Early in our marriage we dreamed of living in a nice area of town and of one day owning our own home.
As luck would have it, we had the good fortune to find and rent a large Edwardian 2 story house with views of the ocean in an old established area close to town. We resided within walking distance to a large city park and small village shops. The rental house had many heritage features and we quickly warmed to it's charms but not to the cold and draughts!
This was at the time my husband was very busy launching his career with an architectural firm and I stayed home to raise our two children. It was such a happy time!
I walked everywhere pushing the buggy with our Golden Retriever Rufus, at my side.
I would choose different routes and look longingly at the wonderful old homes in our neighbourhood. When I saw a For Sale sign I'd look for it in the Real Estate section of the newspaper to see how much it cost. Very few homes were in our price range, with the exception of those listed as "fixer uppers" as our realtor later advised "buy the cheapest house in the best location."
I found our future home on one of my afternoon jaunts....it was a block from the ocean, several blocks from our rental and I thought it looked like we might be able to make it into something beautiful.
This is how it appeared before we took on the restoration!
It had been a rental for many years and was in dire need of TLC.
The house was built in 1912
Milo S. Farwell architect
A California Arts and Crafts Bungalow
we knew very little about arts and crafts back in 1982
but we learned very quickly!
We visited Santa Monica in California
and purchased a book written by Dr. Robert Winter
also known as "Bungalow Bob"
titled The California Bungalow
he was a pioneer in raising the awareness of the architectural value,
significance, and importance of Bungalows
from a heritage standpoint.
The cover has faded from years of sunshine
as the book sat in the Stickley Brothers bookshelf
( grandmother owned this and she gave it to us when we bought our home)
The restoration and renovations
have taken many years
We really had no idea what we were getting ourselves into...
the scope was far beyond our thoughts
and taxed our budget and challenged our energy.
We tackled one room at a time
and worked on the garden in between.
Everything we did had to be in the arts and crafts style
and look as if it was original.
We are proud to be tenants here in the Bungalow
preserving it for the future having applied and received approval for heritage registry status.
It is Serendipity...
What started as a humble home purchase has turned into a lifelong journey
we have met many people along the way who are dedicated to heritage and preservation of old buildings.
We have journeyed to meet experts in the field
and have had experts come here to visit.
Our modest and tiny bungalow