Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Guest Blogger: "Home Again"

I am so excited to finally have this post put together.  The author is Therese, who grew up in the house where my husband and I are raising our children. I am SO glad to have her as a guest blooger for "The Good"!  Take it away, Therese...

You can go home again --- at least to Sara and Matt's house.
I know it is clich√©.  You can't go home again.  Like up there with “things will get better”.  I did have the fantastic experience and discovered that I could go home again; even if the home belongs to strangers. 

Nagle family in front of the fireplace, 1967
Let's back up.  I was one of the family of ten children that grew up in where Sara and Matt live.  My parents picked the lot to build a house on based on the proximity of the new Catholic high school as it was going up a couple blocks west.  When they moved in, they had 5 kids (well, my brother was born two weeks later) and then proceeded to have five more.  My parents also made a home for Gloria, a Ukrainian orphaned by WWII.  Gloria lived with my family for seven years.  Gloria  moved with my family from their house on Denison Ave. to the new house.  She left in the late 50's when she became a nun.  Needless to say, the house was bursting in many wonderful ways.

the Nagles, 1979
My parents lived in the house for almost 35 years.  They sold the house to one of my brothers who lived there with his family for ten years.  The house was in the Nagle family for almost 45 years.  It was sold again and the rumors were not good.  At one point, it went into foreclosure. 

Several times when I was back to visit, I knocked on the door, but never found anyone home.  About 18 months ago, I was down visiting my parents and my Mom and I were running errands.  “I want to drive by the old house”  I told her.  It was on a weekday afternoon, and finding someone home was not likely.  We pulled up and I told my Mom I was going to see if anyone is home.  Matt greeted me and I explained who I was and asked if I could come in.  A few steps in and I was pleased and shocked at all the changes.  The house looked gorgeous and very different.  I told Matt that my Mom was in the car and would really enjoy seeing it.  Matt was gracious and very generous that January afternoon.

My Mom and I spent a delightful 45 minutes (thank you Matt) going through each room, exclaiming over the wonderful and beautiful renovations.  We walked through each room and told stories, reminiced  and throughly enjoyed ourselves.  The renovations were amazing.  The kitchen has an island! (Not in fashion when I lived in the house).  The kids' bathroom upstairs has become a laundry room and my old bedroom is now a bathroom!  Wait a minute, I did not agree to this!  I am not serious, the house looks beautiful and the changes make a lot of sense.

the Meehans in front of the SAME fireplace, 2012
Matt humored us.  He didn't even complain when I opened up a cabinet in the laundry room f/k/a kids' bathroom because it was the only thing left of the bathroom I used for almost two decades.  I think Matt enjoyed hearing our stories as well. 

While we were getting ready to leave, I wrote my name down and suggested that he “friend” me on Facebook as there were photos on my FB page taken in the house when I was a kid.  Sara friended me and we have become FB friends that most likely will never meet.  It has been wonderful fun to see photos of her family living in the house, photos of her kids playing in the same rooms I did. 

I told Matt that day in January, all those months ago, I will take liberty and speak for all of my siblings. We are thrilled to see another family laughing, growing, living in our (their) house. 

You can go home again.....even if it is someone else's house.   

Therese Nagle Kiser


  1. So neat...I love houses with history! The same sort of thing happened in our house in Davenport.

    1. Thanks misty! Where was your house in Davenport?