My mother and father were masters at making a house a home. No green grass grew under their fast and furious feet to ensure a full, fun, free existence for my brother, sister and I. Childhood memories flood my mind, fill my heart as I place greater attention and care on the making of our house, a home here in the wine country.
After living in our homestead for 13 years, a makeover was clearly in order. There was something in particular, in character that I wanted to create for our home, but I didn’t know exactly what it was at the time: warm, yes; inviting–of course, but I wanted something more. Slow but sure, we were bringing, this well-worn, good and tired home back to life, back to its core purpose.
The paint looked old, chipped, faint to the eye. For a year, Dan and I have been painting each room of the house (not without the muttering of profane words under our breath) to bring rich color and newness to our walls. For the kitchen and downstairs bathroom, we chose a sage green color. The t.v. room displays a delicious brown bag color. For our foyer, we went with a deep port red and brown bag accent. For our dinning room, a whimsy beige.
Upstairs, I converted our loft into a Santa Fe styled setting with adobe clay textured paint. We painted our master bedroom a soft yellow to go with our cherry wood furniture. My son’s room is a Labrador Blue and brown. Would you believe, I painted the white gutters above our garage as they showed rust and dirt for everyone to see? I had to get rid of that! What would people say? And I couldn’t look at the brown on white stains one more day.
The long project list continues: staining the deck a redwood tint; going through belongings we have grown out of, whether it be physically, mentally, or spiritually: clothes, toys, books, etc . I know these possessions would best serve another family, another household than ours now.
I realized, after all this painting and discarding that what makes a house a home for me is the peace and understanding that dwells inside it. I always dreamed of living in a home, like I have now–sunny and soulful, but my real dream house had to breathe peacefully inside these four walls to be called home.
I smile, facing the good, bad and ugly of this life and know that I can find solace and serenity in this corner spot of Sonoma we created with family, friends, pets, the garden all here to bring peace and life to each day.
“He is the happiest, be he king or peasant, who finds peace in his home.” –Johann Wolfgang von Goethe (German Playwright, Poet and Novelist)