I Got That Feeling

2011/10/25

What is home? Is it the structure you live in? Is it where your significant other resides? This philosophical question can only mean one thing: another Let’s Blog Off.

One answer to the ‘What is home?’ question is the cliché ‘Home is where the heart is.’ However, home is more than heart: it is a feeling. It is a warm-fuzzy that you receive when you walk in the door. It is that intangible piece that is indescribable to anyone else but you.

Where is home for me? Sit back and I will tell you. I have moved frequently over the last ten years, and only one place gives me that special warm-fuzzy feeling – Oxford, OH. Oxford is home to my beloved alma mater Miami University. It is true that I reside in Dayton, OH, but Oxford will always be home.

Why is Oxford so special to me? For starters, paying my own way through Miami taught me that I can stand on my own without help. I had good friends at MU that stood by me when times were tough. Oxford was the last place I lived where I felt as if I had a purpose. Lastly, the feeling I get when I go back is one of euphoria. Words can not describe exactly how I feel, but I always feel at home. I feel as if I belong.

I have a different purpose now, to test product and crunch numbers, but it is not the same. Walking into my house in Dayton does not give me the same feeling as walking into a building on campus. It has been awhile since I have lived in Oxford, but it will always be a part of me. It is my home.

Upham Hall


Step Up

2011/08/02

I grew up in the quintessential American family: Mom, Dad, and two kids. Since my family was small, a large home was not necessary. We had a typical one-story brick ranch that many families had in the ‘70s. Where am I headed? It is none other than Let’s Blog Off, where participants are asked to name what they wanted as a child.

There were many items I wanted growing up. As I sifted through childhood memories, I kept coming back to one thing: a house with stairs. I know that sounds silly, but it is the truth.

My four cousins always had a two-story home, simply because they had a larger family. We would play in the stairwell. When Cousin Meg and I did not want to clean, we would place items on the stairs instead of putting them away properly. Meg and Jake taught me how to slide down the banister. (See picture below for the culprits.) Of course, we would get in trouble, but we had so much fun.

I pretended my bedroom had stairs by setting up sofa cushions next to Mom’s card table. I climbed up and down until my mother caught me sitting on top of the card table. She asked me what I was doing. I told her I wanted a house with stairs like Meg and Jake. Mom was not impressed with my engineering marvel because she proceeded to demolish my stairwell and spank me. I was forbidden from the card table for a long time afterwards.

Recently we were all together again. Meg and I shared childhood memories. I told her I was jealous of her because she had a house with stairs. She laughed at me. She said that she like my house because the bathroom was never very far away. I guess this proves the old saying, “The grass isn’t always greener on the other side of the fence.”

Becky & David’s Wedding – June 2006

From L to R: Chris, Meg, Me, Becky, David G., David D., Jess, Leslie, Jake


Creativity: Something I Don’t Have but Wish I Did

2011/01/18

What is creativity?  I could quote the definition from Merriam-Webster, but that is too easy.  Being an engineer, I like to break things down and make them simple.  So here is what creativity means to me: creativity is thinking outside the box.  Creativity also means the ability to make a decision and stick with it.

I am very much a left-brain gal.  Math & science come easy to me.  When it comes to right-brain functions (writing, design, etc.), I struggle greatly.  This is quite evident when it comes to remodeling my home.

When I purchased my home two years ago, the entire house was painted white.  I was excited that I could finally paint the walls whatever color I wanted.  However, choosing paint colors was one of the most painful experiences in my life.  I spent at least an hour in Home Depot’s paint department trying to make up my mind.  Nearly $250 later, I am happy to say that the entire house is painted.

My next home improvement project is remodeling the kitchen.  The cabinets are newer, but I am in desperate need of a backsplash, countertop & new flooring.  To me, this is pure torture.  There are so many options out there.  I don’t know where to start.  I have a few ideas, but I am afraid I will not like them.  Thankfully, I follow a few design people on Twitter whose blogs have been somewhat of an inspiration.  Still, I am scared to make that final choice.

(The kitchen table is not usually this messy.)

As I continue on my quest of self-improvement, I am striving to be more creative.   I am discovering that survival depends on one’s ability to be creative.  For those of you that are naturally this way, you have my utmost respect.  I wish I had that talent & capability.


Summer Style

2010/12/21

If money were no object, what is the perfect gift?  This question was posed as a part of the Let’s Blog Off series.  Surprise.  This was easy to answer.

A true nurturer, Mom continuously puts others before herself.  She has been through so much pain within the last three years, I feel sorry for her.

Mom has vacationed in the Upper Peninsula (UP) of Michigan since she was young and always loved Mackinac Island.  Since she is constantly around for support, I would make her Mackinac Island dream come true and buy her a summer cottage.

Mom’s other wish is to own a BMW Z4.  She has a 328i, but goes gaga over the Z4 whenever she sees one.  If she has a summer home, she might as well have a summer car.

I could list the endless projects for the house as perfect gifts for me, but that is egotistical on my part.  Being unemployed for the last 12 months has taught me that I can live without material possessions.  I have learned to be happy with what I have.  (Although a deck for the back yard would be quite nice.)

<— my back yard (Note: The white chairs are history.)

My best wishes to everyone for a joyous holiday season! 🙂