Continuing from part one....
Sometimes you just have to take a leap of faith and step off the path and see what opens up....
After six months we made the decision that it would be best for Alan to give up work and move to Cumbria to enable him to search for work in earnest. Trying to do it from so far away was just not working. He had only got one interview in all that time.
We had to believe he would find a job and we wouldn't be left with both of us out of work and no income. It was a risk - so much could have gone wrong - but it paid of. He was able to concentrate wholly on finding work. He got asked to interviews and it wasn't long before he was offered a position.
Shortly after he began work we started house hunting.
We saw a lot of properties but none were suitable.
In one of the local papers I saw an image of a house for sale that leapt out at me. I remembered I had seen it in the estate agents but had dismissed it because it was just over our price range.
We decided to view it just in case a deal could be done and it could be bought within budget.
It was an ex housing association house and although it would require a lot of work to make it ours it 'felt' right straight away.
It had gardens on three sides - the back being a field - with three large sycamores in - that needed complete landscaping. In total there were 6 mature trees in back and side gardens. The gardens were very overgrown and would need a lot of work.
The house itself had a living/dining room that had french doors out to the garden. It had a large kitchen diner. There was also a garage attached and accessed through the kitchen. The owners had built it to be wider than normal making it an ideal size to convert it into another living space.
It had all the potential to make it into the home from my 'dream book'.
We were lucky to get it within our budget and moved in and began the long process of making it into our dream home.
Over 14 years the garage has been converted with french doors that lead out to a patio - no arbour though! The kitchen cupboards were initially painted until we could afford to change the units. It has has now been replaced and has an island unit in the middle. a conservatory has been added.
The garden has been an ongoing project and has evolved over the time we have lived here.Alan and I work well as a team. I design and he produces the end product. It now has mature shrubbery and is very private. There are different 'rooms' with seating. There is a play area and a veg garden. The driveway has also been widened.
The dream has been realised. It has not been recreated exactly as I envisaged it all those years ago - I dream big and the house I dreamt about was of mansion proportions:-)
It wasn't a finished package - it took vision to see how the property we veiwed could be transformed. Thankfully I had spent so long 'dreaming ' that I had the blueprint :-) It may not be a large property in it's own grounds but it has all the elements of the house I dreamt about and it has become our home.