I knew this weekend was coming. We got through it with laughing and tears, but we got through it.
Hubby’s childhood home has been my second home for twenty years. The first time he took me home we were seventeen. I adored his house from day one. Out in the country – real dirt roads, a good twenty minutes from our little town. A rustic house built-in the late 1800′s, decorated in burlap, actual trees and barn siding. It was a house everyone appreciated even if old-time decor wasn’t normally their thing. Acres of land full of trees, hiking trails and a pond.
The pond. Talk about a place full of memories. I used to swim in that pond, but for the last few years it’s been the playground for my kids and nieces and nephews. Full of fish that loved to eat bread and would follow you around expecting to be fed. The bridge that went over the middle of the pond that Hubby built, I once painted that bridge for forty bucks. Meg painted that bridge not to long ago. On the banks of that pond is where he proposed to me, giving me the ring that after seventeen years, just wore through just a few months ago.
The house. The site of our first kiss. The years of Christmas Eve gift exchanges. The bowls and bowls of ice cream.
Saying goodbye was hard. Was bitter-sweet. The fact of the matter is that a place like that takes a lot of time, energy and effort to keep up. It is all-consuming. Eighteen months after my father in law’s passing, my mother in law has moved on. She has a great little house in town, where the streets get plowed when it snows and the store is three minutes away only if you get stopped by the light. We are delighted for her and she is very content. It was time, but that doesn’t make it easy.
Land and homes are not families, but this place was as close to being a part of a family as a property can be. We will cherish the memories of that home, but we are still family. We will just gather at a different place than before. The spirit of the Cool Springs Road house is in all of us. It is hard to explain this to the kids. The memories of Grampy are strongest out there, the wild care-free play place that they adore is now gone. I am proud of them as they are very happy for their Grammy, even in their sadness.