It has been too much time between the genesis of this thought and my writing it down to trace it to its origin. Whatever it was that spurred it – perhaps my endless perusing of home blogs in search of room inspiration and fascination with space or flipping through a magazine or walking down the street – I was struck.

The thought: here, at Atangard, we have an “ours”. The birth of this realization must have begun while looking at someone’s else’s home, with the beginning of envy or longing for their “ours”. Mid step, it was halted by what is in front of me daily. The wooden floors I know so well – these days it always my bare feet which walk down the hallways, bringing a more intimate acquaintance than winter’s woolen socked barrier. Fingertips brushing textured walls, doors which need a little jimmying and the tens upon tens of quirks that our top floor roost holds.

When you inhabit a place, it is hard to see clearly how you have marked it and it you. However, when someone unknown enters, the sense of home and comfort dwelling along with all our sweaty bodies is palpable. It is also a place to return to – from Vancouver, Southeast Asia, or a season of treeplanting. It took some time, but after the bustle of coming and going, the quiet summer I anticipated has come to rest on Atangard. I cherish it. Yet, I am nearly ready for the return of so many gone, for the marks they have left here to be accompanied once again by their beating hearts and wild laughter.

This “ours” is a gift. Not one of ownership, but of refuge.

The wiser I become, the more grateful I become. I have been attempting to be diligent in recording on film this time, this place, these people. It is a time to be lived deeply. Presently. Joyfully. Here are some shots of our home.

-Elizabeth Ashton

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