One of our favorite posts in our entire archive is this one about hearing from our first house’s original owners. It was so much fun to see photos of their family in our house back in the 60’s, and we studied every inch of each picture and relished every detail that they shared in their letter.
We were also friendly with the people who sold us our second house, so although we never heard from the original owners, it was really great to know the sellers who had lived there for 22 years! So we always hoped to hear from the original owners of our current house. For a while… nothing. And then it happened! We actually met their daughter-in-law Chris at an event here in Richmond a few months back and big hugs ensued. There’s nothing better than hearing how special a house that you love is to another family, and she gave us permission to share some snippets from a letter that she sent us along with some old photos, so here it goes!
The house you are currently in has had a wonderful history of family memories. My husband’s parents bought it when his dad was transferred to Richmond from Cleveland, Ohio over 30 years ago. They had just become “empty nesters” so they searched for the right house in a perfect location for their future grandchildren to come visit. As a matter of fact, the first of their grandchildren was on the way during their move! It was a crazy time for them, buying the house under construction and moving from 500 miles away. They somehow fit in traveling to Texas for the birth of the first grandson, and saw the births of nine more grandchildren, and one great-grandchild while living there! They were dog lovers and brought their beloved dog, Chelsea, an English Foxhound, with them to Richmond. Sometime after she literally disappeared into the woods one day, another dog (Lady) followed my mother-in-law home. She was well loved and stayed with them a long time.
My husband and I lived in Richmond during the births of all four of our children. Before they were born we acquired our first “child,” a dog from the Richmond SPCA. We took her directly to the house to visit “grandma and grandpa” before even taking her to our own home!
All of our children remember the house as a place we celebrated Christmas Eve every year, plus multiple birthdays and other holidays (this photo was taken in the back porch, which you call the converted sunroom, around 20 years ago).
My father-in-law used to put a Christmas tree in almost every room of the house, and they were always decorated to perfection. He used to play a game with our kids, “find the ornament.” He would spy an ornament on the tree, and the kids would see who could be the first to find it. It wasn’t easy! He had hundreds on one tree alone!
My mother-in-law was a fantastic cook and had us over not only for celebrations but just because she felt like cooking. The kitchen was extremely well used and well loved by all. She would spend days baking cookies to take to Virginia Beach every year, when some years all three of her children and ten grandchildren would also be there.
There was an antique chandelier hanging in the kitchen that was precious to my mother-in-law. It belonged to her grandmother. She loved it, but it hung so low everyone knocked their head into it at least once in their visits there! It was removed before the house was sold.
The outside deck and back porch were added by them after moving in. They used the porch on a daily basis, him reading the newspaper and her doing her needlepoint pillows (this is a photo of my mother-in-law presenting one of her pillows to my daughter in the living room).
The tree in the middle of the deck (that you have removed) was just a small thing when they decided to build the deck around it. They wanted to keep it for the shade it provided. It really got huge!
It is really nice to be able to see what you are doing to make the house your own. I love the hardwood floors you have put in upstairs and really like the stenciling you did on the bathroom floor. Your daughter’s room is where my mother-in-law slept during her later years. She would be so happy to see new life there, with the fun girly room you have put together! I also really love how you transformed the half bath downstairs. It is so much brighter and clean looking! I’m looking forward to seeing more improvements in the future. I wish you many years of happiness in your home! – Chris
We’re so grateful to Chris for reaching out and sharing those details and photos with us! It was amazing to hear that the tree on the deck was tiny once. Remember how big it was when we had it taken down?
We realize this letter may not be as touching for you guys, but it was so heartwarming to us. To have a better sense of the life this house has lived and how it has been loved by so many people (filled with grandchildren, home cooking, and Christmas trees) makes us feel so grateful to be here. As a total bonus, we also heard from Erin, one of the grandkids who grew up visiting this house. Here’s her letter:
I’m one of the 10 grandchildren of the original owners of your current house. My mom shared your blog and I am blown away. The house looks wonderful! I have so many fond memories from that house. I am so thankful that you two have moved in and have posted pictures of your updates to the house. Thank you for providing a way for me to still feel connected to the house and for bringing new life to its foundation. – Erin
Amazing, right? It really is awesome to hear from others who are essentially strangers, yet you share something so personal with them: the love of a home.
Have you ever heard from your home’s original owners? Or uncovered anything cool in the house (like this stuff that we found buried under the original cabinets in our first house’s kitchen)? I can’t wait to see if we’ll discover anything when we open up some walls and redo the kitchen! So far all that has turned up is an old water bill from ten years ago in the bottom of the trash compactor.
Amanda L. says
We moved into our current house in January 2013. It was built in 1910 and has had several owners. About 30 days after we moved in, we found a packet of old plans and newspaper articles. It turns out that our house was built on what used to be the property of a Jesuit monastery. More specifically, it is built on what used to be a graveyard. Many of the graves were moved to another cemetery down the street, but it sounds like some were not. Luckily, we’ve had no odd ‘bumps in the night.’ It was definitely neat to see the pictures of the land before our house was built.
We also have been lucky enough to go inside several of our neighbors houses that were built at the same time. It is so interesting how different owners have put their ‘touch’ on these homes.
The house I grew up in is one street over from the house my parent’s moved to when we were a little bit older. My mom and I love to walk by it every day. It has had about 3 owners since we lived there (and my parents COMPLETELY transformed it back into the 90s) and my mom chats with the new owners sometimes. We are secretly hoping it will go up for sale again so we can see the inside – but I’ve been itching so bad to go back there ever since I have been pregnant! I just know one day the hormones will get to me and these people will have a bawling huge pregnant lady on their doorstep begging them to let me inside and share with them all the history that my family put into the house!
We did have a niece of the owners who lived in my parent’s current house come by at a garage sale and tell us about how the house was in the 60s when she lived there with her aunt and uncle, that was really fun for us!
First and foremost I have to say I LOVE your blog, love love love it!! I check it daily for updates! I purchased my first home 2 years ago, I am the second owner of a home that was built over 60 years ago. Just a few months ago I was in the basement looking for something and came across a binder with the original catalog order for my house, picture and everything and the original blueprints. My plan is to frame them for my living room, how much more original could you get for artwork, and such a conversation piece!
Maureen @Altes Haus says
That is so cool!
Anele @ Success Along the Weigh says
Are you kidding? I’m sitting here bawling like a sentimental nerd!! I absolutely love they provided you with a history of a house well loved by one family and now loved and improved upon by yours. Where’s the Puffs, I’m dyin’ over here!
So glad I’m not the only one crying! LOL
And so am I. I love finding out about those who lived before me.
Made me cry too! Especially at the lady of the house spending her later years in Clara’s room!
Absolutely! I’m currently procrastinating from school work for a few minutes and trying to hide my face to stop passing students from seeing my tear streaked face!
The only reason I looked at the comments was to see if I was the only sentimental sap with tears rolling. LOL! Glad to know I have some company :)
This weekend I helped my aunt and uncle move out of their townhouse they owned for 7 years, and I was struck by the sense of it’s not so much being a home-owner, but a house-caretaker. Taking care of your home and enjoying it so that it can be passed on to others later on. How touching to have history of who has lived in your house.
Maureen @Altes Haus says
Oh my gosh!!! I also JUST found some previous owners to my house. Our house was built in 1956, and, just like you, the daughter in law contacted me through Facebook! The family weren’t the original owners, but lived there from 1960 – 2001. I can’t even tell you how excited I was to hear from her (her and her husband now live in Italy!) and vice-versa. I had always wondered about the previous owners and the history of the house, etc. She had only a few pics, but I was ecstatic to see them! I sent them pics of what the house looks like now, and they really liked it. I told her that I always felt like it wasn’t just my house, that this house had been loved before, and that now that I knew someone who lived there, it made it even more special to me. In the house, there is a beam down in the basement that says “PR was here” which was one of the boys that lived there, and there’s a set of old keys that hangs on a beam by our garage door that I haven’t touched since we moved in. I like them there, and they always make me think about the others who lived there.
For some reason I really thought there would be some ‘reveal’ about the origins of the blue trim!
I know that we have seen the blue trim in other areas around the blogosphere but I still find it one of the more quirky things about your house!
The fact that you can work around things that aren’t considered modern these days really helps me not turn my nose up at houses with full pink bathrooms while we search for our fixer-upper.
I think it was really in when the house was built (“Colonial Blue”) since a bunch of neighbors told us they had the same look going on when they moved in!
carol g says
I have had not one, but TWO houses with trim painted that exact shade of blue. I have to admit, when we bought the first house in 1976 I thought that was a selling point….when I bought the second house in 1991, not so much.
If you do a search on Williamsburg and look at photos of interiors, you’ll see lots of homes with woodwork painted blue, green, or gold(ish). Several paint companies had paints in historically accurate colors, though “colonial” wouldn’t necessarily mean exact reproduction. The traditional furnishing style often showed up in reproductions. Since it is a classic style, I’m guessing it will eventually come around again in some form.
I wonder if that look came back in with the bicentennial in 1976. Would that would make it colonial revival revival? That is, a revival of the colonial revival style from the early 20th century.
Look into savethepinkbathrooms.com and retrorenovation.com to see the possibilities in the fixer-uppers from that time period.
Marianne Feller says
I moved into my house about 5 years ago and one Halloween several years ago, a young girl about 10 years old came to the door Trick or Treating and told me that she loved what I had done to the house! It turns out she was the daughter of the original owner.
I LOVE all these stories guys! Thanks for sharing!
I’m currently renting, and my first Halloween had a visit from the previous tenant’s daughter (she wad probably about 7 or 8). She told me “Wow, this house is waaay cleaner than when me and my mom lived here!!” lollll! But I had to agree… When the landlord took me through, she kept apologizing for the mess, haha!
This is awesome!
I often drive past the house I grew up in, that my parents built. It looked like it was to be demolished but then a family moved in and have spent quite a bit of time renovating it. I have so many beautiful childhood memories of that house. I often think about calling in with some old photos of the house when it was first built… But then I think the new owners might think I’m crazy :)
Whyyyyy does this make me cry?!?!?!
I love this post! I love history and I can be so sentimental about this kind of thing. While we have never heard from the original owners of our house, which was built in the early 1940’s, we did find an old newspaper. We were in the process of ripping out the original bathroom (with green and black tiles) and discovered the local newspaper dated June 16, 1942. It was stuffed in the walls. All the headlines were about the war, which was so interesting. There were grocery store and furniture ads, the prices were amazing…wish we could go back to those times with money from now, lol! We even googled some of the local military men that were listed just to see if we could find out what happened to some of them. It was such an awesome find!
Oops, sorry this posted twice. It gave me an error message the first time so I reposted. I guess it worked the first time after all :)
I teared up while reading this because the photos remind me of days spent at my grandparent’s house. Theirs was in Oakwood, a suburb of Dayton, OH. It was a wedding gift to them in 1938 — they never paid a mortgage. Fashionably decorated in the 1940s, it sported that look until the early 2000s when it was sold. It had original everything — floors, ovens, stove, pink and baby-blue bathrooms — and smelled like french perfume and moth balls. I’ve often wondered how the new owner has modernized. Maybe I’ll send her a letter. After all, I know the address by heart.
I live in Dayton…and Oakwood is so beautiful!! You definitely need to send the new owner a letter. I’d love to receive something like that from the original owners of our home! :)
I grew up in Dayton. Oakwood was THE prominent community to live in. I agree. Send the homeowners a letter. Hopefully, they would be as touched and moved as Sherry and John were.
Linda Bernstein says
SUCH a cool letter to receive! And that’s so sweet of them to fill you in like that! Very touching. *sniff*
In our house, the biggest thing we found was something that creeped me out. My husband was in the crawl space/duct area of the house adding a filter, and we found an OLD, nearly destroyed violin that had been stuffed in a nook somewhere. I’m pretty convinced that it belongs to a ghost still in the house (seems legit, right?), so I put it RIGHT BACK and haven’t moved it since. No need to piss off a violin-playing ghost, am I right?
Rachel H says
This was so sweet. My mother raised me on her own and we had a little brick house my whole life. When I was in high school we moved to a better neighborhood with a better school district. Not that many months ago (I’m now 24), we drove by just to look at the house I had spent so many years in, and the owners were outside and invited us in. They had rehabbed the whole interior and it looked INCREDIBLE. Their 3 year old daughter inhabits my once-bedroom, and it’s so great to see another little girl learn and grow in the same space that I did.
This may not be an all-appealing post, but I sure did love it.
Not as touching for us? Maybe it’s still the postpartum hormones, but I definitely teared up reading that. That is so awesome!
I bought my current home in Fayston, Vermont about 2 years ago. In reading through the legal documentation, I discovered that the land used to be owned by a woman named Betsy. It had a log cabin on it where the current house stands, but was so rotten that it was replaced. The local ski resort has first right of refusal upon sale of the property and I’m not allowed to install any method to transport skiers uphill on my property! There is also an old collapsed sugar house in what is now a bog; the previous two owners used to do sugaring in the spring with all the sap from all maples around. Also the guy that regraded my driveway last year also did the excavation for the house 30 years ago. The current house was built in 1985 and hasn’t really been updated since, so it’s been quite a busy and fun 2 years updating it!
Mary | Lemon Grove Blog says
What!? That is SO COOL! Looking back at those 80’s family photos takes me back to my own family Christmas’s and celebrations. How beautiful to hear about all the love this little house has held!
Choked up. People are the best.
We bought our first house from the original owners who had lived there for 50 years. They would send us a holiday card each year, and once my husband interviewed them with their daughter to write a piece for our local paper about the neighborhood. It was fascinating. The houses are all quite small, but mother and daughter counted 85 children who lived in the hood during the 50’s and 60’s. Later we got a visit from the previous owner of the house across the street, and he gave us two photos- one of our house just after it was built (taken from his front lawn) and one of the lot that was there before the house was built. We had them framed and when we moved we left them for the next owner!
I love history and I can be so sentimental about this kind of thing, so this is a great post! While we have never heard from the original owners of our house, which was built in the early 1940’s, we did find an old newspaper. We were in the process of ripping out the original bathroom (with green and black tiles) and discovered the local newspaper dated June 16, 1942. It was stuffed in the walls. All the headlines were about the war, which was so interesting. There were grocery store and furniture ads, the prices were amazing…wish we could go back to those times with money from now, lol! We even googled some of the local military men that were listed just to see if we could find out what happened to some of them. It was such an awesome find!
Anne @ Planting Sequoias says
I often think about what events happened in our house before it was ours. Reminds me of that quote in Moneyball–“it’s easy to be romantic about baseball”–or in this case, our houses!
I’m crying. Like trying-not-to-dissolve-intougly-crying crying. I get really attached to houses. The one I grew up in was partially built by my dad. I lived there from birth till college, and we sold it when I was in my mid-20s. I’ve since forced my way back in for a tour. :) And my first house that I bought on my own was a fabulous 100-year-old Victorian that I worked so hard on. I couldn’t drive by for quite awhile because it made me sad (it was also the house we came home to after getting married, the house we brought our first dog and first baby home to…). But I think it’s about time to force a tour there as well. I am very thankful that we sold both houses to people who loved them. So glad the previous owners contacted you. Thanks to them and you for sharing!
What an amazing gift! I have goose bumps reading this, sounds like your house was made for love, family and memories.
Maybe I’m a little hormonal at the moment, but this got me pretty darn misty. So so soooo cool!
We bought our first house after the man who lived there and raised his family there for 50 years had to go to a nursing home. We met his daughter and she shared so much information with us. He died a couple years later and his two daughters and their husbands stopped by the house (the house they grew up in)to see it. It was so amazing to talk to them and hear stories about the rooms they decorated in awful 60s vinyl, and days spent spraying in the popcorn ceilings. It was great to learn so much about the house and they loved all the work we put in to improve it. I would love to meet the original owners of our new house.
We never heard from our home’s first owners (I think they had passed away), but we did hear lots of stories from the next door neighbor who has lived there since the 1950s! One of the most “colorful” stories is of the time the husband came home and found his wife in bed with another man, who proceeded to exit through the bedroom window and run down the street naked. Not exactly heartwarming, but it did give us a laugh!
zandi @ radical possibility says
When I was around 10, about 1996, a man in his late 70’s stopped by my childhood home with a huge envelope full of photos, dating all the way back to 1920!
His parents had built the house from a Sears catalogue home kit, to be the residence on their chicken farm (which we always joked about before knowing this, since for a house in Chicago, we had EXCELLENT soil haha). He even gave us the original catalogue he had ordered it from!
In the 76 years since they built it, later owners had added a sunroom, two second story bedrooms, a back deck, and a wrap around porch, so it was hard to wrap our heads around the fact that our house had once been a third of the size, but the interior of the original home had not been structurally changed at all! It was also funny seeing a house in a fairly big, packed neighborhood being the only one on the street.
I looove stories like this, i’m so glad you got your house story :) Were you worried at all about how the old owners would perceive some of your renovations (like, removing the very not-to-your-taste blue, etc)?
Vidya @ Whats Ur Home Story says
That is so heart warming to hear how much they loved the house. And to know that they look forward to the changes you’ve made in the home is a big plus too. We didn’t really have any connection with the original owners or the buyers of our first home. Just wanted to let you know that I haven’t commented in a while but do stop in to read every single time. Loving all the IG photos of your lovely duo. :)
When we were selling our previous home we had a gentleman stop and ask if he could take a look around – he had grown up there in the 1950s.
It was a two story, three bedroom, one bathroom home (about 1200 square feet) that we – my husband, me and two toddlers – had started to grow out of. Anyway, the man told us how he and his SIX siblings had grown up in the house! I actually think if that quite often – how the world has changed so much in 60ish years that our family of four couldn’t fit into a home that held a family of nine.
Starr @ The Kiefer Cottage says
Our house is pretty old (built in 1940), and we’re the third set of owners. The sellers had lived here for 40 years when we purchased, and honestly, if I were to meet them, I might box their ears about all the deferred maintenance they left! Alas, one of them died shortly after we moved in, and his wife is in poor health, living in a nursing home. I’ve been in contact with their son about mail we continue to get (3 years later), but no one appears to have fond memories of this place. I wonder what skeletons it continues to hide.
Manda Wolf says
That is very awesome. I’m glad they reached out to you, I can almost picture their surprise when they came crossed you blog, “Oh, that looks like grandma’s house… WAIT A SECOND…. That is GRANDMA’S HOUSE!!!!!!!” I’m sure it is just as cool to them to see what it is becoming. I think everyone has that mentality of wondering what the next owners will do to their house. Heck I even drive by the duplex my hubby and I rented together at the start of our relationship in the spring to see all my tulips and daffodils come up.
Hannah Rose says
When we bought our current home, my grandmother was so excited to see it. As a new bride, she lived a couple blocks away, but had a friend who lived in our home. They spent many hours talking about babies and husbands in this house over tea. I love that connection to the past!
Robin @ our semi organic life says
How fun! We live in a rental house and I personally think its sorta creepy that probably about hundreds of people have lived here. I try not to think about it.
I met the original owner of my house when I was walking my dog around the neighborhood one day. She actually only lives one street over. She is a little over 70 now. She said her family moved into the home when she was just two years old, and she left when she got married. She told me all about the additions that have been made to the house, and what the original layout looked like. She said she had some pictures buried somewhere, but hasn’t found them yet. I still see her almost every day walking around the neighborhood.
Sarah @ Sarah's Daybook says
SO cool! Was it at the Home and Gardens event? I remember you looking excited to see someone and then talking to her for a while. That is really awesome.
At my dad’s house, they had an AC person come by and he said that our house was his best friends house growing up! How small-worldy is that?
Yes! That was it! And the AC story is too funny. It’s such a small world.
What a wonderful treat to have a little contact with the previous owners and see some memories that were had there. We too were able to get a little background on the previous owners of our home. Our house was built in the 1930’s and while there’s no record of it being built (I’ve spent hours digging for info at the local historical society) it turns out that our mailman is the great, great grandson of the original owners. How cool! And he was able to dig up some old photos of them standing on our porch and in the backyard. Also, when we remodeled the kitchen we found all sorts of newspapers, trinkets and farm newsletters in the wall (yes, behind the plaster!) – so I have those framed and put up by our front door for a fun display. As always, I love your blog, your house and those cute kids – keep it up!
I bought my fist house 19 months ago from the son of the elderly woman who had owned it. The son had grown up here and had a difficult time selling his family home after his mother died. he house needed LOTS of work due to the owners declining health in the last year she was here, but had obviously been well-loved. When all of the renovations were complete, I invited the son and is wife to my housewarming party. They were THRILLED, not only to see the updates and changes, but to realize that I loved this little house as much as their Mom had, and that I had taken great pains to renovate with the history of the house in mind. The son took pictures to send to all o the grandchildren around the country and told me many stories about the history of the house and the lives their family had led while living here. This past Christmas, there was a knock on my door one evening and t was the son. He was in town and driving by and had spotted my first Christmas tree through the door. He wanted to tell me that I had, inadvertently chosen the exact spot where his parents had always put heir tree, and to thank m for the wonderful memories it brought back. I love living in a home with such a history of family and tradition and I’m so happy that the son had a chance to see how much this hose now means to me.
Stacy Weiland says
The house we are living in right now belonged to my husbands grandfather, Alfred Nussbaum. Alfred had it built in 1953 and was the only person to live in this home until he moved in with my MIL and my husband and I moved in to fix it up. Very little had been done during those 55 or so years before we moved in. Unfortunately he passed away in 2011 (at the great old age of 90, a WWII veteran, born in 1921), but we do know what he thought of the renovations we made around here: The house used to be a bright, mint color-totally 50’s. We decided to paint it Silt Gray from Valspar. Alfred did not like the gray and preferred the mint. I now have a minty color front door in homage to this great man. House history is so fascinating. :)
You may have mentioned this in a post when you first purchased the house but I was wondering who you purchased the home from? Were there other owners in between these original owners and you guys or was it an estate sale or foreclosure or something like that? I am assuming if there were owners in between that means they didn’t do any updating or modifications to the home before you purchased it? Is so, that’s pretty unusual!
Yes, when we bought the house it was very close to looking as it originally had when it was built (other than the deck and the back porch that Chris’ parents-in-law added on when they lived there). Without revealing too many personal details that aren’t ours to share, the house was vacant for over a year before it was sold, but it wasn’t a foreclosure or estate sale (it was a traditional sale with a realtor, etc).
Of course I know nothing about this family, but I can comment on my grandfather’s house. It was built in 1962 and was always pristine and immaculate inside with a gorgeous yard with a custom built pergola, patios, roses by the dozen, etc. All made by hand by my grandfather. However,after retiring and age taking its toll on the grandpa and losing grandma, the house and yard was still maintained, but only marginally. On a fixed income updating worn out carpeting and changing out dated cupboards just isn’t a priority-and it shouldn’t be. But it still is clean and comfortable and homey. Some day the house will move on to another owner and be updated, but for now it’s just perfect how it is and one of my favorite places to be.
Kim Rosas says
I’ve been sniffing around for clues about our home that we’ve been restoring and “un-moroccan-ing” for 2 years now.
We’ve learned the names of the owners though we never had luck finding more about them, and neighbors have given snippets of information about how it was the best house on the block when this street was developed in 1976.
Too bad the 2nd owners destroyed it by not doing basic maintenance and painting every wall orange. I always hope fate will connect us to that family so they can see the home is being loved and cared for once again. Thanks for sharing this story!
Bonnie C says
One day I looked out the window and saw a woman taking pictures of our house (we had been there about 5 years). We had bought the house from her and her husband and they had moved to Florida (we are in NH). I gave her a tour and she took lots of pictures. I think she liked it. They had lived there 10 years and still had stickers on the windows and the walls were builder primer white. Not anymore!
We bought our 40 year old home from the original owners. They didn’t spend much time in it anymore, as they had 3 other places in different locations, but they were still hesitant to sell because it was so sentimental to them. They had it built to their specifications, raised their children in it and added special touches throughout the years. There was a lot of negotiations during the purchase and the realtor finally suggested that we meet them in person to help things go smoothly. When we met them they asked what we loved about the house and my first response was the history. “You lived here and raised a happy, healthy family for 40 years, now we want to do the same for the next 40.” We closed the deal at that meeting and they gave us all the original plans from the build as well as plans from an addition they did. Meeting them makes me love the house even more!
We got a letter from the children of the previous owners when we bought our house. Their parents built it in 1960 and raised their family here. They told us about parties, a wedding that was held in the basement and how they “finger painted” some railings in the living room. I still have a ring of keys for different doors that has a tag on it reading, “Mom’s house,” that they left. And several of our neighbors knew those original owners. Cool to think about the others’ lives here, and how the house changes.
We are on the opposite end of your story. We are the original owners of a DC home that we had to sell because of a medical illness. It had been in our family for three generations. We shared our story with the new owners in person and they really loved it and told us that it made them feel special and part of a bigger story of the home. They even had a little dog named Kami!
Such sweet stories guys! We LOVE hearing this stuff! Thanks to everyone from sharing.
Goosebumps:) This was a great post!
I honestly think this post is one of my favorites. I really believe a home takes on a life of its own and has a soul that is filled with all of the memories from people that used to live in it.
We bought our home last year in November. It was built in 1989, and other than the owners that lived in it 6 months before us (they had to relocate due to his job), we were only the 2nd people to live in it. When we looked through it, our realtor mentioned he thought he knew who the original owners were and kindly looked up their names when we put an offer in for the house. Since then we have learned a little about them, and we even left some of the stuff they left in the attic in the same spot. She is now in a retirement home and he passed away years ago, but we still feel a connection to what the house was when they lived there. Zillow.com still had the original pictures of the house before updates were made, so we love to laugh and joke at the wallpaper that used to be on all of the walls.
Glad to know I’m not the only one sentimental about these things. We bought our house from a couple who had divorced. I’ve always hoped the people who sold it to them were happy here.
I live in Croatia and people rarely sell their homes and move. Houses usually “stay in the family”. It would be so strange for me to see somebody else live in my granparent’s house other then my uncle and his family now.
Do you know who lives in your old houses now?
That would be fun to see :)
Yes! We have heard from the new owners of our first house and have actually talked about going back there to walk around and show Clara to see if she remembers anything! We would love to see that sweet house again!
is it normal that this post totally made me tear up?? I love homes’ stories and giving up my grandparents’ homes has so much emotion to it- where all the family gathered. So many memories. And such a blessing to have you and your family there.
My parents moved to their current house when I was 5 months. the previous owners had a son my age and he was a boy scout- he’d stop by every year to sell us something just to get a peek at the house. = ) Of course, we always invited them in!
Becca Smith says
Oh, I love this! Coincidentally, we just visited my husband’s childhood home this past weekend. We drove by because we happened to be in the area (We live in MI, but the house is in Long Beach, NY) and we were curious to see if there was any remaining damage from Hurricane Sandy.
I know my husband was nervous about even driving by. His beloved grandparents were the original owners and lived there for 60 years until their death ten years ago. No one in the family has been there since.
As we were driving by, the owners happened to be outside so we stopped to chat.
As it turns out, they have completely transformed the house AND they invited us in for a full tour and were so gracious and friendly and generous. It made my husband feel so great to see that the spirit of a home continues on…
Anyway, you’ve inspired me to drop them a note and let them know how much their hospitality meant to the whole family. Thanks!