First this is a home we hope to live in for the next 100 years so it needs to be able to grow and adapt to all phases of our life. It also means handling all the phases of our children’s lives both now (currently ages 9 1/2, 8 and 6 1/2) through pre-teen, teen, college, young adults, with families and beyond. It also needs to be able to be a great place for grandchildren in the distant future. A lot of work is being done now around aging in place and universal design. There is a statistic that says we create four dwelling places for any one person in the US whereas in the old days people were born, lived and died in the same structure, we want a home that we and others can stay in forever.
Multi-generational also refers to it being a home that is comfortable for people of all ages now as our friends span the age range from infant to almost 100. We want a place where people feel really alive and well. We also want a place which is safe for kids of all ages from a baby to a teenager. Growing up everyone was always at Linda’s house because her parents made it such an inviting, fun, stimulating place to be. That is the kind of home we want to create, one that is home to many.
We hope our house is the place every kid, every teenager and ever young adult wants to come and see. In addition to being a place kids and adults of all ages want to hang out, over 54 non-family members lived for more than six months with Linda’s family on this very same property over the years. We want to continue that legacy by designing a house that is able to accommodate the “long term guest” while still having room for the vacation visitor. Whether that is a friend who needs a home for a year; an older relative who wants to come live with us; a family who wants to stay for a month; or a caretaker for Paul and Linda late in life, we need the flexibility to welcome them all.
Multi-generational also means unique but timeless—from a durability standpoint we are building for over 100 years so we need a design that will fit no matter the era.
"In our every deliberation, we must consider the impact of our decisions on the next seven generations." — Great Law of the Iroquois Confederacy
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