I am sharing the link at the end of this sharing because it triggers a sea of memories, and it may trigger something in you too.
The very first time I walked through the old plantation house (circa 1792) we’d purchased, it was also like a walking talking museum. When we arrived, we walked into what felt like the remnants of another life time. We found a complete doctor’s office in the English basement. Medical books filled the library shelves in the living room on the main floor. The kitchen still had the 1920-1950 era odd hand cranked appliances, containers and old canning jars. The bedroom closets stored hats from a bygone era. . . and we discovered lots of old tools in the carriage house scattered among the remnants of 1950s electronics. It felt eerie but only in the way that it was clear that we are only passers by.
I hated being subjected to the elements and all the stresses of being in that house, but also grew to love the sense of history and the community that I connected with as I raised a family, grew a business and mastered the riggers of living in a big old drafty house. I have often thought of how the harshness of life and the challenges that came with it made me stronger and more resilient.
This past December, I found myself moving through a sea of pictures that I had taken during that era of my life. When we first moved there, I had made a commitment to record both the history and the restoration of the house and grounds, and to put those pictures into a kind of record for the next occupants. Little did I know, when first embarking on such an adventure, that the gifting would be to my parents.
When I connected to the challenge of restoration, that first winter, I can still feel the push of what it took to replace the broken window panes in the attempt to keep the weather outside. I remembered feeling so happy about learning how to restore plastered walls and giving the whole downstairs a fresh coat of paint. But what I cherish the most is the joy of watching my kids embrace their newly expanded life complete with bigger than life nature every where you looked, and a whole string of pets through the years. I would watch them jump the hay bales, ride their horses across the field, climb the massive trees, or like one particular memory–the day they walked toward me from the barn with the biggest black snake I’d ever seen hanging from their hands. They were so happy to show me what they’d found.
I also loved the family and extended community that formed around us. Perfect strangers became lifelong friends. The link I’m sharing below brings back memories, not for what I owned or how hard it was to survive the elements or the life challenges that smacked me in the face. It was a grand adventure, and in a way, still continues. I live in a different house, a different setting, but have only stepped into and embraced a new part of the joys and challenges we call life.