Lately, I've been fascinated by people who choose to restore old homes and buildings rather than just tear them down. Living near Detroit, I see thousands of buildings that were designed and fabricated during the industrial age. As time found them in a state of disrepair, many were stripped of their grandeur in fear of pieces falling off. Many more were abandoned and left for time, weather and vandals to have their way with. It is sad that it has gotten to a point where there are no more options but to tear them down and start a fresh. But the truth is, starting fresh will not happen until people start to take some responsibility for their own actions and lives. To watch the Detroit newscast, even for just one day, many would loose hope for all humanity. It seems like there is no end to the destruction. Destruction that starts in the mind and spreads to the surroundings.
Leaving a neighborhood is not the answer to saving it. Chasing the riff-raff out, is not the answer either; they will only go somewhere else. Saving these historic landmarks, starts with education. From there, we can teach people to take responsibility for their own selves, homes and neighborhoods. We also need to lead by example. I believe this with everything I have.
Having stated that, I recently was thinking of leaving my own neighborhood. I've been living in the home that I had built twenty years ago. In that time, I've made that house into the home that I've always wanted, with attention to every detail. It is a modest home by any means. I never intended to stay here and didn't want to sink a lot of money into a temporary place. But during my years here, I have witnessed the rise and fall of the neighborhood. I've seen many faces come and go. I've always taken an ownership in the entire area. And yeah, I'd say that I love it here. I'm comfortable here. But with my new found freedom from family obligations, I thought it might be time for a change.
In the interest of combining my home and business, I've had my eyes open for something with a little more space. Character is a must in a home that would welcome me every day. I'd love a small yard in a small town atmosphere. Walking to stores and entertainment would be great. Considering the nature of my business, a garage is a must. At least space for three large cars. The other day, I ran across someone that has a home on a main street in a small town. Built in 1926, it's an Early American Craftsman with lots of wood moldings, stained and leaded glass windows and a lovely garden in the back. They have not put it up for sale yet and I would have first option to buy. After falling in love with the charm of the home, reality peeked it's head into the room and reminded me that it has only a small two car garage and a narrow driveway.
Feeling dejected at the reality of the situation, I turned to my own home and looked at it with new eyes. I've come to recognize that my home and the surrounding neighborhood is exactly what I have made it. It is exactly what I need and want. There has been a lot of blood, sweat and tears put into this house and I like renting a garage. It gives me a sense of "going to work".
Each of the cabinets in my home was put together by hand, piece by piece. The floor was laid one board at a time.
Every color and every finish was selected by me (with the input of my beloved)
Only the finest is worthy of entering here, my little oasis from the chaotic world.
Sometimes walls had to be moved to make things just right.
This is a place where neighbors and friends are always welcome.
This is a place that I am not leaving. Not anytime soon.
For those of you that have been following this blog for a while and wondering where I've been, I've been working out private issues after the loss of my parents and you can see some of the results in the photos of my home above. Design and hard work, help me to think my way through things.
This is only a sampling of the many things I've been working on. Stick around and you will see some of my other projects.