Hi dear friends! I’ve been holding a secret very close to my heart for the last four months. So much has happened because of the unfolding of this secret and today I want to share it with you!!!!!
We have moved! Yes! Can you believe it? Let me say first STONEGABLE BLOG IS HEALTHY AND WELL AND WILL CONTINUE JUST LIKE ALWAYS!!!!!
Stop back on Friday to see more about our move and get a tour of our new home… boxes and moving-in mess and all!
But today, will you linger with me at the home that has been our life for almost 25 years? I hope you will indulge me as I remember a bit…
StoneGable was my dream house. My forever home. You can read HOW WE CHOSE STONEGABLE HERE and see how our home came about and why we love it so much.
I wrote the HOW WE CHOSE STONEGABLE as part of a house tour with other bloggers. But what no one knew, except a handful of blogging friends, was we were in the middle of selling it!
I can’t tell you the tears I shed as I wrote this post! Ugly crying! Very ugly crying! I still can’t bring myself to read it! I’m not sure about spelling or grammar or even how sounds!
This post started what I now call THE GREAT MOURNING!
I cried day and night for a solid three weeks after I wrote that post! Solid! I’m not being hyperbolic!
I’d get up every morning and think, “Why, oh why are we selling this beautiful house? This is my HOME”!!!! And a sense of dread gripped me! And I would cry and cry!
StoneGable was Camelot! Our Camelot!
You need to know before I go any further there is a very happy ending to this story and we are living in another beautiful home I can’t wait to share with you. We are busily infusing it with all StoneGable’s style and memories and blessings and joy! And we are making it our own now!
But just for today it’s about remembering the home that loved our family so well!
I took one last walk through my beloved StoneGable yesterday and took lots of pictures of the empty rooms.
I remember 25 years ago when I walked through this empty house for the first time! We really thought it was palatial! And for us it was.
One of my favorite rooms in StoneGable is its ample foyer! Of course, my two most beautiful memories of this area were watching Jacqueline walk down the stairs in her wedding gown and watching Christopher walk out of the front door to serve his country! Those memories are imprinted in my mind forever and I hold them ever so tight in my mother’s heart!
The foyer was often called into duty for other purposes. The rug was pushed away more than once and the foyer became a most excellent dance floor! Or a drink or dessert station when the house was full of friends. And it was even a driveway when our little Anderson got a push- car for Christmas.
We did use our living room but probably not as much as we should have. Book Club gathered there and friends lingered after a meal. I can see my sister Lisa reading or taking a nap on the sofa!
I adore its long elegant windows! And the light in the living room was so bright even on dreary days! It’s the brightest room at StoneGable.
If you drive down our road you can look in one of the dining room windows right through our home and see out the living room door! For some reason, I really thought that was so unique!
Christmas was when the living room shone most beautifully and brightly! As our family grew we moved the Christmas tree from the family room to the living room in front of the french doors.
Speaking of Christmas there is something I need to confess. We did not spend every Christmas at StoneGable. When Jacqueline got married and it was the in-laws turn to host Christmas I just could not imagine Christmas without her. Christopher was in college and he was my sanity that year!
So I asked the boys if we could go away for Christmas. I could not bear Christmas at StoneGable without our daughter!
Just a side story in a story… that was also the first year we put up a family Christmas tree without our children. It was an EPIC FAIL! Bobby and I got out all the boxes of lights and ornaments. Bobby strung the light and the first ornament I pulled out of one of the boxes was Christopher’s “babies first Christmas”. Well, we both sat down on the sofa and cried so hard we put the lid on the boxes and had a tree with just lights that year! I took a nap and Bobby had a drink! Seriously! NOW, we can laugh and laugh about it!
Back to Christmas without my daughter. So my boys wanted to go somewhere warm and tropical. Are you kidding me? No!
It had to be the most Christmassy place in the world! So we decided on Williamsburg, Va! And yes, it is Christmasland there.
We spent 5 days over Christmas and to my great surprise had a fabulous time! Being in Williamsburg is the best at Christmas! We even had a Christmas tree in our hotel room at the Williamsburg Lodge.
Yes, I missed Jacqueline but it was okay because she was really missing us and somehow that made me feel better (terrible, I know!)!
We dined in the taverns and went to every fun Colonial Christmas thing going on in Historic Williamsburg! And we went to Christmas Eve midnight services at Bruton Parrish Church.
So every other year you will find Bobby and me in Williamsburg having the Christmas time of our lives while the children and their families are at the inlaws! It’s awesome! You should try it sometime!
Enough of Christmas past, let’s head over to the dining room…
I often whisper to my dining room, “I love you best of all” so none of the other rooms hear! The heart of my home is certainly the kitchen but the dining room is the spirit of StoneGable. It’s grand but humble about being the prettiest room in the house. It looks formal but it is all about being welcoming! Welcoming is StoneGable’s buzzword, for sure!
And of all the rooms at StoneGable, I will probably miss the dining room the most!
I love this view looking from the kitchen to the family room! About 10 years ago we resurfaced the green marble tile around the fireplace with brick. What a difference! The fireplace is classic and I’m actually going to have the exact same fireplace built in our new home. I’ll be sharing the progress soon!
Like many family rooms, it was the hardest used room in our home! Relaxing, games, movie nights, reading, talking, kids, roughhousing, family, friends, dogs and more!
The breakfast nook holds breakfast memories! Yes, we did eat all of our dinners here too. But it was our breakfast ritual I loved the best!
From the day we moved into StoneGable we had breakfast together as a family. It was not easy getting up at 5:15 every morning to make a hot breakfast every school day! And it was not easy for our kids to get up a little earlier either! But it was more than worth it!
Our early morning time around the table, day after day and month after month and year after year, started our day off right and built such strong family ties and wonderful memories.
For well over a decade we did devotions as a family and prayed together before we started our day! And we see how God answered our prayers and we are so grateful!
My husband will probably remember the breakfast nook for late-night games of One To Thirteen or Poker or other card games. We are a game loving family! And we taught our children and their friend and spouses to love games too!
Now Hanabi is my card game of choice! When our children grew up the tables were turned and they taught us this amazing game!
The kitchen at StoneGable has gone through one major makeover and two little refreshes. Every cabinet and door was built right in our garage! There is not another one like it anywhere! And I loved knowing that!
The kitchen has always been white. For me, there is nothing so pretty as a white painted kitchen!
The kitchen is where I spent the most time at StoneGable with my apron on canning the bounty of our garden, cooking and creating, and enjoying every minute (almost) with Bobby and our kids!
The first time I met Jacqueline’s boyfriend who would be her husband he was sitting at the end of the island in the kitchen. Jacqueline and her friends came home from Penn State for the weekend to go salsa dancing and stayed at StoneGable. Jonathan arrived later than the rest of the group so when I came down to make everyone breakfast there he was sitting at the end of the island! He never went to sleep. We talked and talked in the quiet of that early morning! I thought to myself, “What an impressive young man”!
When all of my grandbabies were tiny wee newbies I bathed them in the farmhouse sink! I think every babe needs a farmhouse sink bath! And this is how I know, my Nani did the same to me!
When I scrubbed the sink for the last time a couple days ago I pressed my hand into the cold soapstone and closed my eyes so all the memories would be soaked up into my hand and then right into my heart! And again I cried, but just a few tears this time!
I remember the first night we stayed in StoneGable like it was yesterday!
I walked from our bedroom down the hall to our children’s room to check on them before we went to bed and thought, “What a beautiful little walk”. Isn’t that funny! Like I was taking a stroll or something. It just seemed so lovely and long!
Christopher’s room! Oh, my! I could actually write a book about all the antics that went on in there! He was a sweet and hysterically funny child with a heart bigger than the whole world!
At night when I would tuck him in he wanted to solve all the problems of the world! In the dark, I would sit on the edged of his bed and we would talk about the deepest things.
No wonder he became a pastor! I always knew God had a calling on Chris’ life!
Oh, but he was a messy kid! Incurably messy and his room was ground zero! We decided when Chris was young we would pick our battles wisely and just shut his door! Thank goodness for boot camp!
Today he is (for the most part) as neat and organized as they come! Again, thank goodness for boot camp!
What I remember most about Jacqueline’s room were all the American Girl dolls and tea parties and ballet shoes and frilly tutu’s and cheerleading pom poms. Girly to the max!
When she got older my fondest memories were all the late-night talks under the pink gingham covers of her bed about her school days, her dates and her dreams! She would chatter and giggle on and on about teenage life and then college life. And then one day about falling in love with an amazing young man who would be her husband!
The Gable Room is the room that wins the prize for the pretties window! It is the Gable in StoneGable! It’s always been a guest room. And our guests enjoyed it for its most spectacular bucolic views!
Another guest room is the GUEST SUITE. This wing (over the garage) of our home has a large room with amazingly angled walls. It reminds me of an attic!
The guest suite and bath gave rest to missionaries, family and a few other souls who just needed a place to be and be loved for a while!
The porch was my happy place! And the swing is where I met with God, had heart-to-heart talks with family and friends and rocked my grandbabies!
The porch at StoneGable is a gift! A big wraparound gift! Love starts on the porch at StoneGable. You can just feel it! The porch is like giant arms wrapping themselves around the house in a big, huge hug!
The porch has a powerful southern personality! I’ve always wanted to be southern! And lo and behold the porch at StoneGable was! Hospitality is its very foundation! And porch sitting is a must!
For several years we housed and hosted Russian ballet dancers who came to dance in the Nutcracker. Beautiful, graceful, pencil-thin ballerinas and chiseled faced men who did not speak a speck of English!
Cold December evening after every performance found them on the back porch smoking like fiends and guzzling copious amounts of vodka! And wow, could they party! That was the porch’s wild years!
Memories are layered in every wall and floorboard and cupboard and closet and corner of StoneGable. We have bundled them up and have taken them all with us! They belong to us no matter where we go!
So this beautiful, warm, welcoming home is bare! Even though we have taken everything out of StoneGable including our memories we have not left it totally empty! !We are leaving a little bit of the magic! And also a sprinkle of love!
Now another family has come to live at StoneGable. A young, delightful family! We had been praying for them! From the day we knew our time at our beloved home was coming to an end, we have prayed for the next family blessed enough to call StoneGable their home!
Our tale is not ended but continues in new and exciting ways! Stop back on Friday and meet our new home at Tanglewood!