Setting Up House

I was reading Rhonda's story about setting up house, and the first paragraph rang a bell, so I thought I would share my story.

I met my husband when I was 20 and about 4 months. We were married when I was 21. Our eldest child was born when I was 24. Our son is 20 now, and he and his girlfriend subletted before Christmas and early this year they got their own flat, and now their own car. His girlfriend came to be with him, after they organised the sublet place and he got part time work. Subletting was not the most pleasant experience as expected by me. She was able to get a nice job fairly quickly. Later on, too quickly to do much about at short notice she was offered a university place in his city, but for now is working and has her real estate licence. Their flat is small, but well worth it for the area it is in. I gave them a table because of its size, but everything else was just lovely when I left, their things very nice. I loved the whole feel to the place. They don't owe anything on their house purchases. Our son has a job that is in his field of study now, he has a 3/4 university load. He will continue on with this for two more semesters. He works 1/2 time and will graduate then.

We met at Easter time and together they enjoyed playing with the other kids in our family, they were here recently for a visit as well.

When I set up my home, well it was already set up. My husband had his house for at least 2 years before I came to be there. I remember he had put in some nice soil and planted some fruit trees.

We have had a little hand in helping our son set up his house. Before he moved into the sublet place his Dad helped him take a bed and mattress there. His only transport was the bus at the time. I wasn't able to help because I was at home with most of the other children. He chose the bed because it was cheap. I have since seen the bed and I absolutely love it. I was able to lend the sheets for a little while, they had already got some of the other things. I lost track of some of the other purchases, but when it all came together I was so impressed with the simple look. Not all the things were unpacked so I didn't see the final result. The microwave will be the last purchase for awhile, maybe some very unusual chairs as they don't actually have a proper loungeroom. My husband was also there to help when the TV stand was bought.

I was able to help in a small way to help them find a place to live of their own. I did a tiny bit of leg work that helped lead on to something. Talked through the issue with the fridge, to start with they managed without one. They are now back to doing a proper shop each week.

My husband hadn't had a property settlement before I moved in. Everything was as it was. I moved in an organ that I had bought, an old organ. I started giving things back but that was silly really. I used the saucepans and things like that for a very long time, and still use the kitchen utensils and other things. Some of the blankets are still here, some 24 years later. They were all very good quality.

My Grandpa had died and my husband had refinished an old wardrobe, a kauri pine dresser. I had bought a nice wooden 3/4 bed, the oldfashioned type before king singles came back. The old ones were high off the ground. Our son slept in it for awhile then I deemed some of these things impractical. I didn't really need a dresser in some ways because there was already one there and I gave it back. It was nice, so maybe I should have just kept it. In the end one day I asked for a thank you, and it was too much and that was the end of my giving things back. I still have an item still, don't know what to make of that, wish they had sorted it out and not left it up to me, but perhaps they did and I kept the thing going.

I was reading back my memories on recent posts and it all sounded flowery. Then my husband and I were discussing pubs, he thought I didn't go to any. Then I recounted the pubs I was taken too when I was little etc. I realised my life has lots in it, that don't reflect the simple philosophy I am in at the moment.

I still have army blankets and things my Mum gave me. They were always used to put under mattresses etc. They may be slightly more moth eaten than they are supposed to be. I have a wool blanket on my bed today (Friday), it is snowing today, and it does add a nice warmth over the top of the 3 blanket doona and the shiny top.

I had a go at buying our own furniture with tax cheques etc. I got lounge suite, dresser (dressing table) for myself, a table and welsh dresser set. The lounge suite lasted a very short time. When we went to our last house in our hometown I had to get a once flash second hand one, and we still have the 2 piece set. It is not fashionable, but it seems the only couch that can stand up to the wear. We got another and it was ruined as well, yes, that one cheap.

I bought a very cheap second hand table and chair set recently that had been resprayed, this is the table I lent. But I am happy with that, and love the carver chairs.

At the moment I am not buying any furniture, I will wait until we have things settled with our houses. We have some things that we would like to fix and start again with, an icechest to refinish and things like that, but that is unlikely to happen.

I am glad our son was able to coordinate his furniture and things and that everything looks nice. Only the table is not new. He lived in University Accommodation for 2 years. I think I took on a lot of things that others didn't want anymore. We want to go through things again.

I definitely won't be buying anything interest free in the forseeable future. Our curtains in our two current houses and the two before that Mum helped with. Some of the curtains someone had in the cupboard from the Salvos, Mum made them over. Some material we bought from a factory, some was seconds or not up to stratch from the factory hubby worked in. Some from ebay. I did buy some verticals in our first home after the roller blinds started falling to bits.

I had lots of thoughts about our son and buying secondhand etc. But I am settled now with things, and don't remember my exact thinking. I like it when things are settled. Very few in our son's position at work live away from home, so must be the experience of country children mostly. Quite a big thing for the parents in some ways, but we are brought up to it. We lived no where near a university when I was little and most had to drive at least 1/2 hour to work if they had a conventional job. We were aware of petrol prices even when they were cheap before our treechange, and lived close by to the factory hubby worked in. If we had lived out of town having a job at the factory would have been unworkable and we wouldn't have been able to support ourselves.


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