As the Family Goes

JP II Quote

"As the family goes, so goes the nation, and so goes the whole world in which we live." John Paul II

Sunday, August 4, 2013

Family Room

Jeff and I bought our little house as a two-bedroom with an unfinished basement.  As a newly-married coupled, we had so much fun dreaming up what we would do with that space.  And it wasn't long before our  situation required just that - the addition of rooms to accomodate our growing brood.  How fun it was to see our ideas transfer from paper to real life, and to design a space from scratch, make it all shiny and new.

We added two bedrooms and a family room, plenty of space at the time.  I decided that our oldest two could share a room in the basement, and we could keep the other as a guest room.  The family room would be our "grown-up" space.  It was so cozy with its clean, unblemished walls and its white trim.  A stark contrast to the upstairs space that was dinged up and cluttered with toys.  It wasn't long before our spare room was converted to a room for our three oldest boys as we welcomed babies 4, 5 and 6 but the family room - that was still our space.

And yet, as the kids continued to get older and bigger, their need for extra space became clear.  I couldn't keep them all upstairs all day in the dead of winter when the days were short and they couldn't be outside all the time, and I couldn't cram all of them into their rooms all day.  And so the furniture, which was arranged in a cozy U-shape with a beautiful glass-top coffee table in the middle of the room got pushed to the side walls, to accomodate riding toys.  We dismantled our coffee table and put it away for later use, and I mourned the loss of my "space" (which, to be honest, I only sat in once or twice a year maybe).  Not long after we moved the toy boxes out of the older boys' room to give them more space and put them - you guessed it - in the family room.  That's where all the toys end up anyway, at least if we have their storage down there it's easier to clean up.

As I cleaned up yesterday, I couldn't help but think that it's more of a family room now than it ever has been. Our house had children in it, and every room reflects that.  The day will come when my children are grown, my house is empty, and then I can make the rooms look grown up.  But for now while my home is still bursting at the seams with babies, it's okay for my rooms to look like that.

And do you know what?  It's still my favorite room in the whole house.

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