:16 AM

My god, I love your writing. I've been reading for years, but I don't comment very often. Something about this post made me tear up tonight... so happy that those challenging times have led to this wonderful moment for your awesome little family!

~Sarah

Liesbet | 12:28 AM

You make me cry with joy. Thanks for sharing your life and your love with me.

Spokei | 1:14 AM

I am so excited for you guys- you both so deserve it!! We get pictures later, right?

Mammy P | 1:54 AM

Over the moon for you all... just think - both Archer and Fable are at the age now where THIS is going to be the home they remember the most when they're our age looking back. Isn't that magic?

xo

Adventures In Babywearing | 3:32 AM

Oh for REAL! Choked up & all sorts of things! Congrats, congrats.

Steph

Angelica | 3:56 AM

I am soo happy that this worked out for you guys!!!!! Congrats!

Anonymous | 4:13 AM

I´m so happy for you and your family!
Thanks for sharing!

phoebe | 4:30 AM

tears rolling down my face. so f$#%kin' happy for you guys.

ThiliBlooms | 4:50 AM

Congrats on the new house!!! I wish you the best of luck and happiness to you and your family in the new house :) Have a wonderful day girl!

Kendra | 4:53 AM

Congratulations! It's been such a long journey in such a short time, hasn't it? But it seems like they always feel that way, looking back.

Prasti | 5:13 AM

awesome! congratulations on getting the house...very exciting. and with a yard...you can watch the kiddies play :)

Anonymous | 5:18 AM

I'm so happy for you guys! I've been following your posts for some time now and kept my fingers crossed for you. Great it worked out. Keep doing what you're doing. Cheers!

My Bottle's Up! | 5:22 AM

SUCH FANTASTIC NEWS!!!!!! THRILLED FOR YOU AND YOUR FAMILY!!!!!

Boston Mamas | 5:24 AM

So, so thrilled for you! Congrats! xo Christine

Fairly Odd Mother | 5:40 AM

So many heartfelt congratulations on your new home. Yours is a lovely story.

Kerry | 5:43 AM

Congratulations on your new home.

Happy memory making. Can't wait to hear all about them.

GreerAnn | 5:56 AM

this one definitely got me. tears and all. my husband and i just bought our first home, and while it was bittersweet to leave the apartment where we brought our first child home, there is something so different about being in a house. with a YARD, too!

robyn | 6:09 AM

Congratulations! Enjoy your new home and your backyard! Oh, the kids are going to love the yard!

Rita Arens | 6:22 AM

YAY YAY YAY YAY YAY YAY YAY!

I can't imagine how hard it is to find a house in L.A. You guys deserve ten thousand happinesses. I'm so glad you got it!

littlerowboat | 6:46 AM

YES!! I was sending you and the universe blessings for the house. I'm so happy for y'all! Thanks for letting us know.

BookishPenguin | 6:46 AM

So happy for you! Can't wait to see a "Home Gone Style" post after you guys put your stylistic spin on it.

I often wonder if we'll ever own a house - it seems like a huge pipe dream, but I guess dreams do come true sometimes (usually with hard work). :)

That one girl | 6:52 AM

OH soooo, sooooo exciting! Dude, L.A. IS competitive! And, YAY, you get a backyard!!! We've been living in a tiny condo with a balcony only a foot wide and waiting NINE months to see if we gat a certain house with a HUGE yard and it's been eternity and the process is no longer fun. I'm soooo happy you guys are having FUN!

messyfunmommylife | 6:58 AM

Beautiful Beautiful Post!

Steph | 7:06 AM

Big congratulations!

Ida Mae | 7:24 AM

woW! Congrats.. much like you I never thought it was possible to grown up, become an adult, have kids, etc. And last year my husband and I did just that. Enjoy your new house and yard!
~Ida Mae
www.treeswillbend.com

Rashel Saak | 7:26 AM

yipeeeeee!!!!!

leel | 7:35 AM

yippee! yippee, yippee yippee! how exciting. congrats! i still love my first house; it's 8 years later and I still love having my own yard.

Karen Chatters | 7:38 AM

Rebecca, I'm so happy for you guys! You deserve nothing but happiness, picket fences and years and years of wonderful memories.

Congratulations on your new home and all the possibilities of the future!

Abi | 8:02 AM

I'm so happy for you!!! When we first moved to Boston, we were in a 1 BR apartment that didn't have a backyard. I was so miserable for our daughter and for the baby in my womb. After a year, we moved to the suburbs and rented a HOUSE with a BACKYARD with a SWING SET! It is so awesome! I can't wait for all the stories and adventures your family will have in your new home.

As for packing... there is no such thing as over-labeling!

freckletree. | 8:33 AM

congratulations.

i am so happy for your family.

also? your way with words brings me to tears nearly every time-- and i'm on antidepressants. so yeh, you've got a knack for pulling out your soul.

Ashley Parker, 2008 Class Reporter | 8:43 AM

This is beautiful, and gives me hope that someday, I will hit that "grown up and made it" feeling. I am 24 and there are days when I feel like it's all just one big hot mess, but I think it's probably supposed to be at this point. Congrats on the house!

The Empress | 9:02 AM

That is beautiful...I have tears in my eyes.

My prayer for you is that you and Hal keep on looking and seeing your relationship with such wonder and accomplishment.

What wonderful feelings to have, a feeling of unity and together.
You guys did it!!!!!!!!!!!

Tanya | 9:07 AM

YAY!!! We've been renting a house, a real house, for the last year and a half and it's made a whole world of difference...especially since we have kids. We don't have much of yard (or really any, actually) but it will do for now.

Congrats to you! It's so good to have space to yourself.

Kathleen | 9:14 AM

Rebecca this is the best news! Congratulations on this next new step in your life.

Polly | 9:20 AM

hurray for adultiness! and doors opening (with good knobs) and universal good stuff for the good people of the universe!

congrats one hundred million times. HOUSEwarming party in the future??

Mo | 9:34 AM

YAY!!!!
real live legit DOORKNOBS! HOORAY!!!

Lauren Knight | 9:55 AM

Aaaaahhhh! You have to stop making me cry! I mean, in a good way!

Congratulations. You totally deserve it, and it's refreshing to hear how appreciative you are. I can totally relate. And I appreciate your refreshingly positive outlook! Yay for you guys!!!!!

gabrielle | 10:06 AM

I know just how you feel. :) I'm so happy for y'all! Congratulations your new home.

Kath | 10:06 AM

11 years ago I met a guy in a backpackers. 3 months later I was pregnant. Here we are now, one child, a dog & five chickens later.

So, this tale sings to me. Folks like us might be better at change than some others.

It's grand to be part of the implausible come good.

sabrina | 10:11 AM

Holy house! CONGRATS!!!! So happy for you guys. When is the move in date?

Known in these parts as Mrs. Q. | 10:17 AM

Hooray for you! The kids will flip when they realize they have their own grass in which to roll!

alice | 10:44 AM

In my experience many people outside of LA don't really understand what a huge deal it is to get a house and have a yard. I've been living in apts in LA for the last 6 years and we are hoping that come December we can find a house with a yard for our son. I am SO happy for you! Thank you for reminding me to never give up hope! Your story is truly an inspiration.

Carrie | 11:27 AM

This post got me so choked up. My husband and I got our lives together late, and we live with our little son in a one bedroom apartment that is filled with love and light and laughter, but man, someday we want that yard. A house. I'm so happy for you and your beautiful family and I totally get it how much it means.

Katherine | 11:41 AM

Congratulations to you and Hal. May your new home expound with the joy your family creates and may it mark the beginning of the next wonderful chapter in your lives. Thank you for sharing this bit of inspiration with all of us...

jo | 11:58 AM

So, so happy for you. Wonderful news!

Deana Birks | 11:58 AM

That's so awesome! I'm happy for you and your kids. I've been in apartments for years too, and right now we're in a 700 sq. ft. townhome. I will be glad someday when we are not all squished on top of each other. Enjoy!

Rebecca | 12:52 PM

Nothing feels as good as the pride of home ownership....Except for when you spend your first spring in the house and find out the back yard is a swamp all spring long because of bad drainage problems and need to spend thousands of dollars on expensive equipment to properly drain your yard so it's no longer a bog.

At least our basement isn't flooding, right?

McConnels | 1:26 PM

that was so beautiful..
to say thanks seems inadequate, but even so.
happy moving!

GIRL'S GONE CHILD | 2:33 PM

Thank you all for your words and tweets and love. Will have photos, eventually, to share and will continue to keep you all posted!

P.S. Rebecca - we're RENTING. Not owning. Oh, no. We have a long way to go before we can afford to buy 'round here! (Good luck with your flood, btw!)

Dawn and Amanda (cousins). | 3:34 PM

Woo hoo! I can't wait to see how you decorate this new house.

Sara | 5:23 PM

So happy for you and your family!

Meeks | 9:10 PM

Happy tears over here too! So fantastic - congratulations.

verdemama | 10:08 PM

Just lovely. Absolutely ELATED for you.

Cara | 4:54 AM

Squee!!!

Pres. Kathy | 8:01 AM

This is awesome! I am so happy for you!

Marcella (yay!) | 8:57 AM

Omgggggg, I just gave a genuine squeal of happiness at the computer monitor when I read this post. So happy for you! Hooray for yards!

Ashley, the Accidental Olympian | 10:41 AM

I don't know how you do it, write things that instantly pull the reader in do immensely and completely.

What an amazing next step.

Enjoy yourselves, there really is nothing like your first house.

mommica | 11:14 AM

We just bought a real live house in November, and sometimes when I'm reading the mail or making dinner or packing my daughter's diaper bag for the next day, I suddenly stop and think "Holy shit, I'm a grown-up. How did that happen?"

But it has it's benefits. :)

Glenda | 12:39 PM

So happy for you! It's always so nice to sit and reflect of where you've been and where you're going. This journey of life...the bumps...but always in the end oh so worht it.

Lauren | 12:48 PM

You always make me tear up at work. Such a beautiful, timeless moment. Thank you for being open and wild enough to share it with us, so many perfect strangers.

Loukia | 12:51 PM

Gah! Thanks for making me tear up again at work! I'm so happy for you. What a wonderful thing this is going to be!!!! YAY FOR YOU GUYS. You give us all hope.

Ray | 5:08 PM

Beautiful, beautiful entry. You always know how to bring a entry home Rebecca with always the perfect ending. CONGRATS on your new house! Here's to new and fabulous beginnings!I loved this by the way: "And when I looked over at him, and he at me, we found that we were staring into the eyes of adults." =D Sweet.

Ray | 5:13 PM

EDIT: Ooops! I meant to write that I loved this by the way: "... him in his pageboy hat and me in my blue-black hair, cigarettes extended out windows cracked, kids trying to impress each other with dreams and hope." ;o)

LindaB | 5:38 PM

I'm so very happy for you and your sweet little family. Best of luck! xoxo

Windy | 8:46 PM

So great when we get what we need and then what we want. Happy for all of you on your new adventure.

Anonymous | 9:18 PM

so happy for u. pic's pls when u have a chance. xoxoxo

Anonymous | 9:59 PM

CONGRATULATIONS!!! :) So excited for you all! :)

-Emily

Sue | 4:38 AM

I love this post. It gives me hope.

Erin | 8:10 AM

We just moved into a rental house in Victoria, BC, and it has changed our lives. We are two young married couples who will never be able to afford a house in this city, and we've had to get creative about housing. We are enjoying the space, and I know you will too. Also, like yours, it's the perfect house, so it's easy to love.

breedemandweep | 2:29 PM

I am rooting for you underdogs, always. What a fantastic post. Happy grownuping -- you deserve all the beauty that comes with it. And curtains! You deserve FABULOUS CURTAINS. And maybe a new ice cream scoop.

This post gives me hope too. Congrats.

Heather B. | 1:59 PM

I cannot wait to hear all about this new adventure. Mostly thought, i cannot wait to see how you decorate the place. If I know you, it will be spectacular.

WarsawMommy | 12:56 AM

That was so beautiful. I just read back through your links, and I can see now how far you've all come together... bravo to all of you!

Marcela Beatty | 3:53 PM

Congrats!!!

Greg | 10:35 PM

kick. ASS! no matter what, no matter who says what, whatever you think - just. fucking kick ass. and backyard BBQs. and cold beer in your own bank-owned yard. and multiple trips to the hardware store to buy shit you have no idea how it works or will fix anything. and laughing when your kid discovers they can piss on the THEIR tree. and mostly? here's to walking around the house naked after you break in each and every room.

Mom101 | 8:31 PM

Hallelujah mama! Much love and many congrats to all of you. Can't wait to show up with some sage brush and a magnum of champagne to celebrate the next stage of adulthood.

Walter Helena | 2:16 PM

Congratulations! (On the house...and the being adults.)

If you need some artwork for the new walls of your home...I'm having a fine art giveaway of one of my photographs at the end of the month and would love you to drop by my blog to enter, if you'd like :)

Thanks for always sharing so candidly your life and creativity and struggles. You have a lovely and powerful voice.