” I FEEL HOME “
“Home Is The Nicest Word There Is.”
Laura Ingalls Wilder could not have been more correct with this statement. There is something so warm and ‘nice’ about the word that brings a feeling of peace and serenity.
I am blessed and fortunate to have these types of emotions and memories when I think of my home. My heart goes out to those who do not. I hope that sharing my experiences will help others to create their own.
Everyone moves their homes for different reasons. Sometimes it’s for work relocation, family priorities, a change of pace, or expanding. Some want to downsize, and some may need something bigger. Whatever the reason may be, it happens.
My first home in Pawtucket, Rhode Island: 1984-2002
The City And The Beach
During the school year, from September through June, my family lived in Pawtucket, Rhode Island – home of the Pawtucket Paw Sox – the minor league Triple-A affiliate to the World Champion Boston Red Sox!
From the City House, I have the usual fun child memories of riding my bike around the neighborhood, playing in the backyard, and being able to walk to my aunt and Gran’s houses within two minutes.
We celebrated many holidays at our City House that always brings a smile when I reflect on those memories. I woke up in the same bed in the same room for 18 years. I came down the same long set of stairs for every prom, social, and other event. I was very much attached to this house, and rightfully so.
We referred to it as “The City” house because we spent our summers and most warmer weekends of fall and spring at our beach house in Narragansett, Rhode Island. I am convinced that this little town is one of the most beautiful places in the world.
We called it the Beach House because it was just that – a small cottage style house just a few minutes from the beach. One of my favorite memories from summers spent there is the giant birthday party we held every July for my Nona, my sister Lesley and myself (July 20, 6 & 12 birthday gals).
“Home is people. Not a place. If you go back there after the people are gone, then all you can see is what is not there any more.” ―Robin Hobb, Fool’s Fate
Change Not So Welcomed
My parents decided that when I left for college, they would start their journey to move permanently to Narragansett. They sold the City House, the Beach House AND my Grann’y s house that was just a few doors down from us in Pawtucket in order to build their dream home.
I admit I was quite saddened and upset by this move. It was new and unfamiliar, and at the time, I felt that everyone was planning this great new life in RI without me. What I failed to realize was that I was busy making my own new home in Florida – without them.
When I came home to RI after my freshmen year of college, my parents were living in my Gran’s house awaiting the finished house; I stayed there with them as well. It was great to be together again after 9 months apart. It made me realize how much my family meant to me and just how much I missed being apart from them.
I would like to say that I wonder if…. but I cant wonder. I know.
I know I would have treated that summer much differently had I known it would be the last time I would be living with them full-time.
A New Home
Once my parents were settled into Narragansett, my favorite part of coming home to the ‘New House’ was my Granny living there with us.
What was once her 3 bedroom house had been replicated into 2 separate rooms just for her. My Granny was so special to me; we’d spend hours together in her room and she made the transition of ‘going home’ much easier for me. It took a long time for this house to feel like my home.
As years passed, we created new memories and traditions in Narragansett. I came home to spend time during the summer and we always made it a point to have a birthday celebration for my sister Lesley and I.
“Home to me is reality, and all I need something real.” -O.A.R.
My Own Home
As of summer 2004, I became a year round Florida resident and it was time to make a new home for myself.
I started my home in Hollywood, Florida while studying at Johnson and Wales University (Go Wildcats!) and had two roomates that also went to school and played on the golf team with me.
For two years, my home was basically a fraternity/bachelor pad that included a beer pong table, golf chipping net and cabinets stocked of ramen noodles amongst its best amenities.
And I loved (almost) every minute of it.
“The ornament of a house is the friends who frequent it.” ―Ralph Waldo Emerson
I moved out on my own completely once I graduated college into a spacious condo on Hallandale Beach. I craved the independence to have my own direction and space, but it was a real fear for me to be alone.
My cat, Spaz, would be the only one waiting for me when I came home every day. There would be no neighbors I had known and seen almost every day for the past three years. No familiarity. But I learned to embrace it, appreciate it, and enjoy it.
My final move was back to Hollywood Beach four years ago where I have been very happily since. It’s interesting just to see how much my home has transitioned over the years in this one location.
“There are few things pure in this world anymore, and home is one of the few.” – O.A.R.
Every move was a new beginning, a new shopping spree for a new (somewhat more matured) taste, and another stair in the climb to achieving success and happiness.
I believe your home speaks greatly as to who you are. Location, decoration, style, organization – it’s all a representation of you and how you intend to live.
Your home should be your safe haven, your peace and tranquility. Choose the objects and people that enter your sacred space carefully so not to cause any commotion.
Is home really where the heart is?
I think so.
I started this blog off with one of my favorite all time songs that has given me chills since the first time I listened to it – “I Feel Home” by O.A.R.
It’s funny how I will tell my friends in Florida that I am “going home” when I plan a trip to Rhode Island.
But when I get to Rhode Island, most people will ask, “when are you going home?” yet they are referring to Florida.
However, my parents are the only ones who rarely ever refer to Florida as my home – and I wouldn’t change that for the world.
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