I have fallen in love with a cottage.


And it’s accompanying wildflower meadow, sighhhhh.

It’s not the house I posted a few weeks back. 

This cottage is smaller. 

It’s dated. 

On paper it is all wrong. 

So why can’t I get this cottage out of my head?  I feel like a 15 year-old girl who has fallen in love with a guy from the wrong side of the tracks.  And this is not the type of real estate market that is forgiving of mistakes.  Buy a house now and you had better be willing to hold onto it for a long time. 

Truth be told, it is a house I first saw when we were still living in the New Old House.  It was on the market, we went to see it, I loved it but knew the time was not right.  Nevertheless, I sent pictures and texts to my E-bff, Miss Layla, and she kept responding “Buy it!  Buy it!!  BUY IT!!!”  I have since sent her pictures of other house listings and she always responds, “No.  The cottage.” 

I have been mentally renovating and decorating this cottage for the past ten months.  I could tell you what color I would paint the beadboard ceiling on the front porch and just where I would add an additional window and french doors to the interior.  The trouble is-the house is all wrong on paper, but perfect in my mind:

  • It is only 1200 square feet (eep!) and we are a growing family (but it would cost less to renovate, decorate, furnish and keep up)
  • it is only 2 bedrooms and one doesn’t even have a closet (but it sits on 2 acres with room for an addition and I dislike clutter anyway)

    (this is not the cottage, but look how clever!)
  • it is on a main road-probably the biggest draw back to me personally (but as previously mentioned it comes with a wildflower meadow-surely wildflower meadow trumps main road?? )

  • It has a dated 1980s kitchen (but its spacious and I see what it could be and what I see is beautiful and I’m already baking Christmas cookies there in my old beautiful cottage kitchen with Wynn on a step stool helping me pipe icing onto gingerbread men and we lick the bowl clean because that is the kind of life we live in this cottage- a lick the bowl clean kind of life)

So there you have it, my confession to you.

I have fallen in love with the wrong kind of house. 

It has me by the heart strings and won’t let go.


  1. OMGoodness those wildflowers! Every time I want to whine because my house is SOOOO small (1200 sq. ft.) I just look around the older neighborhoods in my town and realize that people used to raise families for a lifetime in houses that are even smaller (like 1000 sq. ft. or even a little less)…with no basement…one bathroom…and MAYBE a one car garage…with no vaulted ceilings…not as many windows & smaller windows…no central air conditioning…etc. And I inwardly chuckle at the “dated” word. In today’s oh-so-materialistic society things get “dated” every year or two, it’s impossible to keep up. Sounds charming…if it’s right for you, great {maybe room for expansion?}…if it’s not, I’m sure it has served as great inspiration 🙂 Have a great week! Lisa

  2. Uh-oh – that’s trouble if you’ve already mentally moved in. It’s hard to mentally move out! Any pictures of this charming cottage?

  3. Love covers a multitude of… design flaws?

    In my opinion, its more important to LOVE something -even with all of its imperfections – then to have something that is perfect on paper but doesn’t tug at your heart strings!

    If you are thinking about it this much, then I definitely agree with Layla – BUY IT! 🙂

  4. I wish we had a chance to buy a cottage/bungalow 🙂 unfortunately, cottages seem to be more of a southern thing. We have them here in New England, but mostly on lake-front/oceanfront properties. Instead we bought a split that was built in the 70’s… I have always detested splits. But it has been fun making this one our own (it has needed a lot of work!)

    We’re on the a main road too. Never been a fan of those… but we figured out a way to make it work for us. We’re planning on having children (in the process of adopting!), and we wouldn’t want them riding their bikes down the road (even though the speed limit is 35, people tend to go faster). So this summer the husband is creating trails on our 2 acres of land: trails and paths. It’s going to be lovely.

    The meadow sounds wonderful. We have a tiny bit of “forest” blocking the road from the front of our house. It helps. If the house isn’t too close to the road, I think it won’t bother you too much (unless of course you have semi-trucks using the road. We don’t, thankfully).

    God bless you in your decision!


  5. It is SO charming. As long as with your husband’s job, you won’t need to relocate, then you won’t need to worry about the real estate market, so I would say go for it!

    Actually, my husband and I bought a house 1 1/2 years ago, and we now know we didn’t need one this size, of 2500 sq ft. I know to some of you, you may think, “that’s not large”, but really, why does a family of three need MORE space than that? Unfortunately, there wasn’t much to choose from (bad wiring, you name it) when we were looking, so this is what we purchased. People used to make do with a LOT less, and yes, they made do JUST FINE.

    Our society has become much too materialistic. People don’t “need” 3/4 of what they think they “need”.

    God wants us to make wise decisions and pray about things before we “move” on them. But I also believe in listening to the still, small voice when God is speaking to you on a certain matter, and if you do that, you will never go wrong!

  6. I vote for the cottage. It is beautiful, has charm and character and do you really need much more room? My family of four lives in a 1152 square foot home and we are cozy and fine. I recall my grandmother’s home brimming full with people all the time and her home was tiny. such good memories. You can’t make a bigger place cozier than this! Besides if you wait too long, it will be gone and then you will regret it…you could do an addition in the future! Go for the cottage .. or tell us where it is and we can go :O)
    Stacey of Embracing Change

  7. As long as you’re in a place that makes you and your family happy, it sounds like the perfect place to me:) Best of luck on such a tough decision–I’m sure you’ll make whatever home you choose so lovely:) Thanks for sharing your journeys, I love your blog:)

  8. Sounds like you have found where you are suppose to be at this time in your life – trust your instincts – they’re telling you something very loudly!

  9. Please rethink my dear Erin. Being by a busy road would have me resting so uneasy (beautiful blooms or not) and it may have others also since it’s still on the market.


  10. We have a 2 bedroom house and we love it. We have one and another on the way…they will share a room and then eventually we hope to add on…could you add on to this house? (also a tiny house is so easy to clean)It looks amazing…love that field of flowers!

  11. Sounds like you’ve had a great time dreaming! We bought a house almost 18 years ago that had “potential”. It is still working on living up to it’s full potential! We found out we were expecting baby #1 two weeks after we moved in, then baby #2 came along 8 1/2 years later, followed by baby #3 and baby #4 in the next 4 years! All of this to say, our once “spacious” 1800 sf home now feels much more cozy! (Cozy can be charming and extremely frustrating all in the same day!) There is not a space in our home that we don’t use every day, but there are times we wish we had a little more space to use every day! I must say that I have kind of mourned the selling of the New Old House, but I understand you were walking in obedience! I pray that you and your boys will clearly know God’s plan for this next adventure in your life, and we look forward to seeing and hearing about it. Thanks for sharing your beautiful words and encouragement with us!

  12. SO Saturday I was in Pottery Barn. Sitting on the khaki twill sectional complete with floral and striped pillows, thumbing through a little pamplet on decorating small spaces.

    The way the furniture was arranged in the grouping I was sitting in was so warm and cozy.

    My vote is GO FOR IT! What’s the worst thing that could happen? You buy it, live there for a little while and sell it someday? 🙂 I’m such a promoter!!

    And a picket fence out front would be the perfect addition on a busy road!

  13. Oh. I SO understand the “love this house” feeling! I know you will listen to the Lord and choose the right one, but I will say that even the perfect house with a wildflower meadow would have a hard time competing every day (and night) with the traffic on a busy street. And you are so talented and clever that you could turn any property into your personal heaven (like for instance the house in your February post). God bless you and Hubby in your search.

  14. I fell in love with a cottage once……..we bought it and I had a love hate relationship with it. I loved that house and the 2 1/2 acres but we got so tired of our very long fix it list. As long as you have a fix it kind of hubby and an extra $500 a month for projects then I saw go for it!

  15. Oooh, that’s a hard one Erin! So many pros and cons. We lived in a 1,200 square house and I loved it…but it had 3 bedrooms. When we moved to our next house it was 1,800…with 4 kids! I’ll tell you…your kids will probably WANT to sleep in the same room anyways when they are little guys. We have always had a corner of our room as the “baby’s room” also…till they could move up with the bigger kids. We wanted more privacy which was why we moved to our house now. The busy street is a drawback…I know my boys put me on red alert ALL day when they were toddlers with the way they would attempt to escape every door, fence, boundary…that is a short time I guess though before they know better….that 2 year old year. I wouldn’t care about the kitchen either…in the end, function is what matters and YOU can make anything look great. All three houses we bought were completely head to toe dated. I loved making them my own.
    And look at the garden space!
    I’m not helping at all so I’ll just stop! 🙂

  16. My question to you is this: will you always regret NOT buying this house?

    And just FYI, our family of 7, including teenagers and 4 dogs lives in a 1200 sq. foot house very comfortably.

    Follow your heart.

  17. I just read your post, and I just had to jump into the conversation! I was exactly in your spot 4 years ago…fell in love with a 1158 sq.foot house, sitting on a big piece of land (for the suburbs), built in 1937 and full of charm (some of which I had to rip down, paint, etc to find!) But, we had a family of 5 and I was not sure if we could do it. I am like you, like to organize, create, and hate clutter…so we decided to sign on the dotted line, and we haven’t regretted it at all! Now, since then, I have had baby #4 and really, especially since the kids are little (my oldest is 8), I still love my little house and don’t feel closterphobic at all.
    Not sure how it will be when they are older…but for now, love the small mortgage payment, especially since we can save and put an addition on when we can afford it and we can design the entire thing ourselves!
    I agree with the comment above…follow your heart! 🙂

  18. PRAY, Think, and move slowly, if it’s meant to be there’s no rush.

  19. If your gut is speaking to you that loudly then I don’t know how you will be able to ignore it. Plus, O and I will come and play with you in the wildflowers as that is my dream for her as well.

  20. I’m always looking for signs, and it seems to me that if it’s back on the market and y’all are back to searching….

    We currently live in about 1200 sq ft (plus a basement which adds a little) with a family of 6 and one on the way. It’s doable and there are many advantages (lack of clutter is totally obvious). A beautiful picket fence can help with the road issue.

    I see the only drawback as needing renovations. A growing family means less time to do work on projects as a couple (in our experiences, one adult watches the kids while the other does the work), and it always cuts into family time. If you don’t mind that (and a lot of people don’t), I say go for it. Like a pp mentioned, are you always going to regret it?

  21. we want pictures! 🙂 it sounds perfect. small houses are best, anyway – esp. with acreage! love, mary

  22. You do live a lick the bowl clean kind of life, and with tears in my eyes and inspiration from you in my heart, I am determined to do the same. Love love love this post. But I am convinced you will bring that life to any dwelling.

  23. Those wildflowers are stunning! I say go for it knowing that you have plenty of room to expand and make it your own! I remember part of your criteria was that it needs to be a fixer upper.

  24. Ahhhh, to be THAT in love with a house! That’s not something to be taken lightly. In fact, it’s not really a house at all; clearly, it’s already home. It’s warmed your heart and you don’t even live there. Can’t wait to hear what you all decide to do….

    PS — thanks for stopping by my blog to leave a comment. Since I’m a newbie, I appreciate it very much and would love to have you as a regular blog follower.

  25. my first time here. what a loving way to open your blog….nice and i know exactly what you mean about “your house”. ive got one too. already have everything i want to do, inside and out….its torture huh. one has to dream but would be nice for us to have a dream come true once in a while. would be so contenting huh…dream on….

  26. Please post pictures of the cottage! I want to see!

    This is my first visit to your blog, but I was hanging on every word of that post!

    It sounds lovely. And if your gut tells you to buy it, you should probably listen. Think of it this way, if you lived it NY or Chicago, or San Fran, you’d probably be making do with ALOT less square footage. I live in about 1,000 SF house with a huge yard, and while my boyfriend and I don’t have little one’s (just dogs!) it’s really cozy and I’ve been able to make it look amazing on a smallish budget. Remember that bigger isn’t always better. I can’t stand those McMansions I see popping up everywhere! ZERO character. Rachel Ashwell’s LA house is teeny and she’s made it super gorgeous.

    DO IT! DO IT!

  27. it sounds perfect. so hard to remove emotions when house shopping, but you need to, at least a little. I fantazied about a charming dutch colonial (1800 sq ft) that was on the market when we were 23 and first married and house hunting for our 1st home. we passed, fearing we weren’t up for tackling renovations and the upkeep of an older home. when we started looking for our 2nd home it was on the market again. my heart raced, we drove to peek in the windows before our realtor got us an appointment. we put in a crazy low offer, it was accepted. i took all of these things as signs, as God pushing us in a certain direction. then i panicked. my emotions were getting the better of me. deep down I knew there were issues (too busy street, too small living room, no place to add a second full bath, only 3 bedrooms, etc). i remember going to coffee with my Mum and asking her what I should do. she told me to stop romantazing the house. to be practical, list the pro and cons, and chances are we already knew the right choice. we ended up pulling out of the deal and finding our home about 2 months later. NO REGRETS. Take your time. Listen to your heart, yes, but don’t lose your head!


  28. Erin, I love the new look.
    Looks to me that you had a wonderful Mothers day ! Your Little Man is So Sweet !
    Bless you and your family

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