Write about your home as you share your memories. Your stories of events that happened in your house will make more sense against the backdrop of your descriptions of the place you live. In addition, your readers will be able to understand you better when they understand what home is like.
When a house becomes a home
There is a point that a house becomes a home. Not a building or structure, but the place we belong. It’s the place that our identity resides.
When you write about your home, write about when it stopped being a mere house and started being a home. (If it doesn’t feel like a home, Psychologies Magazine has some helpful ideas.)
Is your home a place of refuge? Do you feel safe? Why or why not?
When you write about your home, include what’s important and what’s not. Is cleanliness and punctuality important? Does spontaneity rule your roost? Do books, memories, photos, or artwork form its identity?
Now, take it a little deeper. Why do you think those things are important? Does the lack of clutter help you relax. Does your family thrive on routine? Are these the things that mattered in your childhood home?
What fills your home?
This is similar to what’s important, but it can also be what serendipitously fills your home. Do animals, clutter, or art occupy its spaces? Is it filled with children—many of which don’t belong to you? Are neighbors or relatives dropping by? Does the smell of cooking and baking greet you at the door or is comfort provided by treasures from world travel? Is there a laptop on every horizontal surface?
Think about the intangibles as you describe your home. Is your home filled with gratitude and love or do anger or grief also occupy the space? Do you want to include the arguments that occasionally hang in the air?
Write about your home’s yard and neighborhood
Walls can’t always encompass everything that makes a home. For me, for example, it’s the nature that fills my yard and close relationships with neighbors. Don’t forget these “external forces” when you write about your home.
Write about the house rules
House rules are often part of what makes a house a home. For instance, at my childhood next-door neighbor’s house, if you took the last piece of meat or bread, etc., you had to finish it. It made mealtime work for them. In some houses, shoes are left at the door.
What are the rules at your house? Why do you have them? How do they work at your house?
What are your dreams for this home? Do you plan to stay in it for years to come? When you write about your home, include you hopes for the future. What role will this house continue to play in your family?