Monday, April 10, 2017

Past Loves

Bonjour et Bienvenue `a My Little Paris

I'm the kind of person that gets "feelings" when I enter a new space. I feel good or bad, warm, cold, indifferent, involved, safe, or any other number of emotions... and they all come crashing into my brain immediately on being present there. So, naturally enough, that's how I base my decisions about........almost everything.....on how it makes me feel. 

By now it will come as no surprise to you, to learn that I love old spaces and old things the best. More specifically,  I love old houses.....and I've been so fortunate to have many in my life. 

This lovely brick home is the Banbury House. It was built in 1911 in Wolseley by my husband's great grandfather, and has a very storied past. He was a successful entrepreneur, general contractor and founder of Beaver Lumber, which had it's very first store in Wolseley. We spent several wonderful years living in Wolseley and during that time, had the opportunity to own and move this home. It was more than we could manage at the time, but what an exciting experience that was. The house is so lovely, with its turreted parlour and beautiful woodwork, balcony and has five or six bedrooms on the second floor and a full attic . You can just feel the sense of family when you're in it, you know that celebrations have been held there, people have gathered and many many memories were made. 

Many years later, after we'd been away from Wolseley for quite some time, I a sense. I'd been wanting to go have a place of my own there. Again, I have such a sense of warmth and calmness when I'm in that lovely little town.......and this "little house" as I've always called it, kind of fell into my lap. It's not big or grand, but it has a sweet charm about it and over the past 10 years I've gone there to get away. To just be on my own, I walk (it's a beautiful town for that) and read, or do some writing in my many journals. Christmas is a particularly beautiful time to be there........the boughs of the fir trees around the lake are heavy with snow and the lights glow through........everything is shrouded in softness and quiet. 

This is my latest old house. A couple of years ago, we bought a farm..........or, more specifically, a quarter section and this glorious house was on the property. It was built in 1897, and alas, turned out to be beyond restoring........but, oh, the dreaming I did in that beautiful home before that decision was made! It had stained glass windows (which, of course, we saved) and we could tell the staircase had been just grand. The dining room was 27 feet long and had a fireplace. There were four bedrooms on the second floor and my imagination went wild with ideas for the huge attic space. I felt the goodness in that home, and it was a sad day for us when we decided that it was just too much to restore. It was a joy to be able to be part of it though, I could walk through the rooms for hours and imagine what had gone on before......and what happy memories we could make there. 

I'm finding the same sense of happiness and warmth, day by day, as my little store develops, as it comes to light. I think, for me, it holds that same "fairy dust" feeling, that same calmness and delight that I've found in my old houses over the years. It's all about how it makes me feel..............

As Always
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