The Proud Owner Of An Outdoor Fireplace

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I was born and raised in the low-income area of Sacramento, Ca. My mother was a single mom raising 3 kids and working 2 full time jobs. Living in the city meant that we didnít have much space to run around. Sure we couldíve hung out on the corners or in parking lots, but what usually went on in those places werenít safe for kids.†

My mother worked for a burger joint during that day, and spent her nights taking care of the elderly. By the time she got home she was too exhausted to spend time with us. Even though she worked her fingers to the bone, we still couldnít afford more than the cheapest foods and supplies. Clothes were handed down from kid to kid, which wasnít too nice for my younger brother. With the little that she made, she made a home for us. We lived in a small one bedroom apartment without any sort of yard. I didnít even know what a yard really looked like until I left California and moved back East.

Moving On Up

Despite my humble childhood, I was given the opportunity to go to college in PA and so I went. I had my first símore there. It was cooked over the open flame of an outdoor fireplace. I had never seen an outdoor fireplace before. Living in the cramped confines of a low-income one bedroom apartment kept me from even knowing what an open flame looked like (not that I would want to see one in such a place).

I graduated from college with my masters in Psychology, and bought my very first house. It wasnít a huge house by millionaire standards, but it was much larger than anything my mother had been in. I was so excited because I had a yard. I had a front yard, and a back yard. I had room to move, I had room to breath. And it was all mine.

I had an outdoor fireplace installed and invited all of my friends and family over to have a cookout. It was the perfect night for an outdoor party. The weather was mild and there was a soft breeze. The backyard was decorated with tiki torches and bamboo furniture. And the outdoor fireplace burned with glowing embers.

I know that to many, this doesnít seem like it should be a big deal to me.† But for those that have lived in a small hole filled with hunger and despair, you can celebrate with me. I know that it shouldnít be such a big deal to have an outdoor fireplace installed, but to me, it signifies the fact that I am not longer that poor little girl from Del Paso Heights, California. I am now the proud owner of a yard.

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