Posted by: morrowsl | November 7, 2020

What I Fall For

Our first glimpse of this property was in late summer, 2016. It was a hot day and we’d driven so far, it felt like we’d crossed a state line somewhere.

We pulled onto the last of our directed roads and drove right past the stone mailbox with the house number. When we got to the dead end, we sat for a few minutes, assessing the area and trying to figure out where we’d gone amiss. Turning around and heading back the way we’d come, we found the mailbox with no effort and turned into the lane. I’m not sure I closed my mouth until long after we’d left.

For me, it was love at first sight.

Initially, I fell for the stone house and metal roof. I spent more than two-thirds of my life longing for a log and stone house. This house, I realized, was about as close to that as I was going to come. The wood floors took me back to the houses of my childhood. The casement windows in one corner of the kitchen filled another longing. The upstairs bedrooms, one feminine and one masculine, were exactly as I would have styled them. The additional space was perfect for a game/media/woman cave area. The bathroom, with it’s clawfoot tub and beadboard walls was quaint and charming. Downstairs, the kitchen had a Victorian charm and windows lined every wall. The master bedroom included a door to a side porch, perfect for early mornings and late evenings.
I was filling the rooms as I walked the spaces, making decisions before it was ours.

We closed on this house and left the state for two weeks to finish up the sale of our farm and take a week to relax with good friends in an incredible log house surrounded by apple orchards. We returned with a U-Haul filled to capacity and began what would become about two months of endless grind.
Once we moved in and began the constant slog of driving to and from our old house with the vehicles packed to the gills with boxes and bags and such, I had no time to actually enjoy myself. I stayed exhausted and anxious. Thanksgiving and Christmas came immediately. January was a blur of boxes. Along with all that, I was still making the three-hour roundtrip drive to help my sister care for our elderly mother.

My mantra throughout this phase was, “If I could just get a string of days…”

In the four years since moving, we have maintained that forward motion. Much has been done to make this place “ours” as well as attempt to add value to the property against a day when it may be someone else’s dream. We have turned the chicken coop and run into a useable space. We’ve extended the decks. We added a metal barn. And a greenhouse. We have a fenced garden area with room to add a high tunnel. The wilder areas will remain undeveloped so that the deer and rabbits and such can live here.

And, finally, I have my “string of days” to do everything and nothing.

Yesterday, I finished up the last of the edging on a flowerbed and walked up to close the door of the greenhouse. When we moved in, fall and winter came fast and I barely noticed. Summer is always hot and I do not enjoy those days. Spring comes in downpours that pool above the hard clay and make a muddy mess that’s slick to walk on and impossible to dig in.

As I walked up the hill yesterday, I realized that it is fall. Our trees are literally on fire with color. Something I looked for and often failed to find each fall in the city. Oh, there were trees and they certainly lit up the corners and stood in brilliance along the streets on the way to the grocery. But there were no long lines, like debutants gliding into the ball room dressed in every imaginable shade of gold and crimson and ochre.

I fell in love with my home again last evening. As I have done a multitude of times without even realizing it, in these four years here. I waited a very long time, worked a multitude of jobs, sat in misery and longing to be away from the crush of the city and its mobs of unpleasant people, to be here.


  1. Beautiful! I am so glad your “string” has arrived!

    • Thanks, Deb. It’s been a long time coming.

  2. So happy for you! It sounds lovely ❤️

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