Stephanie Pearce: Visions of grandeur
When I was a child, I romanticized and daydreamed about so many things. I had visions of how life would be as an adult. I had ideas in my head about where I would get married, where I would live, and especially what my house would look like.
Up the river from our ranch used to sit a grand yellow house. It was two stories, had a porch out front and had these rooms upstairs with bay windows. My grandma told me that some of her children were born at that ranch. I don’t know if it was in that house that she gave birth, but I imagined what it would have been like to live there and have children there.
One day when I was about 12, I was allowed to walk through the old house. It was in some sorry shape, but I was still in awe over it. The woodwork amazed me. I ran my hand over as much of it as I could. I loved the feeling of the smooth wood, and I thought about all the work and love that went into making this beautiful house a home. The staircase that led upstairs had the most beautiful handrail. It led to two bedrooms; one with windows to the east and the other with windows to the west.
These empty bedrooms left my imagination to run wild. I sat in the middle of the floor and envisioned how I would decorate them with canopy beds and toile; red for one room and blue for the other. I went to the window in the west room and the sun was just starting to go down, leaving a beautiful glow in the room like something from a movie.
The rooms downstairs had some built in shelves, and I could imagine one room to be a library/study and another to be the dining room. The kitchen was pretty bare, leaving my imagination to run wild. I could see it decorated with a farmhouse sink and a white stove from the 1930s. The cupboards would be white and there would be a baker’s cabinet on one short wall. I would have a butcher block table in the middle of the room for informal eating and I would use to roll out my dough for pies and knead my bread on it.
I imagined a swing on the white porch that would be surrounded with wild yellow rose bushes. Lilacs would surround the yard along with a white picket fence that would be tall enough to keep the cows out. I could just smell the splendorous odors those bushes would permeate at the end of a long, hard day while I relaxed in my swing.
The house is long gone, but the vision is still there. Walking through that house gave me the homiest feelings like none I’ve ever had before. It was as if I could feel all the love that had traveled through there in the years that it had stood. It’s not the house that I dream of now, but the feeling that it gave me and the dreams it let me dream. It’s amazing to me how a structure can leave such an impression for so many years.
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