After waiting so long to realise our dream, getting our offer accepted on Mill Farm was an amazing moment. But buying a house is never a simple process, so there then followed many nerve wracking months of solicitors, surveys and paperwork.
We made the most of all that waiting time by visiting our friends and family, as although we hoped they would want to visit us in Devon, we knew we wouldn’t see them as often as before.
Then, finally, although we last saw Mill Farm in August, our actual moving date was a wet and windy day in the middle of January.
When the day to pack up arrived, it was unfortunately, very wet and windy... Not ideal.
With the help of our amazing removals team, we squeezed all the possessions we’d accumulated during the 10yrs spent in our lovely Sussex home, into an embarrassingly large number of lorries. (Despite spending months throwing out the things we didn’t want to take with us).
We then slept that night on air beds, in an empty, echoing house, not getting much sleep due to the wind howling outside and the excitement of the day ahead.
The next morning we woke early, (no rain yay!), and we packed all of our remaining bits into the car. There was a last minute panic about whether it would all fit, but we managed to shoehorn it all in…Just.
It did mean that our dog Bailey, had to sit in her bed, on the back seat, balanced on top of lots of boxes. Which actually gave her a great view. (She did have her harness on for safety and to stop her climbing onto my shoulder like a furry parrot).
We then said goodbye to everything that was familiar and headed off for our new adventure in Devon.
The journey took us around 5 hours in all, with lots of stops to stretch our legs, and Bailey was an absolute star, bless her.
We had some tense phone calls on the way down, from the Estate Agents and Solicitors keeping us informed, but eventually, as we drove through Bideford we got the call we had been waiting for…We had completed, it was definitely ours!
The move was exhausting, even with our wonderful removals team. ‘Sorry about the Blacksmith’s anvil guys’. And the whole day was a whirlwind of emotions.
We were nervous about whether the house would be as good as we had remembered, especially as we had viewed it in August and we were now in the middle of Winter, but as we pulled into the driveway the removals lorries were already there, the sun was shining and we were just excited to be in our new home.
Then the unloading began. The rooms started to fill with mountains of cardboard boxes, 'Did we really own this much stuff?!'
After several hours of hard work all our possessions were in and the removals men had left.
It was late, dark and we were totally wrung out, so we didn’t even have the energy to assemble the bed. We threw a mattress down on the floor of the only room with enough space for it, the upstairs lounge.
There were no curtains up yet and we could see the moon was bright and casting a shimmering reflection on the lake. The sky was so dark that there seemed to be a ridiculous amount of stars and it was all a bit of a dream.
The next morning when we woke it took a minute to remember where we were, but you should have seen the grin on our faces when we got up, looked out and saw the sparkling sunshine over the lake. ‘We own a lake!’
To be continued…