Please excuse the brevity of this entry. I have my son this weekend. Yeah, that's the perfect excuse to dodge a writing exercise about setting. Can I just take an internet fail?
I don't have a good idea for a description of my ideal house so you'll just have to settle for a recollection about one of my first homes.
I grew up in a two story log house my dad built with his own two hands with help from good friends. My mother, meanwhile, took care of my infant brother and toddling me in a trailer parked nearby on the large tract of Oklahoma prairie we now called our own. The walls were painted a dark hue, brown or perhaps a deep red, but for one who cannot see such colors, that fact never entirely registered. Instead, my memory clings to the image of my father mounting the tall, tall ladder every few years, paint roller in hand, to apply a fresh coat to our home. Spindly aluminum legs pressing into soft summer grass were all that kept him suspended so high up, a frightening, impossible distance to fall for one who stood just barely to his waist when his feet were firmly planted again on solid earth. For all the world he appeared to me as a solitary shrub precariously perched on a dizzy, narrow shelf with roots exposed all the way down to the ground. An Oklahoma gust gently swayed the ladder and he pressed his frame against the wall for support. But up there he remained, wiping sweat from his brow onto the sleeve of his spackled blue workshit, laboring with diligence and pride until the job was done while I stood below, staring up at him in awe. You have take care of the things you love.