I done been TAGGED!
Apologies, Mandy, this post is long overdue.
The tag: Build your Dream Home.
This tag is poignant to me - a little difficult - as right now I feel that we've outgrown (and not just physically) our lovely little townhome, and many of my thoughts are occupied with dreaming of a home of my own. A place where I can stretch out physically, mentally, emotionally. A place where I can really have a place for everything, and everything in its place. A place where at the end of the day, my loved ones can gather together warm and safe. A place that feels right.
And so I give you the tour: Stepper's Dream Home (or a peek into her listless psyche)
First and very important - the home of my dreams lives here:
Not inside the city, mind you. Just not far north of it. Among the rain and the trees and the cool, clean air of the Pacific Northwest.
My home would be that magic size - small enough to feel close and comfortable, and to be able to clean top to bottom each week with only our howevermany hands and half of a Saturday. Yet big enough to never feel crowded.
And it would have lots of character. Along these lines:
It will have a front porch with places to sit and enjoy sunsets and easy Sunday afternoons. A wrap around, please, for Bill. Perhaps a courtyard with a small welcoming garden. And a dreamily detached garage.
Photo by Steve Gross
There will be a yard. Glory, hallelujah, there will be a yard! With space. Grass for running barefoot. Playing frisbee. Family kickball. And there must be trees, and at least one of them must be a large, climbing oak. Apple, peach, apricot, and pear trees too, please. My yard's boundaries will be marked by a tall, sturdy fence; keeping my children safe and our evening barbecues private.
And a garden bursting with seasonal produce. Enough to share with friends.
Upon walking through the front door (an old fashioned wood), Friends will immediately feel welcome.
My dream is that my children and their friends will like to be here and will come often. My imagination has actually heard the voice my teenage Wyatt's friend say to me, "Mm, these are great cookies, Mrs. M." as he grabbed handfuls from the warm plate in my hands as they passed through the kitchen to the basement where they were going to 'study' (see: open their math textbook, then abandon it to play Foosball, video games, Catan, whatever).
My home will be pristine - yet comfortable. When Daphne's friend comes over for the first time, she'll enter and get the sense that this is a place where you remove your shoes and remain on your best behavior - and as she comes over more and more often, she'll feel at home enough to take her well-behaved, shoe-less feet to the refrigerator to help herself to a soda.
There will be no white walls (unless deliberately so). My home will be a palate of color! Cool, earthy tones (rain, trees, fresh air) in perfect juxtaposition with splashes of more vibrant colors (the surprise of a bright yellow tree in autumn). The colors that both revitalize and soothe me.
Think stepping barefoot onto rain-drenched rocks beneath your bright orange umbrella.
The walls will be covered with art. Most of it will be Bill originals. A few Stepper originals. Some local artists.
This is a Charlie Harper. He is not Local. He is just awesome. This is one of our favorites.
The home of my dreams will have a large, hostess-worthy kitchen. The kitchen will be light (it is, after all, the heart of the home) but with dark hardwood or tile floors. Two ovens (because one is never enough when putting on a dinner, and in my dream home, I'm always cooking for family/friends!). An additional freezer. Stainless Steel, deep sinks, lots of storage. Because my dream kitchen is organized and easy to clean and keep clean.
The kitchen, dining area, and 'family room' will all be open because my dream home will host many gatherings. Many holiday parties. Many game nights with friends.
The 'family room' will be a place where the whole family can gather and enjoy each others company. The record player will live here. The TV will not. Fireplace and mantle, please.
But there will be a large basement room (where teenage Wyatt and his friend are currently hanging out, remember?) equipped with a home theater, because while this will be the ONLY place in the house with a TV - we do take our movie watching very seriously.
The kids will all have their own modest sized bedroom. A place they are free to express themselves. Their closets will all have actual doors, because I can't stand those slidy-things. I always manage to get them stuck open or stuck closed or break them off their 'track'.
The Master bedroom will be our respite. Our own sanctuary.
I have no idea why that dude is in our room.
Walk-in closet, organized beautifully.
The Master Bath will have two sinks, tile floor and plenty of counter space and storage.
A large square walk-in shower with a door (no more blasted curtains!) and made of dark, cool tile. Two shower heads - the kind you can remove to make better shower-singing props.
There will be a small library, with book shelves built in to the walls, floor to ceiling. There will be comfortable chairs to curl up in with a good book.
There will be a basement room dedicated to food storage.
Yes, Virginia, I think I will have a room of my own. A Jekyl and Hyde office-slash-craft room.
A place I can shut myself away to write and finally get this novel that's banging around in my brain out on paper. A place I can go to make monsters. Or email my mom. Or sew a new skirt for Sunday. Or a fabric flower broach for my cardigan. A place where I can display in frame my first rejection letter.
You know. My room.
Oh, and with a rolly-away table!
And Bill will finally have a Jekyl/Hyde room of his own, too (What do you think about that, Ms. Woolf?).
A room divided - half for his painting, half for his graphic design. Like two-face, one half will be messy, smudged, splattered. The other will be organized, gadget-y, technical. The art side of his studio will have a mop-able floor (because oil paint is murder as a stain), his easel always set up, blank canvases lining the wall, shelves and bins and baskets organized along the walls to contain his supplies, but keep them easily accessible. The Design half of the room will contain his perfect desk. High-functioning Mac with multiple screens.
A place for his Wacom so he doesn't have to put it away and pull it out every time. The walls will be covered with framed pieces of graphic design he admires, and pieces he created that inspire him.
It would be really sweet if BILLS Jeckyl/Hyde room and MY Jekyl/Hyde room were next to each other in the house, and we had a window to each other's rooms. You know. So we can wave at each other, spy on each other's projects, and perform puppet theater.
And - now this is important - we will have a really great guest quarters. A large 'apartment' - above the detached garage, perhaps - with bedroom, bathroom, and seating area. Maybe even a small kitchen. So that family always has a comfortable place to stay with us.
So that they will visit often.
Thanks for listening.