After many months of looking and many months of waiting after finding the perfect place, our little (growing) family is in our new home.
When Tony and I moved to Bangor from Lewiston (a year ago today, in fact!) we found a cozy apartment that was close to work but quite a bit smaller than the house we left behind. I spent the year looking for a place that could be a more forever home — looking much more fervently when we knew that Baby Runs was on the way.
I set up alerts on IFTTT — If This Then That — that sent me an email every time a 3 bedroom or larger living unit was posted on Craigslist. I combed the classifieds every Saturday morning.
Things I wanted in a new place to live:
- More space. We went from a 1500 sq. foot house to an 800 sq. foot apartment.
- A dining room. We love to play board games and entertain friends but had no comfortable place to do that.
- Privacy. Not because I am a very private person (LOL! If I were, I wouldn’t be a very good blogger!), but because our dogs are loud and obnoxious and I hated being those people with the annoying dogs.
- A walkable neighborhood. For most parts of Bangor, this was not a problem, though I have a lot of opinions on things the city could do to make it more cyclist- and pedestrian-friendly.
- West Bangor. Bangor is my home. It’s where my parents and my brother live. It’s where I work. It’s where my dad was born and where my grandparents were born. It’s where I went to high school. It’s where I got married. Even looking at east-side places felt a little out of my comfort zone.*
*I know it sounds silly that I have lived places where I knew no one and/or did not speak the language and yet I did not want to live on the other side of the Kenduskaeg Stream.
There’s something to be said about living close to where you grew up. I was born in Philadelphia and lived the first 14 years of my life there. My mom’s family is from Michigan and my dad’s family is from Bangor, so we were a daylong drive from either family. For the most part, growing up near family is something I didn’t get to do, and I’m glad little Baby Runs will be near at least some of her extended family.
I only had to compromise on one point. The place we eventually found was … gasp … in Brewer.
- We have a big backyard, much bigger than at our old house.
- We have a room for a nursery, which will be designed with a penguin theme.
- We are less than two miles from work, though it’s about a 3-mile walk because we have to go up to the Chamberlain Bridge.
- We are in a terrific walkable neighborhood. There are at least three or four playgrounds within a mile, sidewalks at least two miles out in every direction, and not too much traffic.
- We have a completely remodeled kitchen and bathroom. Our landlord did an amazing AMAZING job.
We found the house in March (when I was about 6 months pregnant), but it wasn’t ready for us until the end of May (8 months pregnant). The difference between how I felt at 6 months and 8 months was huge. This winter I had no problem cleaning and repainting our old house to get it ready for the tenants. This weekend, I would unpack one box and then some quality time with the maternity pillow.
Monday marked 34 weeks. Baby Runs is the size of a cantaloupe (4.75 lbs.) and is no longer at risk of health problems for premature delivery. She now has a nursery and (almost!) a daycare provider, but she does not have a name yet.