Tuesday, March 8, 2011

“Miles to Go” & “A Second Home”

I recently read a couple things that so perfectly apply to me that I just had to share them with you. The first is a chapter out of Lisa Scottoline's book, My Nest Isn't Empty, It Just Has More Closet Space. In it she says, “I love having a Things To Do list, and over the years, I perfected a template for my Things To Do list. I write the list of Things To Do on the right, and on the left, next to each Thing, I draw a big circle. I get to check the circle only after each Thing is Done. Oh boy, I love checking those circles. I make a big check, like a schoolteacher at the top of your homework. Then I stand before my list and survey with satisfaction all the checked circles. And oddly, I admit that I've added to the list a Thing I've Already Done, just so I can check the circle. I know, right? It's kind of kooky.”

Speaking for myself, I, too, make lists, but I don't make circles. I'm content to just cross through each task. However, I have been known to add the occasional item, just for the satisfaction of crossing it off. To be honest, I much prefer making lists than actually doing the tasks on them, but I'm pretty sure that's normal, right?

The second excerpt, called “A Second Home” comes from David Owen's Around the House: Reflections on Life Under a Roof.

“Many people dream of owning a second home. They picture a gray-shingled saltbox with a view of the ocean, or a cozy chalet near a ski slope in the mountains, or an old white farmhouse surrounded by orchards and stone walls.

I dream of owning a second home too, but a different kind. Mine wouldn't be near the beach, or in the mountains, or at the end of a country road. It wouldn't be in a different state, or even a different town. It would be right up the street from my first home, maybe a couple of doors away.”

Owen goes on the describe how the second house would be for living, really living, without worrying about it looking like a showhouse (see www.catalogliving.com). “Our second home would be the place where we would go when we were tired of keeping up appearances. In our second home, we would live the way people would live if they didn't care what other people might think. And because our second home would be the home of all the messy parts of our lives, our first home would stay pretty nice.”

I think there's a certain logic to that. I love playing decorator and enjoy spending time admiring our furnishings, but get fed up with constant cleaning and maintenance. If a second house meant we didn't have to do any of that, I would be totally on board with that. We might even entertain more if we had a second house, because then we wouldn't have to worry about children wrecking it or adults judging our taste in décor.

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