There Was A Crooked House #ThursdayDoors #TBT

This is partly Throwback Thursday and partly an entry in Norm Frampton’s Thursday Doors linkup.

Long, long ago — maybe 40 or so years — a friend of Charlie’s built a crooked house for his daughter. Charlie decided it would be fun for his three little girls (this was before I met them) to have a playhouse, too. He had his friend trace the rafters for him, then he built this.CrookedHouse It looked a lot better when it was new, but it’s been through a lot.

The “big goo-uhs,” as the girl Charlie and I had together called them when she was wee, made a lot of mud pies in the crooked house. It was well-loved.

We met and married and moved over here to the country, and the crooked house came with us. #4 Daughter loved to play in it as much as her big sisters had. She had a cardboard kitchen set in there, which she called “stove an’ oven,” and she could play there for hours. She would begin by forcing anyone she could browbeat into “playing” with her, which generally meant watching her play. Eventually, she would become so absorbed that one could slip away.

This is the playhouse where John Allen ended his days. Not John Allen the author, but John Allen the inflatable T-Rex that was as tall as #4 Daughter was. The one she said was her brother. When she accidentally popped his seam, she simply tacked him to the wall and went on being his sister.

After #4 Daughter stopped playing in the crooked house, we cleaned it out and used it as a chicken coop.

CrookedHouseChickenCrookedHouseInsideThe chickens had their own door, of course.

Ah, the jolly times I’ve had slip-sliding down the hill in freezing weather, taking food and hot water to the hens! Ah, the unholy pleasure of picking tomato horn worms off in the summer and tossing them over the chicken run fence to their DOOM!

Eventually, the chickens died of old age, and now the crooked house is a shed. It’s still sturdy, though. Its days are not yet done. Who knows what it may be next?

Artsy shot of the crooked house roof. No extra charge.
Artsy shot of the crooked house roof. No extra charge.

If you’d like to build your own crooked house, look here or look here. If you’d like to buy a crooked house, look here.

A WRITING PROMPT FOR YOU: Where did your main character love to play as a child?



I was born in Louisville, Kentucky, but now live in the woods in southern Indiana. Though I only write fiction, I love to read non-fiction. The more I learn about this world, the more fantastic I see it is.

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One thought on “There Was A Crooked House #ThursdayDoors #TBT

  1. Dan

    December 10, 2015 at 7:06am

    That’s fantastic. What a great idea, and so pretty. I built our daughter a playscape which included a “tree house” like area. She spent a lot of time in and on that thing. Kids like to have their own space. Great job Charlie & great doors.

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  2. Jane

    December 10, 2015 at 9:08am

    Aw, you were holding out on me. You already had a tiny house for me to move into. Thank goodness: NOT NECESSARY NOW!

    I notice the flying books accelerate at a pace relative to their size. Big ones blaze past, etc.

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    • Author

      Marian Allen

      December 10, 2015 at 3:56pm

      Hee Hee! That tiny house would not be comfortable — unless you were a chicken or, apparently, a serpent. Mice were under the impression that it would be comfortable, but: serpent.

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  3. joey

    December 10, 2015 at 4:33pm

    That is adorable!
    Also, I loved he called them goo-uhs. My nephew used to call our girls “the goowuls,” too 🙂

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    • Author

      Marian Allen

      December 11, 2015 at 8:16am

      It’s funny, how many words little ones mispronounce the same way. And then the words that are specific to each. We had one grandson who called a ball “bomba.” Another one called a ball “uhball.” That one made sense: He thought the object was called “uhball” because people would say, “This is a ball.” The acquisition of language is a mystical and wonderful thing!

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      • Jane

        December 11, 2015 at 9:38am

        One of my nephews spelled his cousin April’s name” apro.

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        • Author

          Marian Allen

          December 11, 2015 at 10:14am

          Hee hee! I remember #4 calling her big sisters’ first and middle names: Ah-essAnn, SuzaBeff, and LellyRoot.

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