home design

the Not So Big House: a place of one’s own

Our houses are getting bigger in part because we have no place to get away to, no place to be by ourselves.

Creating a small area for each adult to make his or her own, just big enough for one, can solve the problem.

It can be a place for writing, for painting, for meditating,

and for displaying those things that have special personal meaning.”

Sarah Susanka

It wasn’t so important to me when the kids were younger that they have a space of their own. With adolescence dawning and the increased time we share as a family, I’d like them to each have a space of their own. A place with a bed, a desk and a window seat where they can while away an afternoon reading in front of the sun, staring out at the garden, the chickens, or the lake.

I’ll send them up Saturday morning to take care of housekeeping–insist they sweep their own floors and take turns cleaning up their bathroom. But I might never see this space, other than bedtime kisses, a prayer and a song. It’ll be their space.

What we’ll do with this space when the kiddos graduate from our home to their homes, I don’t know. House grandchildren? Bed and breakfast? A craft room for each art activity I decide to pursue with all that extra time? Start hoarding? No turning back now–I’ve already got four kids.

My special place will be the windowed corner that faces northeast blasting with morning sunlight. This will be my morning coffee and contemplative reading zone. I’ll have my organized desk in the kids’ study during our study hours. But my own study will view the lake and be my afternoon coffee space to play with words and study the dictionary. Space, lots and lots of quiet space.

Does my husband get a special space? Naturally. He’s not the type that requires a garage. Or a mancave theatre. He likes a quiet place to read, a private space to sift through paperwork and be whipped by Bob Harper. A private bathroom, at a pre-dawn hour, with ability to make as much noise as he needs without disturbing his Sleeping Beauty. An entire finished basement suite really. Maybe that’s what we’ll do when the kids all leave–create a suite for him above ground.

I have never found a companion that was so companionable as solitude“.

Henry David Thoreau

3 thoughts on “the Not So Big House: a place of one’s own

  1. Pingback: build the house | capturing the charmed life

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