I never realised how important it is to make your house a home.
My husband and I moved into our current house when I was eight months’ pregnant with our daughter.
We hadn’t been planning to move - we’d spent the previous 18 months and thousands of pounds - getting our first house together just as we wanted it and, to us, it was home, certainly for the next few years. Then the nursery furniture arrived. It didn’t fit into the tiny back bedroom and just like that, a decision was made. Three weeks later we moved into our considerably more spacious house ten minutes down the road. It’s a perfectly lovely place but was missing all the finishing touches we’d so carefully and painstakingly created in our previous house. The beige walls and beige carpets were a blank canvas and the ‘nesting’ side of me deeply missed my brown wooden floor, my warming rug, the deliciously cosy artwork and frames of smiling pictures.
But we had bigger things to think about. Two weeks after we moved in, Imogen arrived and the next year passed in a wonderfully exhausting sleep-deprived joyous blur; meaning that only recently did we decide we had enough energy to tackle the still semi-unpacked rooms and dusty boxes - covered with a year’s worth of baby things - we’d hastily packed back in April 2014.
Sunday has become ‘house’ day. Immy goes off to visit the grandparents for a few hours, Adam and I make strong cups of coffee and choose our ‘room of the week.’
It’s amazing how quickly temporary placings can become permanent fixtures. I’ve spent 16 months hoovering around the large mirror propped against the wall in the hallway where somebody placed it hastily the day we moved in. As we lifted it on to the wall this weekend, and Adam got handy with the drill, I felt like we were finally putting the pieces of our home together, and not a moment too soon.
In the last four weeks, we’ve painted walls, hung pictures, placed lamps and candles and finally, I’m starting to feel ties to the house I haven’t felt until now. I never realised before that living somewhere doesn’t necessarily make it your home. Of course a roof over your head and four walls around you is the most important thing, but having those walls covered with photographs and surfaces flickering with pretty candles can go a long way towards creating the place that is your escape at the end of a long day, the place you create your most precious memories as a family. It feels good to be home.