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First Person

My Brooklyn bedroom has no windows

What originally worried me about the place turned out to be a boon—until lockdown.

Why repainting my apartment was a crucial step in my healing process 

I didn’t have the resources to move out of my home, but I’d finally recovered the strength to transform it

On our bedbug anniversary, we got bedbugs again

When you have bedbugs, your first impulse is to pick up and move—to a new apartment, to a ranch in Montana to start a new life—but this is the last thing you are supposed to do.

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I bought an alarm system to feel safe while living alone

I am not likely to become the victim of a home invasion crime, but what if letting my guard down just this once invites chaos into the place where I am supposed to feel at home?

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From internet friends to upstairs neighbors

My building lacks the shared spaces that newer, flashier buildings advertise as a hedge against urban isolation, but we’ve formed a community just the same.

When I became pregnant with twins, my mess stopped feeling cute

I hoped hiring an organizer would force me to take it seriously.

Only a duplex allowed me to tolerate my partner’s cat

I wanted to be easygoing and compromising, but I didn’t see a way to share a space with this particular, peculiar pet.

My family has lived in the same house for 72 years

Our generation gap is a flight of stairs.

How I learned to stop killing houseplants

I grew up among Californian oaks and wildflowers; after the loss of my father, I developed a green thumb in a tiny Queens apartment.

The unexpected gift of couch arrest

Sitting at home all day every day, I noticed the small ways my apartment had changed.

Losing a home you’ve already left

Family dinners, backyard chickens, and unrequited love defined my years at a Brooklyn commune.

As my neighborhood changed, my home remained stuck

We didn’t hang any photos or art at first. I kept to the essentials as we waited to see how our lives would change shape after IVF.

The roommates who taught me to love being alive

Their maximalist decor expressed everything I wanted to learn from them.

Saving the Merchant’s House Museum

New development threatens the 200-year-old historic home, a living link to New York’s past.

I found my dream apartment—and then adopted a difficult dog

My dog is just like me; his enemies are mine. And unfortunately, we’d made more than our fair share in our neighborhood.

Part 2: Assembling a home renovation dream team

"Who cared about tiny turquoise bathrooms and having kitchen counters as long as the lights stayed on and the toilet flushed?"

Part 1: Falling for the dream of owning in New York City

Curbed’s Renovation Diary series is back! This year, a first-time homebuyer chronicles all the nitty-gritty of buying and remodeling a house in Ridgewood.


Curbed’s Renovation Diary is coming to Ridgewood, Queens

In this year’s installment of Curbed’s Renovation Diary series, a first-time home buyer goes from demolition to dream home in Queens.