Summer Barn

A Move From The City to the Country 25 Years Ago

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One Month Until Summer


I am celebrating 25 years of moving from Chicago to Western, Pennsylvania. If anyone ever told me that this girl would move from the city to the country and live on 32 acres I would have told you that you were crazy. My friend Lulu still will call during summer and say, “How is everything at Green Acres?”

Pictured is my artist husband, Russell, whom I met 25 years ago on the beach in Lakeside, Michigan. It’s the area of the lake that mirrors Chicago’s lakefront. Little did I know, or he for that matter, both our lives would be forever changed after our first conversation under cool September skies and a bright full moon. It was he who turned this once barn for cows into a small home to live in. Originally just an art studio, it became a labor of love/hate making it more into a place to dwell. When I first got there it needed a woman’s touch that is for sure. The bones were there, but it definitely felt like a bachelor lived there. I changed that. But I remember visiting there for the first time and it felt like home.

When I think back of my first winter there I moved logs to place into the wood burner and thought it was fun. Today I am not sure I would call it “fun,” but when you have just turned 30 it’s a different story. Fast forward 25 years later and today it’s a summer home. My husband dislikes winter and cold of any sort and one year after we married we built a place in Florida. I think he was clairvoyant and knew as he got older that he would “need” to live in the warmth year round. Me, not so much. I miss the cooler temps and the snow but I am happy only when we are together with our cat and dog, so this is the schedule.  As we head into May here in Southwest Florida, the air is already steamy and hotter than I need it to be.

In bout a month we will take the overly long drive back to Western, PA and get the 1952 Ford tractor and my little John Deere rider ready to plow down the best smelling grass on the planet, He will relish in planting a garden and I like to play with flowers. Lots of things happen at the Summer Barn and since I have now lived there a quarter of a century it would be a good to start another blog about this every subject. Welcome to the Summer Barn. I hope you will visit!