My House: Out of Fashion and Running Out of Time


| 4/28/2016 3:30:00 PM


Tags: childhood home, nostalgia, Jane Gottlieb,

Estate sale

Amidst rumors of possible demolition, one woman wonders what will become of her childhood home and the memories created there.

It is springtime, a Sunday afternoon, and I am seated with friends in lawn chairs in the front yard of my family home, where people come and go and pay small money for furniture, ladders and silly things like buttons, all displayed on tables inside and out. The consensus after nearly two days is that this is a fantastic house, this 90-year old white brick cottage with a yard that circles out way farther than any other on the block.

Has it sold already, they wonder? These customers stay and talk, suburban neighbors I will never know who wish they’d seen the listing. Me too, I think.

Between chats, I lie back and view the world through the woven branches of our petite dogwood, where sky breaks through in cut-out shapes, a habit from childhood. My parents planted this tree once the old apple trees dotting our property toppled one by one, even overtaking our yard a few times and blocking the front door.

The dogwood now told the story of the apple trees, where I once sat and read in high-up branches. And those were reminders of the orchards that thrived here before that. Would the dogwood even remain after the sale?