We love our house, but...

Several months ago, Shayne and I started to seriously talk about moving.  We've always wanted more property, but we always had the mentality of "someday, down the road..."  Ultimately, though there were things we disliked about out current location, most everything was good, and we were happy.  But then things started to change.

I started to become upset with our neighbors, the ones who own the noisy bar a block or so away.  I kept thinking about how I don't want our future kids to be outside playing in the evenings amid the sounds of drunken revelry.  I started to be bothered by their blatant disregard for others.  They blare loud music out in their barn at 2 am and tear up our grass by riding snowmobiles across our yard when there's only 2" of snow.  After a few months of silent fuming, I decided I needed to adjust my attitude.  Talking to them about the problems was impossible; they refused to answer the door when I went over there.  So I decided not to let it piss me off.  It was just little stuff, and not worth an ulcer.  I managed to chill myself out and felt much better about everything.

Then a few weeks ago, I started hearing chainsaws.  All the time.  And bit by bit, the woods that separate our properties shrank, then vanished.  At first, they left some of the larger trees, making it look somewhat park-like and pleasant.  I had hope that maybe they were done and, even though most of the woods was gone, a little of our natural privacy fence would remain.  A few days ago, those last remaining trees also ended up in the ever-growing woodpile.  When we talked to the neighbor's son, he said that the woods were ugly and mom wanted "landscaping". 

Here are some pictures to show how things have "progressed":

Even in winter, we had some privacy...

 But now??


Both Shayne and I are horrified.  There's no other way to put it.  When I look out the kitchen window, which is the view in the last picture, I want to cry.  Those last few little trees are on our property.  As skinny and straggly as they look, we're keeping them.

Part of the reason we liked and bought our house/property was the setting.  Even though we don't live too far from the city it felt pretty rural.  Our little half acre felt bigger because of the trees surrounding it.  With woods on 2 sides, our yard was a bit isolated, and we liked that.  Now our privacy is gone.  You can see our house from quite a ways down the road, and we're in full view of the road and neighbors the second we set foot out the back door.  Our backyard no longer feels like a little haven surrounded by woods; it feels like we live in a subdivision. 

I hate it.  Shayne hates it.

Funny how just one thing can push you over the edge. 

And so, we've decided to wrap up our unfinished projects and move on.  It'll take us several months, at least, to finish what we've started, but we want to get the house into "sell-able" condition, then start looking for something else.  We're not in any real hurry, and we're not going to do shoddy work just to get the house ready to sell.  But our focus has definitely changed.  We were planning on living here at least 10 years, possibly longer.  I was really looking forward to putting the house back the way it used to be.  Now I'm just looking forward to being done.


Todd - Home Construction Improvement said...

Best of luck. I can't imagine the stress that situation has presented you guys. I hope you have great success finishing your projects and ultimately selling the house.

Omar said...

Sorry to hear about that -- here's hoping you guys find what you're looking for. Life is too short to put up with bad neighbors.

Matthew McLaughlin said...


(I apologize if you have been previously contacted by us).

I am a Casting Associate Producer for ABC families hit reality show 'Wife Swap.' We are currently casting for our fifth season and are looking for a great family that are passionate about flipping houses. We pride ourselves on casting a wide array of families…families from all different walks of life who would like the opportunity to educate the viewing audience about their particular parenting philosophy, their beliefs and their way of life.

The premise of Wife Swap is simple: for seven days, two wives from two different families with very different values exchange husbands, children and lives (but not bedrooms) to discover what it's like to live a different family's life. It's an interesting social experiment and a great way to see your family in a whole new light. It is shot as a documentary series, so NO scripts and no set. It's just one camera that is documenting your life.

Families that appear on the show will receive a financial honorarium for lost wages, time and commitment. And if you refer a family that appears on the show you would receive $1000.

Here at 'Wife Swap' we look for a two-parent home with at least one child between the ages of 6 and 17 living at home full time.

If you are interested, please contact me ASAP and tell me a little about your family. Or if you would like to refer a family, please email me their contact information and I will be in touch.

Thank you!

Matthew McLaughlin
RDF Media USA / Wife Swap
100 6th Avenue, 3rd Floor
Suite 3-29
New York, NY 10013

Centers and Squares said...

I am so flipped out about people cutting down trees near me that I leap out of bed at the sound of any power equipment early in the morning. It is astounding how so many people nowadays seem oblivious to the value of trees and how long they take to grow.

I really think that trees in people's yards need some sort of protected status - why should my neighbor be allowed to weigh in about me moving a window or some other relatively trivial project and yet that same neighbor can cut down a tree that frames several of his neighbors' houses without any of us having a say?


好文 said...