We live in a house on top of the hill and for the past six years it has been our life, but the time is fast approaching for us to move. There are many reasons I’m ready to move on, but I keep finding myself wandering around the house and filing away memories. It’s like I’m trying to stuff my brain with all the moments I’ve shared here with my family. Each moment, I recreate in my mind, then wrap in newspaper and pack away for safe keeping.
This house has been so kind to us. It was the first home my husband Twiggy and I purchased together. We bought it off an elderly couple who built the house in 1970. She designed it. He spent most of his time burying large objects around the property (we suspect to save on dump fees). He also stashed a gun in the roof, but that’s another story. They loved this house, it was their pride and joy. He was dying from cancer, she needed to be closer to her family. It was their time to move, but you could sense the reluctance. If they could have stayed living here forever I think they would. They made the real estate agent set up a meeting with us before any contracts were signed so they could decide if we were worthy of buying their home. We ate cheese on jatz biscuits and drank warm beer. We admired their floral curtains and promised to love their home and with heavy hearts, I could only imagine comes when age forces its hand, they agreed to sell. I’ll be forever thankful to them for trusting us with their past.
The house has been so very kind to us. It’s taught us a lot about ourselves, how much how relationship can handle and how shit it is to get bright yellow gloss paint off every wall. Twiggy renovated the house himself and together we chose colours, picked bench tops, fixtures, tiles and furnishings. I can even laugh at the “through clenched teeth discussions” at Ikea, now they’re firmly in the past. There’s been hours of painting, sawing, hammering, hours of cleaning dust off furniture and scrubbing mud off floors. I’ve squatted in the garden while heavily pregnant, he’s washed himself in the sprinkler. I’m amazed we made it though.
As I sit here and write and look around me, I feel immense satisfaction. Our house on the hill is gorgeous. We have views over the valley. At night we can hear the koalas grunting and in the morning we hear kookaburras. When we turn off the television, there is deafening silence. When we turn the outside lights off, there is blinding darkness. Unlike in the city, when the moon is full you notice how bright it is. And the stars truly twinkle when we stand outside with the girls and sing to the sky.
As the time grows closer to moving day, I’ve started to get sad. I’m scared when I go to sleep for the first time in our new home I will cry for what we’ve left behind, that I will cry with regret. This house has been where we’ve shared our happiest times. This is the first home our three babies have lived in, so far it’s their only home. It’s where we brought each of our girls home from the hospital, bundled in our arms, nervous and excited for who they will become. The enormity of those first few moments, introducing a newborn to their future, is forever etched in the very fabric of this house. It’s a house of firsts – smiles, words and steps. Everywhere I look, I am reminded of how quickly they’ve grown, how we began our journey as parents, how our relationship’s changed and strengthened. I’m worried that somehow we’ll lose those moments when we leave.
I now understand the anxiety of the original owners who sold us the house. A whole stage of our life will be left behind here, as was their youth. I know rooms don’t contain memories, our souls do, but still I worry we will be leaving a part of us in these rooms and I don’t want them to be lonely when we’ve moved on. I’ll do my best to wrap them up in my heart and take them with us to our new home, where they will sit alongside the new memories we will create. I can only hope our new house is as kind to us as this one has been.
Really sad. We probably need a bigger house but have done everything we can to make it work for longer. Like you my kids have grown up here, I would find it hard to leave. But my husband keep on going on about needing a bigger garden. I won’t even go and look.
Great post, BW. Something to be said for houses on the hill, true silence, and true uninterrupted darkness to see the moon and the milky way by. You have done so much since I saw it last – looks awesome. Just tell me you haven’t altered that fabulous bathroom too much!
Enjoy creating new memories in your new home.
Is there a kind of bubble wrap for the soul? You know, to protect it from this bump of moving?
I totally understand your feelings here. Was how I felt leaving our house in the Big Smoke – and there wasn’t even a hill involved. But you’ll soon be making new memories in your new place. And they’ll be just as good (minus yellow gloss) I promise.
Thanks for your lovely comments. It’s strange how even though you know you’re ready to go, you still feel trepidation. x
This is a well timed post for me, this time last year we left the UK to live in our new place in Cyprus and I felt much the same as you.
Onwards and upwards, good luck in your new place.
What a lovely post. I hear you. We have renovated and remodelled and moved a few times, and that alone was hard. To move from the home that you have done so much living in, it’s hard.
A house holds so much emotion, it amazes me how hard it is to leave one and how quickly we re-adjust and find the ‘home’ in the new one.
Any big change is hard and very scary. Cherish the memories and enjoy the future.
I love the comment from Glowless about bubble wrapping the soul. I’ve hated leaving all of our houses and shed many tears in empty rooms while I’ve envisaged new babies being bought home, dinner parties while rushing up to nurse a child. Thinking of you sweetie while you go through it all, you’ve done a great job with your house on the hill, and you’ll do an even better one on your next adventure. Kx
Moving house is always hard, more so when there are kids to package up as well. But it’s also an exciting adventure too…new corner shops, new neighbours to spy on. Am sure you’ll settle into your new home happily, though there might be a few tears along the way.
Oh I am so there with you.
We were meant to get into this house, renovate and leave a year later. Nearly 4 years on, we are still here. We love our street & although it’s only tiny, this house has literally kept us all close together in some pretty horrendous times.
But it so time for us to move on.
Good luck with yours. xx
gorgeous post – I bet the girls will drive their own children back one day to share where they spent their littlest days. Your new adventure will be just as awesome, and create so many more wonderful things to look back on.
We are also moving and your post inspired me to write my own memories post.
What a history. And what a beautiful transformation.
We too need to move but I am reluctant for all the same reasons.
oh what a difference there is between a house … and a home.
There certainly is a sadness to moving even when we know it’s necessary. Well written!
I suspect when we finally move on from our house I think there will be similar feelings from me. It’s the first real house where we put so much effort into making a HOME.
Visiting from Red Dress Club
Your home sounds heavenly. I too live on hill, but I am surrounded by trees, so the moon and stars are enclosed above us, making an extra pretty sight.
I remember when my mom sold the house I had lived in for my first 12 years. It was hard. I still miss that house. But it was the beginning of a new adventure and though I still miss that place at times, I’ve never lamented the fact that we had to move.
I love so much that the old couple who owned it wanted to know who they were handing their precious house to. The notion that a house is a home, not just an economic investment. And it sounds like you gave it plenty of love! We are also thinking about moving on after 6 years and everytime I started sorting through things (kids stuff of course) I get very contemplative. Lovely reading.
Your photos remind me of those before and after pics in a real estate mag! Great job! I hope you find as much love in your next home 🙂
I was like this the last time we moved (well, our only time as a couple) and I walked around every room trying to imprint it on my memory. I was so sad and yet so excited to move to our new home as our first baby was on the way. I hope you have just as many lovely memories when you choose your new home:) Jen
I have had to move with my kids many times since they were born, and although I try not to get attached to a house I know my kids do. If you want some tips I have gathered through my many experiences you can check out this post I wrote
hope it helps xxxCate
I haven’t lived in a lot of places in my life but each and every one holds special memories for me. We too will be moving next year and whilst the new house is an exciting dream, leaving this one will be with a tinge of regret.
Loved this post. Thanks for linking up at the Fibro this weekend. 🙂
A very special blog post, best of luck and love in your new house, just think of all the wonderful memories you are going to create there!
Beautiful words and such a lovely first home.
May your new home be just as blessed x