It is an interesting phenomena that official housewarmings seem to go with buying a new place, not with renting one so nothing formal marked my move from an apartment to this townhouse where I have room to set aside a space for my art, to have an extra bed or two for my grandchildren and to sit at a table with someone to share a coffee or tea. The warming comes, instead, each time someone comes to share the space with me.
The first housewarming occurred the day I moved in. My special friend, David came down from his home up north. My son drove over from Alberta. My son-in-law and daughter helped move boxes and my other daughter met us after work to share a visit and a meal in a local Chinese restaurant where I am on friendly terms with the staff. Having them around me made the house a home even before the boxes were unpacked.
In the next weeks, boxes were emptied and things began to find their home in the space. The rush of finishing school and a two week trip out of province kept me from having others in for a time. David came to share a play and help pick out a piece of furniture, but other than that I shared the space only with myself. It was a time of my own settling in and finding the space my own.
This past weekend my house was warmed once more as my grandchildren had their first visit. Toys scattered across the space, kiddie couches sprawled out in the living room, a new mattress in the office waiting for the love seal fold-out frame that would give that special bed for the little ones. My rickety chairs were reinforced with new child friendly seats welcoming for the many visits I hope they share with me here.
During my granddaughter’s nap, her big brother put his mark on the place by helping me build a two drawer IKEA dresser so each of them can have their own drawer here. It is not a fashion home, but instead has games and toys shelved and stored, ready for the visits of little ones who are important to my world.
Wednesday they joined me again. In the afternoon my other daughter and her special other came by as well. Watching her fellow sprawled out on the floor playing cars with my grandson was a special sight. Having those moments to visit with her was a joy.
It doesn’t take much to warm a place. The presence of loved ones, room to explore the arts and other interests that make life vibrant, neighbours who show an understanding of shared space by helping each other. This is my celebration. The joy of it is, it does not have a time frame. It is something that I can celebrate over and over with each new guest who enters this space.