I really love my house.
It’s not big. In fact, I’ve had some ask me, “How do you fit everyone and everything in that little cracker jack box?”
It’s not small either. It’s one of those houses that looks small from the outside. I like that about my house. I always think that it looks like a cozy place that I would like to hang out in. Lucky for me, I can!
Long ago, I used to really doubt if God was truly working out the details of my life. I never really saw the great “connecting of the dots” that other Christians would describe where they were certain that God was working things out in their lives for good. Of course in the past 4 years I have come to realize that God most certainly is at work in my life. He is there in big ways and small ways! Big ways like when my mom was battling cancer for the 2nd time and I was pregnant with triplets. I have shared this part of my life with a few women’s groups when I have given my testimony. There is no doubt that God orchestrated His timing so perfectly for my family and I during that time. And then there was the time my son had cancer. Certainly I can’t deny His presence and provision then! But those are the big things.
I love it when I am able to see God at work in the little things. This little house of mine comes to mind when I think of God at work in the details. When Matt and I bought this house back in 2005, we decided that we had better add on a large kitchen, expand some closets, and make another full bathroom upstairs. Little did we know that 3 years later we would have 4 kids and need space for them and all of their stuff. We had the perfect little niche in the kitchen that fit 3 highchairs side by side. My house has some odd window openings between rooms. I can’t tell you how many times a day I look through the window from the kitchen to the playroom to check on things! When we bought the house we thought that the 3 bedrooms would perfectly accommodate the 2 or 3 children we planned on having. Now we have a plan for a boys room and a girls room with a bathroom in between. Maybe God had this house in mind for us all along. He knew what was coming in our lives:)
This house certainly isn’t perfect. One issue that we have had since we had our children was the lack of a functional mudroom. We have a very small mudroom that has a stairway leading to the basement right when you walk in. It was never safe to have the kids coming in and out that way when they were very little, and the tiny closet made for absolutely no room to move. So, we have always used the door off of the kitchen as our main entrance and exit. This consists of a 2X3 rug, a shoe basket, and a set of hooks on the wall. As the kids have grown and have more “stuff” coming and going with them, I have grown increasingly annoyed when I find the 6 of us all standing on the 2x3 rug at once, trying to get out shoes off. It just wasn’t working.
I had big ideas that would solve this problem. First, we would build another addition off the back of the house. We could design this great mudroom with lockers and benches for the kids. While we were at it, I would love a pantry and of course, we should move our laundry to the first floor. Yes, a little addition would be perfect!
My always-frugal husband however, quickly reminded me that on one salary, this was not going to happen. We put this on our “maybe someday when you go back to work list,” and Matt got to work rethinking our not-functional mudroom.
And…the mudroom redesign is working out great! I wish we would have taken pictures all along, but I never considered this space photo-worthy until now! It is the simple joys that really make my day…like hooks, and cubbies, and a place for things when we walk in the door!
Matt installed hooks pretty much everywhere. Some are so high that I can’t reach them, but he can! Some are at adult level, others are low enough for the kids to reach.
The small wall space going down to the basement is where Matt hung a shoe rack for my shoes. He puts his on the landing going down the steps.
Matt’s idea to just take off the front wall of the closet and remove the doors was awesome. He extended the stair with a low bench that provides a place for small buns to sit while they get their shoes on and off. There is storage underneath for Allie’s shoes.
On the other side are cubbies for the big kids’ shoes. Boots are on the top, and each child has their own row of cubbies.
Thank you honey for your hard work. I promise to put my “grand addition” dreams on the back burner for a few years. And thank you God for always providing…even the small things;)