Friday, August 27, 2010

This is my home







For almost eight years, we have been crafting a home.
We bought our house, a lovely little cottage-like farmhouse on a little wooded knoll set on the banks of the Manhan River, in December. The snow had already fallen heavy that winter and so it wasn't until spring, until after our Charlotte had come and gone, that we realized that ours was a gem set among hundreds of acres of horse trails, with yet another river a mere 500 yards behind the house through the forest. The pines stood tall, casting long shadows on summer evenings, while the hemlocks provided shadowy density to the woods surrounding us. The house stood, a shell we inhabited, but it was the only place we'd ever had her.
It was home.
When I drive my children to school now, they drive past fields where food is grown; not just crops, but rows of different vegetables that you and I actually eat every day. If you asked my children about broccoli, or tomatoes, or wheat, they would know how this food grew, where they could find it, and probably even how to harvest it. They know that cows must give birth before making milk; they are privy to the sacrifice that mother cows make and that their calves make in order to bring us the mighty dairy industry. The roads snake through this blessed country, where farmland weaves through forests and past rivers, and we breathe as we come up the steep, hemlock-lined drive to arrive at what we've made into home.
A home is not a house, because anyone can live in a house. I marvel at the concept that what we've made could belong to someone else, because it's so very ours. Rooms that we've painted and wainscoted ourselves, nooks that have changed from staircases to desks to pantries. We've thought about and lived in and changed and loved each room in this house. Our children know every detail of their home, they love it and feel its comfort. It takes time, and patience, and some amount of skill to make a home. I feel very blessed.
My children never wear shoes when it's summer, and there's no need to be inside. They flit around the yard, making fairy houses, swinging on the swings, picking blueberries and raspberries and singing joyfully. The fruit trees flower and bloom and fruit, and in the fall things turn orange and drift downward and we wait to move indoors and pass the winter by the fire.
There are spirits here, not just of Charlotte, but of others, too. There is an element of spirit just from the life that this home possesses, just in the beauty of what lies within.
This is how far I've come.
And this is the song we sing, sometimes before we eat, or on quiet nights by candlelight on the porch, while the crickets hum and the river rushes by. This is my home.

(more to come on Dave Carter, a mystical prophet to me, who brought so much beauty with him and left so much here)

4 comments:

Hope's Mama said...

Home is where the heart is. And yours is one of the biggest I know.
Oh how I'd love to be able to visit you in your home some day.
xo

Pietrowski's of North Andover said...

So true. So beautiful. Thank you.

kris said...

Fiona is so delicious. What a beautiful post, Carol. And that song gets me every time. I sat on a tarp in the rain at Falcon Ridge this year watching beautiful, strong Tracy fill the hillside with her voice on that song.

Adelaide's Mom said...

Love seeing pics of your lovely space. Post more!

All the fresh food looks so yummy. We are eating our garden tomatos, basil and zucchini. Love having real garden this year.

xo