Gerald Ford was in the White House when I moved into a house which was then two years old. It is now 29 and it is definitely my home.
It has been my home, actually, from the day I first walked through it. I had not seen the entire house when I knew, knew, it was for me. To this day I drive up the driveway and just love it.
It had everything I was looking for and I have loved it from that first day. It is a big red house that could pass for a farm house and it sits on the original four and a half acres plus almost three more acquired early on.The neighborhood is small; just two little streets parallel each other with a cross street at the end and another in the middle, making two blocks.
Next door a sizable ranch sits on four acres and a large home on seven acres juts off the back at a right angle. Most of the neighborhood homes are smaller and sit on half an acre. While there are several empty lots on both streets, they cannot be built on until city water comes along. Even though a back corner of our neighborhood is adjacent to Warrington Hall, site of two recent Homearamas, our little neighborhood isn't even on the 20 year plan for city water. That's okay. When it does come, it will inevitably change the character of the neighborhood.
Do all the nice things to your home now that you will eventually do anyway if you decide to sell your home.
Enjoy every day.
There's a little red stable we call a barn at the street end of our long driveway, which circles a pretty park area just as it gets to the house. The barn is falling apart now. No horses or rabbits or chickens live there now - just a few hunting dogs - and it is no longer picturesque. We're going to tear it down and replace it before long with a real barn-like structure to hold the John Deere, the Ford pick-up, and our cars.
Life has changed in the house over the years but it is homier than ever. Grandchildren spend the night and periodically visiting friends and relatives come for a weekend or longer. Last year my Mum flew in to celebrate her 85th birthday and my sister's family drove down for the party. It had been a while since we had three rooms filled with overnight guests and it was reminiscent of years gone by when every corner of the house was full.
I've thought of selling it a few times - when getting a divorce, when alone with all this grass to cut and a big house to ramble in, and when realizing that my second husband and I aren't as young as we'd like to be. Once when I had those thoughts, my granddaughter Heather's birthday party changed my mind. I had taken lots of pictures and I particularly liked one showing young legs running past bushes around the park. "That's why I'm staying," I told myself. Really, it is simply because it is my home, so much more than a house to me.
In the last several years, we've put in new windows, doors, and carpet. There are wonderful floral drapes and curtains and new paint. I love to shop for furniture and accessories and my home is eclectic and unusual. I'm a table-nut, meaning I love tables! I have ice cream tables and pub tables and writing tables and a table with a large lazy susan built right into the center. No two tables make up a pair. I even have an old toboggan serving as a coffee table in front of a sofa. The thought of down-sizing makes my hair stand on end. Where would my tables go?
I love everything about my home. That is as it should be. I encourage you to make your home just the way you want it also. Then enjoy it completely. Do all the nice things to your home now that you will eventually do anyway if you decide to sell your home. Enjoy every day.
Home sweet home.
Jean Loxley-Barnard has been a writer all her life and studied both sociology and psychology at George Washington University where she earned a B.A. Her company, The Shopper, Inc., encompasses all the Loxley-Barnard family publications - The Shopper Magazines and Doctor to Doctor Magazine. She has been in the advertising, consulting and publishing business for 39 years.
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