Crockpot Dinners and More

Basketball games in the backyard. Poker nights in the garage. Sunday family dinners. Wiffle Ball games with the neighborhood kids. Crockpot dinners after coming home late from practice. Countless family memories occur under one roof.

I begin to get sentimental thinking about my home and the people within it. I love my home and everything it stands for. I have my twin brother an arm’s length away to talk to and confide in. I have a dog named Nellie who barges into our room and licks my face. I find safety and security in my home. HOME is a place where I can be myself and not worry about the outside world. I can truly let down my walls and be the true me within the comfort of my home.

HOME is my mom and dad always there for us. My dad sitting on a bucket with a catcher’s mitt catching all my baseballs thrown him over the years. My mom washing the grass stains out of my baseball pants or football jersey. My friends and I hit Wiffle balls into the neighbor’s yard.

HOME is mom’s open-door policy, inviting friends and family over at any time, and making sure they always felt comfortable and secure. HOME is a place where the whole neighborhood knows they can come and get a meal or have a conversation. Home is a place where people feel comfortable and filled with a sense of community and fellowship.

As you can tell by now, a house is a structure with walls and a foundation, yet HOME is the people and memories you make under one roof that carve out who you are as a person. HOME is the love you feel when you enter. Sometimes it’s the laughter or yelling or the barking or the tripping over shoes. HOME is a sanctuary where you can be yourself and feel safe.

Sometimes when you travel and stay in some really nice places, it doesn’t feel right. It’s just never the same as being home and sleeping in your own bed. It’s hard to beat your own pillows, sheets, and blankets that feel just right.

HOME has made me the person I am today. It made me a better student, athlete, and community member. The Wodka House is a place friends and teammates gather. It’s a place where imperfections are shared and welcomed, home is a place where stories are shared and relationships are made.

My family moved to Olympia in 2004, and for me, HOME has always meant community. As I go off to college this fall, my ultimate goal is to have a career and build a HOME like the one I grew up in. I want to replicate the community values that I grew up in, where my kids feel comfortable in their own homes, and HOME is a place where they want to be and continuously want to come back to for the rest of their lives.