Friday, April 16, 2010


"Where we love is home, home that our feet may leave~but not our hearts."
~Oliver Wendell Holmes, Sr.

This is a warning for all who would not, do not, want to see the old homestead in its renovated form. It is just the downstairs, but it is still 'our' house redone. Some of the changes are nice, but I will never understand why they closed off the living room from the family room. Really cut the flow and the missing built in book shelves are a HUGE LOSS, aesthetically speaking. The photos don't show this, I heard about that from Patsy who did tour the house during the post Katrina remodel.

I am hoping some of you have pictures of the exterior of our house pre Katrina that are attractive that I can add to this posting for a before and after. I seem to have misplaced mine. Ixnay on the lost photograph, I found one I had in that 'special' place. Bwahaha, you know the one we all have. I'll just put the picture in this 'special' spot so I'll know where it is. Never to be seen again....almost!

I know I am not the Lone Ranger missing the family homestead the way it was. It is really hard to go back to New Orleans and not have a home waiting for me...a bedroom that was once mine. All the old familiar and loved rooms and belongings that just say, "Yes, you are home and loved!" 
I know I am supposed to take comfort as Patsy suggests in the fact that the house is perhaps being loved and nurturing another family like it did ours. But when we visited the homestead and it was inhabited by the "Renters", that were definitely not up to snuff in my humble and admittedly politically incorrect opinion it just made me feel worse.

Some of what they did in the remodel I just don't like. I do like how they opened up the kitchen but it is very strange to see the appliances updated and the missing stool bar. I do admit we would have enjoyed the kitchen renovation if we were still living there!

 I have no photographs of the upstairs remodel, which I guess is for the best. I don't know how I would have handled that as just seeing the downstairs renovation did me in. I have nightmares sometimes that I go home and get lost in our new/old house trying to find all of you and Mom and Dad. Or, I confront the people who are living there in a really angry and inappropriate way, yes, Lee a Schweaggamonster way...and call them on all they have done and how they have ruined our house!

So, if you don't want to see what they have done...don't go any further. If you do, I have also included some pictures of when we were in some of the rooms for comparison. Love you all, and I miss our old 5910 and all the days spent with each and every one of my siblings and parents in our most wonderful home!

5910 pre Katrina...

5910 Post Katrina
First, for anyone reading this who has not seen the house, a quick explanation of the layout of 5910 when my siblings and I lived there.

 When you entered the house from the front door you walked directly into the foyer. To the right was the telephone room. If you go to the posting  And So She Scanned   you will see a picture of my Mom with her arms widespread. She is seated in the 'telephone room'. We called it that back when phones were stationary and in just a few special locations in a house. The closet door behind Mom is a closet she used to keep extra canned food and bottled water during the Cuban Missile Crisis. In the photo below you can see the foyer with a sidelight to the front door and behind the kids, the 'telephone room'. Years later, on the wall where you see a lamp in the telephone room, my parents added the elevator. If you continued  through the 'telephone room' to another door it brought you to the kitchen.

Trivia: we sometimes called the 'telephone room' the library. Not that books were kept there, Mom always suggested it as a 'quiet' spot to read. Nope.

Steve, jr, Timmy, Eric in foyer dressed for Aimee and Wayne's wedding
When you turned to the left  from the front door you went to the living room. 
Bill and Grams in living room...foyer and front door can be seen behind Grams
Steps leading to second story from foyer.
The stairs going to the second floor started in the foyer. 

If you went straight back in the living room you went through a double doorway that led onto the porch...or family room, more on that later. If you continued through the living room and exited right, you entered the dining room that then led to the kitchen. The kitchen also feeds to the telephone room if you go to the right when entering the kitchen from the dining room. If you continued  through the kitchen you would have a door leading to the outside patio to the left and a powder room or what people now called a half bath to the right. Continue a few steps more and you were in the laundry/storage room, a larger than you would think laundry room. More on the laundry room and the famous laundry chute later!
Photo of house during post Katrina remodel. The first bump out on the right side of the house is the elevator shaft. The next bump out shows the laundry room window (with the half shutter) and the small narrow window at bottom is half bath window. Window up top is to one of the bathrooms upstairs.That area was originally a sun porch. WE WERE NEVER ALLOWED ON THE SUN PORCH.
PS I have included the last names of some non-family members for clarity and posterity for the younger generations who might wonder what uncle or aunt I am referring next generations we often called special family members aunt or uncle so and so...thus the last names that aren't familial. If anyone is not comfortable with this let me know and I will delete the last names of non-family members. No probs!
Previously was a carport...sight of LPSSAB family sunfish construction.
Patsy is styling in front of carport-not garage.

Tie a yellow ribbon round the old oak tree!
Billy...backyard oak tree...
Kitchen. Just no room for Uncle Caulk to stand next to the fridge to tell me he is plugged into the outlet behind the fridge 'cause he has to charge his battery. To left, entry to laundry room. To far right of counter, entrance to 'telephone room or library' and access to elevator.
Kinda liking this...I think Ya Ya would have loved cooking in this kitchen!
Lee, Ya Ya, Elise, Elisabeth
Uncle Perry, Aunt Sarah, Monica Doerr, Daddy, Gramma Bet, Mrs. Knight
Living Room. We used to play Train Station, pressing the 'keys' on the dentil molding that was under the mantle shelf. Lee was the conductor and when we got the go ahead we ran the complete circle or 'track' around the downstairs. Funny what entertains kids!
Church family...bc..before Billy C

Home after freshman year at LSU and loving being with the family. Base of Pyramid, Patsy, Susie, Mom (Peckie) top of Pyramid Billy, Aimee...ever watchful Filston May, 1970

Sally & Fred wedding day. l-r; Jack, Lee, Bill jr, Daddy(Bill Sr, Sally, Aimee, Steve, Susie~pregnant, Patsy~pregnant, Allan, seated- Grams(Florelle), Mom (Peckie) Fred was waiting on the riverboat

Tulane Happens! l-r Steve, Jr, Tim, Jen, Daddy (Bill, Sr), Mom (Peckie), Elise
Ya Ya, aka Marion, Elise, Mary Cynthia
Why would you close off this lovely flow? Bad Move...but happy memories!

Rear of 5910 Post Katrina remodel. Exterior porch new to house. Window on right was orientation of previous exterior door before they extended kitchen. Back wall didn't have french doors, instead it had large windows with sidelights.
This would now be called the Family Room. When we lived here it was originally a screened in porch with concrete floor. Many remodels later it was the den or still referred to as "The Porch".

Uncle Clayton Charbonnet, Daddy(Bill Sr) Allan, Michael

Mom (Gramma...Peckie), Jen, Elise
Ya Ya (Marion), Susie, Billy, Aimee, Patsy~May, 1970 Ya Ya and Me sharing a BD cake

Aimee and Steve, Sr Oh the man has moves!

Dining Room...fairly the same. Doorway to living room was not arched when we lived here.

When we were young and still a growing family we rarely ate in the dining room. We had a glass top table on the porch, where we all ate. Daddy could check our feet to make sure we didn't come to the table with bare feet. Mom, not so strict on the shoes.

Trivia: I routinely flooded the 'Porch' when I was dating my husband. Would start the bath, he would invariably call on the telephone or sometimes it would be my best friend, Darnay. I would get so wrapped up in the conversation I would forgot about the water running in the bathtub. UNTIL, I heard, "OH S***! SUSIEEEEEE!!!! Bath water poured out of the ceiling vents into the 'Porch'! I know I remember doing it three times. Mea Maxima Culpa. Cell phones and mobile phones saved my adult hide, I do believe!

Another shot of my birthday...Ya Ya's cake was at the other end! We had two cakes so Ya Ya could have a cake to bring home for her family. I think we celebrated after I finished my spring semester 1970, which would have been closer to Ya Ya's birthday. l-r Patsy, Susie, Aimee, Bill, jr

Aunt Margaret Gaudry, Katie, Michael, Aunt Adelaide Charbonnet
Grams, Uncle Fred, Ya Ya, Daddy, Mom, Bill Jr, Aimee
I miss YOU
Memories...pressed between the pages of my blog...
Loves, Loves, Loves...Sush


Sush said...

Confession time...I played with the posting so much it was all out of kilter. So I had to copy and past old posting to make a new one but forgot to copy and paste everyone's comments. Elise and Aimee please accept my apology and comment again...perhaps noting how wonderfully I have rewritten and deleted and added a few more pictures for clarity. Ha hahaha
@Aimee FYI the bedroom I felt mine was what ended up being Mom and Dad's sitting room. It was added on with another bedroom and bathroom when they extended the porch. Other than the master bedroom the only room I never had as 'my' room was what ended up as the bedroom used last by Bill. Once I was married and returned for a visit I was content with whatever room was offered! Like most of us I slept!

Aimee said...

So Glad you explained the change in the post! I thought I had speed read through it the first time.Bedrooms in the order I remember sleeping in: sewing-room b4 it was the sewing room shared with Sally and maybe someone else. Back bedroom with little bathtub, roommates Sally, Billy; next up post add on back room with Sally. Then you went away and I got your room (mom& dad sitting room) THat was mine all through HS even Hockaday and some of college. Last stop, back to room with small bathtub which was mine until I got married. These pictures brought back soo many memories. The ones of your trip home from LSU, I remember thinking I was so grown up in that red pokadot dress. OMG I was a BABY! The pics with A Adalaide and all are from Moms 70th bday I think. I remember getting the cake that had the slot machine on it. Dinner table shoe rule..not so much. I do remember once replying to "you need something on your feet" with " I do, skin!" not a good move but I thought I was so witty! Last comment, I like the changes to 5910. It is OK that it is not the same house anymore. I have my memories, your beautiful watercolor of it and we are all doing what Mom wanted most, making wonderful memories in our own homes with our own kids. I kind of like that no on else can duplicate Our Home. XXOO Aim

Sush said...

SERIOUSLY? Only my wonderful sister Aimee out of five siblings commented on a blog about the house we grew up in? SERIOUSLY? No grandkids that grew up in this house? No one but Aimee and I apologize Elise you did comment the first time I posted but I deleted that comment when I had to re post. But SERIOUSLY???

Sush said...
This comment has been removed by the author.