Thursday, June 3, 2010

You Are Welcome

First Impressions

When people come onto our property they need to know where to go and what to expect from the home owners. This doesn't happen accidentally. It is by design.
Before we had the fence and the grass was less than a lush green carpet, we had people drive right up to within 5 feet of the house. Building the fence, which is just a line and doesn't actually enclose the house yard, set a boundary that said "Please park your car here!". The next problem has been that people were confused as to where to enter.
There is no specialness that shows where the gate is. I've since dangled a basket and come summer I put a planter of flowers at the gate, but I knew I needed something more. Knowing that the fence needed some repairs, last fall we drove in large posts to inset the whole gate area. We'll add a bench and some plant pots but that should entice people in the right direction.
The next problem is the path. Grass allows two to walk together and is great for grass cutting. No trimming. But it does get a bit muddy and it is very hard to maintain a path come winter. So we need an acceptable alternative. I do know it will not be cement set in a straight line. It will curve slightly to encourage visitors to slow their pace, catch their breath, and anticipate their welcome. I luv the sound of gravel crunching as you walk. I have it at this gate and it is around the house. What a pain! It scatters all over and into the grass. Part of the reason for the insert is to get the gravel on the driveway side of the fence. So no gravel. Flat stones, even substantial ones, give fits to elderly feet as I've learned when they step anywhere but on them as they pass thru the flower bed to get to the front step. I replaced them with pavers but I'd need a lot for the whole path. For the moment, the well worn foot path leads the way and there is a mat to dry the shoes at the step.
There were 2 doors visible which sent mixed signals. The small basement entrance was too small so we began using the front door. It never had a proper step and when we did the house siding we covered over that unused door. The old wooden front step faced the road so we changed it for better traffic flow. The front entrance isn't in direct sight but all signs lead to it.

I luv my veranda. It is where strangers are met and given directions/assistance. It is where friends are welcomed and drawn in.

It is much harder to lay out the welcoming path here in blog land. If you have found the gate and are on the path to my front door, please come up the steps and into my veranda. You are very welcome!

4 comments:

True Blue Nana said...

Don't mind if I do!! What lovely pictures and so inviting.

racheld said...

Thank you!!! What a gracious welcome. I've read only this page, but I look forward to looking back into your archives for more of your enticing words.

rachel

Approachable Art said...

Oh, El, so very very beautiful, I want to come visit and wander in that green verge!!

Cheryl Arkison said...

Thanks for the virtual invite! So welcoming.