It’s a phrase that everyone knows – “There’s no place like home”.
As we all know, Judy Garland famously said these immortal words when she realised that everything she needed and loved was already at her own front door.
It’s a phrase we can all relate to.
There is no-one I know that doesn’t breathe a little sigh when putting their key into the front door, knowing that within ten minutes they will have their comfy slippers on, a hot cup of coffee (or tea) in their hands and be sinking into their favourite spot on the couch, ready to exhale the day’s trials and stresses.
I grew up in a military background. My dad joined the RAF just after I was born so home was always temporary. I lived in seven different homes before I turned seventeen and went to boarding school for my last four years of school. As a family, we never really got the chance to put down roots until my dad left the forces and we moved to Blackpool.
My parents bought a hotel in Blackpool’s holiday area, smack in between the Pleasure Beach and The Blackpool Tower. For the first time in our lives, we had a front door to call our own and it was great! I lived with them for about eighteen months before deciding to move out and spread my wings – those stories can wait for another day though!
My dad’s health started to deteriorate so my parents decided to sell the hotel and buy a house, still in Blackpool, but a bit closer to suburbia rather than the party spots.
During this time I had moved another five times – I was still trying to find where I wanted to put down roots when I discovered I had a baby on the way. I moved back in with my parents again while I saved and saved to get myself a deposit for my own home. It was hard but I did it, and three months after my daughter was born I had an offer accepted on a little house just for the two of us. It was one of the most exciting and scary days of my life when the keys were pressed into my waiting palm – suddenly I was a real grown-up with real grown-up responsibilities!
I loved my little house, my dad and I decorated it to how I had always wanted my home to look – in a military home you weren’t allowed to change the wall colours, carpets etc. They didn’t even like you to put up picture hooks, so in my own little palace I went crazy with colour and pictures – I had no money for furniture but I soon discovered I had a skill for turning old trash into gorgeous pieces that were admired by everyone that stepped over the threshold!
I never had any intention of leaving my little house in Blackpool, but life always likes to spring surprises on us, doesn’t it?
After eight years of living there, I met Mr Crafty! Long story short, we decided we needed to live together but my little house was just too small, so we started to look for a home that we could fit our lives and kids into comfortably.
We found the perfect house here in St Anne’s where we have been living happily for the last five years. Even more perfect is that The Crafty Cottage is on the same street so my two favourite places are in walking distance of each other.
St Anne’s is where my roots have finally settled – I love it here. It has a village feel, everyone is friendly, the amenities are great and there is the same sense of community that is reminiscent of military life. In fact, it is so lovely that after my dad passed away, my mum moved here too so she could be closer to us and her work. Both Mr Crafty and I agree this is where we want to spend our days and grow old together. Although being someone who has lived in over fifteen different homes who knows? My feet may start to get itchy and move number sixteen could be on the cards!
One thing I have learnt though in my search for a home – it’s not the building or even the location that makes a home, it’s the people you share it with. First, it was my parents, then friends, children and finally Mr Crafty – it’s these people that are home to me, the bricks and mortar are just the shell to house the love that makes a house a home.
Keep safe, and Keep crafty
Love Cat xx
Beach Hut Photo available to purchase via the link courtesy of Stephen Cheatley