I was riding the bus to work this morning (I’ve started a new role as an administrative assistant with the Environment team) and was thinking about redecorating our home. I’m pretty much always thinking of redecorating, it’s an obsession and an expensive one!
When I was thinking of redecorating our front living room, I imagined putting a window seat by the corner window, a desk by one wall (which will become my writing desk/creative space), our dresser by another wall (it’s huge) and then putting 2 really soft, comfy, inviting armchairs in front of our wood stove/fireplace – with a small table for each person to rest their drink/book/glass of wine (lol) on.
Immediately, I thought of my friend Samantha and how she’d make a big deal of how lovely it was. “You can sit here” I’d say (I have a very active imagination – is it just me or do you do this too?), directing Sam to the chair on the left as I took the one on the right. We’d sip hot chocolates and eat cookies as we scrolled quietly on our phones. The fire would crackle away, and the warmth would slowly fill the house. I might get us each a blanket so there’s extra warmth and comfort.
This got me to thinking about levels of welcome.
For instance, if the visitor to our home is someone I don’t know well, I’ll seat them in the front room and politely offer a drink. I’ll probably close off the rest of the house (this is doable only from the front room, funnily enough) as my way of protecting our home. This way, I’m keeping the ‘welcome’ civil and polite – but with firm physical boundaries.
You can sit in the front room and I’ll get you a drink – but this is as far as you’re gonna get in our home, buddy.
If the visitor is someone I like – they’ll be given (a very excited) ‘grand tour’ of the house and all its new developments, then probably invited to ‘stretch out – get comfy’ in our 2nd living area towards the back of the house. If it’s a nice afternoon, maybe we’ll sit out on the new decked area together and marvel at how lovely it is when the palm trees sway in the breeze? That’s my next level of welcome.
Now…If someone is visiting who I LOVE? Oh Lord – the welcome is vastly different. I’ll open the door, hug them tight and give them free reign to do whatever they want in our home. You know where the fridge is, Moiz – help yourself to a drink. Yes, Amy – we have bacon, fry some up and I’ll get some fresh slices of bread out. OMG Sam – of course you can grab your favourite fluffy cushion from the spare room – why do you always ask? You know you’re welcome to it. Make yourself at home. Do whatever makes you happy and comfortable – my home is your home.
One day I’m hoping to have tea and cakes with Shanti in our kitchen. Hopefully the benchtops will be new by then and we’ll have a gorgeous brushed-steel tap over deep (new) double basins. It will be SO NICE to BBQ out on our deck with Tommy and Dawn (Alun will feed you both within an inch of your lives – I’m excitedly waiting to try one of Dawn’s amazing pies for dessert, too), to dance like no-one’s watching with Marla (I suspect you have some funky moves, you know), to talk about the garden and landscaping with Jen, to trade stories about our memoirs and how they’re progressing with Kelly (Catwoman) in the ‘writing desk’ area of the front room (although you’d HAVE to see the rest of the house, too), or to sit in the corner of the Garden that I plan to populate with Native Aussie trees/plants and call “Gerry’s Garden” in memory of my Dad and talk to Ellie about how much we love our parents (Your Mom, Ellie – sounds wonderful) and how badly we miss them.
(I’m tired and writing this on lunch break at work; so if I’ve left you out, please forgive me. It doesn’t mean you’re not welcome, it means I’m having another brain fog and probably forgot so many people who touch my heart. Bear with me, I’ll try my best to include you in future blogs).
There are so many of you I know online but in my heart – you’ve earned a full welcome to mine and Alun’s home. I can’t wait to show you guys around one day.
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