Saturday, December 26, 2009

A model home ,but a not so perfect life.

I was able to convince my activity director into driving me to a home that had been turned into a museum although it never takes much convincing on my part because my activity director loves to go places - just like Buster (our dog) and even if the roads are terrible.

The home that I'm about to show you was the first all electric home built in the Kansas City area in 1954. Naturally the house was built by the electric company and originally the operating expenses were so great that they were included into their house payments, but because the home has low voltage wiring it can't handle computers and our more heavy duty appliances that we operate today so the home owners who bought this house in the 90's decided to remove the home from the lot because they only found the "lot" desirable and the house was transported to the back of an existing museum site.

The roads were terrible , but my chauffeur loves me. I should be honest here, it was either this or spend the day with eight kids who had cabin fever and were slapping each other around like the three stooges.
Thar' she is.
(spell check thinks "thar" is a real word)

Here's the main bathroom, there are two ,but only one has been restored to it's original glory and the other half bath is tiled in pink. I forgot to take a picture of the entry hall, it has burlap fabric on the walls for wallpaper (think potato sacks) and when you walk into the hall it has a sensor that automatically turns on the lights, just like the outdoor lights that we have today that go on and off when people or deer trigger them. The hall ceiling is recessed with lighting in such a way that they tried to simulate natural sunlight- think ugly.

This tri-colored ceiling fixture was supposed to light the room, kill bacteria, and heat the room. Here's where I began to zone out because it reminded me of when I was seven and had to have my tonsils removed.
As I began to recall unpleasant memories I started to become twitchy. Who wouldn't?

I liked the green fixtures and so did my handyman.

Here is the first of two bedrooms . All of the lighting was recessed into cornice mouldings. Amazingly the people who restored this house acquired the exact lamp , couches and even curtains in the restoration process and that was before EBay!
When you opened the walk in closet door the closet light would automatically come on just like your refrigerator does!

Pictured above is the master bedroom which shows us that married couples didn't have sex back in the fifties, but they did enjoy coffee. The switch above the bed controls the coffee pot outlet in the kitchen - an electrical wiring nightmare if you ask me, which in fact it was when the house was being restored.

The vanity in the background was very nice. It has storage behind those heavy glass paneled doors and a dual light switch that simulates daylight and evening light so you can apply your makeup just right.

As a child this was similar to the Christmas tree that we had and the gifts again triggered memories that made me twitchy.

The fireplace was electric and pretty lame. No worries about the lack of romance projected from the warmth of that faux fire because it wasn't an issue.

This television set was the largest screen that could be purchased in 1954 and when you flipped on a switch an electric painting would disapear into the wall so that you could watch TV.
The only problem was that the television could only receive one television station- WDAF

After this house had been restored it was used on occasion for cocktail parties and people would dress up in fifties clothing and eat and drink foods that were popular in the fifties. Maybe even pickle and olive kabobs. ( Let me know if you want that recipe)

This is the dining area . It's to the back of the living room and again the lighting is hid inside of a cornice moulding.

I noticed that there weren't any view master toys.
I will "will " them mine, but I'm still 110 reels short of my goal.
I am serious because my kids don't appreciate them.

I liked how the designers hid the card table and chairs into a wall beside the fire place. As you can see all of the bookshelves beside and above the fireplace mantel were electrified.
The curtains can open with the flip of a switch.

Here's the kitchen, it's very pink. The builders kept records of every color and item installed with the original house plans so the re-constructors were able to consult charts with the original manufacturers to find authentic replacement colors and items. I forgot the "pink" name of this counter top , but the company is still producing it.

Double Thermador ovens and a refrigerator that opens with a lever on the floor that you step on and not by the door handle.

I liked the appliances.

The cook top had a griddle in the center under the stainless steel top.

Ooooh, how cool is this refrigerator and it has lazy susan shelves. I could just imagine "Mr. What a pain"(my son) putting a cat in there and spinning it round and round.

Dishwasher included.. naturally.

This is the laundry room and it's sandwiched between the kitchen and the garage. One unit had washed and dried clothing. I didn't get a photo of an automatic ironing press located to the right of this machine. It was used especially for ironing sheets.
Here is where I would like to insert a prayer of thanks that I don't have to iron sheets.
The deep freeze.

My activities director commented about how thick the freezer walls were. I'm thinking that perhaps it's nuke proof.

There is paneling along the sides of the garage and a heavy new fangled contraption above the garage door. It's a garage door opener. The remote control would open the door with a high pitched sound signal which also happened to be the same signal that the trash truck made so once a week you could expect for your garage door to pop open.

Easy , breezy control panel. You got it straight yet?
(It looks like a high cootie toll anyway.)

That was fun.
My activity director decided to take the long way home.
So he drove us past my child hood grade school and it was there where I again began to remember some unpleasant memories coupled with a few memories from the electric house , but I didn't say anything because when I do my husband gets mad and holds a grudge against any and all perpetrators and the less he knows the better for the sake of his soul. Heck he was taken aback and perturbed last week when he remembered that my parents never baptised me as a child. He said , "do you know what could have happened?!" I said yes, but we can't control our childhood circumstances nor our parents. It doesn't matter now though , God took care of me.

He decided to continue driving by the homes that I had lived in as a child, and then the next one as a teen. He thought that I enjoyed driving down memory lane as much as he did and he asked me several questions. As I withdrew into my memories I felt like crying and I realized that even though I felt that I held no grudges against anyone, there are times when not unlike arthritis pain, it sometimes flairs up outta no where. It's perfectly natural , but I don't pick at emotional scabs . Old wounds never heal when you pick at them. You can't live for Christ today and simultaneously live in the past and hold on to your pain. We have to lay these things down at the foot of the cross and understand that the people who hurt us were people just like us -sinners. They were sinners who put themselves first and didn't notice the pain that it caused the people around them and even though you forgive them, you will sometimes have to deal with the pain and hurt.
We forgive. We give it to Christ and we move on.
It's the very least a grateful, repentant sinner like me can do.


Lola said...

I love this house.

So many thoughtful ideas such as the lighting the hiding places for the tv and card table.

I even like the pink kitchen counters.

Thank you so much for sharing Belinda!

Lola said...

Also, you thoughts on people of our past, those sinners just like us, was particularly touching. Espcially after so many of us were spending so much time with family recently...

God Bless you Belinda!

belinda said...

Thank you Lola, and I saved you the price of the admission !

Melody K said...

That's such a cool house! I love retro stuff. I like the pink kitchen, too. It reminds me of my grandparents' house in town, after they quit living on their ranch full-time (50 miles to the grocery store or doctor was a bit much for them). Except Grandma's kitchen was aqua instead of pink. She even had an aqua built-in oven.

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