I once read “Home is where you know how the plumbing works.” That gave me a giggle. And I’ve traveled internationally enough to agree! These days I am thinking home requires more than simple plumbing. We recently moved our lives and household across the country. Setting up everything in a new location has many challenges. And I have been pondering: What makes a place my home?
I want to say home is where the heart is. But if I’m honest, home is where my stuff is. During our move we had to put all our things into storage for three months. At first it was very freeing to be unencumbered by stuff. I lived out of a suitcase. No wardrobe choices since I only had a week’s worth of clothes to choose from. I would get books from the library. We ate out often since it was hard to make meals in an apartment with limited cookery. But I started to miss things. I wanted my own books to read. Then I wanted to curl up in my favorite chair. I missed my pillows and blankets. And I longed for my stash of crafting and knitting supplies. I wanted to play with my toys again. I even wanted my own lemon zester back. Crazy.
Things are what make me comfortable. My stuff is familiar, trusted, and mine! On an Amish-focused site where we often talk about simplifying it may seem odd to talk about stuff and wanting to have it around. But one reason I like my familiar stuff is I can relax. I know where everything is. I do not have to hunt or buy or figure out a quick fix. I have the things I need. And when I can relax, I can attend to the more important parts my home: the people who live there.
Things may make a place comfortable, but people make a place my home. All the changes and trials and shifts in lifestyle that I have gone through this year have been taken together with my husband, Rod. We are in this adventure together. And while I like sitting down at our own dining room table and using the dishes we’ve had since we got married 27 years ago. It is really the conversation around that table that makes me know I am home. I like the comfort of my things but I need my family members to make it home.
What makes a place home for you?