Lots of couples our age are fed up with property taxes. Yard maintenance is a pain, literally. Cleaning the gutters is a menace. Raking in the fall. And despite labor saving devices, these chores get old. Just like us. So every so often, my husband and I discuss maybe moving. To a cool loft downtown, or a smaller, even older historical house in the great old neighborhood surrounding Dayton called the Oregon District. There are a lot of lovely brick houses there, There are bay windows, postage stamp yards, and you can walk a block or so to fantastic restaurants.

We just talk, though. Because here, at this house, is where all the family holidays have been. My kids ran home from school to this house. It is where we had all the family dinners and the heated discussions. This is the house I fell in love with and then after we bought it, I had the most searing case of buyer’s remorse, because Oh My God my babies were born in that OTHER house.

We have lived here for 25 years now. The kids probably won’t be coming here for Christmases any longer, as they have there own families. We will travel, most likely.

But we are determined to stay here as long as we can, even though the tiny house shows look sort of like those might be fun (for about a week), every time we visit an acquaintance living in one of those “open plan” city lofts, or whenever we see houses built along lakes or river beds. We certainly do NOT want to move to one of those fancy retirement neighborhoods, where the sound of children bouncing balls is frowned upon, and where my daughters would find not one nook or a single cranny.

So we stay put here. But sometimes, when I can’t sleep at night, I remember how very very sad my mother was when she got too frail and began to fall inside her dream condo. A widow, she could no longer live alone, and despite begging us otherwise, my sister and I were forced to move her to a retirement home that morphed into a nursing home when needed. My mom never liked her room, no matter how many trips I took to HomeGoods to decorate it. She didn’t like the other residents. It was all “old people.”

I don’t want to leave my house that way. So I think about moving more often. But then I hear the kids outside riding their bikes and shrieking with laughter. So once again, I resolve to stay here. Just a few more years.

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