Old Home Place #ThursdayDoors

You know how it is when you move, and the folks who bought your house make improvements outside and you wonder what they did inside but you don’t want to go ask for a tour?

Sell your house to your brother, and you can.

Charlie bought a house on the GI Bill when he got home from Germany (after the Korean Wa– I mean conflict). Just before he and I met, he and his “baby” brother bought land in Indiana, planning to build houses within hollerin’ distance of each other. Then his brother decided to stay in town, but needed a bigger house, so he sold his, bought ours, and sold us his half of the land.

So we get to see our old house, inside and out, several times a year. We went yesterday, in fact, and I got some door photos.

They put in the retaining wall and the deck.

Closeup of door.

We hardly ever used the front door. The only time I recall any of us using the front door was when our girls played detective (which the did A LOT), and rang the bell to warn me that Jack the Ripper had been seen in the neighborhood driving a gray van, and to beware because Flag Day was coming up, and he did his worst on Flag Day. They can’t remember now why Flag Day was the day. Maybe they heard somebody say that “a red flag” meant danger?

ANYWAY, we always walked up this to the back door.

Yeah, no, it’s STEEPER than it looks.

We walk past this.

That’s the door to the crawlspace (this house doesn’t have a basement, so the plumbing and stuff is accessed through this. A crawlspace is just as creepy as it sounds. Charlie says, “That’s the same door that was here when I bought the place, fifty years ago.” Not pretty, but it’s apparently a good’un.

So THIS is the door we come in. There’s a Welcome sign on it, and food inside. I’m in!

Oh! Before we go in, let’s look at the rock garden. Charlie made one there, himself, but it was pretty … vernacular. Mrs. Baby Brother had a professional lay the stone and had a small deck put in. She had a new fence built and painted it. Isn’t it great??

From the kitchen, we can look through into the addition Charlie built. Baby Brother did some gussying up here, too, and Mrs. Brother redecorated the kitchen. We’re all like, “Can we move back in?” That “Little” Charlie, Mr. and Mrs. Brother’s son, who also came to lunch. We reminded him of when he was little and his sister, who was littler, looked at him consideringly and said, “Charlie, you got a big head,” and he said, “Yeah, and it’s full of brains, too.” He said, “I still use that one.”

Here’s the front door from the inside.

The door to the right used to be the coat closet.

This used to be the linen closet. Charlie and his late wife were so brilliant: each of the girls had a different color towel, so there would be no quarreling about who used who’s towel. I don’t know what’s in the closets now, ’cause it’s done of my business. I love these skinny doors!

The other door is to one of the bedrooms. I didn’t take any pictures of the private spaces because: none of my business.

We had a great lunch, which Baby Brother cooked. All the brothers and sisters and inlaws were there, as well as Little Charlie. A fine time was had by all.

This has been part of Norm Frampton’s Thursday Doors link-up. Visit his page and click on the blue frog link at the bottom to visit other doors from around the world!

A WRITING PROMPT FOR YOU: Your character goes back to a house where they used to live.



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 “Old Home Place #ThursdayDoors

  1. Mary J. Melange

    April 6, 2017 at 8:42am

    It’s wonderful that you still get to see your old house. Baby brother and his wife have done a fabulous job with the outside landscaping and decks. They have great ideas and appear to be very talented in home remodeling.

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    • Author

      Marian Allen

      April 6, 2017 at 8:53am

      That is so true, Mary! I love to visit and remember when this happened here and that happened there. And, every time I walk up that drive, I’m glad we moved. lol!

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  2. janet

    April 6, 2017 at 9:16am

    They put a lot of time, love, and money into that house, Marian. What fun that you can still go there and enjoy your good memories. When we moved from our house in Cleveland, a job-related move, not from choice), a friend said she could go by and sent me a photo sometime, but I declined. I’ve driven by the street a few times since then, but haven’t ever gone to see. However, I have gone by the house I grew up in in Omaha and enjoyed seeing the outside of that. My brother stopped by once, told the people who lived there that we lived there years ago, and, I believe, got to see the inside. That would have been interesting.


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    • Author

      Marian Allen

      April 6, 2017 at 11:47am

      It would be hard, seeing a house where you used to live now being lived in by strangers. I think, like you, I wouldn’t want to see it.

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  3. norm 2.0

    April 6, 2017 at 10:53am

    Big family meal get-togethers are lots of fun and it’s kinda cool that you get to see all of the TLC invested in your old place.
    I really like That narrow linen closet door and I love the back deck/rock garden area.

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    • Author

      Marian Allen

      April 6, 2017 at 11:49am

      That’s a great little deck, isn’t it? When he has the BIG family over, if the weather permits, they set up a big umbrella table there.

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  4. Jean Reinhardt

    April 6, 2017 at 11:08am

    It must be so nice to be able to wander around your old home, Marian, and that it stayed in the family. Great story about ‘Jack the Ripper’ too.

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    • Author

      Marian Allen

      April 6, 2017 at 11:50am

      It is nice, Jean. –Those kids were so much fun! They had notebooks full of “suspects” and “known associates” they had cut out of newspapers and magazines and had written criminal histories for. πŸ˜€

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  5. Dan Antion

    April 6, 2017 at 11:23am

    That’s pretty cool that you get to visit the old place. Thanks for the tour. His brother has the same storm door that we have πŸ™‚

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  6. Joey

    April 6, 2017 at 12:51pm

    Oh that’s charming! I love the dining room paper and built-ins! That rock garden is so cheerful, too! Mr and Mrs Baby Brother have done a fine job.
    We have a skinny door in our house, and I can’t deny I love it. It’s like the other doors in the back hallway, but skinny. So cute!
    I have lived here almost four years and only had to think about going into the crawlspace once. Every time I think about it, I get twitchy and remember the benefits of a basement πŸ˜‰

    So far, not ONE of the houses me or my family lived in has been improved upon or even maintained at the same level. I hate that.

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    • Author

      Marian Allen

      April 7, 2017 at 7:56am

      That’s so sad, to see a beloved house deteriorate. πŸ™ And, yeah, here in Tornado Alley, there are MANY benefits of a basement.

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  7. Deborah

    April 6, 2017 at 9:01pm

    The deck and rock wall are really nice. I can picture big family BBQ’s in the summer months.

    My linen closet door is a skinny one too. πŸ™‚

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    • Author

      Marian Allen

      April 7, 2017 at 8:06am

      Nobody’s house is big enough for six brothers and sisters, their spouses, their children, their grandchildren, and now their great-grandchildren to all be in the same place at the same time. We sprawl out from the back yard to the front yard and circulate like city traffic so we can all talk to everybody. And they do that several times a year. Several more times a year, just the brothers and sisters and spouses get together, like this one. They’re a great bunch! As the only child of an only child of an only child, I’m happy to be part of such a large and loving group. πŸ™‚

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  8. Ron Pickle

    October 4, 2017 at 8:29am

    This is a great idea to sell the house to your kin and see the changes whenever you want, several times a year. I loved that little rock garden along with beautiful fence conceptualized by your sister in law.

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    • Author

      Marian Allen

      October 4, 2017 at 4:30pm

      I think I remember more about the neighborhood than the kids do, although I married into it just before we moved. Adolescents push old memories out in favor of new ones — necessarily, I suppose. They have clearer memories of their uncle, aunt, and cousins in that house than of themselves.

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