Playing House.

The small girl inherited a lovely doll’s house from her sisters. Over the years the family of dolls has expanded and we felt that a second house was required. The little wooden dolls needed someplace to go visiting. Okay, it was all an excuse; I saw one of these shoebox houses on Pinterest and I desperately needed to have a go at making one.

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Playing house has been my absolute favourite entertainment for as long as I can remember. As a child, I built tree houses, blanket forts, Lego chalets, sandcastles…you name it, I built it. As a student, I put up an eight-foot-high live Christmas tree in my tiny bedsit. When Husband and I moved into our first rented apartment I spent our entire food budget in Habitat. When we bought our own house and I was given license to actually hammer nails in the walls, I was ecstatic.IMG_4638

But every house before this house was, more or less, temporary. Even while we searched for it, I called this The Forever House. The house where I would invest in hard wood floors, plant trees and put down roots. The house purchase was a year-long torture by a series of masochistic banking minions. The planned kitchen extension turned into a year-long nightmare of demolition and re-build. The only thing that kept me sane during the worst two years of my life was a packet of colouring pencils and a pad of graph paper where I planned bathrooms and bedrooms and, above all else,  my dream kitchen.

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Small girl was only five weeks old when we moved in. I strapped her to my chest in a sling while I lovingly caressed my hard-won, hardwood floors with a mop.

IMG_4632Since then, I’ve been having the best fun playing the most exciting game of house ever. Some days I scream that I want what I want and I want it NOW in fine Verruca Salt fashion. Other days, I feel that there is no rush. We will eventually get a patio outside our lovely patio doors and I will eventually paint the back of my bathroom door. It doesn’t need to be finished. What would be the fun in that?IMG_4639

The trees are beginning to mature now and the precious floors are getting scuffed. I tried to protect them with rugs and mats but had to give up. There’s a groove being slowly worn between the sink and the cooker and between the cooker and the fridge. It’s not pretty but it tells my story. It’s my groove.

I thought that the shoebox house would be a fun project for my three girls but it turned out that I was the one who spent hours cutting up magazines and matching perspectives. I asked Teenage Daughter why they weren’t joining in and she answered, ‘Mum, you are obsessed. We are afraid to lay a finger on that thing’.

Woops. IMG_4635

I’ve left it next door to the old dollhouse now and small girl plays with it while I’m hoovering. I might buy a new magazine one day soon and do a bit of renovation. I can’t help it.

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