Shiny Happy Homes

When I was a kid, I spent many hours making drawings of my “dream room”.  Items were numbered, with a corresponding list below of the cool features, such as canopy bed with fort capabilities, large highly organized desk space with own computer and journals and art supplies galore, own telephone, own television, door to own balcony, walk-in closet/club headquarters, and of course, secret passageway(s).  As the middle sister, I shared a room until I was fifteen.  Dreaming of my own space was a cherished activity.

Now I’m a big person, and my hubby and I talk about things we might someday have in our dream house.  Don’t get me wrong, I like our little house, our first house; we have a big basement that apparently hasn’t leaked since it was built in 1970 (we know because the carpet is orange-and-brown disco-bordello original).  We have a crab-apple tree that has lovely dark-pink blossoms and very little in the way of crab-apples.  We have a backyard much more roomy than the ones being allotted to new houses.  We have a fairly spacious kitchen, a cozy living room, and we made sure everything (on the upper floor) is colours we like.

But I think most people, like me, imagine coveted elements of the homes they might someday call their own.  My parents have deliberately retired to a house in the woods with huge, wonderful fireplaces.  My aunt’s fancifully painted porch is the stuff of dreams – porch is not a pretty enough word for it.  (But, for you word geeks, veranda is not an appropriate word because it’s not at ground level.)  My grandparents’ former house, which they designed, had humongous windows with a breathtaking view of Texas hill country.

The other night I was at a party at a friend’s house I’d never been to before.  Her husband has contractor connections and inclinations, and they’ve redone practically everything.  Taken out many walls, put in tiles and granite counters, breakfast bar, shiny shiny hardwood.  It also has elegant decor like something out of a magazine (which I’ll never have, unless you count the Ikea catalogue).  Beautiful, sophisticated.

My husband and I, as I said, sometimes talk about ways we could make our current house into a place we could stay indefinitely, or what we would wish for if we moved.  A pastiche of my favourite bits of wonderful homes I know starts to form.  Once you get imagining, it’s hard to stop….

Stuff I Like:

  1. Skylights
  2. Bay windows with window seats and something green outside to look at
  3. A big wooden deck with Muskoka chairs (or “Adirondack” chairs to the Yanks)
  4. A big kitchen with lots of counter space, a stone tile backsplash, a full double sink, a bamboo floor, and an island
  5. An open-concept living/dining space with room for a big long table
  6. Sliding doors to outside… in the bedroom
  7. Trees that bloom in the spring
  8. Flagstone walkways
  9. Gables, shutters
  10. A rec room in the basement for the kids (I always thought it was a “wreck” room, for good reason) with a kick-ass dress-up box and sufficient space for exuberant dancing
  11. And secret passageways.
  12. And heck, why not a wardrobe with Narnia in it.

I’m sure there’s lots more I’ll think of as soon as I decide I’m done.  And it’s good –  I don’t just pine away, wishing for these dreams to come true, because I’m not unhappy now.  I know I have a good place to live for the moment, and… who knows what will happen someday?

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