Day by Day, Uncertain times 2020

Home – November 2020

I’ve been reading “The Herb of Grace” by Elizabeth Goudge along with @elizabethgoudgebookclub which home is a central theme. The book features two homes. The first was created by the indomitable matriarch of the family, with the purpose of bringing restoration and healing after the harrowing loss of the First World War and providing a place where the family could continue to call home through the generations. The second was crafted by her daughter in law, an equally determined character, who created a home where not only her family but others could come and find hospitality, warm fires, good food and a comfortable sense of belonging. Neither of these homes happened by chance. Both grew out of daily sacrifice, painful choices, hard work, and a vision for home.

Home has become increasingly central in our lives this year. For some it is far from a good place to be; for many around world it lacks basic amenities such as clean water and sanitation. For many more, it doesn’t even exist. For the few of us fortunate enough to have not only a roof over our heads, but the ability to create a home out of a house, I wonder if this year has given us an opportunity to explore the purpose of home in a deeper sense.

I think most of us could do with a little light heartedness in these grey days, so I thought it would be fun to post some photos of other people’s homes which have caught my eye, and then of some of our weekly family traditions and rituals which go towards making our home a place of belonging.

An ancient Inn, a place for weary travellers to find shelter.
The Cloisters in Wells, home of Cathedral clergy
Tyntesfield, A grand old Victorian house owned by the National Trust
Coughton Court, a Tudor mansion also managed by the National Trust
The first home of William Shakespeare, Statford on Avon
A vast fireplace in the Bishop’s Palace, Wells
Row of individual cottages
Beautiful cottage in Somerset
Cotswold village

These houses are all the stuff of which dreams are made; not many of us live in places such as these! However, with a bit of intentional thought and creativity we can all make our homes places where our families can find refuge from the storms of life, where we can share troubles and celebrate joys, where there is space to explore and learn and where others can know they are welcomed.

Here are a few of our weekly traditions which provide some of the background fabric to our family home.

Sunday picnic tea; outside in the summer and in front of the fire in the winter, where we think and pray toward the week ahead. It’s far from calm but good to do!
Afternoon tea….it rarely looks like this but does involve a steaming cup of tea and something sweet to eat.
Daily walks, even in non covid times!
Sharing stories together
Food for particular days; this has helped provide our adopted children with constancy and has helped us all with some certainly during lockdown. Pizza on Fridays, fish and chips on Tuesday while we watch an old TV series on the computer, Saturday lunches (soup, bacon sandwiches, something yummy), porridge on Saturday mornings while we listen and discuss an audible. It also helps me with meal planning. Two meals straight out of the freezer…..!

Our home is very far from perfect; it’s far too cluttered and messy and we I’m sure are far too noisy and crotchety. But it’s home, and I love it.

6 thoughts on “Home – November 2020”

  1. I have thoroughly enjoyed reading this. My home too is “very far from perfect; it’s far too cluttered and messy” yet we feel relaxed in it, enjoy the company of family and friends in it, find quiet places just ‘to be’ in it – it is home rather than a place waiting to be featured in a magazine.

    Liked by 2 people

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