Evan Taylor

Olympia High School

2012 Scholarship Winner
Third Place

Home: “a congenial environment; a social unit formed by a family setting; or a place of origin.” This is the definition of home given by The Merriam-Webster Dictionary (1974). I believe this definition is fantastic and accurately describes what my home means to me.

One reason my house is a home is because it’s a sanctuary where I am surrounded by those who love me. High school can be rough sometimes and hard to deal with, but I know everyday that when I walk in through the front door, everything is going to be just fine. My house is a place where I feel safe; it is a place I trust. I am free to relax, I am free to do homework, I am free to make memories with friends, and I am free to laugh, love, and live with my family. I am never lonely at home and on my worst days someone is always there to cheer me up, whether it is my mom, dad, brother, or sister. Our house is a place where I wake up every morning feeling blessed because of where I live. Blessed because there is nowhere I would rather be than home. Home is place of peace where I can be happy, because if you are not happy at home, you will not be happy anywhere else.

Olympia, Washington is not where I am originally from. I was born in Denver, Colorado but moved to Olympia with my parents when I was less than two years old. Some might say that Denver is my home because that is where I was born. I would disagree. My house in Olympia is my home because that is where I originated as a person. I became who I am today because of this town and the people here who influenced me. I grew up here, Olympia is my home, and my heart and pride lie here. I have traveled to many other foreign cities and towns but none can compare. I have experienced so much within the walls of my house, I lost my first tooth, I learned to ride a bike, I survived an earthquake, I battled through fevers, and celebrated holidays with loved ones. These precious memories both good and bad are part of what make my house my home.

Home is not defined by money or other superficial characteristics. A home can be anywhere or built out of anything. It is not just a shelter; it is a refuge. Homes are not built out of bricks and mortar; houses are. Homes are built out of memories, time, and love. They are improved with the addition of family and friends, not furniture or fancy TV’s. American clergyman Charles Henry Parkhurst once said, “Home interprets heaven. Home is heaven for beginners.” It is a place where you can return from work, school, church, vacations, or just a trip to grocery store thinking, “There is no place like home” (L. Frank Baum).