My parents started making plans to build a new home. Their plans included a list of things that should not cause them the difficulties they were experiencing at their present home.
Mom disliked her large kitchen. She knew how many steps she had to make from the stove to the sink or sink to refrigerator and then to the dining table. She also disliked doing laundry in the basement and then carrying the wet clothes outside to hang up and dry.
Dad wasn’t a fan of dealing with water coming into the basement and dealing with temperamental sump pumps. A small unattached garage was also unacceptable. Our old house had narrow eaves, and if any windows were open during a rain, water came inside. To combat that moisture, we had a loud exhaust fan that pulled air through the house.
As a teenager I paid little attention to any of this. Soon I was shown a diagram of the new house. The general contractor was Gerald “Red” Mobley, who lived just a block away from the house we were building.
We knew most of the contractors. Our kitchen and laundry room appliances came from Harrell’s, the cabinets from Miller Cabinet Co. I came to notice that each of the items that were on the no-no list were not present in our new home.
Our new home, which featured three bedrooms, a handy laundry room and a heated attached garage with the exhaust fan from our old house, was located on a high plot of land with good drainage to a small creek. The kitchen was and is still known as a “one-butt” kitchen. You could touch the stove, fridge and sink without taking more than a couple of steps.
Over the years we discovered that the crawlspace was as dry as a desert. Our neighborhood had city water but not city sewers. We were on a septic system.
My wife, Lyn, Stuart, our therapy dog, and I live now live in the home that my parents built.
City sewers were installed a couple of years ago, but we couldn’t connect until the entire project was finished, so we didn’t hook up until last week. It looks strange to see that mound of soil leading from our home to the street. Soon it will settle and new grass will be growing.
Changes have been made to the house over the years. It is now a two-bedroom home because the living and family rooms and the small bedroom were opened up to create a great room. We have added a sun room, a deck and a bookcase, which covers an entire wall.
I also have a wonderful outbuilding – “The Hideout” – in the backyard. I am seated in it as I compose this article.
The old exhaust fan still works fines, and it brings back wonderful memories from both homes.