It’s A Wonderful Life

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Bear with me while I try to get out something that’s been rattling around in my tiny little brain for the past few weeks.

I am not brave.

Thus far, 2017 has been chock full of enough major life events to last a solid decade. In February, my husband deployed to Southwest Asia. Our crazy life had to keep on running despite my other, better, help-ier half being 8,000 miles away. I still had to get on with homeschooling our kids and working from home. Also during that time frame I turned 30, was a bridesmaid in my BFF’s destination wedding, celebrated our 9th wedding anniversary from afar, trained for and ran a 10K, and juggled several big work deadlines. When he got home in July, I peaced out and went to Paris by myself for a week.

People would say, “aren’t you scared?” “You’re so brave.” “I just couldn’t do it.”

But I have a dream. We have a plan. This is the way we’ve chosen to live our life.

Within six weeks after I got home from France, we were already living here. In just those few weeks we listed and sold our house in NC, put an offer on the Brick and Maple and closed on it, packed up our entire house and moved into the literal house of my dreams. Simply saying, “I like old houses” is the understatement of the century. As a young kid and on into my teenage years, I used to keep disposable cameras with me at all times and make my parents pull over whenever we passed an old, decrepit beauty that I wanted a picture of. That scene in It’s A Wonderful Life when George Bailey runs from room to room yelling about this ‘drafty old house’ and kissing the Newel post top that keeps coming off in his hands gets me EVERY DAMN TIME.

So when I saw The Brick and Maple, I knew. I just knew. I had it saved on my real estate search engine account for MONTHS. Built in 1887? BRING IT ON. Almost 6,000 square feet? Lay it on me! Original, drafty old windows? Be still my heart.

“Are you sure?” people would ask. “That’s… a lot of house.” Again they would say, “You’re so brave.”

But… why? I’m not. I just… have a dream.

Living my dream is not brave.

Living YOUR dream is not brave.

Brave is what my husband did for many months this year. This? This is just not being afraid. Sure there are risks in buying a 130 year old home. People probably do think we’re crazy. But I don’t care… because life is all about risk assessment and mitigation. Fear is healthy but fear is also designed to keep us safe. We could have been safe and bought your run of the mill, cookie-cutter house. Low risk.

But you know what I hear? When I hear ‘low-risk’ I hear ‘low reward’.

Holding onto that fear would have kept us from leaping into a once in a lifetime house. And it almost did… I definitely had a mini panic attack on my Mother-in-Law’s couch when we were going back and forth on whether we were going to put in an offer at ALL.

I am so, so, so glad that we did, but bravery didn’t have anything to do with it.

Do you have a dream? Don’t be afraid to take that leap! The only thing fear will do is hold you back and then, one day, you’ll realize you haven’t scratched anything off of your bucket list. Me? I intend to go out in a blaze of glory, filled with memories instead of regrets, in this big, drafty old house. It certainly IS a wonderful life.


Stay sweet,
The Brick and Maple Fam <3

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