You might think this is a post about the the things I love about MY home. Well, it is and it isn’t.
This is me being thankful. Thankful for the things around me. I’m a stay at home mom, so I look at every room of this house every day. And after awhile, it just becomes a house. When we moved 2 years ago, I wanted a bigger house. A place to accommodate our rapidly growing family, a place for our family to have room to stay with us instead of at a hotel. But lately, I look around and after awhile, honestly, a house is just a house. It’s a shelter. Filled with so much stuff, right now, I can barely navigate through all the toys and clutter. It has to be cleaned. I have to continuously organize. I do laundry twice a week (yes only twice a week on Mondays and Thursdays), I have to make meals, I have to vacuum. And in the midst of all of this, it’s easy to just think of this place I live in as a house. A house I am always behind in, always striving to get a handle on the clutter. A house I just seem to become frustrated with and feel overwhelmed in.
Really? Why do I feel this way? It dawned on me recently that I have lost my perspective. I have lost the joy.
Rather than seeing the place I live as a house, I need to be reminded that this is my home.
I need to be thankful. I have prayed for this life for many years; being a wife, a mom, staying at home and loving on children. This is the life I have dreamed of and desired my entire life. I don’t want it to become a business, something I am responsible for and have to manage. Now, don’t get me wrong, there are an immense amount of responsibilities and management that need to be done, but I don’t want to miss the purpose of a home.
I think of a book by children have, A House is a House for me. But, a home is not just a house. A home is so much more than that. I want to look more deeply into the place I spend the majority of my life. I want to see beyond the surface, the day to day, the structure of my house and see it as a place I call home.
And I think it starts with being thankful. Seeing your house for more than just walls and rooms, but seeing it as a place where your family will grow and love and live together. It’s where memories are created and creativity is expressed. It’s where we all learn about life and how to develop deep meaningful relationships. It’s a safe place. It’s where you belong, when you may feel like you don’t fit in anywhere. It’s where you can safely “fail” at things and realize, the importance of trying again. It’s where you learn to say, “THIS IS WHO I AM!” Where else can we learn to be ourselves but at home.
So, here are 10 Things I Love About My Home
1. A wonderful kitchen: This means I have a central meeting place for my family. This is where I spend the majority of my time. This is where I fix PBJ sandwiches, where I wipe beautiful faces after dinner, where I sweep multiple times a day because I have 3 messy eaters! We hang out in our kitchen. This is where we have meals together, where we are teaching manners and the art of communication. The kitchen is where we can celebrate friends, and family. It reminds me that families grow around the kitchen table at meals and gatherings. There will be many conversations around our dinner table over the years. I want it to be a place of substantial “meat”, not just meat we eat, but a place where we grow and learn and pass on wisdom. It will be a place that my children will learn responsibilities and learn to help. I am thankful for this “center” of my home.
2. The walk-in closet: This means I live in America and have an abundance of good things, and all my needs are met. As big as our closet is, it reminds me to live with less. It is big enough for my husband and I to be in there at the same time. We have conversations there. It is also a space so perfectly created for a prayer closet. A space where I can just go to sit with God quietly. As I look at the burn marks on the top of the cupboard (more on that story later), it reminds me to be thankful that our house just didn’t recently burn down and not to pack our suitcase by candle-light.
3. The kids bedrooms are close to the kitchen: This means I have children to love and pick up after and train and just lead through life. I am thankful to be able to hear their laughter and tears from the kitchen. They are just down the hall. I love being able to take a few minutes while I’m cooking or cleaning to just pop in and play with them. They are filled with things that will help them explore their creativity and help them enjoy their childhood. I look forward to watching their rooms change over the years, where they can exert some of their independence and imagination. I look forward to those bedtime conversations and prayers that will impact my children and us for the rest of our lives. It reminds me that they will all grow up and one day they will move out of these rooms onto bigger adventures in life. Oh Lord, thank you for reminding me that these rooms will be empty sooner than I ever can believe. Thank you for helping me to enjoy their little messes and who they are becoming.
4. Everything is on one floor: This means we can have races and games of chase! We have a super long hallway which is awesome for races! I love it when one of them pushes the other in the baby stroller. It’s hilarious! We have it on video. You can hear there screams of joy all throughout the house. I’ve thought of putting furniture in the dining room, but it would really detract from our fun and interfere with the running. And always running! I am thankful for children running and screaming through the house. I have great memories already of pushing kids down the hallway in laundry baskets, laughter and squealing. And I’m thankful I never had to worry about anyone falling down the stairs in the middle of the night!
5. Great pantry: This means I will not go hungry. I am thankful for so much food. Oh, how I take this for granted. We are not in need of anything. I am thankful that the kids love to stock the shelves. They still enjoy helping me unload the groceries (I’m enjoying this while it lasts). We live in a country where we can get organic, healthy foods. I can find gluten free foods for Cruz easily. I just keep praying God gives me an overwhelming desire and joy to cook!
6. The double oven: This means I have plenty of room to cook for guests in my home. Yes, I struggle with cooking. But I wanted a double oven, even though I don’t necessarily utilize it as much as I would like. But I LOVE having people over for holidays. Easter is especially a time that I love to have friends and family come over. The more the merrier. When I see it in my kitchen, it reminds me that we are blessed by the people in our lives. And I’m very thankful for my father-in-law who always helps me make the turkey for Thanksgiving!
7. All of the windows: This means we can enjoy the sunshine even indoors. Our last home just didn’t allow for much sunlight. I love sunshine. We are outside as much as possible. I am so thankful that we have windows that I can clean. More windows, more sunshine! Especially during the spring in Texas, I love to open the windows and feel the fresh air blowing in. When I open the windows, it’s like the house can finally breathe. I hear it saying, “Ahhhhh…thank you.”
8. There is an extra room for our family to stay when they come to visit: This means that both of our parents are still alive and healthy and love to come see their grand babies. I am thankful for family. I’m thankful to be able to provide a place for them to enjoy and interact with us. I love having room in our home for people to stay with us, especially since all of my family is in Iowa. We have room to practice hospitality and I so look forward to teaching that to my children. What a lost art!
9. Spacious living room: This means that we have a large space to do life with our family and with our friends. We have a small group in our home from church that comes once weekly. We ‘do life’ in our home. I love the living room. It’s open and inviting. The kitchen looks into the living room so I can be doing dishes and watch the kids roughhouse with their daddy. It’s a great place to be. The living room is where I envision our family just hanging out together, playing board games (love them) and just resting. I look forward to movie nights and popcorn and right now, the daily gymnastics that occur on the couch!
10. We can see the sunset out our front door: This means that we can be reminded nightly of a wonderful day and of God’s creation. I love front doors. What a symbol of being welcomed and invited. We live on the edge of town, so even though we are in a neighborhood, when you look out our front door, it’s like we are in the country. When we open the front door, we see nature and freedom. We have a beautiful view of the stars. It’s so peaceful and serene, unless of course there are wild hogs out front. But mostly serene and beautiful. Thankful for where God has placed us.
So, there are my 10 things I love about my home.
You see, it’s not really about the house, but about what is going on inside my home. Home is where my heart is.
Home isn’t just where you live, it’s where you love.
Next post, I will be delving into what God’s word says about our homes. The word HOME is used over 200 times in the bible! Stay tuned to Part 2 and we’ll learn the truth about what it means to have a home.
What do you love about your home? What are you thankful for? Please share below!