I was lying in bed last night watching over Elijah as he still had a bit of croup so I wanted to stay awake for a while to see if he started coughing again. While I was lying there I was day dreaming about our beautiful old home in Tulbagh and missing it so much. I thought as a bit of a tribute to that house I would do a blog post on it. I hope I can do it justice.
When Darrell and I decided to set up a home together in Tulbagh we wanted everything to be finalized so quickly so that I could move up from Cape Town and we could start our lives together. We looked at all the houses for sale and chose one. It was not our dream house but we did not want to wait for something else to come onto the market as that would delay us starting out our lives together. Our house was a large seventies style home, not our taste but we both grew to really love it as it was our first home together and holds so many memories. But we were always still keeping our eyes open for something more “us”.
We always used to drive past these two huge grand Victorian houses in town and dream about living there. But we knew that was just a dream. We were so settled in our home. We had done major renovations, built a pool, landscaped the garden. I even got what most woman want, a princess open plan bathroom with dressing room, huge freestanding bath and walk in shower. We had so much space which was great as we loved having people up to stay. We loved our home and lived there for over five very happy years.
Then someone wanted to buy our house and our dream Victorian was for sale. Darrell and I decided we were so happy and content where we were that we would just stay there. But after a few little nagging feelings we decided to just go look once more at the Victorian house just to make totally sure we would have no regrets with our decision.
As we both stepped into the house we glanced at each other with a look that both said we are going to go for it!
She was beautiful, a majestic lady set in over an acre of gardens with a solid 8 foot wall around her in the centre of the old part of town. She needed quite a bit of restoration but that was a challenge Darrell and I loved. We restored her to her splendor. The gardens became a magical fairy land. We started a kitchen garden, my most beautiful rose garden, a formal but indigenous garden out the front of the house. We had our “soccer” field of lawn and then the pool with a separate cottage and more lawns. Darrell was so delighted with his garage and workshop that he was hardly ever in the main house! Always working on his next creation.
The main house was so spacious, five huge bedrooms all with wooden floors and the highest wooden ceilings I have ever seen. Even though all the rooms were so large it still felt cozy. One of the first things we did was to rip out the “modern” fireplace and replace it with an antique Victorian one which was constantly alight all winter long. I think both Darrell and my favorite room in the house was the library. It is where we all just used to relax after he had come back from fighting a fire, pizza in hand and the three of us would snuggle down and watch a series.
This was the house where we brought our darling Elijah home. Darrell was in charge of decorating the nursery and as with most things in life he did it brilliantly. It was a room that a little baby boy could grow up in. Unfortunately we did not get the chance. Our house sold so quickly and five months after Darrell died Elijah and I were living in Cape Town. Moving towns with a baby so soon after you have lost your husband is not something I would recommend to anyone but looking back now I know it was the right decision.