ode to our first apartment

I remember my first night in our first apartment. It was only a few weeks until our wedding day, and I slept on a twin sized air mattress in the corner. The room felt so big and empty. Not at all home-like. But now we're leaving, and this is the first home we've created together. For us. 2610 Milwaukee will always be our first home.

I remember painting the ugly taupe walls white the week before our wedding. And realizing in hindsight what a foolish but good decision that was. We hated the painting, but never regretted it. Oh, and cheap paint? It is cheap for a reason.

This is where we returned after our honeymoon. The giant welcome home sign that my parents hung - the grill waiting for Tyler to discover. We were couch-less for a week and boy, are couches an awesome thing to own.

This is where our first real fight happened. And our second fight, and third fight, and every fight for a year. This is where I learned how hard and good marriage is. How good Tyler is at humility.

This is where Tyler studied for the MCAT and the GRE. Where I started quilting and studied Zumba moves. Where he played video games and I read silently next to him.

I learned to decorate in this apartment. I started from scratch - with 624 square feet to work with - and made a home. I hung a gallery wall, hung curtains, arranged bookshelves, and stacked towels.

I learned to cook for two in this apartment. Chicken parmesan, roast, lasagna for company - always lasagna for company. One minute microwave cake late at night and cinnamon rolls on holiday mornings. Coffee and lattes and hot tea and milk and the perfect sweet tea - all drunk from yellow glasses I've collected through the years, finally put to use.

I learned to share here. To compromise on thermostat temperature. To delegate household chores I hogged for myself. We learned how to live weekends here. To sleep in and then work all day. To have pizza/movie nights and share margaritas.

And Christmas. This is the first place we celebrated Christmas together. Our tiny twinkling tree in front of the window, Christmas cookies in the oven. Tyler's first time watching It's a Wonderful Life, and wrapped presents under the tree. Our first snow day, and New Years Eve on the back patio, just the two of us, ringing in the new year - how I secretly wanted it to be when we left the party early.

And spring! And evening walks around the old golf course behind us, and dips in the pool, and grilling in the tiny backyard. I loved reading my Bible each morning on the couch, the mornings growing brighter and brighter, as Tyler slept in the bedroom. I loved that view out the window, the silence in the air, and sharp warmth of the coffee.

I grew closer to God and closer to Tyler in this tiny house and I can't help but be a bit sad to see it go. There is still some work to do, repainting, cleaning, a few pictures still on the walls - but an era in our life seems over. The first year has passed and passed so quickly. And our tiny 27A apartment was so good to us then. 

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