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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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  April | May 2016
"Secret of Happiness"

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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

The Secret of Happiness: Be YourselfStage of Life April/May Throughout my short time on this Earth, many people have had different definitions to happiness. Many people have had different definitions to happiness. Some definitions are having a luxurious house, being wealthy, and having a beautiful family are just few of the many examples that I’ve heard very frequently throughout my life. People can be very wealthy but unfortunately they can easily lose all of that wealth ...
The Secret of Happiness: Be YourselfStage of Life April/May Throughout my short time on this Earth, many people have had different definitions to happiness. Many people have had different definitions to happiness. Some definitions are having a luxurious house, being wealthy, and having a beautiful family are just few of the many examples that I’ve heard very frequently throughout my life. People can be very wealthy but unfortunately they can easily lose all of that wealth ...
Moving out of university was probably the most ‘adult’ thing I had ever organised to date and I’ll be honest, it was scary! For a start, the state of my student digs wasn’t great and resembled more a bombsite than a living space! I really didn’t know where to start but I didn’t want to have to call my parents and have them bale me out. It was time to make my first step into the grown-up world using my own initiative. Hence scary!I went on to Google and searched for a lo...
Gandhi said, “If we could change ourselves, the world would also change.” I see this fitting into my life as a 30-year-old homeowner, and educator, boldly believing in a better than 2015, 2016. 2016 has to be better. Life isn’t meant to be consisted of mortgage payments and mourning. 2015 was extremely difficult. I left my apartment and teaching position abroad in Abu Dhabi, because I missed my house in the United States. I didn’t want to sell it when I was offered th...
Lucky lottery winner ™…and the super powerball and mega millions jackpot winner is…Matthew Harris from Bryn Mawr, Pennsylvania!No way! This must be some off-season April fool and/or Halloween trick or treat!Yea right! In my dreams! A voice inside urges “take anther look dear Matthew Scott Harris”!Yet upon frenziedly staring (for what seems like an eternity) at the matching numbers (per tickets for both record breaking sweepstakes) no denying that every numeral exac...
Lawn Mower Love AffairMy wife gave me a chore to rake the leaves in the front yard that day -- or move out of the house.The thought of raking leaves haunts me. As a kid my Dad would force all of his kids to rake leaves for hours on several autumn weekends – every year. The most annoying part was his approach. He would be extra cheerful. This aggravated us.So when my wife gave me this assignment, I asked: How can I get those leaves off the lawn without having to rake th...
I am a 72 year old lady and have a male friend I would like to bring to MY house. My adult daughter and my 15 year old granddaughter live with me. When I mentioned my friend coming to spend the night with me, my daughter hit the roof.I think as it's My house she should just chill. She says her 15 year old lives here and I should not bring him here. She doesn't even want him to come to the house at all, just to see me. I need advice, this is causing a problem. It means I can'...
How do we tell our family that we do not want them to drink at our new house? We recently bought our first home. My family has already suggested we have Thanksgiving at our new house. I would love nothing more than to host all family events at our house, however my husband and I don't drink. We don't want any alcohol in our house or around our kids. How do I tell my family that we don't want alcohol at our house? ...
Last year, I grew tomatoes, basil, parsley, and mint on our deck. But this summer, I wanted to add something pretty to the mix! Unfortunately, our deck gets blasted with non-relenting sun in the afternoon. Therefore, I was on a mission to find some flowers that love full sunshine.I carefully perused all the flower packets at Lowe's, and finally settled on a packet of pretty purple daisies and some blue flowers which I can not remember the name of, since I have since t...
When I was a kid, some of my friends traveled to exotic places for vacation, like Hawaii. Others visited Disney to have their picture taken with Mickey Mouse. But I was convinced that I went to the best place on earth: Crescent Lake Cottages, Maine! Sometime in the middle of July, with my sister and I sharing a backseat, we made our yearly trek from New Jersey to the Sebego Lake region of Maine. When we finally arrived, I would step out of that hot sti...
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 ...

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