I Like Your Real House

I like clean houses, organized and beautiful. Like a library, or a museum, I appreciate the order, the quiet, the beauty. I appreciate the strategically placed candle on the coffee table.

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I like cool houses. I like the funky pattern combos and the flea market finds. I appreciate the way you’ve found and made things beautiful and purposeful.

I like fun houses. I like the rec room and the pool table and the mini fridge and the wet bar. I like the effort made to bring joy and relaxation into your home. I appreciate your hospitality.

But what I really like is real houses. I like mismatched cups and a pile of mail on the kitchen counter. I like toys abandoned in corners of the living room. I like the smudges on your refrigerator. Like the Velveteen Rabbit who only becomes real when he’s weathered the act of being loved and being lived with, I like houses with the new rubbed off.

Maybe they are also clean houses, cool houses, fun houses. Maybe they are all of those things because they are loved and lived-in.

Sometimes I feel like we have to pick one side or the other when it comes to housekeeping. We must either excel to an extreme or we must surrender to the chaos completely. But, I like real houses.

I like houses that someone cared to decorate and straighten up but where they also leave a pile of magazines in the bathroom and some dust on the top of the gallery wall picture frames. I like houses where diplomas and preschool art and sports pictures and grandma’s prized pottery all grace the bookshelves. I like real houses.

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I like your real house. I hope you do too.

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Rebecca Chasteen

Rebecca Chasteen

Becca Chasteen is a writer, coffee lover, substitute teacher, and mental health professional. She lives with her husband and two children in a small town on the outskirts of Charlotte.