Last week I was telling A the changes I was going to make to our Outdoor Living Area. It's true, until we move out of our apartment this OLA does not exist, but it's important I keep fine-tuning my vision so that when we do get that house I can make my dream a reality!
After looking at me like I was a crazy person for a few seconds, A asked me where this obsession with an OLA came from. It took me a little while to realize that it stems from my love of porches and disappointment that not all houses have one. When A and I first looked at houses online a few years ago I was quick to dismiss them if they didn't have a Front Porch. About a year into our relationship we were taking a walk around Saratoga and he said "I finally understand why you need a front porch, every house in Saratoga has one". Only then did I realize that not every town was filled with houses featuring front porches and that I might have to alter my expectations some. So in the wake of this devestating observation came my dream of an OLA.
Still, if I had the choice it would be a nice big front porch. I love the front porch on my Mom's house where I grew up. It's always served as a place to watch the world unfold from the comfort of my home. When I was 4 I sat on my front porch and watched the new girl that moved in across the street play on her front porch - she later came over to my porch, asked me to go see Roger Rabbit with her and became one of my best friends. As kids my siblings and I watched the tourists come in every summer by reading their license plates from the safety of the front porch. The porch was a perfect place to watch thunderstorms at night and read the paper during summer mornings, sprawled out in the sun with the comics around me. Sitting out on the porch also made it easy to strike up a conversation with neighbors as they left their house or walked their dog. You can always count on a friendly wave from someone driving by if you're sitting on a porch.
There was even a wonderful summer when I was on "sabbatical" (aka, I was taking time off from working to figure out what I was doing with my life) and spent every day on the porch. I had the rare occasion to watch baby Robins hatch. I saw Mama Robin built the nest, I found the eggs the day after she laid them, and I watched her sit on them for weeks. I was there when the first one hatched (Mama Robin made a screeching sound that pierced my eardrums) and even more amazingly, I was there when the first one flew the nest. You need a porch to get that experience (and a lot of time to do nothing)!
So now that I've waxed poetic about my love for, and memories of, porches, here's some wonderful Saratoga porches to feast your eyes upon. I'm particularly partial to the Top Right photo of Union Gables Bed & Breakfast because A and I will married on that porch this October!