Eight years ago, on an August weekday, my husband and I sat on the floor in our empty, new-to-us living room right after we closed on our house. We dreamt about what could happen in this house, our home. Later that afternoon, we brought our 10-month old son over to see it after picking him up from daycare. We sat on the floor in the living room and took our first picture in our new house. Being there as a family was an exciting fresh start, and it felt a bit like holding a new journal that we got to start writing in together.
Since that August afternoon, our living room has become such a special place in this home.
It’s where that 10-month old baby learned to walk and began building Lego creations. It’s the room we put the carseat down in when we brought two more babies home from the hospital and where I laid my exhausted body down on the couch.
It’s where our daughter and I ate snacks and played game after game after game of My Little Pony memory during our third baby’s naps when he was a newborn. It’s where we introduced our youngest to all of the oldest’s trucks and where the kids ran in circles and played while I made dinner.
By this window was where my kids waved to the garbage truck every Friday morning (during their own I-love-garbage-trucks-so-much phases) and screamed with excitement each time the snowplow blew by in the winter throwing piles of snow halfway up our driveway. We’ve watched blizzards shut out our view of the neighbor’s house and have seen the sunshine fill the room with an orange glow on summer nights.
Pressed up against the glass is where the kids blew kisses to their Daddy each morning as he’s leaving for work. “Bye, Daddy! Love you. Have a good day,” they all said over and over again until his car was out of sight. When the doorbell rang, it’s where they ran to see if it was Grandma and Grandpa arriving to babysit.
This is where we’ve snuggled with sick kids under blankets. It’s where they got comfy with an iPad and where I took opportunities to slowly drink hot coffee on Saturday mornings while getting caught up with my husband.
The living room is where we celebrated baby Jesus near our Christmas tree each December and where we hunted for eggs behind the pillows on Easter morning. Birthdays, holidays and the arrival of our babies have brought family and friends together to share meals in this space. In harder seasons, it’s where those same good people delivered coffee, hot dish and hugs.
This space is everything to me, but it’d be nothing without the people who have lived in it and the ones we’ve welcomed in to be part of it with us.
But things change and you find it’s time to move on.
Next week, this room will be empty again, and my husband and I will sit in a different empty room dreaming of the future in our new home. We get to take all these sweet memories with us, but we also get to begin writing in a new journal. A new home. New memories.
This room in the front of our house has so much meaning, but you should know that the kitchen holds far more memories. What is it about a kitchen? Stories for another day.