I have had some requests in the past few weeks to post some photos of my apartment. As I was going through them, I had a lot of fun looking at the way this place has evolved since I first moved here this summer.
My mom and I flew out here in the spring to nail down my living situation. I was mostly using Craigslist, and some of the places were so shady.
Thank God we made this trip (mom, that was all your doing). We saw some terrifying places that had looked fine online. Yikes.
When I was out here by myself for admitted student day, I stayed at a little bed and breakfast in town. I told the wonderful owner of the B&B that I had decided to come, and she told me that her daughter worked for a leasing agent and handed me her number.
I forgot about it until I got here, but since I always travel with the same bag I still had the number on me. So after a really depressing day with Craigslist appointment I gave this lady a call and made an appointment for the next day.
Carol could not have been more helpful. People in her office showed us tons of places in town that were all great. I asked if they had any with a working fireplace, and they said there was one that wasn't available yet because it was being remodeled, but we could go check it out.
When we got inside, the apartment was being completely gutted and was full of workmen. New floors, new lighting, new shelving, an entirely new kitchen and bathroom, new windows. New everything. It was a disaster when we were there, but there was something so appealing about being the first person to live in a newly renovated place.
This was our first visit to the place:
In addition to the newness, this place could not have been in a better location. It is a 5 minute walk from the main campus at Yale, including all the main dining areas and libraries and half of my classes. It's also a really easy drive up to the Divinity School, and it's on the edge of the neighborhood called "East Rock" where almost all grad students live. Lots of cute coffee shops and little gourmet bistros.
There was someone else interested so we had to act quickly. Within an hour I was reading lease agreements, signing the biggest checks my little bank account had ever seen, and sending contracts to my wonderful lawyer boyfriend to review. Ah!
This was in May. I flew back to California and was so happy to know I had a place to live, but I had no clue what the place would look like when it was finished.
In June, my leasing agent sent these photos:
This is the view when you walk in the front door:
My cool kitchen:
Wow! The kitchen has some pretty edgy backsplash action, but the place looked perfect to me.
July rolled around and I took off on my cross-country drive with Dad. We parted ways in Nashville, and I made the rest of the trek alone. When I showed up in New Haven and brought my stuff inside, I snapped this photo:
Since I drove out here in the Mini, I couldn't bring anything other than the clothes that would fit in my car, and a few other little essentials. I set up this air mattress in the living room and slept on it until I could find myself a bed:
The empty bedroom:
Yes, this was actually a really depressing few weeks. The place isn't air conditioned, and it was about 100 degrees and thunderstorming for my first few weeks here. I am not exactly the world's toughest cookie when it comes to heat and humidity, but I survived it.
I spent weeks scouring all of surrounding Connecticut for ways to furnish the place on a budget. Antique stores, Goodwill, the occasional splurge at WalMart - these are the things I collected.
Two end tables from a little country antique store near Old Saybrook:
An antique mirror from an antique store on Boston Post Road in Guilford:
Some bathroom curtains from WalMart (and the power tools from Sears I bought to put the place together):
My one splurge - a rug from Home Goods in East Haven:
My tiny little study (it's 6' by 6') - I found this table at a great place called Helping Hands in Hamden:
My couch from Helping Hands. This was one of the most stressful purchases - couches are expensive! This one is the perfect size and was so inexpensive I almost felt guilty buying it:
An old Yale classroom chair also from Helping Hands (this was $5):
And - ta-da! A little home!
Mom made these curtains at home and mailed them to me, and then Ian installed them when he visited a few weeks ago. So impressive Mom - they are perfect in my tiny study and the yellow is so cheery:
My friend Anthony came over the other day to study by the fire:
And there you have it! My little home that I love so much.