Monday, April 4, 2011

How we Found our New Home

We are back from the chilly lands of Alberta. What a whirlwind trip! We spent 2 days driving there, with our 3 year old and towing our RV. After dropping both off at Grandma and Grandpa's, we headed just south of Calgary to begin the search!

With much excitement, and nervousness, we set off with the realtor bright and early. We had 9 homes to view the first day. The result??

-too small
-too contemporary
-bad location
-a few too close to the highway
-so not our style, and not worth a reno to remedy the situation
-etc etc etc

Most we found were nice, but didn't have that special something. They didn't have that moment, that you walk in the door and say 'wow', this could be our home! That is all, but 2.

The first contender, you have already seen a glimpse of:
The good: Gorgeous trims and doors and flooring. The bones of the house were fabulous. The layout was near perfect. The kitchen was to die for. Hello Barn Door to the walk in Pantry!!

The bad: There is much left unfinished (no light fixtures, no shower doors, no fireplace surrounds or mantles and more). Essentially the owner/builders got so far and just stopped. I was actually quite eager to put the finishing touches on ourselves, but the price had to be right.

The ugly: I just about cried. It can't be true!! This gorgeous house, in a community that was utterly perfect, had a BIG problem, not apparent until you open the french doors to the back deck and yard: The highway. It didn't seem that close, but it was. It was very loud, and could be seen from the house. Vroom, vroom, vroom. Constant. Loud. Annoying.

I tried to reason my way around it, but the fact was, the home was next to the highway, which would forever affect the equity and resale. I had to break up with her. It was made easier, I suppose, by the price, as it was very highly priced for the amount of finishing that needed to be done.

With dismay and sadness, we kept up the search, seeing lovely homes, that just didn't speak to us. Until we reached the second to last house on our tour.

 This picture doesn't do the house justice.  It is a cool, unique house.  Definitely custom design and different from any other in the neighbourhood.

I had kept my eye on this one online and liked the pictures, but didn't love it. I knew the square footage, layout and location were ideal, but I wasn't feelin the love based on the pictures. Well let me tell you, this is one of those times that you walk into a home, and our jaws literally dropped. Gorgeousity, with a capital G. Goodness, love, swoon, oh my. The pictures didn't do it justice. Is it perfect? No. I would have loved a walk in pantry, and the kids rooms and closets could have been a bit bigger. Do we love it despite this? Absolutely. I think anyone would be hard pressed to find the perfect home without a bit of compromise.

It's quite a West Coast feeling home, with classic details that make it hint towards a more traditional home, rather than contemporary space. Here's some of the features that make it fabulous:
-transom windows above every door.

-BC fir trim. Normally I far prefer painted trims, but trust me girls, this is gorgeous.

Entry way with beautiful fir ceiling.

-light fixtures, faucets, hardware. It's in the details, and they are all exactly what I would have chosen. I don't want to change one thing!

Lovely egg-shaped ORB door knobs.  It's the little things that make me happy!

Hello coffered ceiling.

-Board and batten throughout many of the rooms. Hmmm, I wonder if this owner has a blog? Surely a popular project amongst us bloggettes!

 Sunroom board and batten.  Notice the ceiling.

-A sunroom that is utterly, most fantastically, completely, my favorite part of the house. Dear Sunroom: Please accept this invitation to enjoy morning coffees and blogs with me on a daily basis.

I'll need to find a window like that to put on the mantel too! 

-Gorgeous granite and travertine (my fave) counter tops throughout, including the laundry room. Oh ya, and I love the turquoise washer/dryer.

Sweet, lovely Travertine.

-A massive mud room, with a beautiful built in bench and massive closets.
-A craft/quilt room of my dreams. It's in the form of a 650 sq ft space above the garage. Dormered windows, more board and batten. Swoon.
-A fully developed walk out basement with all the bells and whistles. My favorite bell? The massive play room/family room. Finally, toy central, rather than toys strewn throughout our house.
-there is so much more....all detailed to you just as soon as we move in!

I wasn't allowed to take many photos (nothing personal could be in the picture). I also had my little camera, so the quality isn't great. Just as soon as we have our hands on the house (July 1), you can bet I'll be bombarding you with pictures galore.

Now, I'm off to dream of all the decorating fun to be had in our new home!


Martina @ Northern Nesting said...[Reply to comment]

Congratulations Andrea!! You must be so excited and relieved that you found the perfect place to call home!! I'm looking forward to July to see more pics!

Pamela said...[Reply to comment]

Andrea this home is a dream!! You lucky girl!!
That first home reminds me of Ontario..beautiful but you don't want to live by a highway you can never
block out the noise!

Pamela :)

Kim @ Savvy Southern Style said...[Reply to comment]

Andrea, how exciting. Sounds wonderful. I have those egg shaped orb doorknobs. Great details it sounds like. Have fun moving in.

Sue said...[Reply to comment]

Andrea, I saw many special touches that are going to make this house a wonderful home for you! Love the board and batten, the woodwork, and the door hardware. You've got a lot of exciting things going on for you. Glad you found what you wanted.
:-) Sue

Terri @ said...[Reply to comment]

Congratulations! It sounds more than perfect! I am so happy for you!

Krista@TheGatheringPlaceDesign said...[Reply to comment]

Beautiful home, Andrea! I can't wait to see it when it is yours! The sunroom?! excited for you...I would LOVE a sunroom!

Andrea said...[Reply to comment]

Beautiful Home!

Tammy@Beatrice Banks said...[Reply to comment]

I'm so excited for you Andrea! Finding the near perfect house is so wonderful! I'm just jumping up and down on the inside. I know how disappointed you must have felt with the first house but as always, there was something better waiting on you. Can't wait to get bombarded with those pictures!

Melissa @ Veranda Interiors said...[Reply to comment]

So excited for you!! Glad you found your piece of heaven here in Calgary, once you are settled lets meet half way for lunch! xo

Grace @ Sense and Simplicity said...[Reply to comment]

What an exciting time - you seem to have found a gorgeous home. I'm with you on usually liking painted wood trim, but yours looks fantastic. I can't wait to see a complete tour.

Becca said...[Reply to comment]

Gorgeous ... congrats !! The coffered ceiling is fabulous and all of the other accents are amazing.

Heather said...[Reply to comment]

gorgeous home! I am a new follower and a fellow Albertan/ Calgarian!

Armandina Skerl said...[Reply to comment]
This comment has been removed by the author.
Armandina Skerl said...[Reply to comment]

After a long search, I’m glad you finally found a home. It seemed like this house was really for you. The entire design of the house perfectly fits your family’s lifestyle and needs. So, how’s almost two years of living here? ->Armandina Skerl