owning a home brings immense personal satisfaction and achievement. when the garage door suddenly jumps off the track, you gotta fix it. when the fence is ugly, you have to paint it. when the furnace is archaic and possibly hazardous, you have to replace it (or at least pay someone else to). when your yard looks like The Secret Garden gone horror flick, it’s time to tear it all down and start from scratch.

i suppose that’s what all of this is: a new start for us. many times since we’ve been here, i have wondered to myself about who has lived here over the past 50+ years. how many owners? families? what changes did they make and add to this mid-century relic? who decided to plant this giant tree? what insane person thought it was cool to EVER plant ivy and vines all over the freakin’ place?! anyway, it’s fun to make up stories or at least imagine. but honestly, it’s even more fun to begin to dream about what you and your family will add to this little house’s legacy.

we love this house. in case you’re in the dark ages, we did buy a house and moved last saturday with the help of the very gracious hands of many friends. and for those who haven’t seen it yet, here it is:
Photo 24.jpg

a bit country, but homey none the less.

jared told me that he wanted to die in this house. maybe a slight exaggeration considering we have only been here 4 nights, but oddly, i have that same sort of feeling. there is something that feels so right about it. i think about all the houses we looked at, many that we wanted to put offers on, and feel so thankful that this is where we came to rest.

a few things have been welcome adjustments:

• space! we actually have too little furniture, which is fine.
• a yard! chloe is in heaven
• a garage! jared has begun to transform it into a man approved space.
• a window above the kitchen sink looking out to the sunrise
• my own trash cans!
• my own washer/dryer
• the ability to do whatever the hell i want to it (save build a fence less than 16′ from the curb…darn city code).
• this front porch!

as i was scurrying around doing odd projects like putting a chain lock on the front door, washing cooped up linens, spraying bugs and replacing light bulbs, i began to feel anxious and overwhelmed. trying to remember too much at once. suddenly, i remembered the front porch. we put our 2 nice, heavy iron chairs out there, but haven’t really utilized the space. how nice, i thought, to just sit in silence with a book and a drink, simply watching neighborhood life pass by. so, after churning my right thumb into oblivion screwing and unscrewing that silly chain lock, i grabbed my drink and headed to the very place i sit now. that’s the other great thing about a house…your internet connection can go outside with you!

sitting on a porch, to me, can be likened to walking through a new city as opposed to driving or taking a guided tour, or just spending a day there. you can drive down a street, even look into a certain house, but never know the flavor and character of that neighborhood. sitting on the porch gives me the opportunity to observe and understand the goings on of those around me. i can say hi to new people, or maybe just notice how the wind always blows the front gate closed. but more than anything, it gives me a place to be still. no clutter, no tv, no apartment neighbors smoking in the common area…this is my/our area. jared has the garage…i have the porch.

when i traveled through europe, i preferred to stay in a city for at least a few days, preferably a week. i spent a week in paris, a week in croatia, 3 weeks in mallorca, a week in ireland, a week in switzerland, a week of combined stops in germany, and then skipped around, usually in 3 day stints, to other places. the places i came to admire the most, were those in which i could slow down. i took up smoking while i was there. something so sexy about smoking. but i can understand why they do it…they like to sit at cafes and watch their world, their neighborhood go by. having something to be orally fixated with in the process is nice, and comforting. i guess that’s how i got to know europe.

i no longer smoke, save an occasional clove, but i do plan on having some drinks, sitting with my friends and family on our porch and getting those same warm sensations of joy, happiness and comfort that i got in my other home, europe.