Oftentimes, I look at my little apartment and dream of something more, something maybe not bigger, but a little better and with more land. I want a house.
This want is constant and never goes away completely, but this week that desire has been especially strong. I was finally able to put away a bit more money into savings, something that I’ve struggled with since my spending’s been out of control, and so I looked at my goal again, wondering if it would ever be possible.
Since dreaming and creating a goal is the first step to action, here is my dream house:
It doesn’t have to be big. In fact, it’s better if it’s small–then there’s less inside to clean. It must be old. Not necessarily ancient, though I don’t rule that out either, but definitely more than ten or twenty years old. In my life, the area in which I’ve grown up has undergone massive development. In an age of rows of identical town homes and condos with tiny yards, and of cookie cutter houses in clustered communities, older homes stand out. They have character. Even “ugly” ones with vinyl siding can be charming with the right care. And older houses have character. They have strange little nooks, hidden corners, odd-shaped rooms. They have spirit that newer houses do not. I understand that older houses are a lot of work–I grew up in a “starter house,” which my parents had to remodel when we moved in to make it livable. I loved that house, even the creepy downstairs bathroom that was never finished until we moved out. It always needed work, but my mom was constantly finding ways to make it more beautiful and we definitely made it better when we left than even when I was a child.
It must have a yard, preferably with a tree big enough for a child to climb. There should be a fence, preferably around the back yard only so the front is welcoming to the neighborhood. I don’t care if the fence is chain link, picket, vinyl, or cinder block. Just so that I can have some privacy in my own back yard, should I desire. If it’s ugly, I can beautify it with plants.
The yard must be big enough for me to have at least two garden areas: a vegetable garden (if there’s enough space, then with berry bushes as well), and an herb garden. Maybe someday I’ll know more about medicinal herbs, but for now I know enough about culinary herbs to warrant their own space. Herbs grow far better in the ground than in pots, and if I needed to I could combine my vegetable and herb gardens with herbs that deter pests. The front would have flowers that attract butterflies and happy looks from the neighbors. There may even be a garden angel, though it would be my own private little joke because I don’t think garden angels look as great as all the sellers seem to think they do. It would be just creepy enough to give passers-by a little shiver they can’t quite explain.
The inside of the house should have two bedrooms, minimum. The first would be my room (my husband’s too, if I ever find one), and the second would be my study. All my books would be in this study so that the bedroom could be free of clutter and the sitting room simple, with room for the television, a couch, my piano, and a couple indoor plants. The kitchen wouldn’t need to be large, but it would be functional. I’d have a yogurt maker, my dehydrator, and other small essential appliances stashed away under counters and in drawers so that the counters could be clear. A sunny painting here or there would warm the room and fill it with peace.
The study would be a warm, magical place. Vibrant paintings, Van Goghs or fantasy landscapes, would dot the walls and bookshelves. Perhaps a little portrait of Lucy entering the Wardrobe would be hidden in the corner of one shelf, while a wand from Harry Potter would be discarded in another. The TARDIS would sit unused in one corner of a shelf or desk. There would be a comfortable rocking chair for sitting, and a bean bag waiting in the closet, ready to be pulled out.
There would be plenty of children’s books. It would be a safe haven for the neighborhood’s kids, a sort of miniature library where if they liked a book enough to keep it they wouldn’t be fined for its loss. They could come and read, or work on homework, or sit and talk. I would make snacks for the kids–dehydrated fruit, maybe cookies, the occasional home cooked meal for those without food at home. Knowing this day and age, I’d probably have to have permission slips from the kids’ parents, but as this is a dream house then this is just a silly worry that never needs to be realized.
There would also be a dog. I suppose it would be a hypoallergenic dog so that children with dog allergies wouldn’t be deterred. After a long day, once the kids are gone and the dishes are done, I’d curl up with my dog at my feet, make some Crio or herbal tea, and read a good book or watch a movie. Then, happy and at peace, knowing in the back of my mind that the siding needs to be painted but that it can wait, my dog and I would go to sleep, she on her mat and me in my bed. Of course, she’d probably end up in bed with me eventually, and we’d fight for bed space, but her warmth would be a comfort and a blessing. And, all said and done, me pressed against the wall while she somehow takes up the entire bed, we’d fall asleep.
There are other things in my dream house that makes it absolutely perfect: solar panels that power a Tesla battery, a compost tumbler, mason jars filled with peaches and tomatoes and applesauce, a sewing machine that I pull out to make quilts out of scraps, a clothes line or rack to save on drying costs in the summer, but those are just icing on the cake. The house would be mine, with a husband or with me alone, but it would be mine. Of course, if I had a husband we’d eventually have kids, at least two, and then my dream house would change. But the yard, the garden, the dog, the study, those will never change. Those are my dreams.