Tuesday, January 19, 2010

The Not So Big House

It's not often I read something in Parade magazine that actually holds my attention for the entire (albeit brief) length of the copy. But last Sunday's Why We Gave Away Our Home by Kevin Salwen did.

Salwen's family of four decided to sell their "dream house," buy a much smaller place, and donate the difference to charity. It was the perfect rejoinder to my Rant on a Monster House from last week. Salwen wrote,

The four of us are living more tightly -- in a good way. In our previous house, the Ping-Pong table was buried in the little-used basement. Here, with nowhere else to put it, we stuck it in a walkway to the TV room, and now we play every day. Our piano had to be moved to the front room for similar reasons. Hannah often yells, "Joe, get out your guitar," and they'll duet on the only song she knows.
That's a pretty far cry from a heated pole barn for "toys" and a tiki bar. But maybe the folks with the monster house in Buffalo, Minnesota, are selling it to donate the proceeds to a charity they chose as carefully as the Salwens did. Who knows?

The Salwens have a book coming out, and a website to support it, called The Power of Half.

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