Feel-Good Friday: It’s Good to be Home… and Homing In

After one week in our new house, it feels like our new house.

That’s not bad—seven days. We’re not done, but we live here now, and it no longer looks like someone dumped boxes, and then dumped stuff out of boxes. (Except in the basement. The basement is… yikes.)

This house was built in 1941 and reminds me of my grandmother’s house in Independence, Missouri. Hers didn’t look like this, but it had the same glass doorknobs, and our creaky floorboards sound just like hers did. My grandma moved out of that house when I was a young teen, I think, so at least 30 years ago. But I still know the feel of a glass doorknob in my hand, and the sound of those creaky floors.

Yesterday I Googled her house, and though I couldn’t find any good photos, some realty sites had it listed as built in 1940, so it makes sense that I feel some familiarity here.

It’s strange to have a sense of memory—or, to be specific, sense memories—in a house a thousand miles away from the source.

Making home.

This move-in has been different than any other we’ve had. Most of the time it’s a question of finding places for all our stuff. This time around, it’s been a question—repeated over, and over, and over again—of what stuff we actually want and need.

When we walked into this house with the property manager last week, I panicked a bit. I’d been studying the photos and video we took on our househunting trip in July, but the real house was (is) smaller than I realized. Feeling at home here, and feeling good about being home here, is a practice in finding focus.

After seven days of arranging and rearranging, sorting, purging, and arranging again, I feel good when I look at each space and see only things with usefulness and meaning. There’s not room for anything else.

Homing in.

Now I am ready to apply the same consideration to the rest of life.

There are so many possible things to do: classes to take, online conferences to attend, workout programs to sweat to, shelves full of books to read. There are anti-racism teachers to support on social media and Patreon. And then there are writing projects, blog posts, Etsy shop listings, prayer and meditation practices… and on and on.

And it is all important. It wouldn’t be hard if it didn’t all feel important.

But this past week of “homing” in our new house has helped me to reflect on how I can—how I must—“home in” on what I’m doing.

I feel the urge to outline a plan right now. I don’t feel quite ready to set it out exactly, but this space will be a way to mark the miles. A fixed point to focus on, a way to keep myself “homed in.” I want to feel as good about this online home as I do about my physical home. For that matter, I want to feel as good about how I spend my time and my energy. When I look around this blog—and when I look around at my life, and when I look back at my days—I want them to be full of the things that are most useful and meaningful.

I want to make myself at home.

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