Working on our "new", built in 1900, house has proven to be the daunting task that we had feared but secretly hoped for. As with most construction and renovation projects you will fix one thing just to find out there are ten more that need to be addressed. It has been and continues to be demanding, labor-intensive work, but something my husband and I have been dreaming for.

Owning a home is much like having children to us. A lot more work than we had thought but we wouldn't change it for the world! A great example of this was the day after we put our mailbox up. We went back to the house to do more work to find out it had been smashed. Of course we were upset that our property had been damaged but we smiled at each other knowing that we did not have to call the landlord and we finally got to fix it ourselves. My husband was happy that the braces that were only slightly bent, assuming it at least stunned our attacker.

We also decided to restore the hard wood floors in the house. According to the papers filed at the courthouse the whole house has hardwood, which was a big selling feature to us. Though the entire downstairs was covered in carpet we, not so secretly, hoped that the original wood was still there.

After several long weekends of pulling up sub-floor, which was nailed every couple of inches, the entire floor in the kitchen was exposed. It was very rustic, but salvageable...we thought. We pulled the final pieces up to see that the floor boards went in a different direction and looked much newer. We are guessing that there was a fire, which ruined the original boards, and was replaced by new timber. Disappointment was palpable. After all that work we had nothing to show. New flooring would have to be put down.

Our hidden gem came in the downstairs bedroom. After the trim was lifted we attempted to pull up a corner, bracing ourselves to find sub-flooring that continued from the kitchen. Instead we found floor in perfect condition. The padding and carpet were only stapled around the wall. A good mop and we are ready to go.

Many people have told us that is the way homeownership goes. You try and try to get things the way you like and that fails a lot, but then you stumble upon the little treasures that make it all worth it.