Meet the cabin.
Our family has retreated to this enchanted hundred acre wood since 1948. My grandparents bought what was once a working sheep farm from a widowed school teacher, when my dad was just a wee little nipper. Years were spent fixing up the old -but charming- 1700’s farm house and barn. The rooms became filled with favorite family antiques, as the house was slowly rehabbed and ever-so-lovingly brought back to its’ original glory. My mom became a part of the picture when she and my dad started dating in high school.
Fast forward 12 years.
It was 1968 and one of the hottest August days on record when I decided to make my entrance into the world. While at the hospital basking in the glory of his first born, my dad received the phone call that the farm was gone. It had burned to the ground.
Everything was lost. It was devastating. Heart wrenching.
Shortly thereafter my dad and grandfather built another house, a little cottage, that became the haven where I spent many a weekend making memories growing up. The first of those weekends was spent sleeping in a tent. And being bathed in a bucket.
I took my very first steps in that very tent, on that very hill while chasing “long leg-ed mothers” (as apposed to daddy long legs).
On my 3rd wedding anniversary another tragedy unfolded. A bolt of lightning struck the house and once again…it burned to the ground. After much consideration, a decision was made by the entire family that we just couldn’t give up on the hundred acre wood.
A third house was built.
A log cabin. Stones from the old original barn where used to anchor the foundation, pine tree trunks from our forest were used to make the porch columns that stand guard and watch over our precious abode.
Inside a stone fireplace was built to honor the beloved fireplace of the first farm house. A walnut mantel was made from the 200 year old walnut tree that barley survived the second fire.
Large pine beams made from our very own pine trees stretch the width of the cabin to support the roof. They not only give support but strength and comfort in knowing that the inside of our cabin is made from part of our hundred acre wood.
We have once again filled the rooms with antiques…special treasures from many different places, people and relatives. Like a patchwork of memories that warm our hearts and hold us tight.
We have unspoken rituals and traditions here at the cabin.
The picnic table on the front porch is always dressed with the red & white check tablecloth within minutes of our arrival. Nana lovingly covers the table, rain or shine. It is always the first sign and quiet promise of the fun and relaxation that’s to come.
Flowers are gathered to adorn the counter.
Watches find themselves lonely and unwanted as time doesn’t really seem to matter when at the cabin.
The screened in porch is opened up and sits waiting patiently for visitors to get lost in a book or magazine.
The television sits quietly in the corner and is rarely turned on. Instead our visual entertainment is simply the view.
Not long after our arrival the deer greet us as we sit on the porch and let the stress of everyday life melt away.
The deafening internal mental talk magically quiets.
The gentle wind.
And we unknowingly listen.
And are soothed.
As we watch,
all of the splendor unfold.
We become enthralled in all of the majesty that we somehow miss,
when absorbed in our busy lives.
I watch my dad tenderly teach our girls about guns, of the artistry and the history and respect that they deserve.
Just as he taught my sister and me.
I watch my girls practice what they’ve learned.
A skill that has been lost in our generation.
And I am proud.
The cabin is about small, quiet moments
that speak volumes,
when you take the time to listen and see.
The cabin is about meandering down dirt roads in search of the seasons harvest.
It’s about antiquing in search of treasures left behind,
from generations past.
It’s about slowing down enough to just swing the afternoon away.
The kind of smile that just bubbles up from the inside out.
It’s about lazy afternoons that stretch into relaxing evenings.
Even our dog Oakley stops to enjoy the view.
As the day winds down and the shadows grow longer, the deer awaken from their midday naps and appear once again.
A glass of wine is enjoyed,
while watching the sun slip into the horizon
leaving a blaze of sherbet sky behind.
A bonfire rages and reaches its’ flames up towards the now darkened sky.
The snap and crackle of the fire echos through the forest as we gather round to reflect upon the day.
Somehow while at the cabin, all seems right in the world.
The cabin is about a certain state of mind.
A certain state of being.
Perhaps we should begin each day with red & white check tablecloth on the table in preparation for all the good that’s to come?
Can’t wait to share more of the cabin with all of you. There will be some scrumptious recipes and fun antique finds in the days to follow.
Wishing you a hundred acre wood state of mind…all the time.