The story of a storybook house

One night back in March, Husband and I were sitting about with my lovely brother in law and his even lovelier wife, when the topic of conversation turned to houses. Leigh and David had recently purchased a home and we were chatting about their place for awhile. Then, David, being David, started to ask us questions about when we were going to think of buying, where we wanted to live, what kind of place we wanted, etc.

We mentioned that we were kind of thinking the lower Blue Mountains might be nice but that we weren’t planning to ‘officially’ start looking until later in the year.

Skip forward an hour and all four of us were on our smartphones browsing through various property websites and checking train commute timeframes from different mountain suburbs. For some reason, I felt the need to pipe up every few minutes with ‘this is not an official look! We’re not officially looking, ok?’. I think I was scared we’d actually find something we liked and I wasn’t mentally prepared to leave the city.

But then my loveliest of lovely sister declared ‘I’ve found it! This is your house’. And we brought this perfect storybook house up onto the big screen.

We loved it instantly and vowed to call the estate agent the very next day. But somehow we got busy, distracted, and forgetful and the call didn’t happen. Two weeks passed by, but I couldn’t get the house out of my mind. When I mentioned to Husband that “I just CAN’T stop thinking about that place”, he confessed that he couldn’t either.

We decided to go and check it out and while we were up in the mountains, we’d see as many other places as we could fit into our day. Just, you know, to get a feel for the market, as you do when you’re being all grown up and HOUSE HUNTING! We still weren’t officially looking, I told myself. We were just checking it out. Just sussing the sitch.

As we approached the house, Husband gave me strict instructions that I was to keep my usually excitable personality in check and show no interest or emotion in front of the agent. I rolled my eyes till my head almost fell off and then agreed to be on my best behaviour. Which lasted all of five minutes. As soon as we walked down the drive way, I could feel my face start cracking into a smile. Then I walked in, saw the gas stove and it was all over. “I loooove it!’ I started whispering (loudly) to Husband.

We just knew. You know how sometimes you just know? Like when you find the perfect wedding dress. You just know.

We made an offer the next day and signed a contract within a week. All that paperwork stuff? Gosh but it’s confusing. Because we weren’t ‘officially looking’ we hadn’t organised pre approval and we didn’t have a solicitor. Thank goodness for a husband with a head for numbers. I sat in dazed confusion while our broker explained the difference between compound interest, off set accounts & other boring details. While he droned on, I spent my time mentally re-decorating the bedroom. Thank goodness too that one of my best friends happens to be a conveyancer (albeit in a different state) and could talk me through the process.

We move next Friday. I’ll be sad to leave the City. I’ve lived here in this little flat for 11 years. The whole time I’ve lived in Sydney, Pyrmont, and this tiny two bedder has been my home. But it’s time to move onto something bigger, something better, somewhere with a gas stove, dammit.

It’s going to be freezing, there’ll be snakes in the backyard and I’ll probably end up with a leech on me every day. But oh the house. Oh. I do so love it. And houses with that much character don’t make themselves available for you every day. When they do, you just have to say ‘Thanks! We’ll take it!’

And will I be singing ‘She’ll be coming down the mountains’ on each and every one of my daily commutes? You betcha!

This picture reminds me of…


Apparently when the Zombie apocolypse comes, her & my husband are going to turn into strategic, super ninjas. They’ll protect her husband & myself.

Jay & I will be left to collect fire wood and bake cakes. Sounds like a pretty good gig.


Art by Nan Lawson