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When your children are in a good place at the same time, it’s cause to take a vacation/celebrate/give yourself a pat on the back. I was blessed to hear from both daughters in the same night and to hear how happy they are in life. Whether they are 4 and 7 or 24 and 27, they are my kids. I will always worry and fret about them and rejoice in their triumphs.

When the world has been unjust or they have screwed up, my heart breaks and I struggle to help them find the lesson to be learned. I fight back my mother bear instinct to seek revenge and work to see the positive forces leading them to happiness, whatever that looks like.

Talking with my daughter Hanni the other night we came to a profound conclusion. We had both had flashbacks to the farm and who we were as a family then. “That house was massive, I said, “If nothing had changed and Daddy & I were rattling around in that house alone at this point it would be insanity! Probably with dozens of animals to feed and the barn to shovel out daily.”  She agreed it was a huge universe that she wouldn’t trade for the world, but it was the shower she remembered. Ah yes, the shower!

“We spent the first few years fixing up the outside; the massive job of residing the house, rebuilding the barn, the new natural pool, the flower gardens and ornate iron fencing. Then the focus shifted inside and we spent another fortune and time on improving the living space. “The outside was for appearances, the inside was for comfort.” Hanni is a wise soul at 24.

Arizona 1

This looks like a good place for a swimming pool.



Pool finished, now for the gardens



Keeping up appearances on the outside


The final project Jeff and I attacked was to turn a nursery, a minuscule bath and an enormous bedroom into a master suite. We were very successful in the project though the construction was a nail in the coffin of our marriage. One feature was a huge 5ft x 5ft, floor to ceiling, six-sided glass shower. Custom tiles bearing fossils graced the floor and walls. There were several shower heads with options for spray and it all looked out over the barn and rolling green pastures. “Mom, there was nothing like that shower. The tile base was just high enough to shave your legs and the multitude of jets as you looked out at the horses made it a private spa.” she sighed as we both envisioned the room.

From the outside, the house was magnificent and stately. By all appearances it was a wonderful farm filled with animals, gardens and joy. But it didn’t buy us happiness and it didn’t last an eternity, only memories do that.

12 comments on “Keeping up appearances

  1. Doppleganger says:

    And what lovely memories that place provides…. It housed amazing beasties, human and fourleggedy alike, that changed all of our lives,.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Steph, it was an epic adventure and so glad you were a huge part of the journey!


  2. julieallyn says:

    Beautiful place. Interesting post. Things are temporary yet hold great meanings over a lifetime.

    Glad you have such a strong rapport with your daughters!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Julie. Memories are a funny thing when you stop to compare with family…everyone has a different perspective!


  3. It looks and sounds like a great place to live.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Allen. It was a lot of fun.


  4. Life is always changing, isn’t it?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thankfully most of the time, Susan. Change is something I have learned to grow comfortable with and no longer fight.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Marie Keates says:

    I guess it goes to show that possessions don’t always make for happiness. That shower sounds lovely though.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you Marie. So true, you can’t buy happiness!

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Touring NH says:

    I could have lived in that shower!!!!!! Or perhaps in the gardens, with my morning coffee. It is a wonderful thing when your children are all in a “good place” in their lives (and yours). Maybe, just maybe, some day I’ll get there too.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Laura they are small MOMENTS of calm, trust me. You get there all the time. I’ll bet you missed your grandson and will be amazed at how he has grown in 7 short weeks!


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