Every house tells a story. . .

Posted on August 8, 2010

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Today I was looking for more cheap entertainment, this time for the whole family.  So I typed in “open house” with the name of my city and pulled up a list of open houses scheduled for today.  After looking at them, we chose three to visit.

The first house was closer to the beach, which we loved, but didn’t look like much from the outside.  It was yellow, though, which I loved, and had nice green grass and several fruit trees.  There was even a little koi pond and fountain by the front door.

Once inside my opinion changed; the house was filled with light and very open.  One bedroom was painted in orange, green and hot pink stripes with a giant flower accent, which my daughter immediately loved.  The master suite had a bay window and a separate tub and shower, which I’ve always wanted.  Best of all, though, was the big pool in the backyard, complete with wooden deck and screen room.  What more could you ask?

I couldn’t imagine why anyone would want to leave such a nice house; turns out the owners’ children had grown up and moved out, so they’d moved to a smaller home.  I wanted to buy the house right away; it showed so much love and careful thought in all of its features and additions.  It almost felt like the house was lonely for kids and a family again.

The second house was more of a one person house, and belonged to an older artist.  Her amazing work filled the house and her gorgeous light-filled studio.  I felt bad that she was having to sell; I hoped it wasn’t a decision made due to ill health or the economic downturn.  I found myself wanting to meet the owner; her house reflected her warm, aesthetic personality.

The last house was the saddest of all.  The original owners had built it as their retirement dream house.  It was a lovely pink brick and absolutely gorgeous.  The wife died a few months after they moved in.  The husband continued to live there for seven years, and died this spring.  How sad, to live in your dream home alone.  The house even felt sad; it seemed to want a family and lots of love.

Maybe it’s just me, but I do think houses have personalities.  Our own house was built in 1946, and was built to last.  The plaster walls are constructed with lathes and real plaster; it’s quite a task to drill a hole in them.  But you certainly appreciate the solid construction when hurricane season rolls around again.  And I love the fact that my husband came home from the hospital here as a newborn, as did our daughter many years later.

We’re in the middle of doing our own renovations; so far we’ve done some painting, and uncovered one section of gorgeous oak flooring.  It’s sanded and now waiting for cooler, less humid weather to be finished.  The adorable metal door plates have been removed and cleaned and now shine like new once again.  Ugly old replacement doorknobs have been beautified with original glass knobs.  It’s a work in progress, but we’re getting there.  And how can I not love the house where I came as a bride, where my daughter came home from the hospital, and where she took her first steps, and where my dog of nearly 17 years died in my arms while looking out the back door at the sunrise?

We have a wonderful story here.

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Posted in: Lesson Plans