On this first day of Spring in Ohio, I’m at home, sitting on my couch, listening to rain and sleet blow against the windows, attempting to put some thoughts together before my husband and son get home from work, realizing that the time might be better spent making dinner or packing for tomorrow’s road trip home, feeling a little crunched for time, having used more than I intended on visualizing a makeover for our home today.
These brave daffodils will likely be covered with snow tomorrow morning!
Yesterday, I wiped Winter’s dirt off of our front porch bench and planted myself there in the warm sunshine to jot down some thoughts about home. I thought about what we call home, a country, a state, a county or town, the building we live in, the place we come from. Home is what we return to after work, after school, after a vacation, after a hospital stay. We can be at home and be missing home at the same time.
When we leave home as young adults to live at college or in our own apartment, home becomes harder to define. As son Kyle left his home two weeks ago and returned to our home, I simply said, “Welcome,” keeping the word “home” for another day when he has settled back in here, understanding that even as he returns home, he has left what has been his home for over two years.
We’re from Ohio. It’s home. When we made our home in North Dakota for a few years, we still came home often. Yet, when we took the opportunity to return to Ohio to live, leaving our home in North Dakota was heartbreaking for us and our kids, as well as for our friends.
Life happens at home. Love is shared, memories are made, children grow, paint peels, roofs wear out. This house, built in 1963, has been our home for almost thirteen years. Last summer, I accompanied my husband to the bank to make our last mortgage payment.
Dave with the 32 Years and 5 Houses collage I made for him (us).
Now it is time to do some work on the outside of our home, replacing the roof, installing vinyl siding, updating the look a bit. We both want our home to look nice and be pretty maintenance free. We both want to accomplish the renovation at a reasonable cost and hope to have a good experience with the contractor we choose. The decisions we are making matter, both financially and aesthetically. It’s important to choose materials and colors that we will love since they will last for decades to come. In the back of our minds, we consider that at some time in the future, this house will become a home for another family. I appreciate Dave’s logical and financial mind, one that builds a spreadsheet to compare contractors’ quotes and thinks about how our house’s value compares to others on our block.
Meanwhile, I play with the siding company’s on-line visualizer to “try on” various color combinations and siding styles. Sure, we have already chosen a color combination. But, we haven’t ordered it yet, so my creative mind wants to hold onto the prerogative to make changes. Nothing too crazy, of course, but maybe something a tiny bit less brown. It may be handy to have Kyle here in case we need a tie-breaking opinion. And, I may need to remind myself of what I said at Bible study today about humility meaning valuing the other person’s opinion and not insisting on my own way.
Well, it’s time to heat up some left-overs for dinner and think about what I will pack for my visit to my hometown, where my mom, my sisters, and my brother live, home.
Jesus replied, “Anyone who loves me will obey my teaching. My Father will love them,
and we will come to them and make our home with them. John 14:23