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Stage of Life® is a free blogging community for homeowners.  Get involved with our educational mission:  Share your experiences about home ownership, remodeling advice, DIY projects, gardening tips or memories and personal stories about the homes you've lived in throughout your life.  Or...take some time to explore our home ownership resources, such as homeowner etiquette, quotes about home ownership, statistics about home ownership, videos for homeowners, or save money with coupons for homeowners.  Whether you're renting, buying, remodeling or simply living in your home, we look forward to reading your essays about and helping you save money on home ownership.  Get started now...

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Recent Writing Contest Winners

Winning Essay WritersWinning Writing Contest EssaysBefore you scroll down to read the essays, stories, and blogs being submitted to StageofLife.com, let's celebrate the recent writing contest winners.  We select one essay each month from across all of the non-student life stages to win our monthly blogging contests

Basically...these winning essays are selected from all of you "grown-ups" out there writing on Stage of Life...

Past Writing Contest Winners

Homeowner Stories

So, here's my situation: we live full time near the ocean and lots of activities. After moving here we invited friends and family to come visit and several have for several years in a row. Some stay for a weekend or a week, some for several weeks. In the past we have stocked the refrigerator with some of the items we know they like, bought tickets to events for their entire family and cooked meals as well as paid for some when we dined out. In return, we barely get a thank y...
It was 2013 and how I recall it so very vividly as I witnessed my children's tears and heard their cries. How can this be? How can this be allowed to happen? Our home was stolen right from under our feet. Oh no it was not because of inability to pay; I did that for a decade on my own. It is very sad how our own system can fail our children. When the narcissistic ways of adults can rise above the basic needs of children; there is a serious problem that I set out to change...
A relative has invited myself and my family (5 of us) to their cottage for an over night stay. There will be 10 of us there in total, including the host's family. The host has requested that we bring our own food. I am put off by this and curious to know if I am justified. We have not stated there before. I would never invite some one and ask them to bring their own food...thoughts?...
Moving house can often be a lot of work and many people just don’t know where to start. Procrastinating is one of the worst things you can do because often this can cause you to blow the budget when moving. The longer you leave it to plan things you need to your move, the higher your expenses will become because you’ve not had the time to look for the best prices.Consider carefully the best time to move.Believe it or not moving in the winter months is actually cheaper than...
I was hoping i could get someones opinion or even better answers how to cut and unwanted unannounced family guest's lenth of stay.I am 41 years old have three boys 10,8,3 I recently just got back from a weeks vacation havent even settled in yet and my wifes aunt calls and tells her that she her daughter and child will be visiting and staying with us for 12 days.they dont clean up after themsleves,they dont provide food and worst of all her aunt sleeps in my front room on my c...
Planning a remodeling project? There’s one thing you should know above all, they never go exactly according to plan. That said, there are a few things you can pretty much expect whether you’re remodeling your kitchen, refreshing the look of your bathrooms, or adding on a master suite. Here are a few things you can expect and how to plan for them.Higher costA remodeling project never costs less than you expected. There are always hidden costs and setbacks that arise during a...
Selling a home for the price you’re asking for can be extremely difficult. If your home is in a highly competitive or saturated market, it can seem all but impossible. Unless you’ve taken great care over the years to keep your home up-to-date, chances are your home will need a few upgrades before it’s ready to go on the market. Here are five remodeling projects that are sure to make your home sell faster.Start with needed repairsThough it’s not as glamorous as some of the o...
The bathroom is one of the most common areas to be remodeled. The bathrooms in older homes especially are often in need of a complete overhaul. If you’ve been putting off that bathroom remodeling project you’ve desperately needed for a while now, don’t put it off any longer. Though any remodeling project is a big project, there are some tips to make the process easier. Here are four tips to keep in mind for your next bathroom remodel.1. Plan AheadIt is impossible to plan ...
When I began Freshman year in high school, I was not what you would call a "model student." In fact, I was more of a "model goof-off."I was going through a bad spell. I was tired of school. I just wanted....well, I didn't know what I wanted. But I sure didn't want to be in school learning "boring things."Therefore, I began doing poorly in all my classes. The guidance counselor were called in. No one seemed to know what to do with me. My parents were appalled....
1) Is it proper for a single man and a single woman to stay in the same hotel room for 2 nights driving out of State to watch Nascar and they are just friends, according to the woman, she is also neighbor to the guy.2) is it also proper to pick a roommate which is a guy and the owner of the house is the woman she went out with years back, according to the woman, maybe they are still going out and it's just a show or facade.3) is it also proper for a single woman to go ou...
Buying an apartment is one of the most lucrative investments that you can ever make. This is because unlike other products or services, it value appreciates as years pass. Automatically, you will sell it at a higher value. However, when acquiring the property, you ought to consider certain important factors. Therefore, you must know the tips for selecting the best houses for sale.Since many people are looking for apartments in ...
I share a home with my boyfriend. Yes he does pay all the bills in the home. Is that reason enough for him to bring his kids over without letting me know....
https://tigressandbutterfly.wordpress.com/2014/12/16/home-makers-the-queens/here is a kingdom ruled by Queens, they are Home Makers. So this blog is not just to talk about good qualities of home makers, not just to say they cook well, their house is clean etc. Those are world – wide known facts.Here are few tips for the home makers to make sure, they are not “just” home makers but they are “INDEPENDENT” home makers & top reasons to pat you1. Have a hobby! It is a ge...
The Revolt of “Mother” by Mary E. Wilkins is a short story of a lower middle class family. Sarah is the wife of a farmer named Adoniram with two kids, Sammy and Nanny. Adoniram owns an old barn and intends to convert the remaining land into a new barn. He had formerly promised Sarah that he would use that land for the construction of a new house. However, when the time comes, he breaks his promise. He goes out of the town to fetch a horse from Hiram for the new barn. Meanwhil...
It can be frustrating to decorate an apartment with tight restrictions that do not allow you to change paint color, leave nail holes or hide ugly carpet and flooring. It is hard for empty white walls the make an apartment feel like home. If an apartment is outdated with old carpet, faded tile and peeling paint it can be even more difficult to make it feel warm and cozy. Luckily we live in a world of people who refuse to give up when it comes to creating their perfect place of...
We have just bought a house in a HOA development..It clearly states only 2 vehicles allowed per house. My son is away at college and we took his car here and parked it in a "guest parking spot". We receive a letter stating that it needs to be removed..My son will be coming home in two weeks and we want him to be able to use one of the "10" guest spots here.My question is: how long is a person who comes to visit in your house considered a guest? He will be leaving in M...
When you think about your dream kitchen, it doesn’t include the word “small.” Yet that's the reality, many of us are dejected with a small kitchen with skimpy counter space and precious little space for appliances Cooking in a small kitchen causes restrictions to many home chefs! But don’t let your small kitchen to limit your culinary dreams. Being tight on space should not limit your cooking work. If you cannot knock out a kitchen wall into your living room, then do the thin...
(487 words)Nadalee Merczelnmerczel@hotmail.com"Why oh why do I put myself through this?" I moan, yet again. I am watching one of "those" home shows. You know the kind. A young, very attractive couple is looking for a new home for their burgeoning family. The family is not burgeoning by much, mind you. The woman is pregnant with her very first child. But the home they are currently living in is suddenly not roomy enough. They need more space! So of...
HGTV renovation shows tend to have several things in common: a competent contractor who is at once an architect, a construction expert, and an interior designer; a home which seems hopeless to begin with but is magically transformed into a beautiful dwelling by the end; a few hiccups along the way that the contractor is able to deal with by trimming the budget elsewhere, still bringing in the final product under budget and on time. Yes, they try to make it more realistic ...
Lone Wolf Most of the time, happiness comes from a variety of things that deal with peoples company, companionships, and love. However, these things don’t come naturally or mysteriously out of the blue, instead they randomly decide the happiness most people desire. Loneliness has an effect on people, maybe because of other peoples’ actions and feelings on certain things. These things can either be very moral or very dissolute. The world is full with so much blank walls and ...
My husband (which, to be honest, is still a little weird to say) and I have recently begun looking for a new place to live. We currently stay in a one bedroom, one bath apartment, and were hoping to upgrade a two bedroom apartment in the winter when the prices on apartments go down. But here's the problem: prices weren't going down. In fact, they were going up. Way up. After anxiously waiting for a price drop that wasn't coming for two months, we took a step back. What abou...
I have two cousins (a father and a son) stay with me for four months while they did a work project. I didn't ask for them to pay rent or anything. The only thing I asked is for any increases in the utilities to be paid. They bought their own groceries, but never replenished any of the items (dish/laundry detergent, paper towels, etc) in the house. They did use regular items (spices, etc) for cooking. They never offered to help with anything financially. They only assisted whi...
Falling In love all over agan The holidays to me are the ones best enjoyed during the fall season. When you live in a big city like chicago , being surrounded by Deep Dish Pizza, Hot Dogs , Popcorn and cheesecake, and you cant afford to travel. Nonthing feels better than awaiting the star studded nights, Fall weather, colorful leaves, crisp air, beautiful cloudy days, and most of all comfort foods. The hots days of Chicago can be intense. But the Days of the fall, are...
I told my kids I wanted a bag of nuts for Christmas this year. Not just any nuts—Almonds. Cocoa dust covered almonds. My children looked at me like I was a nut. I told them when I was a little girl my father would receive a small container of peanuts from his mother-in-law each Christmas. I remembered thinking, “Poor Dad. The only thing Grandma gets him for Christmas is a can of nuts.” Now that I am older I understand how great a gift this actually was. Nuts are versat...
A year ago, my family moved from the city to a more provincial town a few miles north. Our new street was full of pricey homes with extravagant landscaping. The neighborhood lived up to the name Oak Tree, and was full of mature trees. Coming from a less "gardened" section of Oklahoma City, my husband and I were uncertain how to pep up our new yard. Following suggestions, we called a landscaper.The man presented a complicated set of drawings. His eyes shone bright and I ...
Becoming a homeowner not only gave me the feeling of adult responsibility and independence, it revealed an unexpected side of myself and infused in me a passion that occupied all my free time. At first, I worked in the yard to avoid housework and to tame the previous owner’s overgrown hodgepodge of random vegetation. Once I had removed the weeds, the garden looked empty. So, I went to the garden center and picked up something pretty that was on sale. It promptly died fr...
It all depends on how you look at life. In June my family and I moved from our cozy little home in Pennsylvania to an idyllic community in Illinois about an hour outside of Chicago. When we lived in Pennsylvania my husband’s constant travel schedule back and forth to his job in Illinois prompted us to take a look at our “family together time” and re-prioritize what’s the most important aspects of our lives. We left so much behind - familiarity, our families, our co...
So you plan to relocate to a new place - you're either moving out of the neighborhood because the family needs a bigger home, or you're moving to a different city for professional reasons. There could be a million reasons why the house that you own and currently live in, could be put on the market for resale. One of the things that you're likely to be looking at is Chicago moving companies to help you with your packing and relocation. H...
The sound of burgers sizzling on the grill and the wonderful aroma wafting through the air churns up memories for most anyone. Myself in particular, it reminds me of late summer days as our lives make the transition from laid back vacation time to the hectic schedules of school and work. The backyard begins to rebound from the constant trampling of children running and playing through its grass. The toys that have spent the summer strewn across the yard have been collected...
Ok this page is coming again and again So I ask this- Ok How to share a story on stageoflife.com?...

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