What happens when old people buy an old house? Lets just say that when we decided to downsize for the last and final time, we were seeking to put off any thought of Independent Living places. We just don’t feel the need for anything like that yet. We had many thoughts about how we would go about things! We knew that we were way past the stage of wanting to do a full renovation on a house, for as history has taught us, the latest and greatest is only new for a while! We have built two new homes and it was so much fun picking out tile, carpeting, cabinets, floor plans etc. We did it twice and of course the second house took on a distinctly different flair from the first house. Everything was brand spanking new! But, as we discovered, all things get old in time!
This time we moved to a retirement community and we looked at the new homes which were nice, but the lots were tiny and so were the houses. Through the years, retirement communities have cut back on a lot of things in the new build category. At the top of our wish list was the desire to have a sense of privacy from the neighbors, which one does not get very often in the newer sections of these retirement communities. We really liked this place because our house sits a respectable distance from the neighbors, and because our back porch looks over a greenbelt. This was the main reason we decided to buy this house.
Right out of the gate, fresh from signing the purchase agreement, we hired painters to paint all the walls and ceilings throughout because 20 year old paint just looked tired. We replaced the old carpeting in the Master Bedroom with wood flooring, and we hired an electrician to move a couple of fans and add some overhead lighting. So we were making progress! Al decided to have the exterior painted as well, as there were some cracks in the stucco. Essentially, a lot of the signs of aging have been corrected.
We love the house! This house feels “just right” for this time of our lives. It is comfortable and easy to maintain. Al wanted a “lock and leave” place so we could travel and he has no interest in living in “House Beautiful”. What I mean by this is that other than the painting, bedroom flooring, a little electrical work, and interior shutters, we are done! We can age in place here very well!
Which brings me to orange! The Top kitchen cabinets are shorter than most cabinets are these days but seem to be of solid good quality. They had no hardware when we moved in and now they sport warm oil rubbed bronze handles. Unfortunately, in the 20 years since the cabinet installation, the finish has oxidized. The finish which was once a soft natural finish has turned to an orange! ORANGE! The handles helped a lot in how they look…but, oh dear! Orange!! My first instinct was to paint them or have them painted a neutral color. But in the two months since we have moved in, I realize that I kind of like them. They blend very well with the wood floor (another story). Besides, even if I did not like them, I really have NO interest in going through a painting process at this age, whether by our own hands or the hands of a professional. The cabinets have a vintage feel to them, and what better pairing of homeowners and their cabinets than when BOTH are vintage! Haha!
Frankly, I have tired of chasing after the latest and greatest! I am weary of the ongoing TV shows that teach us how to be unsatisfied with the way our house looks! All we ever see is a gutting and stripping of the family home, with no thought given to the people who lived and loved there within those well worn walls. I am impatient with this materialistic world where we are forever running to keep up. Whether we know it or not, we are negatively affected by the hyper focusing and comparisons of externals. The only thing that ever gives us happiness and joy is love of family and friends and a connectedness between all and this can be as easily felt within the confines of a tent! Love is love no matter where one expresses it and feels it.
I remember the days when we were young and we went along with our Mothers on a visit to a neighbors, friends or relatives house. Nothing about anyones decor was ever scripted or “exquisitely appointed”. (At least not in the region I lived in.) Houses in those days were as individual as the people who lived there. Those women did not hire people to come in and plan out their decor. I don’t think that was something even available to these country women in those times. Their budgets would not have allowed for it in any case. So for us as children, these visits were fun as we let our eyes roam around the hostess home which was so very different from our own home. We sat quietly entertaining ourselves in fun visual adventure, while our Mothers visited. Every single home was different and unique. House plants were a thing in those days, often sitting on the window sills leaning into the light coming through the glass. I specifically remember a plant called “baby tears” which was a small green plant with multitude of tiny tear shaped leaves. I remember many of the women in the area often had baked goods on their counters and it smelled heavenly as we waited in anticipation of being offered a piece of a hot, sweet something or another. As a matter of fact, I am still enthralled with plants and baked goods! Lol!
I digress….I found myself a long way down memory lane as I sat with my tea contemplating my orange cabinets. I had to bring myself back around to the present moment. I look again at the shiny, orange glow and smile. Yup! I think I will keep them as they are right now. Haha! Maybe I will get a vibrant rug, paint a wall in the kitchen, buy a plant for my table by the front window! These are easy things to do and relatively cheap! I already feel as if I am “back home” (waaaaay back) and I get a warm fuzzy feeling inside as I do the comparisons.
NEED to have is more important than WANT to have.
FUNCTIONAL is preferable to WASTE.
I remember my Grandpa stating when talking about something quite old. “It is perfectly good as it is.” “Waste not is want not!“
Yes, this could be fun!
I hear something speaking to me in a soft low voice. Actually, almost telepathic, I would say….“What’s that you say?”
My cabinets send out waves of loving telcommunication…
“Orange you glad we found each other?” They ask!
“I absolutely am! Nice to meet you and I am so glad to make your acquaintance! ..I think we shall become great friends!”
ORANGE! For me it is the new beige! Lol!