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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

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?...
Home owners are quick to come up with big and bold ideas when they are considering remodeling their homes, but before the most unique of ideas are put into motion, home owners need to be aware of how those changes will effect a possible future sale. Even if home owners do not plan on moving, one reason they choose to remodel is to raise the value of their homes. Home owners need to understand that sometimes the most extravagant of ideas only diminish home value. Forbes giv...
Ritu was born to a middle class family from India. In her arrival into this world, her mother cried, her dad refused to see her and her relatives stayed away as if she had an incurable disease. Her grandmother abused her mother for giving birth to another girl. Her elder sister looked helplessly at the mother and the new arrival with sadness in her eyes and wondered what was wrong.After much adieu, she was brought home from the hospital but the drama did not end there. Fe...
Some people renovate their homes to rectify damage, others do so to make the home into their own, still others renovate in order to make it more easy to sell. Whatever your reason, it’s important to be aware of how renovations impact home value and what to expect from your post-renovation home appraisal. The Appraisal Foundation has come up with a few tips to help you maximize your appraisal.Value doesn’t equal home value plus reno costIf you thought appraising a home’s p...
The tricks for maximizing your lithium-ion battery’s useful lifespan—that is, the number of times you can recharge it before it no longer accepts a charge—are pretty basic. Three things will prematurely age a lithium-ion battery: consistently draining it to the automatic shutdown point, exposing it to heat, and overcharging/overvoltage-charging. That last practice is actually dangerous and can lead to fire or even an explosion.The most obvious battery-draining component t...
March Madness: David and Goliath A rapid knock on the door. An unexpected phone call. A siren heard in the distance. A tragedy on the news. These things have all caused a sense of panic in various ways over the years. Madness and mental illness are such horrific twins; companions conjoined in the dark. Yet, I wonder will it always be so? Mental illness is no laughing matter to those who have witnessed the cycles of a bipolar...
How do I start..we moved into a rental in 2011 nice view of the lake, the homes are a little closer together than we wanted or are used to, we have an elderly couple next door the husband in his late 60's wife early 80's she is getting dementia and wanders, we are always friendly and help them when they ask here and there and we even borrow a tool at times from them, we are a very busy family with work, sports, and projects, they always seem to come over to talk just as I pul...
The Olympic Spirit: Go for the Gold "How many can I miss and pass?” screamed a rambunctious fourth-grader as the class hunkered down to take a four hour writing assessment early one Monday morning. Those words, unbeknownst to the nine-year old, were like an arrow that pierced my heart; words no teacher desires to hear. In that moment, the spirit of an Olympian rose up in me as I stopped the test and gave the class what I like to call “a little pep talk” o...
You want the interior of your home to reflect your taste, your style, your personality — but you may not be able to find the right furnishings at a major department store. With a little bit of effort, though, you can hand-craft items that will make your home uniquely you.Following are some items you can make that will help you personalize your space.CurtainsAn easy way to add personality to your living space is to make your own curtains. Head to your local ...
How are you at making decisions? I’m big on intuition (ask Myers or her mother, Briggs); but I’m kind of wishy-washy if I don’t have a mountain of information and the results of surveying at least half the people on the East Coast. Retired, I’m having a terrible time deciding what to do first. Life was so much easier before I retired. Go to work early, come home late, do what I could in the evening and on weekends, feel content. Now, by the end of the day, it’s what I cou...
I have something to admit. I am addicted to watching HGTV shows like House Hunters, My First Place, Property Brothers, and Love It or List It. I’m a junkie, and I could spend hours watching people decide their house futures. I love to see renovations in an hour. I love to see people weigh pros and cons of a potential home. I often find myself yelling at the television, “Go for the cute bungalow on the tree lined street” or “How could you choose that boring, beige, coo...

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