Ok, so now that I’ve told you why we moved, I’ll answer some of your questions about the new place ;).
We moved to the Bonsall/Fallbrook/Vista area. It’s about an hour south and inland from where we were living in Costa Mesa, just inland from Oceanside. With all of the time spent at home this year, I was craving more space and more nature for the girls. We are still only 25 minutes from the beach and hey, it took that long to get there with traffic in Costa Mesa sometimes ;).
Since we work mostly remote anyways, the move makes sense. We can still get to Salon Row if needed but also have some amazing business partners that live close to it. I am still close enough to drive to any modeling jobs or other work that I book, as are the girls. A friend referred to this area as “the final frontier” in Southern California – where you can still get land but be close to the beach – and I liked that. It definitely feels like the country, but in a good way. I’ve found myself saying, “when you go into town today,” we are on septic and propane, and have had the hardest time setting up reliable internet – all things that make me laugh!
The girls have seen all kinds of wildlife just on our property- lizards, beetles, spiders, frogs, crickets, bunnies, chipmunks, squirrels, various birds and even a couple of really beautiful hawks that fly back and forth across our property all day. We do hear some crazy coyotes howling at night, so we are careful to keep Lo in when it gets dark! As far as plants, I love the mature yard with so many beautiful trees, bushes, flowers, and succulents (or “sunk-ulets” as Romy calls them!) And guys, we can see STARS! So many of them, it feels like magic every night! I hope that doesn’t go away. My favorite part of the whole property is this tree outside of my bedroom door with these orange flowers climbing up it. I just now Googled it and apparently they are called Black-Eyed Susans…I’m in love!
There is a pool! I never thought I’d be a pool owner, but living far away from our friends and family I’m hoping to use to it convince people that our house will feel like a vacation spot so they’ll come visit/stay! And the girls are LOVING it – they swim 2-3 times/day and eat and sleep so well because of it!
Inside, the house feels big to me because we have significantly more space than we did in our tiny house in Costa Mesa. I like the layout of the house and where it sits on the property. Although there’s lots I’d love to change about the house, it’s totally livable for now and I can slowly change things over time if/when budget allows ;). I’m doing a few things right off the bat and then want to just live in the house for a while to get to know it (and save some money).
Here are the things that were important to me to do right off the bat, and it’s made the biggest difference!
- Re-texture the ceilings. The ceilings and the walls had a heavy texture on them. I would have loved to smooth everything, but decided for budget reasons to just do the ceilings. This is a VERY messy process, so I knew it would be best to do it before moving furniture in. I’m SO glad I did it – it really opened up the house and feels SO much nicer!! I worked with Nate Gallow at The Patch Boys of San Diego (firstname.lastname@example.org) and I was so happy with their work and service.
- Paint the inside white. It’s seriously crazy what a coat of white paint can do! Blake’s Mom and Dad came the day after we moved in and completely spear-headed the painting process. They almost finished the house before they left! We just have a few bedrooms and some trim left!
- Re-carpet the bedrooms. This was a non-negotiable for me – I had new carpets installed the morning we moved in. I choose a white berber because I love it. I knew it would be hard to keep clean, but it’s been really tough with all of the construction dust and dirt (leftover from smoothing the ceilings and current fireplace work). If Folex already wasn’t my best friend, it will be now! It’s THE best spot cleaner if you’re not familiar with it! Now, does anyone have a carpet shampooer that they love?! I’m on the hunt!
- Renovate the fireplaces. It might sound like an odd thing to prioritize, but I haaaaated the stone fireplaces in both the family room and living room and they were the center of the whole house. On one side we could see that there were really cool, big bricks under the stone, so we ripped off the stone to expose it. TBD on what we were do next (paint it, replace the mantle, etc.) but for now I’m loving the original color. On the family room side, we took off the stone and framed out a new fireplace that will go all the way to the ceiling. It will be an asymmetrical fireplace with smooth, white stucco and I’m so excited that it’s almost finished! It already looks so so good and opens that room up so much!
- Install a pool fence. Yes, we are having a pool fence installed and it’s happening in one week! It’s been so hard to keep track of the girls the way I need to with the chaos of moving in, construction, and painting, so the install day can’t some soon enough! I did a lot of research and will let you guys know who we decided to go with and what we are installing soon!
And for the sake of anyone’s curiosity, here are some very basic “before” pictures of the house that I snapped on my phone when I first came down to look at it!
So that’s it! Lots more to come, but this is my attempt to bring you up to speed! I’m sure you’ll see lots of house projects popping up here as we get settled in!
Here’s to a new adventure and making some lemonade out of the lemons we’re getting in this crazy, weird year!