One such house really left an impression on me. A small white cottage with a gable-style roof, it had so much potential. It could have been so charming. There was a small cottage-style garden lining the front walk, but that's where the charm stopped. The house needed paint, window panes were broken, and the door looked like it needed to be replaced twenty years ago. The roof was starting to cave in, too. I understand those kind of repairs take money. They would be so easy to overlook if other more minor repairs were not left undone. For example, the curtains (bed sheets) were torn and ripped. It only takes a tiny bit of effort (and no money) to stitch them up--even just fold them up and staple them, or tie them with inexpensive ribbon. Through a bare window, from twenty feet away, I could see a very messy room: boxes stacked up, clutter all around. From what I saw, it was obvious that these homeowners just stopped caring.
There was such a disconnect from where this house was and where it could be. Seeing it made me sad.
On the flip side, back at home, I love to walk through a certain neighborhood because it is always so charming, like walking through the pages of Country Living or Southern Living magazine. The houses inspire me, and I get ideas for little things I can do to make my house more charming too. Little things like window boxes, or flower pots on the front steps, a wreath on the front door. I realize these require money, but could be saved up for, if one's budget does not allow immediate purchasing.
"The wise woman builds her house..." (Proverbs 14: 1)
Growing up, I loved to dream about the kind of home I wanted some day, what I wanted it to look and feel like. My parents divorced when my sisters and I were young, and I yearned to someday have a loving Christian family of my own. I imagined what kind of wife and mom I'd be, and the things I'd do to give a sense of sweetness to my family. The dreams always involved creating a cozy interior, part of which would be achieved through cooking and baking and creating a welcoming atmosphere (especially in the kitchen). Although each day isn't perfect, that is still my vision for my family.
So whether it's something we can do on the exterior of our home to make it look more charming, or something in the interior to make the atmosphere more charming (something as simple as making a special breakfast and serving it on pretty plates), let's aim to show our family--and others--that we care. A little care truly goes a long way.