Good Morning Scribblers! Vivienne Lynge, here. Today is a weird day for me. I’ll be spending the day cleaning house. Now if you’ve seen my house, you know that I’m just a few giant steps away from being a hoarder, or so it seems with Minx and Jester strewing their toys everywhere. Cleaning just isn’t my bag. But today, I’ll be spending the day cleaning someone else’s house.
My grandparents built a house in 1950 when my mom was a toddler. Mom was an “oops”, as in her 3 siblings were 15, 17 and 18 years older than she. My mom was really the only one of them to grow up in 1950 House. Mom married young and divorced young, too. Just a few years after leaving 1950 House, she was back, with two babies in tow. The more adorable of the two was me. 🙂 So I grew up in 1950 House, too.
When I was in high school, Mom remarried and we moved out leaving a 75 year old widowed G-Mom at 1950 House. Mom’s oldest brother had divorced about that time (seriously, who divorces after 30 years of marriage?!) and he moved in to look after her. Now thirty years later, G-Mom is long gone and Oldest Brother is 85. He’s moving in with his son and it’s time to clean out 1950 House.
Mom’s got a lot on her plate these days; a lot of change is coming her way at once. To be helpful (and further cement my place as top daughter) I organized a family picnic for Labor Day at 1950 House and gave my Dad the number to call for a dumpster. The cousins and I will be in attendance, our own kids in tow, to whip this place into shape.
I have no idea what kind of treasures we’ll find. My last peek into darkened 1950 corners was a decade ago when I uncovered a drawer full of phone bills from…wait for it…the 1950’s. I’m pretty sure Grandfather’s baseball card collection is long gone, as well as mom’s bicentennial quarter collection. But I bet the bar still houses the 1973 Bugs Bunny and Friends glass collection from Burger King and I know my G-Mom’s record “collection” is still sitting on the floor of the Dining Room. These are perhaps the worst sound recordings ever conferred upon vinyl. And there are about 30 of ’em. Sigh. No Antiques’ Roadshow treasures there. We’d have to pay someone to take them away. Can you say “dumpster”?
But no matter what we find, it’s the end of an era. That house was my first home. I know that address, phone number and neighborhood better than I know my own. We’ll be renting the house to family for a while, but still, the time has come to purge 1950 House of the Grandfather I never knew and the G-Mom who was (for good and bad) important to my formative years.
Today’s Secret: I’m pretty sure that this is one of those life moments that writers are supposed to pay attention to so that we can write them authentically. It’s a rite of passage for many people, whether it’s a parent’s house or another family member.
Today’s Question: I’ll be spending the holiday weekend on a trip down memory lane. What are your plans?