I love old houses.
The older the better.
Once while Joel and I were driving with some friends I commented on an rather ugly block of giant McMansions and our friend teased that if I could (financially) I would take one of them in a heartbeat…
I begged to differ, NO I WOULD NOT!
It’s not out of necessity that we have chosen to live in an old house, though we could never afford the big new homes so prominent in the Chicago suburbs, if I could afford one of those I would use the money for an older, bigger, crustier home… with more land of course. Not that some of those homes are gorgeous and full of room, like my friends, holy goodness, does she have space… I would just feel out of place in one.
That is what an old home offers.
And I love them.
Creaky floors and old windows. Lead paint and uneven foundations.
Many of our windows have wavy glass, they have pulleys… our floors… well, when you move from a house… it’s the sounds of the house you remember.
We are the fourth family to live in this house which was built sometime between 1840 and 1870 (the historical society lady said she would have to come down and look at our basement rafters to know for sure.?????) Speaking of rafters, someone carved their initials into ours long ago…
It’s upside down but it says “J.W.” This house is known as “The Walsh House.”
This photo, taken, I imagine by the style of dress, just before the turn of the century shows our home before the addition of the second floor and additional garage space off the back. Check out that cool front path, the foundation problem on the right… you can still see the repair when you push aside my hostas today, and look at my beautiful pine tree, still standing by the Grace of God over on the left…
We find many of their treasures these days especially in the Potager. I dug our potager almost three feet deep in some places and it’s not uncommon to find chunks of coal, broken dishes, shotgun shells and even an old, old, old lipstick or makeup compact.
I spent my childhood dreaming of living in my Gramma’s farmhouse someday, just knowing that my Grampa was born in the room just outside the downstairs bathroom makes me smile every time I am there. I think of my Mom scampering about as a child, all the meals my Gramma lovingly cooked, the laughter, the tears. I don’t know what God has planned for our life but I do feel that I even with that childhood dream and the longing we have had for land for our children to roam and our vegetables to grow I am so grateful for our house. It really is, “the perfect house.” Bedrooms big and small, fun details like french doors, a front porch, a good size kitchen, a charming linen closet built into the hallway… and that hallway, I love it, so wide and bright. Two our our three children have been born upstairs in this home and God willing, the forth will be welcomed into the world here too.
My imagination runs wild, my spirit it is ever-creating and thus ever-desiring but I find this a wonderful place on earth to wait and see what else is in store!