The Stories of Home

Here is a fact – my memory is terrible and I easily forget details and memories even when they are things that are important to me.

But certain things are clear as if they were yesterday.

Like when we bought our first house.

It was in Gilbert, AZ.  And I remember my husband and I standing in the lobby of our hotel being handed the keys by our so sweet realtor Claudia.

It is amazing to me that I remember her name.

But what I remember most clearly, is the feeling we both felt when she handed us the keys – it was pure fear.  And we were astonished that she cheerfully walked away after congratulating us leaving us to figure it all out on our own.  Didn’t she know we weren’t grown ups yet?

 

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Skip ahead two two and half years and we are in a large board room, I am 6 months pregnant with our first child.   We are signing paper and paper and filling out checks that are emptying every one of our accounts.  We pushed ourselves financially so that we could have a “ten year house”.

And that is exactly what we got.  Because after 10 years, we renovated our house to fit our family better.

These memories have been running in my head all day, all day I have been thinking about home – not buying them or selling them, but HOME.

 

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I have noticed a trend lately.  I have not had the patience to read a book in a long time.  I must admit I have become a technology junkie.

But today, I have found myself reading, but I laugh at myself.  What am I reading?  “Home, What It Means and Why It Matters” – I found it at a consignment shop last week.  It has me thinking about just that, why does it matter?

When acquaintances find out that I have a decorating business or that have been here to my blog, sometimes they are nervous about me coming to their homes – that maybe I will judge them.

I was at a friend’s house for the first time a week ago.  Everything in her house was labeled – “cabinet”, “door”, “window”, “refrigerator”, etc. – in perfect penmanship.

It was some of the best “decorating” I had seen in awhile.   Not only are her children excellent spellers, but her home reflects that is about her children – that they come first.

What I look at when I am in someone’s home are the things they tell a story about, family pictures, something passed down, something someone they loved built for them.  Or labeled cabinets.  A home that someone took the time to make special for their family.

I am not looking to see if your home looks like it came out of a magazine or if something is out of place.

We all know the nervousness and excitement of buying or renting a new home. Sometime we know it is temporary, sometimes we know it is our forever home – but either way, we want to feel like “our home”.

Reading this book today has given me some clarity. There is a lot of advice out there telling you “how to write a blog” – and almost every single source will tell you to figure out what you are about and to be true to yourself.

So, I think after two and a half years, I may have finally figured myself out a bit.

I am here because I want to encourage you to make your home a true reflection of you and your family, to encourage you to tell the story of your home.

 

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Because at the end of the day, aren’t we all just looking for a place that welcomes us, embraces us and allows us to be “us”?

So with that in mind, I am going to be starting a new series…stay tuned!

Thanks so much for reading!

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About Finding Home

My name is Laura and I have been running a small interior decorating business since 2004. I have always had a love for decorating but I never fully realized it until about 10 years ago. I live in New York with my husband and two daughters. They support me and encourage me at every turn. I have always loved the “hunt” for the next treasure, especially when you have to get down and dirty to discover it. I feel like it is time to start taking my business in a new direction. I am not sure exactly what that will be, but this blog is about that journey. About finding a sense of home, a place where we belong and can most be ourselves. Thank you for being part of my journey.

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Comments

  1. Laura- I love your style so I am sure this series will be awesome!

  2. Jeannie S says:

    I can’t wait for your new series Laura! It seems I am always running around and spending too much time in the car. I love it when I am home. Now if I just had the energy to get some projects done that would be icing on the cake!
    Have a blessed day!

  3. Candace Bertalan Horner says:

    Hey Laura! I don’t recall how I got to sign up for your blog, but sooo glad I did. Today I got this lovely post, and so then I took a few minutes to look over photos of your home, stunning!!! I share so many of your collections such as vintage boxes, advertising, mason jars, etc., however my house is so tiny!! Just looking over your home has given me so many great ideas on how to arrange things in areas I am having trouble with. Thank you for so much inspiration!!

  4. Rick S says:

    Laura,
    Just saying the word home makes most people more alive. My wife and I have lived in many homes, apartments,townhouse, duplex and even one we built. We found one we loved and it shouted HOME like no other. We have been very slow and deliberate about any changes because it has a “in the same family for years” feel to it. Our home gives us a hug everytime we come home and is where we want to be.
    I think we all look for inspiration to see what ideas we can make our own and live with. To make a house a home takes putting in things you love to show ourselves as well as others who we are, and what inspires us.
    Thanks for all you do to inspire.
    rick

  5. Can’t wait! Home and your stories in your home are really what life is about. I don’t think I’ve told you this…we used to have the sweetest most wonderful yellow lab that ever lived, her name was Katie. Katie was terrified of storms. Once we were gone and a hail storm came. Katie jumped on my beautiful/expensive dresser and walked all over it, she ate the wood blinds in the bedroom, and the shutters in the dining room. We fixed the window coverings but the scratches on our dresser are still there. They are ugly. My first thought was to get rid of the dresser but my wise husband said, “Those scratches are part of the story of our family.” Truly – he said that. The scratches aren’t pretty and I always feel the need to explain them when someone sees them. However, my husband’s reply put things in a different perspective. We loved that dog and she’s part of our story.

  6. Claudia says:

    I too have a memory problem…but I have to say, your first realtor’s name is GREAT…OK it means “lame one” but other than that I think it is very memorable. ;-)

  7. What a great post, Laura! Even though I’m a fairly new follower, I think your blog already speaks to the fact that home is about creating a space that is about you and your family’s story. The photos of your home are a testimony to your belief — it is so warm and welcoming. The word “homey” pops to mind even though it might sound kind of silly.

    I love what Oprah Winfrey says about a person’s home…”it should rise up to greet you.” I think it can easily be misinterpreted to mean that it needs to be perfectly decorated and meticulously organized. I think it really means what Rick said in his comment above…it should give you a hug when you come home.

    This is something I’ve been trying to accomplish in my own home with some struggle ever since I got married 13 years ago. What “hugs” one person might not “hug” the other. Blending styles, tastes and comforts of each other can be challenging but it can add so much richness and warmth to a home when your things tell the story of both of you.

    I can’t wait to see your new series and I thank you for your daily inspiration in turning a house into a home! xoJulie

  8. Michelle says:

    THANK YOU!!

  9. Oh Laura…I love this post…you inspire me every day!….Here is my favorite quote about “home’…one day I want to frame it…

    “That which we elect to surround ourselves with becomes the museum of our soul and the archive of our experience”.
    Thomas Jefferson

  10. Looking forward to it Laura! I feel the same way about making a home. I come from a long line of people who make you take your shoes off at the door and follow you around picking up crumbs. It took a lot time for me to break that habbit myself, but I am finally free. I embrace all the stains on my sofa, knicks on the hardwoods, and fingerprints on the walls. Because we live here. And that’s life.

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