And then there are other things we love about the house, things we looked for but that weren't dealbreakers if we couldn't find them all: big closets, fireplaces, great kitchen, backyard patio, huge windows, separate formal dining room, big windows.
And then there's this third category, a more ambiguous one than the first two: little random things we love about the house that we weren't looking for at all, and in many cases didn't even notice until we'd moved in. This is possibly my favorite category, because it's so random and yet so great.
- Pocket doors. In case you don't know what these are and don't feel like clicking the link: these are doors that, instead of opening on hinges, slide across a track into the wall. In other words, when they are open, they totally disappear. We don't have them in every room, but we have them between our living room and dining room, between our dining room and kitchen, between our kitchen and front hall, and between our bedroom and the master bath. And they are AWESOME. A big door that had to be propped open and took up space would be incredibly annoying, especially in the master bath but really in all the rooms. Truly, looking at the configuration of our house I can't even visualize where regular hinged doors would go. And I am telling you, I swear I didn't even notice the house had pocket doors until well after we had moved in. HEART.
- Closet placement. We noticed, and loved, that the house had lots of closets, and big ones. Every bedroom except one has a walk-in closet; the one that doesn't has two regular closets instead. Our master bedroom has a double walk-in closet. So that's great. But then there are these random other closets sprinkled around. We have a great, giant coat closet in the front door. A lovely, perfectly placed linen closet in the upstairs hallways. Fantastic shelving in our laundry room/closet. And, a totally random, bonus, AWESOME extra closet in the upstairs hallway, just for fun. We don't use all our closet space now, but once we have kids who use the bedroom closets for their own stuff, these extra hall closets will come in extremely handy.
- The layout. OK, we knew we liked this when we bought the house. But what we liked was the general traditional structure of the house, not an open floor plan but not totally closed off either, with the kitchen opening directly into the family room without a wall, but the living room and dining room as concrete, separate spaces. But it turns out that the layout is more than that. It's just generally genius. Everything in this house flows perfectly into everything else. It is just an incredibly livable space.
- The bedroom in the basement. The basement was finished right before we moved in, and it has a giant room that will make a great playroom, or media/movie room. But it also has a fully finished bedroom, with its own walk-in closet, and a full bath. This is awesome for guests, or for a home office, or for our own kids if one of them, in the teenage years, develops a very strong need for privacy. It's super versatile, is the point, and it's nice to have one bedroom that isn't clustered with the others.
- The moldings. I admit that these serve no useful purpose, but I love them so. They are white and they are everywhere and they are beautiful. I just love the way they look. The crown molding in the living room makes me especially happy, but I also love the chair rail we have in several rooms and the wainscoting in the dining room. Beautiful.