American Bungalow Magazine|Issue 99 Fall 2019
When I met Susan, my beautiful bride-to-be, we often talked about our future—career goals, family, and home life, and what the future might hold for us. It was then that I made a promise of sorts. I will build a house for us—a place of beauty, where our children will grow to be wonderful people, where family and friends will gather often, where the dog will sleep belly-up by the fireplace on cold and snowy winter nights, and where the summer nights in the garden will awaken our Druid spirits.
I envisioned, in my imagination, a woodsy house, with great glass windows and a beautiful entryway. The house would be like a palace, filled with art and artifacts from our travels all around the world. There would be a library for reading on those winter nights. There would be a great room with a cathedral ceiling that opened up to the moon and stars. The landscaping that would surround the house would have flowing fountains, sculptures, and quiet places to enjoy nature under a canopy of pines and maples.
These were the dreams, and dreams they were to remain. Or so we thought.
In 1981, our daughter Rachel was born. At that time, interest rates for home loans were hitting 18%. Housing was scarce and expensive. There would be no beautiful house of my own design.
We set out on a much more conventional search, with baby Rachel in the back seat, to find a modest house, hopefully with good old bones and within our means.
Amidst the grand mansions and stunning architecture of the famous Chicago suburb of Oak Park, we found her.
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Issue 99 Fall 2019