Friday, November 8, 2013

Be It Ever So (Very) Humble

I'm finding myself more and more in that rocker by the bookshelf, as Rosie seems to be willing to nap for a little bit if I'm holding her and rocking.  My Mom bought me this chair when I was pregnant with my first baby, and it is by far one of my favorite things.  It's small - a woman's chair.  A Mama's chair.  I can rock two babies at a time in it, or do our read alouds or bible time.  I'm on hand there to help cut out the many (many many) hand-turkeys that are being crafted these days.  There's a stash of knitting projects nearby to grab a hold of when the baby falls asleep and I just have to keep on rocking.

I told my husband at the beginning of the school year that this has to be our last Christmas in this house.  I think I've said that before, but I meant it this time.  6 children who are only going to grow larger, 3 small bedrooms that seem to shrink each year and 2 closet-sized bathrooms?  It's just ridiculous.  We've dabbled here and there in house hunting, but nothing very committed because, well, I love this house.  It's home.

It's a humble little thing.  I remember saying, when we moved in, that it wasn't really my "style."  That was 7 years ago and you know, I think this house has changed me.  It fits me.  Isn't that how a home really is?  When we painted those hideously wooden paneled walls upon moving in, I still didn't like it.  Now I love the cottage-ish way it makes me feel.  When we painted everything white because it's a rental and we aren't supposed to add color, I pouted a bit.  Now I am so thankful that we did - white making these small rooms open wider than they would if they were painted how I wanted them back then.

It will be time to move on soon.  As much as I hope that is true, I also know that this place will be a big part of my story and a hard place to leave.  Although it would be a relief to have more space, closing the chapter on this space will hurt.  Our first home.  The place three of my babies were born.  The yard connected to my parents, my kids playing in the same spaces I explored as a child.  I think this is what has frustrated our house hunt at every turn:  while I know we need more space, should really get on it before the market comes back completely - my heart isn't in it.  My heart is here.

When my children's friends come over (or when mine do), I wonder what they think.  What they say about it when we're not around.  Do they see how packed we are here, or do they see what I see and what I hope my kids see?  Mama in that little kitchen, making good things to eat.  Wrestling with Dad on the living room floor.  Read alouds in the rocking chair, a Christmas tree in the window.  Bits of yarn and knitting everywhere.  Sometimes it embarrasses me and I think how much more on top of things I'd be if I just had more space.  But then I realize - wherever we move, we will still be ourselves.  And our home, while the outside may be different, the inside will be much the same.  I won't suddenly become an organizational maven and my kids won't suddenly keep their rooms neat.

So we talk and talk and talk about moving, about looking for houses come Spring.  As the weather changes and we find ourselves more and more inside, I feel the pinch.  Things are tight.  Learning and laundry and littles all jumbled together, all day every day.  It's humble.  It's human.  It's home.

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  1. We keep having that discussion too. This house is small, only one bath and the yard is smaller than the house. On the other hand there's a grassy vacant lot across the street and we love our neighbors and can walk to church. Every year at lease renewal time we look around a little and then stay put, and I squeeze things around a little more and get rid of a few more things!...K

  2. We just moved in July, and our new home is not what everyone expected it would be. It's smaller, older, etc. But as we were buying it, I constantly thought of you. Through your blog, I've learned that "small" doesn't mean bad. And that our home will become our HOME because we will make it so. Thank you for your beautiful blog and your beautiful outlook! God bless xoxo


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