Monday, March 23, 2015

This Old House

Last week we said "hello" to a very precious heirloom and this week we are saying "goodbye" to another.  

This piece of history has a story.  When I was a girl my daddy built me a Barbie doll house.  He built it from the cheapest plywood that may have been used for something else before.  I watched him saw out the 4' x 1' slabs and draw the cuts for the doors and windows.  
I suppose I watched him make the walls and doors, paint and carpet, but I don't remember that.  I do remember thinking that watching the building process was better than the finished project.  
I loved the finished project, too.  We played and played with it and I brought it to my house when my first daughter was born.  
It was a very special project, Dad painted it white with a red door, just like the house we lived in. 
The windows were trimmed in red; our house had red trim.  When dad built the house the windows had wood sashing to make it look like panes with thin clear plastic for the windows.
The doors were cut to fit and had real hinges and little door knobs.
 Our door had a diamond window, so did this one.  


The windows were trimmed in red; our house had red trim.  When dad built the house the windows had wood sashing to make it look like panes with thin clear plastic for the windows. It had a back door into a hallway.   


One bedroom had the lavender paint and yellow carpet of my bedroom.


It had the carpet of the boys bedroom, but their room had paneling.  I don't know where the orange paint came from. Both bedrooms had closets with rods.


The living room is yellower than this.  The carpet is the same as our living room carpet.  The yellow was from something else.  


There was an arch into the hallway.


And a door with no door into the kitchen. There was a bathroom but it was too narrow and the worst damage and I didn't want a picture of that. 


Dad mounted wheels on one side to made it easier to move and store when stood up on that side.  


This is just a glimpse when it was down in playing mode.  I didn't get very close with these, because it is broken now.  Somehow it got badly damaged in storage.  Someone who didn't value it as I did. 


I wish the yellow of the living room would have photographed faithfully, but it didn't.  Since this post is for me to remember I am posting photos of each side.  





This house still looks pretty good on the outside, but damaged enough on the inside that it would take too much time and energy to fix.  It is large and awkward and hard to store.  It has made great memories.  
Especially the one where I can say, "My Dad made this for me." 


Monday, March 9, 2015

You Don't Know What This Means to Me!

 No, I can't know what this means to him.  I don't think I have anything in my life that is as important as this is.  
You can get a glimpse of what it means by the look on Jim's face.  


This is the 1951 John Deere B that Jim's dad bought brand new.  It was the only tractor he ever bought brand new.  It's been out of the family for nearly 35 years.  His dad sold it at the farm sale when he retired.  Jim has wished that tractor was ours for nearly all of that time.  We knew where is was, but it has always been too hard to find the money and the time to buy it.  To us, we knew it was worth more than we could afford to pay.  In those days, we were raising children and old tractors don't often fit into the budget.  


It's ours now.
We can hardly believe it.  
This afternoon, the renters that rent the farm that Jim grew up on, drove up to the shop this afternoon with this tractor on a trailer for Jim to look at.  Jim says, "That's the same kind my dad had,"  
"It IS your dad's"
"How much do you want for it," says Jim.
"It's yours," says our renter.  


What can you say to that?  
What can you possibly say to someone who has given you a dream you've had for decades? 
You can say "thank you," but it is more than that. You can say, "You don't know what this means to me." 
It's the kind of thing for which there are no words.



What bunch of guys doesn't love Old Iron?


And, the best of all.  I found a photo of the original owner.  



Sunday, March 8, 2015

A New Way In

Several weeks ago Jim started on the project to put a new door into the garage from outside the front of the house. It involved tearing out the brick planters in the front of our big picture window and cutting out the brick from the garage wall.  
When Jim redid the garage last spring before graduation, he framed out the door ready for this and sheetrocked over it.  So, now all he had to do was cut out the sheetrock on the inside and install the door. 

Jim had a friend come and help with the finish brick work around the door and learned well enough to finish it himself.



























Sunday, March 1, 2015

Old Stories

I could say we are one-sixth done with the year but keeping that up will soon get depressing.  I have been spending the last half of the month sorting through all the doubles of the photographs I've saved from the days we took film in to be developed and received back again negatives and two of each photo. 
I also sorted through a bunch of old photos from my childhood, discarding the bad ones and some there were too many of, sorting many that need new homes, and finding in them some more projects for me.  
I've been viewing photos, not taking them.  One of the things I ran across was this little book with proofs of some of my earliest photos.  
These were taken one month before I was a year old.  
The book I found them in was, well...
just plumb cute 
and held together by a red metal binder thingy.




These were taken back in the days when a photographer would set up shop in JC Penney's and everyone would come get photos of their kids.   
There wouldn't be any specific "one year" photos, you got photos when the photographer was there. 

The order form is interesting, especially the prices.


And here I am...


The first photo of the next group is the one that I've seen around.  I don't have it, I hope Mom still does.