April 14, 1978

The house today - it didn't look like this when we lived there.
The house today – it didn’t look like this when we lived there.
Our front yard - it didn't usually look like this, it's decorated for a Halloween party.
Our front yard – it didn’t usually look like this, it’s decorated for a Halloween party.

J and I bought our first house on impulse. I’d seen and rejected thirty houses before we walked into this one and fell in love. The fact it was a little eclectic – or, to put it another way, weird – made it irresistible. It never occurred to us that such an unconventional floor plan, not to mention the fact it was on a flag lot, might make it hard to sell. Of course, we didn’t intend to sell it, ever. Why part with perfect?

Our faux-wood paneled family room, decked out for a prom party.
Our faux-wood paneled family room, decked out for a prom party.

The money part terrified us. Millennials, avert your eyes. These numbers might make you weep. Instead of paying $225 per month for our two-bedroom apartment, we were on the hook for $596 and change in monthly mortgage payments (for a slightly odd but large three-bedroom, two-bath house, half in Glendale, half in La Crescenta.)

Our living room - note adobe walls and weird cabinet built into wall on the left.
Our living room – note adobe walls and weird cabinet built into wall on the left.

Had we gone too far, were we in over our heads? The sum sounded insurmountable when we bought it, but every one of the mostly happy ten years we lived there, our house payments seemed less daunting. Knowing what I know now, if a time machine took me back to 1978, fear wouldn’t slow me down. I’d spend every last cent and then some to snap up real estate at those prices.

Another shot of the family room, like it usually looked. Built-in bar in rear.
Another shot of the family room, like it usually looked. Built-in bar in rear.