Third Culture

Third Culture
August 24
M is a copywriter in the Bay Area. In addition to writing riveting copy, she loves old buildings and cooking, although not necessarily in that order. She and her husband became first time parents in January 2010, when their extremely energetic daughter, P, was born. The name of the blog was inspired by the fact that M and A are raising their P in the U.S., although neither was born here. “Third-culture” is a term used for kids who grow up in a foreign country, and don’t feel a sense of belonging to their passport country. She blogs at


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SEPTEMBER 14, 2011 3:09PM

Unexpected Side Effects of Home Ownership

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My little fam moved into the new digs a little over a week ago, and I can already feel a difference. This list will probably be updated pretty regularly as I come to realize what home ownership does to you, but at least it’ll be a start.

  • I have now taken the trash out voluntarily the entire week. No poking, no prodding. Just heading out with the trash, and feeling thoroughly satisfied when it plops into the big bin.
  • I offered to clean the bathroom. A was a bit nonplussed, to say the least. You see, when it comes to cleaning, there’s no beating A. In a former life, he probably scrubbed hospital surgical equipment, and had fun doing it. He’s super clean. So he pretty much does all the serious cleaning in the house, including the bathrooms. But I actually felt like I could show him a trick or two, and I scrubbed the sink, the bath, even the toilet to previously-unknown cleanliness levels. It was incredibly satisfying.
  • I have started nocturnal gardening. My sister gave me four tomato plants (yes I know it’s September, but we’ll get a few more months of sunshine yet!) and I planted them at 8.30 pm on a Tuesday. My reasoning was that it needed to be done, and if I didn’t do it at 8.30 pm on a Tuesday, it wouldn’t get done until the weekend. And that was just not acceptable. I have also watered the said plants after the sun sets every night. I can’t imagine what the neighbors must think.
  • I’m actually looking forward to mowing the lawn. We bought this really cool push-mower and I’m totally in love with it. As a teenager, I mowed my parents’ lawn once in a while with ginormous, heavy, gas-guzzling piece of machinery. A wanted to buy a gas-powered one, but I was totally against it—and I’m so glad we decided to be all “green” and hippy dippy. The thing is silent, powerful, and all-around awesome.

Apparently, before owning a home I was a lazy, dirty mess without a green thumb. But the whole “pride in home ownership” thing actually turns out to be true. So far it’s been great, especially for A, who watches me in shock every time I do something completely unprecedented.

It may completely be the novelty of the experience, a home honeymoon if you will, and we’ll see how long it lasts. I’ll ride the wave as long as I can.

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cleaning, home ownership

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We are in our first boughten home as well. As stressful as the extra expenses can be when one buys a fixer as we did, I am more at peace now than I've ever been when a landlord was in charge and we were subject to their whims...
Have fun! Good luck getting a tomato out of that plant : ) Let me know what happens.
There are actually a couple of tomatoes! It's been fun so far. I've already started the winter (or as winter as we get here) garden...perhaps the subject of a future post! :)