Tim’s Anniversary Gift


Tim loves to paint in a Maynard Dixon style. He likes bold colors and shapes and you might imagine how touched we were to receive this gift for our 50th anniversary. This is the home we raised our children in, for the most part.

He is a dedicated thrifter and so this was painted on a thrifted canvas with a wonderful, old frame which he knew would be after my own heart.

Our children talk about their days in this home all of the time. It wasn’t a big home, but big enough for our five children. The yard was very large and suited most of our needs during those hectic and noisy years when our money was stretched to the limit. There is a Where’s Waldo quality to this painting for those who loved this house and these years.

These are the things he wanted everyone to remember:

the yard. the tree house. the chicken coop. the peach trees. the apple tree. the garden. the dewberry patch. the peonies. the metal shed. the fence across the front. the irrigation ditch. the screen doors. the big windows. the painted upright piano in the living room. the pocket door from the living room into the hallway which kept Christmas morning a secret. the big willow tree with branches you could swing on. the coal chute which should really be called “the escape hatch” I am told. the boys bedroom window. our bedroom window. the lilac bushes on the east. the originally quiet street.


What is not seen, but remembered:

the backyard rabbit hutch. the clothesline with the trumpet vine and the tarantula. the asparagus along the east ditch bank. the raspberries. the red, white and blue swing set. the picnic table. the chin-up bar. the strawberry patch. the thorny shrubs which were removed from the front after popping who-knows-how-many bike tires. the east fence which kept the mad-dog Fritz out of our yard. the gate which slid across the driveway where the neighbor boy took off little Lissie’s finger nail.  the stenciled mailbox. multiple bikes and trikes. holes full of mud in the garden. clothesline tents. the sandbox by the rabbit hutch. the basketball standard in the driveway.


What was inside and remembered:

the checkerboard basement floor. the paneled walls. the little windows that pulled down. the food storage room under the front porch. the tiled kitchen counter. the old fashioned wallpaper which changed a couple of times. the yellow stove. the yellow phone. the orange carpet. the linoleum floor. the pink and green tile in the bathroom. the wooden folding table grandpa built in the washroom. the furnace. the pets ( ferret, dogs, cats, hamsters, turtle, tarantula, fish, birds etc.).


The house is gone.

The trees have all been cut down.

The ditches are filled in.

In its place is a new, modern-looking home

which makes this gift a special and priceless treasure.




One comment

  1. Clara Watrous

    I wish I could see in real life the house I’ve heard so many stories about and I hope that when I grow up, my house now can be something I tell stories about.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

Back to Top