Well, there's nothing like a deadline to get us moving here at The Boxmoor! About a month ago, our local art center (which is housed in a historic school a few doors down from us) asked if we'd be willing to participate in a tour-of-homes fundraiser.
Immediately, our fair-weather friend, Flattery, graced us with her presence and made us feel oh-so-special--for about a minute and a half. Then Fear made her self comfortable with a glass of iced tea and had us doubting our home's worthiness for a "historic" home tour. Then Reality showed up with the logistics of actually having to have every single room cleaned and presentable--in just four weeks. Oh, but then a whole group of our very best friends showed up to grab us by the shoulders and give us a solid shake and cheer us on. You know, friends like Creativity and Challenge and Memory-maker and even Storyteller.
With support from the likes of them, who could say no. Well, we couldn't!
We immediately made a reasonable list of things we'd like to get done before the tour, and we accomplished almost everything. A deadline makes all the difference! The few things we did not complete at least got started!
On Saturday, June 18, over 100 people walked through the rooms of our home, and we had a blast. I so wish we had taken more photos of the people; but frankly, we were too busy spinning tales and being tour guides. We did have our guests sign our chalkboard wall, which seemed appropriate, since The Boxmoor was a school for over a decade.
For three hours, Kelly, Tessa, my husband, and I told the stories of this ol' house--stories of historic significance, like it once being considered a town mansion (trying not to choke as I type--because the idea of us living in a mansion is laughable) and the home to Senator Walters and All Saints School. But our favorite stories were the personal ones.
So many memories have been made in the twelve years since we bought The Boxmoor with its fire escape, drop ceilings, water fountain, sprinkler system, and piles of books. We've lived life here, which means we've laughed and cried and fought and created and threw in the towel and picked it back up again many, many times.
We've grieved hard in this house and have given thanks in this house.
And some have grown up in this house.
And oh, how we have worked in this house! As we told our visitors last Saturday, renovations are not for the faint of heart. One-hour television shows make it look so much more fun than it really is. If only real life makeovers could happen in 60 minutes! So in the spirit of full disclosure and kindness--especially if anyone was considering buying an old house to fix up--as much as I've loved living in this house, I admitted that I've cursed the day we bought it many times--usually after a long day of painting window trim or doing lawn work. Yes, they are my least favorite chores.
I was reminded by the end of the day that my family is also making history in this house, in our home. It may not be the kind that ever makes the books, but it is significant nonetheless. And I realized again that having three generations living harmoniously--for the most part--under one roof is truly a precious gift.
If you wish you had been able to take the tour, you can see more photos and read more about The Boxmoor and our family on our About page.