Thursday, May 31, 2012

Missing it Already

Looking up the hill, towards the house on a misty spring morning

My parents have sold their house.
I'm surprised by how wistful I'm feeling for a house and a place I didn't grow up in. I suppose I hadn't realized until recently, that I've become attached to the place.

I'm not sure exactly when my parents bought the ranch style house in the "middle of nowhere", (in reality, on an old dirt road in the country, about a 20 minute drive from where we grew up) it may have been just before we bought our first home. I'm going to say less than ten years ago. Funny, how a place can grow on you so quickly, but then, a lot can happen in ten years! LOL.

I will never love another place like the home I grew up in as a child.  I lived in that home from Kindergarten, until I moved out after College. I still had a bedroom there when they sold it. My Dad has said that they never should have sold that house, our childhood house, but I think it was time. Everything in life happens for a reason, and some things you just outgrow.

I learned in high school, that a House is not a Home. How did I learn that, you ask? Well, let me break it down for you. Our old, century home was getting a new basement put in, it had to get lifted up and moved from its foundation, so we all went to live with my Grandma for a few weeks... A month? I can't even remember. It felt looooong. I loved my Grandmother (rest her soul), but her house, was not my home.

A House is not a Home. You always hear people throw around old platitudes like that. I just did, and I'm about to do it again. ( They're so overused because, they're usually true.)  You see that phrase  painted, Folk Art style, on little plaques. "A House is a not a Home, unless it's filled with Love", blah, blah, blah. Right?!
Well, I say, A House is not a Home, unless you're comfortable enough to walk around naked in it. A House is not a home until it has shared your treasured memories, your tears, your fears and your dreams. A House is not a Home until you know all of the noises and creaks it makes when in settles at night. Sometimes, you realize, a House is not a Home, until you sell it and have to move away.

My Dad, giving Griff a ride, the way my Pop used to do for me.

Oscar, on the hill in the side yard

So, now my parents have sold their house. This house I didn't think I was so attached to -- this is the only house my sons have known their Grandma and Pop to live in.

My eldest son has been anxiety-ridden since he first heard that my parents were going to be selling the place. He keeps thinking that they will have already moved by the time we visit again, or the house will be gone when we go back. He keeps asking "Why are they selling their house?" and I have to explain that it's too big. The house is too big for the two of them. The yard is too big. On the only free weekends they have in the summer, in the evenings after work, they are cutting the grass. Seriously. It's a lot of grass. Even with a riding lawn mower, it's a good 4 hours.

Looking out over the pond

"Peep" The neighbor's duck that waddles over for  visits

One of the many Hummingbirds 

Going for walks in the field beside the house

The house itself is lovely. Nice layout, big, beautiful kitchen, great deck. But, it's not just that.

They have amazing neighbors.
On the one side, an old cemetery, (They're quiet and they never complain. Can I have a rim-shot, please? Budum-ching.) Behind them a little forest, the other side a nice field surrounded by farmland and neighbors across the road who cut their grass for them when they're away on vacation. You couldn't ask for better.

Nature, steps from the door. They have a great pond in the backyard full of frogs, fish, even a big snapping turtle named Prehistoric Pete, until it was discovered "Pete" was laying eggs. They now call her "Petra". The pond attracts all sorts of woodland creatures, from birds of all varieties to Deer and mink. The woods behind them and fields beside them are full flora and fauna. Great for a walk with my camera and the kids.
Wild Ladies' Slippers at the edge of the forest

old apple tree at the edge of the field

Back of the field

Tiny mushrooms on the forest floor

Little froggy found in some leaves

Walking in the field

Praying Mantis in the long grass

There is nothing like the country life. Just down the road, there is a sign in a field that reads " You are in Corn Country, EAT CORN" and it's not long until you get to one of the stands at the side of the highway that sell corn on the cob, vegetables from the farm, honey from the hive or freshly baked goods.

I'm going to miss the Auction Barn down at the corner. If you have never been to a country auction here are some tips:

Wear comfortable shoes. Nothing open-toed.
Be prepared to get dirty.
If you do not like the smell of body odor or manure, breathe out of your mouth.
If you do not have a pick-up truck, find someone who does and borrow it, because you may purchase furniture you were not intending to buy.

I'm going to miss walking with my kids down the old country road, seeing the farms, the cows, the horses, the fields. You get it by now, right? It's pretty idyllic if you like that sort of thing.

And so, next weekend will probably be my last visit before they move in July. We're putting on a Baby Shower for my sister, so, they'll be some more happy memories in that house. I hope to do lots of walking, laughing, playing and picture-taking. After all, "A House is not a Home unless it's filled with Love" ;)


  1. This is beautiful!!

  2. Thank you! I really appreciate you taking the time to leave me a comment. :) Cheers!

  3. Jody, you are so talented in so many ways your paintings, your photography and now beautiful stories that stir up wonderful memories. No matter where your mom and dad live it will always be a home of love for family and friends. Tell the kids they will be making "New memories" Thank you for taking the time to do this blog. Chris & Gord

  4. :) Thanks, Chris and Gord! So glad I can share like this.
    Friends like you, from the old neighborhood, are a testament to the beautiful life we had in Prince Albert!
    You're right about Mom and Dad. No matter where they live, there they are - - loving, welcoming, wonderful. Maybe I'm biased 'cause they're my parents, but I think it's the truth! LOL

  5. Jody oh,deep breath. sigh, you made me cry. love mom. x o

  6. Oh jody deep sigh you made me cry. love mom x o You know Jode its alright we'll fill the new house with love and new memories quickly and the more you and your wonderfull family come down the sooner it fills up. Your writing and great pictures make your Mom and I so proud.We can't wait to show it to you Mike and the boys.It feels like a home already and reminds me a bit of Prince Albert. I love that you feel the way you do about everything around you and am sure that the boys are picking the same feelings.Can't wait to see all of you on the weekend. Love Dad.

  7. Jody - this was a lovely post.
    I didn't know that your parents were selling their home. I love the country ... there is no place like it.

    Also - the cemetery joke was a winner. Save it for when you start doing stand-up.

    The images were lovely. It was really, really nice to read this post today.

    Love, M

  8. Well, I didn't intend on making Mom cry, but I'm glad I killed it with the lame-o joke. Yessss!
    Mieke, you're a doll. LOL.
    Thanks for the encouragement, All. :)

  9. I told you I couldn't keep up. I just had time to read this post.
    What a beauty. Now I know where the heart in your art comes from. Those beautiful memories of your parents' home will not disappear. They are part of you and your family (plus you have all of those lovely photos). xx


Thanks so much for taking the time to read my blog, and for leaving some comments of your own!