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Oh, the lost art of porches. Almost every home has some type of porch. Porches were a means of relaxation and socializing back in my grandparents’ days. Have you ever noticed how many vintage photos are of people on or around their porch? It was always the perfect backdrop for a photo of large families.
Porches are the perfect example of slow living and in the first of my series, I’d like to take us back to the day of the porch and hope to inspire us all to bring forward this lost art of porch sitting.
Days Gone By
I remember when I was a kid and riding my bicycle around my neighborhood, I would always see people sitting on their porches. Everyone would give me a wave “hi!” or say hello. I knew almost everyone in my surrounding neighborhood simply by seeing them on a daily basis. Porches were a means for some to sit after dinner with a cup of coffee and a newspaper. Porches were also a means of great communication and socializing within the neighborhood. They are a place where friends and family gather to catch up on current events and neighborhood gossip.
Porches are a place to sit on the swing with your grandmother to help shell garden peas or snap green beans. A rocking chair was the perfect setting to share a laugh and a glass of fresh squeezed lemonade. Everything seems to slow down when you relax on a porch.
Unfortunately, some people no longer find use for their porch. Although many decorate their porches for curbside appeal, few use this precious space to socialize with loved ones. Some people even use their porch for “GASP!” storage! I am here to say that we need to bring back the beloved use of our porch!
Bringing Porches Back
I love my porch. It is my spring/summer/fall sanctuary. My porch is the place where I sit and smell the summer rain. It is the place where I shell my peas and snap my green beans. It’s a place where I enjoy a glass of wine with my best friend while we reminisce of old times. Often, I find myself on the porch of my older neighbors or uncle who still cherish the art of porch sitting and I love how we chat about our gardens, what is going in the canning jars in the fall, as well as catch up on that neighborhood gossip! We chat and laugh until the mosquitos drive us inside for the night. That is definitely slow living at its finest!
If you haven’t been using your porch, then get out there, give it a good cleaning, stick a couple of chairs on it (or better yet a swing!) and invite some friends over. Make your porch the first step toward your slow living life.