"I want a corner piece!" cries Sabrina.
"I want a middle piece!" chimes in Ann Marie.
"I want an edge piece!" adds Lauren.
I sit on the couch smiling as I watch my girls jumping up and down in excitement as Dado takes the Dutch Baby I have made for dinner out of the oven. They yell out in excitement over and over which piece they want. It is a simple moment of joy - a single, solitary memory being made in a kitchen that already holds thousands.
In that instant I realize this simple memory is being etched into the walls of the house we live in making it just a a little more our "home." And I think about yesterday, kneeling in prayer with my family, my parents, and my sister's family in my childhood home for the last time.
How many moments just like this one are etched into the walls of that home? Do the walls remember the hands of my father who helped to raise them up? Do the boards beneath the floor remember my older brother playing on them with his hammer and little homemade car as the house was being born? Do the ceilings remember the countless number of times I sat upside down on the couch pretending to walk on them?
Countless memories of magical moments have been made in that beautiful old home. She has served our family for over 33 years as a place of shelter, a harbor in the storm of life. She has stood as a witness to our lives. She has seen our happy simple moments and felt the tears of our most bitter sorrows. She has felt our anger when walls were punched or doors were slammed. She has joined us in laughter as tricks were played, surprises were made and plans were hatched. She has hidden me in her cupboards. I have danced in her spacious living room, and roller skated in her basement.
This old home has been holy ground on so many occasions. Many of my most spiritual experiences took place within her walls. Angels have walked her halls and aided those who have been suffering within. Innumerable prayers have been sent up from within to call down the power of heaven. This old house had long ago earned the title of "home."
Driving away from that final experience in my childhood home, I feel the millions of memories etched in those hallowed walls imprinting themselves even more deeply into my soul. I can almost hear echos of my own childhood as I watch my children now and those memories of that home flood through me. We will make our own families memories here in this house. It will be to my children what that house had been for me. And I will carry all of these memories from all my houses in my heart no matter where I call "home."