Your house is a mausoleum to your own family. Everything in it is a memory of some aspect of your family’s life. And now that you’ve gotten married, had careers, raised the children and retired, that story of life has become history. Your house has gone from a place where life occurred to a place where the next chapter that awaits is death.
Why am I so harsh about this shrine to yourself. Let’s take a tour. We start in the kitchen, with the refrigerator. Oh look, it’s covered in children’s drawings. Today they’re by the grandchildren but the fridge first hosted the work of your children. And where has that work gone? Is it in a box, on a shelf in the basement just off the rec room? Or is it in the attic? Are the mice turning it into nests for their babies?
What of the dining room? I admire your handsome dining room suite. Although it’s more than a little out-of-date. And yet it’s not hip enough to be retro. If you had to sell it you’d be hard-pressed to find anyone to take it. And you’ll never get what it’s worth.
You and your spouse may think that the children will want it. After all, it’s from the mausoleum. It’s part of the archived legacy of how your family became the people we see today. But without even knowing your children, I can tell you that you’re thinking is way off. It stands to reason that if your children are old enough to have careers, spouses a home then they’ve already furnished the dining room with a suite. And it’s up-to-date. Not old and tired.
The living room is next. The TV’s up-to-date. It’s a nice model and has some of the latest features. But your 80+ inches of home cinema would take up two walls in your children’s condos. And besides, they already have a TV. Or they watch Netflix on their laptops.
Then there’s the sofa, and the side chairs, and the coffee table, and the end tables, and the lamps. All worn out and tired. It costs more than it’s worth to have it re-covered. No charity will take it. The grandchildren going off to college can’t fit any of it in their bachelor pads.
Now what really ties the room together is that Persian carpet. Timeless. But if you have one Persian carpet and two children then you have an argument, not a bequest.
Next Up: The bedrooms.