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Thursday, January 07, 2010

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Oh....I LOVE this post. My parents sold their (OUR) house a few years ago in favor of a new home closer to the city, closer to their doctors, a little further from the snow. It was a wise decision for them and their new house is beautiful. Because it's my parents' house, I feel right at home when I walk in and comfortable, warm, protected while I'm there.

But I sure do miss that old house. I have to drive past it to get to their new house. I believe it's a vacation rental now, so most of the times I've passed by it looks vacant. It looks sad. Like you, by the time they moved out it really didn't even feel like "home" anymore. They had cleared out all the personal stuff, left only the bare minimum for potential buyers to see. And yet, it's still sad for me to drive along that road. As time passes, I'm sure the feelings will dull a little, but I wonder if the "ping" on my nostalgic heart will ever completely disappear.

BTW - what CHARMING house. It looks like a lovely place to grow up.

I got a little teary reading this post thinking of my dad's childhood home. It was the house my grandmother was born in, and my grandfather moved into it when they married. My dad was raised in that house, and I have so many memories of Christmases and sleepovers there. It stood empty after my grandma passed away for several years, and it always made me sad to see it empty and alone when we'd stop in and check on it when we were in Michigan. It was eventually bought by the government and torn down. Now there's a busy road and a Starbucks where it once stood, but the trees my Dad planted as a child are still there. Anyway, all that to say, it wasn't exactly my childhood home, but I can relate all the same. Many blessings on your family's new home and on all of the memories you will make there.

After my parents sold my childhood home, my Mom asked me several times whether "home" is where the house is, or where the family is. I told her that, for me, my home is where my family is. I think at the time, I said this mostly to appease her. But over the last 4 years, I've really found it to be true. Home is wherever my family is.

This is so beautiful, Arwen.

I had a similar experience this year over Christmas. We used to make the trek up to Chicago every year to spend Christmas at my grandparents' house (known as 722 for its street number). There almost my dad's entire family would gather, including throngs of cousins. There are so many memories tied to that house. When my grandparents moved to Florida several years ago, I thought I missed that house. When my papa died just before my second child was born, I was nostalgic about that house. It was a lovely, old house on a tree-lined street. I missed sitting in the narrow kitchen at a long picnic table waiting for my papa to serve his signature cinnamon toast.

But this Christmas I realized as many of my dad's family gathered here in Georgia where there was no snow and no cinnamon toast that it wasn't the house I had missed so much the family gathering together to celebrate Christmas. We kept saying it was just like Christmas at 722 because of the PEOPLE and the LOVE, not because of the walls we gathered within. I'll always have fond memories of that house. I'll always miss my papa, but it was a gift to realize that wherever love dwells and family gathers is the best place to call home.

I so enjoyed your post. You have such a way with words, Arwen.

God bless you!

It makes me sad that this house will be gone. Your parents sheltered me in the large back bedroom when I was just in my late teens and early 20s. The time I spent with them helped shape me as a person and part of me views this house as home too. I wish I didnt live 1900 miles away and could say good by to it. I am so happy that the love of your family is quickly making the new family home, home. Blessings to you

My parents moved out of "our house" when my little brother was born (18 years after me, which is a story in and of itself). My older brother had married, I was in college, and since my dad was becoming more successful in his real estate business, they moved over to the "rich" part of my hometown to a bigger house.

My dad kept the old house as a rental, and a couple of years ago it was empty so we headed over there to see it. I opened the door to the basement, and you could still see where my dad had marked our heights as my brother and I grew. Being Queen of the Saps, I burst into tears and my husband made us leave before I ripped the board off the wall. :)

My dad's business grew and grew and 12 years ago they moved yet again, to a fancy-schmany house where we all have our own bedrooms and baths, but I tell ya, I'd almost rather be cramped in that teeny-tiny house on Pleasant Court, because it's HOME.

This is one of those rites of passage we must take as adults I suppose ... all of us eventually have to let go of our childhood homes. It was very sad when my mom sold the house we grew up in and I chose to not see it again as she moved out. It was a good decision. I can remember it as it was that way. Good memories.

Beautiful post, Arwen.

You're absolutely right about the house, Arwen. I remember every room and have great memories of your old house. I know that when my parents call me with the weekly update of which houses are gone now (sadly, most are already demolished, I hear) and say that your old house is gone, I'll probably shed a tear or two.

It may just be the hormones, though.

Yeah, we dropped Kelson at Hugh's the other night on the way to RTL board, and "couldn't" quite go down the street even though it was the shortest way. I'm glad Christmas was "right"!

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