I’ve been very good about looking at ranches, considering only single story homes for Ethan and me. I had almost reached the point where I began to prefer ranches stylistically to two-story houses when a dream dutch colonial went on the market. I knew I just had to see it.
There has been only one other dutchie that I’ve stepped foot in, and I loved it, but it lacked the revival character I had grown to love from antique house plans. I thought this newly listed house could be the one, though it went against every rule I had formed to help guide us in the hunt.
1. Single story home.
2. Short and flat driveway.
3. Modest yard with easy maintenance.
These rules are very important, as I have begun to look at houses through a more realistic lens. Because of Ethan, I feel I need to be 100% positive I can take care of the house by myself (for the future). The yard, the driveway, even the roof. You wouldn’t believe house six inches of snow can change your mind about driveway design. It’s amazing however how ready I was to throw the rules out the window for the 1930s DCR.
It was one I have admired often, one of three dutchies in a row in a cute part of town. Though the road it is on is a busy one, the homes hold their value and it is centrally located. As soon as I saw it online I texted our realtor, and he got us in the same afternoon (yesterday).
Driving up the slushy lane, I took the details in: the painted white brick that I thought was siding from the curbside, the pretty mullions in the sunroom, the way a cupola would look attached to the carport. Inside, I was greeted by archways and a sweeping banister, my favorite style of fireplace mantel, and ceiling timbers in the extra-large kitchen. I loved it. I wanted it.
Upstairs there were two large bedrooms, large enough for lots of babies when Ethan and I get to that point in our lives. Everything was original except for the cabinetry, but even that wasn’t current. The screened-in porch was ample and I fought away visions of fall nights wrapped in blankets there. As we closed the front door to return to the car, I was certain I needed to drag my dad out into the miserable weather to check it out too. But upon returning “home,” it was a much different story.
As much as my head loved the house, I knew in my heart that it isn’t for this life. I can’t choose our house on what I want. It has to work for the both of us. I hope someone with my sensibilities scoops up this dutchie. I hope they sandblast the white paint off the gorgeous red brick and add shutters to the windows. I hope they see the potential of the grand old home and not try to change it too much.
But the simple fact is, they aren’t us.
And I plan on sticking to my rules like glue from here on out.