Saturday, November 21, 2009

A little piece of heaven

Today, November 20, 2009, my husband and I bought our own little piece of heaven.

Two acres, backed by greenbelt on two side. 6 miles from downtown Austin where we work. We can keep our horses, our chickens, our dogs, right there with us. He can have his big workshop, I can have my garden and my own barn. We can ride our horses out the back gate and have miles of trails at our disposal. Absolute heaven.

To put it in perspective, the view out of my new kitchen window looks like this:

The tree in the far right is the back right corner of the property.

Of course, there's one minor thing... the house that sits on this property was built in 1951. And it's never been updated.

Well, I suppose I shouldn't say never. It does have a new furnace. At some point someone installed central A/C (thank the stars!). The original septic tanks were filled in in 1993 and new sewer lines were run when it was put on city sewer. It might have had a new roof put on sometime around 1980 (we know because it needs a new roof... DESPERATELY). But otherwise, it's got the original fixtures, cabinets, kitchen, floors, doors, and everything else. Which makes it... kinda neat, actually. But in desperate, desperate need of help and updating.

I won't get into all the foibles here, that's for later posts. But let me point out a few extra-special fun things:

The property includes a guest house. At some point, the guest list included termites. Termite treatment (and follow-up reconstruction of damaged areas) is scheduled for early next week.

The property originally had a well, which is now defunct (you can see the corner of the well house on the left of the picture). It doesn't really matter since the house is on city water now. These two concrete cisterns were holding tanks for well water, but they are no longer in use. However, we are considering using them as rainwater storage tanks if we can collect rainwater off the (as yet nonexistent) barn roof. Water here in central Texas is extremely precious, and rainwater collection is becoming very popular.

This may be my "favorite" thing... a PINK bathroom. If you know me, you'll know how much I HATE pink. The tile MUST GO.

And so, the journey begins. It's a big project, and we worry that we're biting off more than we can chew... but on the flip side, we can envision what it will look like in a few years when it's all done (if such a project can ever be "done")... sitting on our back patio sipping coffee (well, OK, chai for me) watching the sun rise with the horses grazing along the fenceline... yeah.

Front view of the house.

Oh, and MK and DK? Thanks for making this a possibility. We owe you - literally and figuratively! In the meantime... how do you feel about tearing out a fireplace? :)

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