Why Bother Making a House a Home?
Recently, a friend of mine moved into a new apartment and asked if I’d come and help her arrange things in her new space. Of course I accepted her invitation for help.
Her new apartment is small, but there is plenty of natural light, and a high ceiling, making the space appear larger. On a Saturday afternoon, we stood in the middle of her living room eyeing her furniture that surrounded us. She told me she was ready to discard all the pieces that no longer were useful or had meaning to her. I smiled at her resolve and we got to work arranging, rearranging and shuffling items into a pile that would later go to the dump or thrift store. When we were finished, we stood back and surveyed our hard work. In a short amount of time we’d turned her new apartment into her home, a place that held meaningful and comforting items that were unique to her.
No place like home
I haven’t moved for several years, thirty-one to be exact, and thankfully, unlike my friend, I don’t foresee having to relocate any time soon. But when we first bought our house, I wasn’t sure I wanted to stay long enough to turn it into a home. For one thing, it was too small for our family of five, and I was sure my husband would find that having only one bathroom was too much of an inconvenience. But I was wrong. My husband had a vision for this ole house. As a builder, he sees things I do not and envisions potential where I don’t.
So we stayed and the changes began. First, we started with small and inexpensive improvements such as chopping out the tansy that grew wild in the backyard, cutting down trees that grew too close to the house and tearing down an old chicken coop that only housed racoons, mice and other rodents.
Though I longed for an addition to the living room, and a master bedroom with its own bathroom, our budget could not manage that. Instead, my husband added on a few feet to the eating area in the kitchen and built a nook with benches that opened up for storage. We replaced the metal cabinets with wood and the funky green linoleum with vinyl plank flooring.
Eventually there was new siding, fresh paint, a new roof, new windows and a garage. We never added a second bathroom. We learned to live with one. But we did replace the pink tub and toilet.
Our sons grew up and left home one by one and the house grew larger with each departure. Now with just my husband and I our house feels incredibly spacious and the one bathroom is no longer a bother.
I am glad my husband envisioned what I could not. He knew if we stayed long enough, our house would turn into a home.
Why bother making a house a home? It is worth the hard work and effort that it takes to make a house a home because our home is that unique place that holds meaning and comfort just for us.