Years ago I had the pleasure of hosting a book club dinner meeting in my home in which the author was also an invited guest. She was gracious enough to sign each of our books. Her presence not only gave us a better understanding of who she was as we discussed her memoir, but she also personally gave me a better understanding of how my home was perceived by the inscription written in my book. The simple statement “Your home is warm and inviting, your spirit livens every room.” made me realize for the very first time that your home has the power to make your guests feel welcome or not.
So recently I came upon this bit of news about the sale of the most expensive home in America and needless to say I was very curious to know just what makes a home worth its $120 million price tag. First off the home is a French Renaissance-style mansion that has 12 bedrooms, seven full baths and two half baths, a wood-paneled library, an ornate dining room with a tracery ceiling and oak columns, a solarium, wine cellar, third-floor staff wing, and a three-story, wood-paneled entry foyer. Whew! You definitely won’t need a gym membership to stay in shape in a home this spacious. Some additional features includes the original kitchen located in the basement equipped with a dumb-waiter which was originally part of the staff’s quarters, fireplaces with marble surrounds adorning most rooms, sleeping porches (something I would love to have) and 12 foot ceilings.
With Labor Day behind us and the beginning of a new school year, fall is quickly approaching. A little too quick for my taste as spring and summer are my favorite seasons. Before you know it some of the things I enjoy most such as admiring gardens and spending time outdoors will give way to winter snow storms and freezing temperatures. I’m fortunate to live in a neighborhood that has periodic garden tours conducted by a master gardener. I was able to attend one last week that featured a green roof. In addition to seeing and learning about what’s involved in creating a green roof the overall garden was a very nice two level backyard retreat which made for a welcoming environment for the many guests that were invited. My favorite feature was an outdoor fireplace which is a great and practical means to extend time outdoors for entertaining and relaxing once temperatures drop in the fall. I was definitely inspired and decided an outdoor fireplace would be a nice feature to add to my home improvement wish list which is quite long.
I’ve always had a love of books. For the most part I come from a family of bookworms. Reading was just a normal part of everyday. Growing up I remember my mother reading the Washington Post from back to back each and every morning (with the exception of the sports page). To this day she still attacks books with a fierce appetite. I even once told her that I hope her local library doesn’t run out of books before she reads them all. When I say I love books I mean the actual books, not just the stories they tell. I do not own an e-book reader nor do not plan to get one. I have actual book shelves with books. I don’t care how small my home is there will always be a space or place for books. So this post is especially for like minded people who would rather crack a book than fire up a Kindle.