Monday, February 10, 2014
The Tree House
The beauty of the house aside, it was perfect. It was in the same school district (I didn't want the kids to have to switch schools). It had four bedrooms, so no one would have to share. It had a large, shady backyard with a privacy fence so that I could let them play outside and not worry about them wandering off. And, best of all, it had a tree house built around a gigantic pine tree ... or pine cone tree, according to the kids! Built off of the tree house were two swings, a trapeze bar, and a climbing rope with a bell at the top ... and of course, a basketball hoop.
Every time I look at the tree house from the dining room or kitchen windows at the back of the house, I can see my kids playing on it in my mind's eye.
I can see my son and several of the neighborhood boys climbing on the nylon ladder stretching between the branches of the split trunk.
I can see my oldest daughter sitting in the tree house, leaning against the trunk, reading on a lazy summer afternoon.
I can see my middle daughter with her dolls, sitting at the play table up there, and feeding them meal after meal of the delicious plastic food she is so famous for.
I can see all of the kids swinging and singing at the top of their lungs. I can see them climbing one of the two ropes that hang from the treehouse or climbing the rope on the swing set and ringing the small bell attached at the top. I can see them playing basketball at the goal attached to the end of the swing set. I can see them playing basketball, giggling with delight when they made one.
I can still hear their giggles and see the carefree smiles on their innocent little faces when they came in for a drink or a snack, flushed and tan from playing outside all summer long. I can see them jumping in piles of leaves in the fall, and making snow angels and snowmen in the winter. I can see them helping me plant flowers in the spring ... wait ... where did the kids go? I guess I should change that to ... I can imagine them helping me plant flowers in the spring! Actually, they did help (some) when they were little ... not so much when they were teens.
I don't need a house this big anymore, but every time I mention selling the house, the kids have a meltdown. They've spent their entire lives playing in that tree house, dreaming of how much fun their own kids would have out there someday. This house was a wonderful place for my children to grow up ... from the shady backyard oasis to the creaky swing on the wide front porch . If I do sell the house and move someday, it will be really hard to say good-bye to the tree house that dominates the view from my back windows.
I think I just might love that tree house as much as my kids do :)