Three weeks in our new house and slowly it’s coming together. A new house is like a Rubik’s Cube: frustratingly impossible to figure out the parts but hit the right one and somehow the rest fall in place.
I haven’t moved in over a decade. That’s too long, I’ve decided. Move every five years so you don’t have time to accumulate too much, or never so that someone else will have to deal with your lifetime’s worth of stuff.
We moved to a smaller house. So even after fairly extensive pruning, a lot more came in the door than could be accommodated. Furniture was arranged several times before a workable solution was found. You start with a preconceived idea, based both on your perceptions of the space and the way you had things before. Then you see it doesn’t work or feel right, there’s too many pieces left over, or what you need doesn’t fit and what fits you don’t need.
Throw it all out and start over’ was followed by ‘We paid to move this stuff halfway across the country so it’s all going to fit come hell or high water’. Then a midpoint of sanity: you have to see something in the space to know if it’s needed and rejigging can make things fit. And if something really doesn’t work, replace it. Life is indeed too short to live around your furniture, accommodating it instead of it accommodating you.
So a settee and coffee table sit on the porch, no place inside for them. Kind of looks like the Clampetts moved in. They probably will go to the attic or garage, or I might leave them there until winter. They just beg you to ‘set a spell’.
The countryside around here is beautiful: farmland with hay baled or cows grazing, woods. I’m enjoying just looking at my own land – rosebushes, tiger lilies, grapevine-covered arbour, field with the potential of being pasture, woods. A deer out in the field late one afternoon, turned her head when she heard a voice and meandered on.
An old farmhouse, it’s very different than our previous new-ish suburban house. But this house, with old softwood floors and a renovation job of pine cabinetry, tile and soft sea colours, is of the lineage of houses I have lived in and loved the most. I could line up photos of rooms from this and three other ones and they could all be the same house. That’s not to say I haven’t missed my St. Thomas house. I liked its space and convenience and straight walls and floors, and I enjoyed just looking at the rooms. But my soul is back at home in this house.