I’ve lived in a lot of houses in my life.
*pause while I count*
I think it’s 25? Maybe. Anyway, it’s quite a few. For me then, a home isn’t somewhere I’ve lived in all my life. It’s not somewhere I grew up, somewhere I can walk around and say ‘that’s where I tripped over the cat when I was seven and had to have stitches.’
It’s not something that’s special because it’s full of memories created over decades, so what is it? What’s that elusive thing that makes any house a home, regardless of how long you’ve been there?
It’s the people in it, of course, we’ll take that as a given, but what else? It’s the stuff I guess. The things you surround yourself with that maybe you have grown up with over decades, dragging them with you from one house to the next.
For me, it’s pictures and plants.
I can move anywhere, to any style of house, and it only feels like a home to me when I fill it with my plants and hang pictures on the walls. I have a lot of plants, and although some of them are just there to make the space look pretty, many of them have a lot of meaning, like Belle’s apple tree, which is now in the ground and quite a bit bigger than in this post.
I have one peace lily for example that I bought when Bee was very small as one of my first ever plants. It was tiny, like her, when I first brought it home from the supermarket, and now, over 20 years later, it fills a huge wicker plant pot in the corner of my bedroom.
I’ve loved watching my Swiss cheese plants thrive over the last few years, and my avocado plant, successfully grown from an avocado stone on about my eight attempt, reminds me not to give up on things, even if they don’t work out the first seven times.