PORCHES

MEEThinks   October 1, 2015   22 Comments on PORCHES

PORCHES. I once wrote a little piece called “Where have all the porches gone.” I’ve been thinking a LOT about that lately. I think I’m going to start a new category on my Blog called PORCHES.

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I’m not sure how this will “sit” with anyone who happens to read or see what I include. I suppose I’m taking somewhat of a risk. But I feel so strongly about the topic of COMMUNICATION / CONVERSATION that I’m feeling courageous. Brave. At least for today. The FIRST DAY of OCTOBER. And yes… a little bit nervous. I think it might help to re-post what I wrote about porches as a kind of introduction. I’ll hope for and appreciate feedback. NOT the “like” kind, I guess. In my somewhat reluctant start on Facebook, and the creating of a Blog, I’ve hoped to follow counsel to post things which are meaningful. I get a kick out of posting things which make me laugh out loud. But I also love posting things which have made me think. Deeply. Doing some earnest considering and pondering. I have an idea that this new PORCH category might do some of that (for mee even if for no one else).

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So now I need to quit “wandering around” and post the porch thing and “git ‘er done!” This new category is going to be about “creating a porch feeling” in our relationships, in our communication. I’ll try to remember to post something on Facebook whenever I have something new in this category on my Blog (MEEThinks.net).  I want to know what YOU think.  Thank you.

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PORCHES

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I’ve been thinking about porches. If we were together, I’d ask you to sing with me: “Where have all the porches gone?”  For years I’ve had this thing on my mind about porches.  That’s one of the things which has changed about the pace of life.  When I was little, it seemed that more homes had porches, and more people used them.  I loved it when Palmers would be out on the porch, maybe with Roland playing his guitar and singing.  I loved it that Joneses were out on their porch as I’d roller skate by (although I didn’t appreciate it when they laughed when I’d crash).  I love Kent and Karen’s porch with the big, comfortable swinging bench (what’s the “real” name for those wonderful inventions?).  There’s a big tree near for shade.  I think we’d all be better off if there were more porches.  We’d be more in touch with each other.  Porches bring people together.  Several of my neighbors will line up chairs along the front of their home, and anyone is welcome to stop by and sit and visit for a while.  Almost like a porch.  A friendly, welcoming feeling.  Do you have a porch?  Or could you just put some chairs out in the front yard?  A porch doesn’t need to be fancy.  In fact, it seems that some of the porches on brand new homes might only be there for decoration — some look like they’ve never been used.  Some aren’t even wide enough for a chair. Maybe you live in an apartment on the 15th floor, but where it’s possible, could you create a porch-like feeling?  Maybe someone could play a guitar or harmonica once in a while.  Maybe you’d even like to sing.  I love doing that with friends and family — gathering and singing the familiar songs and visiting.  Solving world problems.  Sharing burdens and joys.  Sitting quietly.  I once heard a family described as “world-class porch sitters.”  I love the sound and feel of that. 

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If you live in a neighborhood where there are several porches, you could form a porch association.  Nothing formal with dues and rules … just a fun way to encourage each other and act organized.  I’ve got a little porch (room for one at a time).  I think I’m suffering from porchlessness.  Do you feel it ever?  I’m thinking seriously of saving pennies and expanding out towards the driveway and having a real porch.  Ask me about it the next time you see me.  And think about doing something which will create a porch-like feeling where you live. 

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 I was tempted to make changes (it’s been quite a few years since I wrote this), but I’ve decided to include it just the way it was when I first wrote it.  This new category is going to be about “creating a porch feeling” in our relationships, in our communication. I’ll try to remember to post something on Facebook whenever I have something new in this category on my Blog (MEEThinks.net).

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ENJOY THE BEGINNING OF MY FAVORITE SEASON OF THE YEAR!!

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22 thoughts on “PORCHES

  1. Kate

    In my visions of my dream home, there is always, ALWAYS a nice porch, perhaps even a wraparound one! I think the porch lifestyle should be termed just that, a lifestyle! One of inclusion, and friendliness, of really getting to KNOW one another! Especially in this world of social media, we get to the point where we think we know the people around us, because we read what they post on Facebook, on Instagram, or even on their blogs. But, do we take the time to really sit down one-on-one, or even with a small group, and have true heart-to-heart conversations? That’s what I long for: that heart connection. I don’t have a porch, (yet!), and my health continues to keep me homebound far more than I would wish, but I will always strive to create a porch lifestyle and heart-connection with the people around me.
    I can’t wait to hear more of your thoughts on the topic! 🙂

    Reply
  2. Jill Pearson

    Dear MEE​

    I loved how at BYU Womens Conference you passed out Thank you cards to people in the congregation of the Smith Field House when you were going to speak.
    One of my favorite things that you said that day was, “God may not always come when we want Him to, BUT He is always on time.”

    (I wrote this back in August, but didn’t know how to get it to you until now.)
    I wanted to visit with you about porches! Can’t remember where I was reading it…from one of your books or talks, I’m usually reading several different things, books, Ensign, lesson manuals, etc all at once. But you were talking about how you love porches and how it’s sad to see porches disappearing and how you don’t find many people out sitting on their porches any more.
    Well, I am a porch lover. I wanted a new house with a wrap around porch – a porch that wrapped all the way around the outside of the house. We are in the process of building a new home, but the plan my husband picked did not have any porches. He has added a small porch onto the front and a porch off of our bedroom on the 2nd floor. (But its still not enough porches.) I love the front porch I have now…at our “Old house”. We have been building our new house for 10 years now and maybe we will finish and get moved in this year – who knows.) But I’m still trying to make friends with these new porches at the new house.
    But back to my familiar porch… I sit out on the top step of my front porch and pray and read scriptures nearly every morning. I love my porch moments! I love sitting out there watching a storm roll in from the Stansbury Mountains or over the Great Salt Lake.I love watching the sunsets and the sunrises from my front porch. I have two old metal chairs that I have painted yellow and a small table on my front porch and I invite friends over for brunch. I have little garden boxes with herbs – some growing, some not so much! I also have some of my rock collection on my front porch. Things I love are gathered on my front porch, my favorite moments happen on my front porch. I tell my children, “If you can’t find me, I’m probably on the porch!” And I love it when they come and find me and we get to spend some moments together visiting or reading or just quietly watching the world pass by from our front porch. Recently our married college kids were home and they have a 5 month old baby. I went and got the grandbaby out of his crib and brought him outside with me, to sit on the porch and we read scriptures together and we shared his “first” of many porch moments with Grandma! I love your idea of figuring out how to incorporate a “porch feeling” into all aspects of our lives. Thanks for the chat, from the Pearson Porch!

    Reply
    1. MEEThinks Post author

      Hi Jill! The “porch piece” was in MEE Thinks (the book… and now the blog). But it’s been on my mind so much that I felt like sharing again. Thanks for your note. “Soak in” all your wonderful porch experiences before you move to your new house. Sorry you don’t get the “wrap-around porch.” Shucks. Loved reading about your 5 month old baby reading scriptures with you; sweet! I know you’ll enjoy ALL your “Grandma moments,” and so will he.

      Reply
  3. Carol Scheel

    I remember as a child sitting on the front porch swing at my grandma house and on some days I got to take my afternoon nap on that swing. Playing on that porch and having the time with my grandma was so special. My other grandma and granddad had a porch and all of us cousins would run and play there, too. Porches are so special. We need more of them. My porch is on the back of the house and we see the trees and wildlife and neighbors. MEE, I love your blog and your comments. You make me smile and even laugh out loud sometimes. Sit on your porch and sing!!!

    Reply
  4. Irene

    I truly love this post! We have lost the art of just talking and interacting with each other. Everyone is too busy on their phones, If I had a porch I would put a basket out and invite everyone to leave their phones and just TALK to each other. How grand would that be 🙂

    Reply
  5. Kathy

    MEE, I don’t know where I have been to not know that you have been blogging! I love you so much. You make me laugh out loud! I agree with your idea of porches, we all need them, whether it be an actual porch or any place that will create that “porch” feeling. I remember as a child sitting, playing, talking, shelling peas on my Grandmother’s porch. When it was too hot then we were in the den but it still had the porch feeling to it. We were all together. We talked, told stories, sang songs, played games, just had a grand time. Now there is no time for porches, life is too busy, everyone is into me instead of stopping and talking and listening. I miss those days. Mind you I continue to sit on porches. My husbands parents have a porch on the front of their house that faces the highway and the sun as it is setting at night. They have a back porch where we watch the neighbors cows, can see crops being planted and growing, seeing the irrigation falling down to the thirsty plants below, you can also see the sun rise. We see all kind of wildlife, deer, turkeys, birds, foxes (of course there the gnats and mosquitoes that make it not quite so pleasant) . We sit and talk about life and the ills of our society. We sit and take shelter from the sun, we love to sit and listen to the rain falling and the thunder and lightning when it is in the distance. I remember as a young woman how I loved seeing houses with porches that went all the way around the house. We would be so better off as a society if we would slow down and take the time to sit and enjoy the porch and those sitting on it. Thank you for sharing and asking to ponder and think about the porches in my life. I think that I need to build a few more.

    Reply
  6. Beth Mould

    Love this blog! I have enjoyed your articles and agree we all need porch time. I grew up in Vermont and when I moved West a porch was a must. Decks can substitute but not quite the same. We could dry clothes on the back porch when it was cloudy and front porches were to be neat with a flower pot or more. I made do with pot on the side of wide steps in summer and garland on rail in winter. Thanks for this uplifting Blog.

    Reply
    1. MEEThinks Post author

      Thanks for sharing, Beth. I have to say: I love Vermont! (Have read a lot about the Maria von Trapp and family in Stowe… don’t know if their place is still there)

      Reply
  7. Jill

    I, too, suffer from “porchlessness.” It’s a darn shame! I think I will start a fund too. My husband is going to love this plan! 😉
    I love your idea of spending time out of doors, visiting with family, friends, or neighbors. I would really enjoy that. I remember sitting and listening as “the grown-ups” visiting. I love that porch feeling. My neighbors and I wave as we drive into or out of the neighborhood but don’t take time to talk. We need to do that.
    Thanks for your blogpost!

    Reply
    1. MEEThinks Post author

      You have given me an important new word: PORCHLESSNESS…. Sad! I hope your husband DOES love the plan… he’ll sure love the results! Keep us posted (grin)

      Reply
  8. Just Lindy

    Mee,

    Since this is my birthday month and favorite season…I am so happy to read this. I love porches. We have a backyard “porch” in our yard. I even put up fairy lights for ambiance in the evenings. Our neighbors have a backyard porch also. We love to go over there and have long chats. I do have some neighbors across the corner who love to sit on their side porch and play guitar and sing. Too bad they drink and can’t play or carry a tune. But I digress.

    Our favorite place to getaway is a B&B with a wrap-around porch filled with rocking chairs and crocheted blankets. Its about time we go back there for some R&R.

    I love the Andy Griffith show, especially when they are sitting on the porch chewing the fat or playing guitar and singing.

    Thank you again for making my morning sing with happiness. I hope there are plenty of porches in Heaven.

    Reply
    1. MEEThinks Post author

      What a superb month for a birthday! I LOVE AUTUMN! And I love your description of your backyard “porch” (especially with fair lights). I love that neighbors come over. Thanks for your note.

      Reply
  9. Sandra Douglas

    Loved your article because I also have been thinking a lot about porches lately. I don’t have one, but boy how I wish I did. I have been trying to figure out how to get one, but it could only be done by removing a tree which my husband refuses to do. Ugg! I love the nastalgic feeling you get from a porch. A comfy chair, a soft blanket and a good book would be how I would decorate if only I had a porch! Love you, and love reading your articles. You are one very special lady!

    Reply
    1. MEEThinks Post author

      Thank you, Sandra. Wow… that you’ve been thinking a lot about porches too. Good luck with getting one. Meanwhile: chairs on the lawn or something.

      Reply
  10. Ann Snider

    Please see rather long comment on my ❤️ of porches! Who knew? You know I got a degree in the study of porches. There’s research and experts doing porch research as we speak. I hope that helps with your cause! Porch ❤️s unite!

    Reply
  11. Debbie

    I’d love to post a picture for you to see my front porch of my youth. (I dont know how) Grandma sitting in her chair on that porch. Mom and dad sitting out there while all of the kids in the neighborhood played night games. A picture of me holding my badeball trophy. So many memories on that porch. And let’s not forget stretching the long phone cord out there to talk to your friends. And a final family picture of all of us after my mom’s death and before we sold the house. Oh yes I love that front porch feeling and have created a tiny one at my own house with my grandmother’s chair and love sitting out there and saying hi to ask the people walking by especially on a Sunday afternoon. Ahhh thanks for helping me have a front porch remenicence. That was fun!

    Reply

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