Monday, 17 August 2015

Searching












After last weekends shenanigans, I spent this weekend with my head stuck in various shrubs and trees, literally, not good for my hay fever I can tell you.  By Sunday evening I looked like a boxer who had done too many rounds with Mohammid Ali my eyes were so swollen.  The back garden is looking a lot tidier (too tidy for me) and I just have some weeding to do in the front.  The weather was glorious so I decided to take some photos for the sales blurb.  I tried to take carefully staged photos that didn't show all the wild plants (well o.k. weeds)  patchy weedy lawn, piles of wood that have deliberately left for insect homes under the trees and two ruddy great compost bins.  I was pleased with the results until I downloaded them and realised that in most of them there buckets, spades etc from our toils, bare patches and of course the compost bins and the water but.  Oh and not a flower in sight, I am clearly not a gardener!

So I can here you all asking when is she putting the house on the market?  Yes I know this has dragged on but what with working, doing all the normal things in the house and trying to find time on top of that to paint, declutter and generally pimp my house........

I guess what is also dampening my enthusiasm is that despite spending hours searching, nose stuck to my computer, I just can't find THE house, or is it THE lifestyle?  Don't get me wrong, there are some beautiful properties out there, but maybe some are just too beautiful.  Everything designed to within an inch of it's life, the sort of thing you see on the television, all glass and metal with 'landscaped' gardens, but I just couldn't see myself in them.  In my mind my future dog will be running all over the  cream carpets with muddy paws, the grandchildren will be falling down the designer glass floating stairs.  The future goat and chickens will be happily munching away in the landscaped garden.  Me, I will be wandering around in my cut offs with inappropriate holes, (the bearded one did remark that my ass was hanging out of my threadbear jeans yesterday when I was bending over weeding)  I found a beautiful cottage which was next to some woods, it looked idillic but I would be shut indoors suffering from heyfever half the year.  A property by the sea had me wavering but it had no garden at all, yes a gorgeous view but.......

I guess in my mind I can see myself in a traditional hard working shabby farmhouse kitchen, the type my farming grandparents and uncles had.  Where dogs and muddy boots were welcome, my shabby old furniture would fit right in and cats would feel at home tracking muddy paws over the back of the old sofas.  Clothes and boots by the range drying, free range grandchildren running through the house wreaking havoc with no fear of breaking anything precious.   I want some land around me but not pretty land, more wild, gorse covered land, preferably high up where I can look across miles of landscape and watch storms approaching.  I want it to be 'our' home, not completely finished to another persons taste.  I want to get my 'teeth' into something, not sit in a pretty house with nothing to do but look at it and tidy up.   How do I explain all of this to an estate agent.  Am I asking too much, do these places even exist any more, or have they all been prettified, lost their character and priced out of most peoples reach.   I will keep searching and hoping.












Not sure which photos to include, what do you think?  I've booked  a couple of estate agents to come and do a valuation next Monday eeek!!  Right off to do the second coat of gloss on the backdoor and start on the cloakroom, and yes my ass is still hanging out of my jeans, I'd better remember which way to face when I am weeding the front garden.  I don't want to frighten the neighbours.

Chickpea xx

45 comments:

  1. I think you garden is looking just fine, good luck with all things house-y. I'm sure you'll find somewhere that just fits the bill eventually!

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  2. I like photos 1-4-5-7-and 8.
    As for finding your dream home, twice we have found what we were looking for by asking around, go to an area that you like and get chatting in the village shop or pub, especially pubs that farmers frequent. There are a couple of magazines that you might find what you are looking for in. 'Resurgence' and the 'Permaculture' magazine although there is nothing in the latter in the current edition. Also the 'Smallholder' magazine and a website called Greenshifters.co.uk

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    1. Thanks Anne, I will check them out.

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  3. 3.4,5,7 & 8. Gorgeous - who could resist?

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    1. Thanks Dani, we bought the house off plan, when we moved in there was absolutely nothing in the garden, just grass laid over very wet earth. We had the patio built and planted the trees. I love the garden and the house, but time to move on to the next part of our lives.

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  4. I'd buy your house! It looks big and the garden looks spacious and perfect for a spot of ball kicking, and a spot for relaxing, too. I do rather fancy your rock bench, very lovely. I would probably make a list of ten would likes and then prioritize those into 'can't do without' and 'could get used to without' etc. Good luck!

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    1. Haha thanks Christina, it has been a lovely family home when our children were growing up, lots of kicking balls around the garden. There's a rock bench on the other side of the patio as well, they are sweet but not very comfortable.

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  5. wow, it looks fab, I am sure youll have no problem selling it, i love the bottom run of pictures from the stone step/seat downwards..good luck with your search, the right house is there you just have to find it.. have fun looking..

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    1. Thanks knitty, I hope not, I don't want to find the perfect place for us then lose it because we can't sell this one.

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    2. its a bit like what came first the chicken or the egg! do you look then sell or sell then look, tough call. I am sure it will all fall into place. x

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    1. Thanks Marlene, it's not too bad for someone who hasn't a clue about gardening!

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  7. So your looking for something to modernise or something like we have got, to find it lower your price on searches if we had put in our maximum we would have been looking at show houses not what we were after, so we drop the price range and found everything from tumble downs to livable but needing work :-)

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    1. Good tip Dawn. I'm looking for something that hasn't had all the character ripped out of it, or been modernised badly. I saw a beautiful old chapel that was very badly converted, but it would cost too much money to rip it all out and start again.

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  8. It all looks in tiptop condition, I'm sure it will be snapped up as soon as you put it on the market! :-)

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    1. I sort of hope so, though not before we find something else. It is a dilemma whether to put it on the market before we find something else and hope for the best.

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  9. could tell the estate agent you are looking for a fixer upper?
    We renovated our house, and are still busy working our way around the garden.
    My niece in Devon has a long wide view of gorse on the slopes.

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    1. The estate agents have been less than helpful as usual. They have only sent me details on 2 properties!

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  10. i love all the photos....then again, i'd be happiest in the exact place you're looking for so am probably the wrong person to advise on house-pimping. besides, i'd be much more drawn to a house with a functioning watering can than one with glass anything [other than windows] <--- glass shows all the dust and fingerprints, after all.

    best of luck, i'll be living vicariously through you as you search for The House. :) xoxo

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    1. I do not want a house that will need constant tiding and cleaning, my idea of hell. Or a landscaped garden that I will have to weed all the time. I think the search may take a while so take a seat :)

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  11. Well for what it is worth I think that your garden looks fantastic!!!!!!! Ours was a total dump when we moved in and if I moved in to find your garden as it is now I would have been over the moon!!! So don't be so hard on yourself! As for finding a new home, as Kirsty has been reminding us on this new series of Location, you need to actually get out and see houses, looking online is not the same as househunting, so I hope that once you are actually out there you will find "the one"! Remember, if it is all neat and tidy it is probably because they have been doing the same as you and you can soon ruffle it around the edges a bit! xx

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    1. I'm a bit worried about going to see places as I may talk myself into something that is not suitable, I'm trying very hard to be objective. But you are right, I need to go and see some, that should be the enjoyable part, but none have been worth looking at yet. Right house wrong location, Right location wrong house, right everything, wrong price.......

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  12. Moving is always a big decision. Having spent years getting your present house the way you like it vowing never again you suddenly find yourself wanting to do exactly that as nobody elses taste is exactly yours. I can completely understand your dilemma. We have thought about moving from the cottage especially as D has a back condition but then he wants a bungalow and I still want to be able to go upstairs to bed. Then there is trying to agree on all the other criteria you will have between you. I sometimes think we need two different houses. For now we have chosen to stay at the cottage and I only have two things on my wish list for the next house at the moment a much bigger kitchen and a conservatory so if I can have those I may let him have the bungalow. Good luck with the estate agents.

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    1. Yes it is a huge decision, we have been thinking about it for a few years but it has never been the right time. It needs to be soon for us to enjoy the benefits. I'm not a huge fan of estate agents having bad experiences of them in the past!

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  13. your garden looks lovely!
    have you considered renting for a bit, you would be a really strong position then with no chain, and wouldn't have to settle for something that wasn't perfect if you had buyers wanting you to move out.

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    1. Hi driftwood, yes I have thought about renting, we had to rent for a month before we moved here because the house wasn't finished, it meant a lot of upheaval at the time and expense, but we may consider it. The thought of being stuck in a chain gives me nightmares.

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  14. Definitely the bottom photo & all the garden shots look good, hope you didn't scare too many of your neighbours xx

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  15. Pictures 6 & 8 are fab. I think we have similar tastes in houses and I agree, houses are to be lived in not showcases xxx

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  16. I could never be tidy enough for it to be a showcase, there's always projects on the go :)

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  17. I love the photos you posted.
    Wheb
    n the x was building houses and I worked in Real Estate.... I used to cringe when a young couple would come in and the wife having a
    Dream House lists. All for way less than asking price.
    But It is good to know what you really "need" as appose to what you think you need and the area you want to look.
    When I bought my house in Tucson, I replaced three bathroom, ripped up all carpets for tile. No worry about footprints and various bug/critters plus dust is just swiffer away. Moved two walls fluffed up the kitchen and now this house is my home.
    I looked on line first and then went with an agent. Bought the first one I saw.
    Oh and I use to "stage" homes too.

    Wish I could go out looking with you.
    Good Luck.

    cheers, parsnip

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    1. Thanks parsnip, that would be fun!

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  18. Your garden and house look fabulous! And I'm sure you will know immediately when you find what you are looking for. It might not be the house of your dreams but you you will know!

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    1. Thanks Gina, it's funny, the more I look the more I know what I don't want :)

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  19. Wow! I think your pictures look fabulous and the garden looks lovely. Have you had that feeling yet where you do up all the house and then think 'why am I moving again?' I know I did when we left our previous home but it was worth it because you will know when you see the right house. Just look past how other people live in it and picture your style in there, if the two are incompatible then you will know. Good look with the search. Have you thought of getting Kirsty and Phil involved? (Location, location)

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    1. Haha, I could cope with Phil, but Kirsty would get my goat :)

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  20. Your photos are terrific! As for finding the right place to move to, have you considered Shetland? Okay, now you're probably staring at the computer wondering if you read that right. :-) Seriously though, it is an amazing place. If I didn't have my family here in Canada I would move there in a heartbeat.

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    1. I have never been to the Shetlands but I have heard it is beautiful, but my heart and family are in Cornwall so can't imagine moving away.

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  21. The photos look great, but OMG you are describing EXACTLY what I am hoping for. I really don't want anything that's too perfect. The house I live in now is lovely, but if it isn't really tidy, well kept and clutter free, it just looks really shabby. I want something we can live in - you could be describing my dream home!!

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    1. Fingers crossed we both find what we are looking for :)

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  22. Your garden looks wonderful. I hope you find a property you like quickly. It is very stressful moving. Joan at www.aviewtothefells.com

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    1. Thank you Joan, stressed already and the process hasn't really started yet!!

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  23. You're not looking for a house, you're looking for a home.

    I think the place looks great, but I'm not exactly a "Better Homes and Gardens" reader.

    I tried to take carefully staged photos that didn't show all the wild plants (well o.k. weeds)

    I prefer to call them "underloved plants".

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    1. Ha nor am I, the next place will have fields not a garden I have to faff around with :)

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