The House of My Dreams…

June 2nd, 2009

On our recent trip to visit my sister-in-law and her family, I took my camera and walked around their sweet old neighborhood.  Their home is the stately mission style house pictured above.

I love older styles of homes and if I ever get the chance, I would love to build another house inspired by a different style of architecture.   







For instance, I would love to build the world’s sweetest brick bungalow.  

The coziness of any bungalow never fails to make my heart go pitter-pat.

Plus, the big bad wolf can huff and puff all he wants but he would never be able to blow my house down.







But what about an English Tudor with a vine covered chimney?

I am afraid that I really must build an English Tudor with a vine covered chimney.

What exactly is the point of slogging through the next fifty odd years without an English Tudor with a vine covered chimney?

I will however, need a curl of smoke rising from my vine covered chimney.

…and a butler who lays a fire for me every morning.






Oh dear!

Perhaps the chimney should be vine-less?

Is a vine-covered chimney so necessary if there is a long shed roof dormer, a curving brick sidewalk, and a storybook slate roof?

I think I have found it.


This will be the next house I build…






Can I really NOT CHOOSE a formidable four square replete with a prominent overhang and precisely perfectly striped awnings?

This is the one.

This is the next house of my dreams…

End of discussion…






Oh dear!

But what about a sweet cottage with four dormers and an entrance so welcoming that I almost walked in?


Anyone home?

Can I have your house please?





But what if I need more color?

Maybe a mission inspired two story with fabulous windows, and massive porch columns?

This is the one.

I must go for some color next time…






I can find the fixer upper of my dreams!

Wouldn’t this be a fun one to tackle?

Look at that wrought iron fence!  That side porch!  That beautiful second story bay window!






I lingered long over this one…

Imagining it in my mind…

Painting it, sanding the floors, caulking the joints, repointing the bricks, stretching new screens, repairing the plaster, stripping off mirrored wallpaper, ripping out the overgrown garden, replacing the insulation… the plumbing… the wiring… the windows…

Wrenching the house off of it’s foundation to repair the cracks…

Discovering a ghastly infestation of termites…

The roof caves in…

The house sinks into the ground…

My marriage breaks up…

My kids go to jail…

I am placed in a mental asylum where I wander the halls in a backless gown…

My hair is matted to my skull in greasy blobs.

Food is dried on my lips…

A handsome man visits me with a pretty woman and a baby and I don’t know who they are…

I escape the asylum and am found living with ferel kittens in the old house I once tried to rescue.

There is a strange old man who wears yellowing t-shirts and paint stained shorts who spends all of his time taping old game boxes back together and planting trees…

He never remembers to put half and half in my coffee…







Fearing for my life, I fled the fixer-upper and found a different house…







A house with white clapboards, a green roof, a curving brick sidewalk….







Sweet gingerbready siding on the gabled exterior….





An inviting front porch.

An absurdity of windows…

Strangley comforted I thought, This is the house of my dreams…

This is what I will build…





It’s the only way to keep my sons out of prison.


  • Rechelle, you know your residential architecture. Good for you. And I get the sense that you love houses. So do I. All kinds of houses. And I love your website. Thanks for your photographs which I will come back to again and again. Please add me to your links, and I will add you to mine, you sweet houselover. Jean

  • Margaret:

    We just drove thru two small southern towns. The houses were exquisite. I would move to any of them if I didn’t have to pack things to do it.

  • I love all of those houses – even the fixer-upper – which I would, of course!, need to win the lottery (that I don’t exactly know how to play yet…) prior to tackling in order to avoid said horrible potential scenario you so aptly described! Lottery winnings would ensure just the right crew to have to deal with all of the stuff you’ve so perfectly projected!

    But honestly – your house is pretty much perfect! I loved the link you had on the old site to the plans you drew some of your decisions from. Oh my!

    Some day we’ll have a house of our own. I apologize ahead of time if it has some features that you may have seen somewhere else! :)

  • Beautiful! I love houses with style…

  • Oh Lordy yes~please flee from the fixer upper, I’m gonna have nightmares over you in that asylum!! hahahaha What an imagination you have!!! :)

    Love all the houses!!

  • I love houses, too, especially big, old houses with character. Right now we’re doing some remodeling and painting to our nearly 100 year old house, though, and there are days when I’d gladly trade it in for a newer model. Still, I like all the houses you showed us.

  • There is something about an English Tudor…it calls to me at times. We have a street in the big city here that has lots of beautiful tudors. I enjoy when they have open houses.

    BUT! Being in the middle of building a house…I never want to do it again. (I’m sure I’ll change my mind in 10 years. *sigh*)

    In my dreams I’m given the chance to build a Frank Lloyd Wright design that had been lost and is newly discovered. Uh-huh. That’s really gonna happen. : )

  • I think that the Scripture passage about having many mansions applies to people like you. And me. To keep us from going nuts in this life and aiming for heaven. Kind of pathetic, but if that’s what it takes…

  • Ooh! The house at the bottom is my favorite! Hey, didn’t Clay design that house.;o) (Please don’t hurt me! I was only kidding!)

    Funny, but I went through that same thought process in deciding I did not want a Queen Anne fixer upper about 15 years ago. My vision was disturbingly similar to yours if you throw in four little rugrats feasting on paint chips full of lead and meeting with all sorts of other old home dangers.

    Other architectural notes:

    That four square must be a double four square. It looks like the funeral home in Douglass.

    We almost built a bungalow about 14 years ago after we saw the error in our thinking regarding that Queen Anne fixer upper and before we just settled into a nice little ranch style house that Danny’s grandpa built. I still drool over photos of bungalows.

    I love elements of Mission style, too, but that house doesn’t do it for me. English Tudor? Eh, it’s okay.

    I really do think you settled on the best style. The next house we build (like that will ever happen again!) will be either a classic American farmhouse with an awesome porch or a funky Earthship ( incorporating river glass from my ever growing collection into the stucco walls. That is, unless Danny builds me that gypsy vardo and we just hit the road.

  • Give me an old house anyday, preferably one with a wraparound porch, lots of rooms not laid off in any predictable manner.
    One of my most favorite dreams I’ve ever had was of an old house with lots of secret passageways. It was filled with books!
    All of these houses look like they’d be perfect!

  • Oh, I DO so love a bungalow. One thing I really miss about the midwest over the east coast is the great deal of bungalows out there! I miss that. There is always a “bungalow street” in every small town neighborhood. My 85 yr old grandmother lives alone in the greatest bungalow. Sigh. Loved these house pictures. You really ought to do that more often…share house pictures with us. Some of us have house lust.

  • DirtyKSmama - Nikki:

    LOVE bungalows… and classic farmhouses,…and cute little Tudor-style cottages. But bungalows with elephant-leg tapered columns over brick on the front porch, plus a shed dormer, really make me drool.
    Luckily, some farmhouses DO have some bungalow style, so we are building a bunglaow-style farmhouse. And to satisfy the “cute English cottage” thing, I fell in love with some little whimsical lights for the back porch, which are justified (in my mind anyway)since that porch faces the garden. A little of this, a little of that – perfect!

    • Rechelle:

      I have to see this house someday. Even if I have to drive in concentric ever widening circles around Manhattan for the rest of my life!

  • Southern Gal:

    I’m so glad you fled the fixer-upper. You were scaring me.

  • Fran:

    Your irises are gorgeous!

  • Erin:

    Your tale of life repairing a fixer-upper had me laughing so hard my husband left the comfort of his lazy-boy to come see what had me in stitches. “Sent to a mental asylum, wandering the halls in a backless gown, living with ferel kittens”…you are insanely funny!

  • Tonya:

    I love the fixer upper house it is exactly my dream house, but sadly I will never have one because my husband is not a fixer upper kind of guy he says I’m nuts.

  • Cool post! And so glad that you have already built the house of your dreams!

  • Naomi B.:

    We tried a fixer-upper once. I didn’t end up with feral kittens, but do squirrels in the attic/walls count?
    We had such high hopes for that house when we bought it, along with the 47 original pressed glass windows from 1897.

  • Oh I am troubled by the same affliction!! I brouse houses that are for sale on the internet!! I look in small rural towns all over my state. And I fall in love about once a week sometimes twice!!

    But stick with what you got and keep yourself out of the loony bin and all of us readers something to do everyday!

  • A girl after my own heart! I love old houses too. However, you have completed one of my dreams, to build a new “old” house. I’ve always wanted to build a house that looks old but has all the modern conveniences and a floor plan that doesn’t include useless rooms.

    There is a sweet little bungalow a few blocks from our house that has a lovely front porch. The house is tiny but I just love it. Even the landscaping is awesome. Sometimes I just stand and stare at it for awhile.

  • Tammi:

    Oh, how I love Broadway Street in Leavenworth! Lived there for almost a year, not too far from 2 of those houses, I think. Beautiful photos, and I seemed to have the same reactions, I love this one! No, this one! No, that one! All are beautiful! Thanks for the trip down memory lane!

  • Lois:

    Someone actually shares my house addiction? Veddy cool. My daughter and her husband recently built a new old house on farmland in Michigan. Modern conveniences in a salt box that looks as if it’s been there forever. Dreamy.

    I had always drooled over bungalows until my daughter lived in one in college and found it exceedingly dark with the low roofs and porches. Boo hoo!

  • DirtyKSmama - Nikki:

    I forgot to mention that I like the color thing, too. So my farmhouse is green. OK, only 1/2 green since that’s all I got done this weekend before the rains came.

    Don’t drive concentric circles. Here’s a hint: “it’s 1/2 mile south of the county falcons”
    It’s currently in the looking-good-but-still-a-messy-construction-site stage. There’s a forklift in the backyard, scraps everywhere, and I have just 6 weeks to finish the house before the final inspection. High on stain and poly fumes, but eager to move in (I should have started a blog when we moved into a rental.)

  • I love these homes! Thanks for sharing! I too walk around my garden daily & look at what is growing, but I actually haven’t taken any of my vegetables on walking tours yet. Might have to try that!

  • Angela:

    I just did a search for brick craftsman home and came to your site. The houses you have pictures of are near my home and was wondering if you live near Baxter Springs, KS? Just curious, but great photos of some of our very cool homes!

  • Rechelle:

    Angela – I don’t live in Baxter Springs, but have relatives there. We were visiting.