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Misty Water Colored Memories

If I close my eyes really really tight, I can walk up the front sidewalk, climb the precarious cement steps, and open the brass door knob on the left side of the large double doors. Once inside, I could describe the rooms therein in great detail. Down to the scratch on my brother’s closet door. Made when he tried to run me through with a sword. A real sword.

Good thinking, mom and dad.

I have wonderful memories of my childhood home. Save for the hideous saber sword incident. We lived there from the early 60’s until the early 70’s, when we left the Cincinnati area to move back to Texas.

I’ve always wanted to go back to see that house. To see if the fruit trees that my dad planted were still there. And if the live Christmas tree we planted after it served it’s purpose in the living room was still in the front yard.

I never have.

Now, I may get to see it on the news. From the comfort of my own living room.

My best childhood friend, Karen, sent me this link in an e-mail. That’s my house that they are reporting on.

•That’s a house made for crisp snowy Christmas mornings.

•For snow fights and sled rides in the front yard.

•For all night slumber parties in the den, listening to the “Partridge Family” album until my red-eyed parents said the LP vinyl was irreparably worn out.

•For Thanksgiving dinners around the fancy dining room table in the fancy dining room which we were not ordinarily allowed in. Sitting in impossibly uncomfortable antique chairs.

•For white shag carpet that had to be raked daily. With a real rake.

•For throwing beloved Barbies down the stairs in their Barbie car, recreating horrific automobile accidents. Over and over.

•For making Gingerbread men cakes with my mom, and then decorating them before eating the entire thing in one sitting.

•For getting sick, and getting to lounge around in my parent’s bed all day. Watching “Days of Our Lives”, and “Dark Shadows.”

•For catching fireflies in the backyard on warm starlit nights.

•For crying for days at the thought of moving away forever. And looking back, one last time. A memory etched in my mind some 35 years later.

That’s not a house where drugs are to be cooked. And then distributed. Quite possibly to children no older than I was when I lived there.

I was trying to explain to Fiddledaddy why that story affected me so deeply. And I’ve concluded it’s because that’s the last house that I lived in where I felt any sort of childhood stability. Before we started moving every single year for the next 4 years. And before my family was forever fractured by divorce.

Childhood innocence. A time when my mom would watch us fly out the door in the mornings, and not expect us back before dinner. Days long gone.

This bit of information will most certainly spice up my posts about my childhood.

Evidently, I did hail from the wrong side of the tracks.

It just took me 35 years to figure it out.


My house in 1971 (looking nothing like a crack house)




17 Responses to Misty Water Colored Memories

  • Oh, this is so sad. I felt this way when my grandparents moved out of their house a few months after my sweet Grandaddy was forced to defend their home at gunpoint from an intruder. I cried bitter tears when they moved out about ten years ago, and my sister and I drove by there again last year, and I was just as sad, knowing that the neighborhood where I felt safest as a child, I was now afraid to get out of the car in.

  • I am so sorry.

    I often think of my childhood house and wonder who is living it in, if they are enjoying it as much as I did.

  • There is something to be said about the security of the childhood home. My parents moved from mine a little over a year ago. It hasn’t sold yet but I still have a key and have to check on things periodically. My mom called last night and she thinks it might be sold. I feel like I am mourning a loss.

  • That house looks like the Brady Bunch house. It is sad to hear of its downfall, and I can understand why it has affected you. My parents moved out of my childhood home when I was in college, and I cried like a baby.

  • Oh DeeDee, I am so sorry. That is really so sad. I know that when my mom finally moved out of the house I grew up in, I had all kinds of bittersweet feelings…and wondered what the new owners would be like, what kind of memories they would create.

    Certainly, we all have an attachment to the homes where we grew up, and it would be heartbreaking to hear that they’re being used to detract from a community, rather than contribute positively.

    The memories you shared were beautiful. They are real, they are lasting…hold on to those.

  • I’m so sorry. I know it’s just four walls and a roof, but it still breaks my heart when I hear stories like this. There is something comforting in being able to go back to your childhood home and have everything still be the same. I’ll be in prayer for the people who live there now.

  • I remember when you posted before about this house. It does look like a “Brady Bunch”-type house. I’m so sorry that others have wrecked what you held so dearly. May you be able to look past this incident and still remember fondly your OWN memories of that house!

  • Thank you all for understanding my melancholy mood. Maybe it’s a girl thing. My hormones certainly aren’t helping. Neither is the head cold. 🙂

    Some serious chocolate may be in order.

  • It looks like the perfect home for a child to grow up in. I grew up in one place, got married and moved 5 miles away and never went anywhere else. I’m boring and I love it.

  • I’m so sorry DeeDee! Don’t let them overshadow your beautiful memories. No matter what they’ve done to it now, that doesn’t change one moment then!

    I’d definately do the chocolate – warm and drizzled over something else…

  • Oh- that is horrible to hear!

    BTW- I now can not get that dang song out of my head- i.e. the title of you post!!!

  • Beth,
    I KNOW! Only I keep singing it in my head the way Tom Hanks sang it in “Big.” “Scattered PICT—chures.”

    Sorry ’bout that song in your head.

  • Ugh! I just had to comment because I do understand. My parents still live in my childhood home, but they are surrounded by crack houses and pr*stitutes roam the alleys. It’s very very sad. But my parents remain, because my mom shares your background of divorce and moving every 9 months. It’s the only home she’s ever known, and the house where she raised 5 children. It wasn’t the greatest neighborhood even in the 80s, when I lived there, but it was home.
    May your home be blessed with all the beautiful memories you have from your childhood!

  • Yikes a Meth lab! Lord only knows what has gone on in my childhood home and neighborhood in a barrio in Los Angeles…

  • I’m so sorry, DeeDee. Hang on to the good memories. Nice thing about time is that some memories seem a lot better than what they really were and some we forget all together.

    Wow, what a downer I am. I’ll go eat some chocolate in your name, k? 🙂

  • My childhood neighborhood took a quick downturn in the late ninties and my parents divorced and moved away. I had already moved out but I still hated the thought of never being able to take my kids there.

    I still look it up on google earth sometimes. We are all attached to some house somewhere.

  • Yuck. I’m just kind of grouchy about the whole thing FOR you. Grouchy about drugs and divorce and childhood memories that aren’t ALL sweet. I have some of those, too. My houses I grew up in are dated by which divorce, which dad. Yuck again.

    Loved this post and didn’t like it all at the same time. Do you know what I mean?