Plunging back into home ownership

Tomorrow. Laila and I are closing on our new home in Calhoun, Georgia. After months of everyone telling us what a great time it is to be a home buyer and a few counter offers later, voila! Its a perfect home for us. All hardwood floors without a scrap of carpet in it,which is good since I won't have to vacuum on a bi annual basis any longer. It also has the two car garage as seen above, so I can clean out my storage unit and still not have a place to park. This purchase will also mark the return of Poolboy who I thought had permanently retired upon his move Northward from Florida six plus years ago.


This move has put me in a little bit of a reflective mood about all the places I have lived. I can remember five places I have lived with my folks.

Darien, Illinois right off of Cass Avenue where all the parents would respond to the comment "I'm bored" with the comment "Why don't you go play in the middle of Cass avenue?. That was until some stupid kid did (No stupid kids were ever hurt doing it though).

There was some apartment temporarily in New Jersey where all I remember is the neighborhood kids playing soccer in the hallway.

There was the house in Marlton, New Jersey. I remember it was there where I first fell in love with baseball and my first team the Phillies. It was also there where some Alaskan Malamute picked up my Cairn Terrier with its teeth and mauled it. Somehow Corfe survived another 14 years after that. I also remember it for some monstrous snow ball fights and my favorite field trips in school as a child. We would go to Philly and see Independence Hall and the Liberty Bell and once to Valley Forge. I think it was there that my love of history was born.

There was a house in Houston (you could call it Alief I suppose) where I learned what it was to sneak out and to TP a house. It was also there where I got my first paper route. I think this is where I learned responsibility (maybe) and the importance of a job. I remember the days when it was so cold, or windy or raining where I sure did appreciate when my Dad would drive me in the back of the Plymouth Volare Station Wagon. It was only years later that it would be revealed to me my Mom would bug the heck out of him on those days until he did. It was also there where I learned to love newspapers. There was something special about wrapping papers at 3 O' Clock on a Sunday morning and reading the headlines. No internet in those days so you felt like you were the first to find out about everything. The one story I remember more vividly than any other was the day I opened it up and read about the Jonestown Massacre in Guyana. 

We then moved to Sugar Land, Texas. I remember it as being the middle of nowhere at the time. Not any more. This will always be the house I consider to be my childhood home. Too many memories to list here but I do specifically remember coming home from the movie "The Fish that saved Pittsburgh" to find it in flames. I also remember jumping out of a second story window to sneak away to the beach in Freeport with a young lady named Pam. Only youthful exuberance can make that seem like a good idea at the time. The funniest part was no matter how many times you snuck out or what time you came back the odds were about 75% that Mom would be sitting on the bottom of the stairs when you got home. Youthful exuberance again, no re entry plan.

I lived by myself in a couple of apartments after that. There was one up by West Oaks mall where I first became a cat owner  servant. I had always been a dog person but when some family friends were moving to England and couldn't take them with them I got Peanut Butter, Jelly and Moonshadow. So it was there that I learned to love cats.

I then got my first house in Sugar Land. It was small but had a hot tub in the back yard. While there it was mostly softball and parties. There, I learned how to throw a Super Bowl party. 

From there it was on to Garden City, Kansas and a condo. I will always remember it as the place I brought my daughter home to.

Then I bought a house two blocks away, it was the first house I (we) had ever bought on our own.  It was there that I learned you should always at least look at the back yard before you buy a house. It was the home I brought my son home to, It was also there where I truly learned how to shovel snow.

Then it was onto Florida and the emergence of the original pool boy. It was a lot of fun to live with a screened in pool right off the back doors. It was there that I fell in love with Disney World, theme parks in general and particularly roller coasters. I remember it wasn't as difficult to get people to visit me there as it was in Kansas.

From there it was on to Ringgold, Georgia where I (we) bought a very nice house. There is a lot I could say but I guess for me it was there that I had to say good bye to my children as they moved off to Iowa.

That brings me to the house Laila and I currently live in in Ringgold. It was a blessing to find a house that someone would rent to people with two cats and two dogs. It has no storage space, no garage, a gravel driveway and in many ways resembles a shack on the outside. It has been my favorite house, it was Laila and mine's first house and it was here that I fell in love with the North Georgia mountains. It has an incredible view off of the back porch in the winter and the back yard grows into a jungle and bird paradise in the summer.  We are leaving our bird feeder and bird bath along with some food and directions on how to feed them. Poor little things might starve.

I was also thinking, that from the hot tub house in Sugar Land to this one now I always had my dog Brooks with me. He may have been one of the sweetest, most well traveled dogs of all time.  He passed away last summer while the kids were here. It came so soon on the heels of Louie's death I just couldn't write about it at the time. I will always remember him in his little baby pool at the hot tub house, he loved the water. That is until Florida when he didn't quite understand the inground swimming pool and tried to walk across it. He sort of lost his zest after that, but I could picture him on the deck of the new pool and it makes me sad he won't be there.

Wow, I laughed, I cried writing that.

All that being said I am very excited about buying the house. Usually I hate moving but I am looking forward to this one. Check back with me next week to see if I still like moving.

I am also looking forward to having TV again, satellite this time! Curse You Charter Cable! 







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