almost home...

We have been talking about buying this house for such a long time that lots of people think we are already in it.  As it turns out, it actually IS annoying to buy a house.  It seemed pretty easy when all I was doing was responding to non-stop requests for information for the first few months.  But, it is still almost done.  We had to switch the type of loan we were getting and make some sacrifices on our timeline and budget for the needed renovation, but we should be homeowners by the end of next week at the latest (but I've heard that before...) 

The first thing we need to do when we get the keys is tackle some safety concerns... there are 100 spider nests, some peeling (probably lead) paint, and a few missing floor boards. 

But the next first thing we need to do is turn this Noah's Arc into a summer haven for grilling and chilling.  That closed in porch has got to go.

This will be the first time since Mark and I built a skateboard trick box together, which revealed that our power tool wielding styles are in conflict, that we pick up hammers and face each other off again.  Who will survive?  Only time will tell.

We will ply the panels off, trim off the edges, sand and paint the porch ceiling and floor, and install a nice victorian rail (from a kit.)  It seems like a reasonable first attempt at DIY and sweat equity.  I might unlease my inner artist and go Edward Scissorhands on those ugly bushes... maybe if they were spiral shaped with something flowery growing around them... and vines coming up the rails of the porch...

Our next task will be to unravel the mystery of the downspout that goes straight into the ground.  And I'm sure we have some spring gutter cleaning to do.  (I need to relish the fact that this is probably the only time I will ever look forward to that task.)

I am so blissed that I found these pictures thanks to online archiving of the Cleveland area history.  This is a pic of our new street... looking South from the Nickel Plate Rail crossing back in 1930. 

This shot from Google Streetview illustrates how very little things have changed... except that there are a lot of beautiful trees that have gone missing over time.  That's too bad, because that is one of the things Mark always talks about wanting... trees along the lane. 

Here is a shot of the intersection where our street hits the main road looking East, just a short block from our house back in 1965.  Some of the same shops are still there.

And back in 1964, this anonymous guy stood out in the middle of the street (did his mother teach him nothing about getting hit by a car?) in front of what would notoriously soon become the humble Cleveland beginnings of the famous McCowen Empire.

I don't know about you, but I just love this stuff.

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