Lightbulb moment …
28/12/2012 § Leave a comment
Sometimes it takes somebody very special to switch on the light in our minds and we see something so obvious right there where we weren’t looking for it!
Has that ever happened to you?
It’s no secret to those closest to me that my dream home is a double-fronted house – it has to be double-fronted because there’s some balance about such houses that makes me feel like they’re home. Our very first home together was a tiny Victorian cottage – here it is courtesy of Google Streetmap …
Double-fronted and brick-built, our front door opened almost immediately onto the stairs; the kitchen was on the right and the lounge, complete with amazing tiled Victorian hearth, was on the left. A tiny casement window at the back of the lounge had a view down over the water meadows and towards Winchester’s magnificent cathedral. On Wednesday evenings, I used to open it wide, whatever the weather, to hear the Cathedral bells ringing. In fact, this was Caroline’s first home, I went into labour whilst decorating the Christmas tree and my darling man – calm as ever, insisted that he took the dog out and stoked the stove before we left for hospital. Caroline was born just an hour and a half later and we moved when she was 3 months old!
I loved the house, but it had a few setbacks – the bathroom was in the basement, down 2 flights of stairs from the bedrooms; no central heating only an ancient Rayburn that produced some heat and clouds of sulphurous fumes if the wind was in the wrong direction; and no garden, just a roof terrace behind the kitchen on the roof of the bathroom! It was a special home though, a great place for parties as it was so small that all our friends squashed in together; Elvis our rogue collie lived there with us and I loved the walk into town along the riverbank or past Winchester College – picturesque and quaint.
Our second home, I hated. It had a lovely outlook over the college playing fields (the college where I now teach), but it wasn’t double-fronted and I felt all out of balance for the couple of years that we lived there. Finally, we moved again, just a mile away to our present home – almost 24 years ago. Joe had arrived in that couple of years’ interval and Jack arrived just a couple of months after we arrived here. It’s been our true family home – the one they grew up in and now come home to for Christmas. Our darling Dilly dog shared 14 years here with us and now Misty, Belle and Flora the duck enjoy our companionship and love.
Back to the lightbulb moment – I dream of a double-fronted cottage, surrounded by a cottage garden, with a 5-bar gate, apple trees and outhouses, ponds for wildlife and secret places to sit and dream. Sometimes I browse estate agents’ windows looking for my dream home.
Then on Christmas morning …
I opened my present from Jack. I thought he’d put all my dreams into one perfect home – my dream home. And then I looked a little closer – there are Misty & Belle in the garden, there’s the gate at the top of our drive, there’s the cherry tree that was the children’s Christening present and flowers outside the window – and the light came on – I don’t need to dream about a double-fronted cottage – we’ve been living in it for almost a quarter of a century! The back of the spoon shows Flora in the back garden where she enjoys daily splashing in the ponds, slug-hunting beneath the apple trees and dozing under the white birch tree!
Painted spoons are a very special present that Jack has given to me at Christmas for the past 2 years. Last year …
And this year, a picture of my dream cottage.
I’ve been taking it for granted. Looking for something that I already have and next year I’m going to love our home a bit more. It needs a good tidy up – a huge Spring clean. Some fresh flowers planted in the garden – definitely lots of garden love is needed. I’ll sort out the outhouses and reclaim the greenhouse and veg plot.
Thank you Jack – you’ve made me see ‘Home’ in a new light. Thank you Joe & Caroline too, for my wonderful and special presents and of course, to my wonderful, darling man ‘Thank You’ – he hadn’t realised that every present he’d bought for me was heart-shaped until I unwrapped them!
I’m looking forward to the New Year and making the most of our home where life is balanced and calm, happy and healthy.
Now I’m off to light some candles and do a bit more crochet whilst making lists in my head of ‘things to do’ – happy days!