Share a pic of the house you grew up in and win £100 John Lewis voucher -WINNING PICTURE ANNOUNCED(127 Posts)
To celebrate the publication of Lisa Jewell's latest book The House We Grew Up In we're inviting you to send in pictures of the house that you grew up in with a short caption.
Whether it's a shot of the exterior or a room indoors, a garden or even piece of furniture or ornament but all pics must be evocative of your childhood. Post your pics up before the end of 22 July, write a short caption, and we'll create a carousel of our favourite ten pics on 23 July. Each person who makes the shortlist of ten will receive a copy of The House We Grew Up in. Author Lisa Jewell will then choose the winning photo from the ten and we'll announce the winner on Thursday 25 July. The winner will receive a £100 voucher for John Lewis.
More about The House We Grew up in by Lisa Jewell
Meet the Bird Family
All four children have an idyllic childhood: a picture-book cottage in a country village, a warm, cosy kitchen filled with love and laughter, sun-drenched afternoons in a rambling garden.
But one Easter weekend a tragedy strikes the Bird family that is so devastating that, almost imperceptibly, it begins to tear them apart.
The years pass and the children become adults and begin to develop their own quite separate lives. Soon it's almost as though they've never been a family at all.
Almost. But not quite.
Because something has happened that will call them home, back to the house they grew up in - and to what really happened that Easter weekend all those years ago.
I have no pictures of the house I grew up in. Bummer.
I have a picture of ever single stage of the house I grew up in
from the brochure of the street when the estate was planned, to the house from 2 bricks high to completion (1962) and the house prices list.
I do not have a photo of it when it was sold as it was too hard and a bit neglected by then
Think it might be too soon to scan some in...but I'll try.
My father built the Devon house I grew up in. In the mid 70s we moved to a tiny village, the highest point between Exmoor and Dartmoor - my childhood was like 'The Good Life' meets Enid Blyton. This was taken the winter day the first fire was lit - no floorboards, no windows, snow outside. A magical moment when the house finally felt like home.
Wish I could but it was demolished 10 years ago
What if you didn't grow up in a house?
What if you didn't grow up in a house?
Sorry we didn't mean to exclude anyone from entering the comp - we're just using 'house' as a generic term for 'home' as it's the title of Lisa Jewell's book. Post up pics of where ever you lived when you were growing up.
Our house...in the middle of our street! we always used to sing that well known song as our house was at the end of the culdisac in Breadsall in Derby. I remember warm afternoons with the aroma of tarmac, riding our bikes with plastic bread tags on our spokes, gulping down bottles of Cronona limeade and saving the bottles to get 10p of our next one. Fond memories..although my brother and mine's matching haircuts had been forgotten until I dug these old pictures out...mum...what were you thinking?!
This is easy to do if you were born in the digital age. Less so with a film based childhood.
Oh sorry we didn't think this would be difficult. We just thought people would take a picture of a photo on their phones and upload. Don't stress about the quality of the photo - that's not what the comp's about - it's more about gathering pics that are evocative of the places you grew up.
I could phone my parents and ask them to sort it. But they are in their 70s and every time they try to scan a photo and email it it involves several hours on the phone to me before they finally print it and stick it in the post.
We moved a lot, as my dad was in the army. The first two houses I lived in are now demolished (one was a congrete low rise block of flats, the other a concrete prefab). No photos, I'm afraid and no one house counts as the one I grew up in.
I live opposite the house I grew up in, my mum still lives there and it still feels like home to me
I lived in about 10 different houses by the age of 16 and I have no pictures of any of them.
Surprisingly depressing thread
Thanks for starting this thread! I've really enjoyed reminiscing about my childhood. This is the house I spent the first 13 years of my life in (thankyou Internet). I can still remember the house phone number!
The memories I have in that house are really special, particularly as my dad died when I was a teenager so we didn't get to make many more together.
The gates on the left used to be wooden and painted white and my parents have a photo of me aged about 2 poking my head through. It was a very sunny day and I had a floppy flowery sunhat on. According to my dad, just after the picture was taken I got my head stuck!
I also remember standing on top of the porch holding my dad's hand thinking I was so high up as I could see all around.
You can just about see that the neighbours don't have a garage - obviously they still haven't replaced it after the hurricane in '87 blew it down.
I also remember the time my friend was riding his bike too fast, the handlebars came off and he went head over heels into my Kim's flowerbed
where I'd been digging up all her slug pellets
Just wanted to share this one too (thanks again, Internet!)
My dad was a keen craftsman (he made all out furniture/wooden toys etc.) and on the left is a banister with an acorn on the end that've made from scratch
way back in the 80s
He would be proud to know it was still going strong over 20 years after we moved out!
*mum's flowerbed, not Kim's!!
My house (maisonettes on council estate) has been knocked down.
I didn't add a caption to mine (and am rubbish at this sort of thing) but here goes . . .
For my second picture, which has the banister my dad made still in it:
This house was built with love, improved with memories and long after we sold it I still remember it as home.
The house I grew up in is currently for sale and the owners have RUINED the interior. It was early 80s when I lived there so 70s decor but boy have the owners who bought it off us turned it into an even worse decorated house (and it didn't seem possible!) So because the interior is so different and they've paved over the beautiful front garden my mum cultivated (including the very low branched tree we used to sit in) I thought I'd include a picture of the back garden. My dad who has 0 DIY skills laid the patio when I was 2. My mum left him in charge of me running around the back garden and I now have a Harry Potter scar where the patio slabs left their mark! One of these slabs has my blood on it still!
Maybe my caption should be "This house really left its mark on me"
This is my house. I have lovely memories of this house, my Dad who died 2 years ago did so much work to it with his own bare hands, and looking at it now it looks awful, so characterless and soulless. The garden used to be lovely with a greenhouse and apple trees and now it is just a horrible bare stretch of green, there are awful built in wardbrobes and WTF they have done to the front room I don't know. Very sad.
This is the block of flats I grew up in, right in the middle of one of the largest council estates in South London. It looks pretty grim but holds lots of happy memories for me. We never had any money when I was younger, I shared a tiny bedroom with my sister and we didn't have many material possessions, but we were showered in love and affection by our parents. All of our friends lived a stone's throw away and we spent many happy summers playing out on the estate. There was always someone looking out for us, so we had a lot of freedom. Our friends and neighbours were all in the same financial position as us, so I never really noticed that we were poor until I was a teenager. Looking at it now gives me a new-found respect for my parents, for managing to give us such a happy childhood despite their difficult financial restraints.
Hmm, that wasn't really a short caption, was it?
Can I change it to:
This is the home I grew up in. From the outside it looks a bit grim, but to me it was just a happy, loving home. Crime rates in the area were always sky-high, but for me it was the safest place in the world.
I would post a link to my school, but fear that would out me. That was me 6-16 anyway!
On the plus side, we had a pool
I have only lived in two houses, my own and the one I grew up in. My parents were kind, thoughtful and loving and I wish that we could 'turn the clocks back' and see them again. Our garden was always overflowing with flowers/hanging baskets and vegetables, Dad would be horrified to see it now.
Super memories, even though it has been sold 13years ago I still see it as MY house Thanks.
One of the many houses I grew up in! The Dartmoor Inn in Bovey Tracey, now turned into flats I loved it here, just a short drive from Dartmoor National Park and all the lovely locals were so kind to me when I was a kid. We had one chap called Laurie who painted an amazing steam train mural for us in the bar, I used to take him his drinks and keep him company for hours, he was a local legend!
Similarly to others, my childhood photos are at my mum's house and I don't have any scanned in, but if I can find one I'll add it - my overwhelming memory of our 80s/90s house was the carpet in the living room, which had squares of red, blue, yellow and green all mish-mashed together like crazy paving. My sister and I used to hop from sofa to sofa, being careful not to fall into the lava or water squares, stepping only on the grass or cornfields. Hours of fun.
This is the house I grew up in, although when we moved the extension on the right hand side hadn't been built. When my grandparents bought it for my parents (in 1976 for £9k!!) it was a red bricked, 2 bedroom Elizabethan cottage so it has changed a lot. I remember when we had the extension built and we found an old bread oven in the wall. It was haunted too!
I have some brilliant memories of living there until I was 12 and we moved away. My favourite are from the garden that went all around the house and the field next door where we played, watched the local football matches and used to shout at the man who used to use ferrets to kill rabbits that used to burrow there. We used to love it when the cows came, they would come up to our garden fence and let us stroke them.
I probably would have died of boredom living there as a teenager but as I left at the age of 12 I only have good memories of living there!
Tis is where I lived til I was 9. My parents ran the restaurant downstairs, we lived upstairs.
There was talk of ghosts, there was always a spooky feeling on the stairs (where my sister saw a ghost!) but I never saw anything.
My twin and I used to sneak downstairs at night and chat to customers
and steal After Eights
It was an amazing place to grow up in.
I have visited the place since, several times (a hotel now). It's very modern inside now, but it's fun spotting things that were there when I was little.
(Sorry, bit more than a short caption there!)
My 60s style house (60s? 70s?) my gran lived in the granny annexe to the right. There used to be a massive willow tree in the front garden until the roots buggered the drains. Really happy and sad memories in. Climbing the tree to the right of the photo and finally managing to get onto it by myself without a leg up when I was 6, waiting for my dad to come home that night to tell him, but he never came home (killed in an RTA)
May not matter to most people but just be aware that if you post the photograph and someone recognises it you will be outed to those who recognise the picture. Most may not worry about that but it may be an issue for some.
Here is a pic I took of where I grew up n Dublin - I took it the day it was being demolished. The place had a bad name but we were so happy living there. Our flat was the one on the left on the top floor!
"The building & the bricks are gone
But our happy memories still live on
We felt like Royalty on the Top Floor
We'll remember the good times forever more"
Does anyone know how to share an image from Google Streetview? I have found the house we lived in from 1963 to 1969 but don't have any photos of my own.
The house I really grew up in, from age 6 to 14 is down a private drive and streetview hasn't gone down there, I don't think.
minty could you do printscreen then crop it in paint/photoshop?
This is my mum and grandparents at Christmas in the dining kitchen of our tiny terraced house/newsagents shop in the early 80s.
Unfortunately I don't have any photos of the front of the house/shop, but the house was tiny - just a double bedroom and 2 very small bedrooms, bathroom, living room also upstairs and downstairs a dining kitchen behind the shop. I loved living there, had friends nearby and lots of lovely fields to walk our spaniel in.
This is a picture of DS being washed in the same kitchen sink that I was bathed in as a baby - bits of the house have changed around the sink, and when the house was badly flooded (think 6ft of water in the kitchen) the sink went unused for several months whilst the whole of the downstairs was refurbished around it - but the sink has always been there, and probably always will be there! It's where us children were all bathed as babies, where the dogs are washed after a muddy walk, it's where veg is cleaned after being dug up from the garden, and where the dishes are washed after every single meal (because mum doesn't like stuff being left out all day). It's quite an integral part of family life
This is a relatively recent pic, but my mum still lives there. It's the lower of the two houses in the picture. My parents bought it half derelict in the 70s and my memories of childhood are of them adding things like running water, a toilet, stairs... The rest of the time we were out playing on the mountain. Pretty idyllic and she's still there for me to take my children.
Me in my bedroom.
I don't remember the second hand furniture, I don't remember the wonky old pram, but I certainly remember the fantastic map of the world mum painted for me on the wall. You don't need money to be inspired (I went on to study geography and am now an environmental scientist. I also have a shocking ability to match curtains and wallpaper)
All the photos I can find of the house I grew up in - bar the one in the snow - were taken of the various extensions that were added to it over the years. I was four when we moved in. The previous owners had taken everything, carpets, bathroom fixtures, even all the light bulbs, and my parents had very little money to begin with to spend on furnishings but it was always a home. I lived there happily until I moved away to college. My bedroom is the one above the garage. I still think of it as my bedroom even though I haven't lived there for over 25 years! My dad, who spent pretty much all of his time tinkering with things in the garage, used to bang on the ceiling with a broom if I played my music too loud!
Mum and dad still live in the house, although it's really too big for the two of them. It will be a sad day for us all when they eventually, but inevitably decide to down-size.
(Namechanged for obvious reasons)
A couple of years ago in my work I had to ring a telephone number to advise of a raffle win. I recognised the number as the one that had been at my childhood home where I spent my first 18 years, we had moved from it 30 years ago.
The new owners invited us round, although I still live nearby, the rest of my family have long moved to new areas. These photos were taken 40 years apart, the same tree in the background.
Thankfully my Mum didn't make us all wear our matching BHS anoracks this time.
I can't do this on iPad so marking my place for later.
I grew up in a three-bedroom council house with my parents and four siblings and had the happiest childhood imaginable. We played run-outs in the street with all the other kids on the estate, we knocked on doors to visit our friends, and all the neighbours watched out for everyone else's kids. Although we were not the kind of kids that Katie Hopkins would approve of (what a restricted imagination that woman has), but we had childhoods that were full of fun, laughter, and community spirit.
So, fast forward 30 years to Christmas 2012, and my sister - a body builder and personal trainer who lives in New Zealand - came home to visit after a 17 year absence. This photo is taken outside our old childhood home looking a little worse for wear but packed full of fantastic memories of family and friendship.
This is a picture of my sister and I taken in the late 70s in our living room. I have no idea what we were wearing but we used to have so much fun! We would prop my mums cooling trays against the kitchen chairs and pretend to be in the zoo, or shoot along the carpet on all fours pretending to be spiderman running up a wall.... or maybe we were just hallucinating off the carpet patterns!!
This is the house I grew up in from 6 months to 5 years. We were 2 adults and 3 children in a three roomed house with no bath or toilet; my parents were living the 1970s self-sufficient dream. I have nothing but happy memories and we still have the house, though it has deteriorated over the years. Some of my very earliest memories happened looking out through that little window on the right.
this will out me to anyone who knows me in rel life.
I lived in 7 houses between being born and leaving home aged 18. Don't have any photos of any of them
Quite bizarre, would never have occurred to me if you hadn't asked.
I don't think I can win 'cause I'm American, but I wanted to play anyway! I love this house. My parents still live there, that's my dad up painting. We moved into it and it had been empty for more than 30 years. No electricity or running water. (This was 21 years ago, so strange to think that now!) People thought my parents were crazy, but it was right on a river with 19 acres of land. There were holes everywhere and bats and bugs but they made it lovely. It is gorgeous now; they've been offered hundreds of thousands for it time and again. And they never hired anyone, my dad did it all himself.
Maybe there is scope for friendly Mumsnetters to get together and go an take a picture for people who have moved away and no longer live where they grew up - we must have the whole country covered.
This was the house I grew up in during the early part of my childhood. It is a lovely proportioned Georgian house with a sweeping staircase, a ballroom , stables and extensive cellars. I remember as a child the big walled garden with it's mulberry tree in the middle and the huge hydrangea bushes which I used to spend hours sitting under. I remember looking down the gratings into the cellars and scaring myself with imaginary monsters and exploring under the yew trees at the bottom of the garden and finding the graves of family dogs. My grandmother used to lay huge sheets of polythene under the mulberry tree at harvest time to catch the berries, and it was my job to collect the berries into ice cream tubs ready to make steaming mulberry and apple pies which I loved. I also used to spend hours with a butter knife and a bowl scraping the moss out of the cobbles near the stables. My grandmother used to give me 10p for every tubful of moss I collected. I loved doing that, and it was an ingenious way of keeping a small child occupied! Another magical memory I had was standing at the window right at the top of the house in the evening. I used to watch the ferry crossing from Torpoint to Plymouth and love seeing the lights twinkling on the water as it crossed. It was a magical place to grow up in and perfect for hide and seek. Unfortunately my grandmother sold it as she couldn't manage to keep it up on her own. It then was bought by a dentist who had his surgery on the first floor and has since been sold again, though I don't know who to. I don't have a photo of it to add, so I found one on streetview which shows the lovely high slate walls around the house.
The house on the right is where I grew up and it looked much different back then as the walls were painted pink. Originally, the woodwork was yellow and white (my mum loved colour). The house was bought by the neighbours and as you can see they painted them to be the same and there is no longer the front garden. The back garden was 100 ft long and we had a lot of fun in it and our dad grew all our veg and we had numerous fruit trees. We also had chickens which every morning we would go searching for the eggs which were delicious for breakfast. Of course back then, we never fully appreciated what it was like to have our own grown fruit and veg.
This was the house my parents bought when they moved out of London and I lived here for 3 years and then every other weekend with my mum when they divorced and sent me to boarding school. Mixed emotions about it, as I remember some horrific arguments between my parents. Definitely the most harrowing setting of my childhood, but the only one I spent time as a 'family' in.
However I also remember looking for shark teeth in the gravel, laying on the hammock in the big garden, helping mum make the pond, having the attic to myself as a playroom and enjoying going to latchkey up the road when mum worked too late to collect me from school.
It had a lovely stained glass window in the upstairs loo and a small square hole just inside the front door where the old bell pull wires would have run which was perfect for keeping keys in. Mum also added the conservatory at the back so she could sore her piano and would play it while I was poking things with sticks in the garden.
We lived here until I was 7, and it still has so many memories. This is the house that has Fred and Mary living across the road, they were an older couple who used to take me on trips regularly. We used to sing if you want to know the time ask a policeman and a song about the sequence of the traffic lights.
Next door to us was Mrs Jagear, who I was leaning out of the window talking to about my grandma coming to stay when I fell out onto the concrete step below. In my mum's haste to take me to the hospital, she left my bag sister asleep in her pram and had to turn back to get her.
Louise and Michelle were our friends that lived down the street, I remember them having Whooping cough and we were one of the few friends who could go and play because we'd had the vaccination.
I also remember the street party we had for Charles and Diana's wedding and I had to sit at a table on our drive with my grandma and my sister because I had german measles at the time.
We moved houses a few times when I was a child, the one constant was the family business (Jewellers...not a glamorous one though- a proper working one!) .
It makes me laugh to think that all these people coming into buy luxury items over the years and I have had my nappy changed (in an emergency) on this very counter. I grew up behind the counter, playing with the window dressings and changing watch batteries...
This picture of my DD and my DF in the shop gives me that lovely homely feeling. It's a bit like a time travel scene as nothing much has changed in the 26 years between it being me behind the counter and now it is her.
Here is the farmhouse I grew up in. Sadly it was demolished earlier this year as it was very damp and needed a lot of work doing to it. The floors were very uneven and all the furniture had blocks of wood underneath to keep them level! We had an ancient Aga that everyone always made a bee line for and I remember coming down in the morning and putting my clothes on it to warm them up before I got dressed!
This was taken on my 3rd birthday in the house I grew up in. We always used to have chocolate teacakes & malt loaf with butter on as a treat! Mum made me a heart shaped cake because my birthday is Feb 14th ...
I love this photo not only because of the occasion, but also due to the décor. It shows I'm a real 70's lass!!!
I grew up in this beautiful house and had an ideal childhood up until the age of 7. Sadly my dad became poorly and had to sell his business resulting in us having to leave this house. I still think of it so fondly, but am a strong believer in any house is a home, it's the people inside it who make it what it is.
This is my house where I lived until I was 14 in 1983. It had a huge back garden where we spent all our time climbing trees and making dens. I always thought it looked like a house a child would draw - 4 windows with the door in the middle! My bedroom was the top right and I used to sit and look out the window in the night watching foxes! It has been knocked down now to make a road into a small estate with twenty starter homes built in the garden.
Longest I ever lived in a house was about 5 years so I don't really feel like I grew up in one house.
Very sad that I have nothing to contribute. My homes were many and varied but none that could be photographed. How about a "pen picture".
One was cramped as we had been rather suddenly and forcibly downsized. My mother refused to get rid of the bigger furniture we had before the move so there were lots of sharp edges and cramped corners. I was initially, through lack of space, put in a caravan in the drive but, after a bout of food poisoning, getting scared of the drunks passing and the onset of winter I was promoted to the other half of my mother's bed.
It stunk of fags - cheap ones where the smell is mostly of burned paper, not tobacco. My sisters ruled the roost - I was older but had been away from home for some years so was rather in awe of their street smarts and friends. I took up smoking and worked long hours in various places, longing for the day when I would start University and be able to escape again. It was in an expensive part of the South, making its chipped paint and "rented" appearance stand out a long way.
Will that do?
This is where I grew up, where as a young lad I'd lie on the red curvy thing by the front door and gaze up at the bright blue sky, wondering what might be.
When I went back there a couple of years ago, the windows were boarded up and the legend "Kevin has AIDS" was scrawled on one of the boards.
Message withdrawn at poster's request.
This is the garden of the house we lived in in Norfolk. I have fond memories of myself and my big brother letting ourselves out of the back door one morning to play on our new swings. Our dad had to chase us back indoors in his dressing gown as it was only 7am!
Years later, we always used to drive past the house to say hello when we went on holiday to the north Norfolk coast. My bedroom had some bright circus wallpaper in it, and I remember sitting at the bottom of the stairs with my Mum ringing my Dad at work asking him to bring my teddy bear back from our new house.
My brother died 3 years ago now and looking at pictures of the house makes me smile still but sad that I don't have anyone to reminisce about silly childhood things any longer.
Here is the house that I remember growing up in. We moved to the coast from London when I had just turned 4 and I don't remember London at all. Growing up with gardens parks and fields summers were spent outside, in the garden in paddling pools and on bikes. Summers seemed so long, and hot and full of fun with my brother building camps and staying with my Nan! I wonder if my son will have the same fond memories of his home when he is older?
I lived in my old family home from the age of seven. When we moved in, the previous owners left us a really cool fifties' tin dolls' house. The family moved out after my mum died.
A few years later, I was at a works do and got talking to a lovely lady I'd only known to say hello to. Turns out her sister lived in the house before I did, and the dolls' house I'd loved so much had been hers!
When her son told me all about the fun he had with his cousins there, it was profound to think we had shared childhood experiences. I missed that house so much that when it came up for rent a decade later, I had to go and see it (for some kind of 'closure' I guess.) The new owners had done so much to my old house. They got rid of our wonderful vegetable garden, which broke my heart, but in its place was a beautiful summer house.
I really missed that vegetable garden. I loved picking and eating all the raw veg and scrumping the raspberries and gooseberries before the birds had them all. When I had a family of my own, it inspired us to create one in our own forever house. My daughter now picks at our herbs and veg, just like I did when I was her age!
This is me on my beloved swing in front of the house where I grew up, which my Dad was still building at the time.
I think we were still living in a caravan on site at that point. I used to terrify my parents by climbing on the scaffolding (health and safety - what's that?) so they bought me the swing for my 3rd birthday in the hope that would be safer. Which it would've been if Dad had ever got round to hammering in the pegs that anchored the legs to the ground...
It was right by the sea and in the summer all you could hear was the crash of waves and the chatter of happy children. When it wasn't pissing down, obviously.
I walk past this house that I grew up in, in Beer Devon, every morning when I walk my dog. Sadly it's a holiday cottage now as are a lot of the houses near the beach, but the owners did keep the topiary boat shaped hedges which my grandad sculpted. Many happy memories & what I would do now to have a house with this view.
I didn't really understand the phrase 'house proud' until I looked at this photograph taken in the mid-sixties (that's my big brother) and thought about the war-bombed, dirty and neglected city my parents had grown up in. My parents were so proud of this house, shown by how much colour they threw at every space in it and outside it!
I can't win because I'm a foreigner but wanted to play. This is my Soviet paradise. It was all cosy inside and yes we did have a carpet on the wall, there were rats by the rubbish chute that we used to torment, and about 5 mins walk to a river where we could skate in winter and swim in the summer- those were the days, it was glorious!!
My mother had the house I grew up in demolished and sold the land to a developer after my father died. It was quite isolated, the garden was much too big for her to do herself and she was unable to find anyone reliable to come in and cut the grass. And she didn't want anyone else to live in it. The developer cut down all the fruit trees in the orchard, got rid of all the plants, shrubs and other trees, got rid of the "natural" hedge and turned it into a "close" for three "executive homes." It is in the middle of the countryside, in the home counties near the river Thames, and is now a bizarre "gated community" with remote control gates and ornate gates and fences. It looks utterly out of place in its surroundings, it sits on an unmade road, overlooking farmland. And the developer ripped her off royally.
I had an idyllic childhood - spent all summer down by the river, swimming and waving at people on boats. We used to swim across to the island, swing out on a rope that someone had helpfully tied on a tree and drop into the river. All without adult supervision. We used to go home when it was getting dark or we were hungry. Occasionally my Mum and her friend would wander down in the afternoon with some biscuits and very weak lemon squash in tupperware beakers with lids.
Short Caption (after writing the stuff below):-
It is better to have loved than have never to have loved at all .....
The house I grew up was unremarkable - but perfect...
I lived there for nearly 16 years and even today I when I go back to my home town I make a tiny detour to see what it has grown into.. I take my eyes of the road (for a second) and sneak a look, reminisce and then look ahead and drive straight on..
Back then it was a simple semi-detached with a garage had a long long garden - well everything seems big and long when you are small and squat.
My parents kept the front very neat with an even neater privet hedge and a small wrought iron gate... I can still remember the squeak every time you opened the gate.... I swear my Mum could hear the gate go even before I lurched my way to the front door when I was a teenager..
Inside was comfortable - full of the stuff that my parents considered homely but to my sneering teenager eyes was "naff" ... I wish I could wander through there now, re-assess my prejudices and think again..
My Father hated going on holidays - so his efforts were in developing his little bit of England and his toys... we had a concrete path weaving its way down the garden were he used to take his steam engines to run around. My memories are of him stoking up the engines with meths and then leading them down the path... he enjoyed it and we watched.
When I was little he built me a Wendy House (out of old wooden pallets) - and I vividly remember that I had to eat two whole boiled potatoes if I wanted to get a split door (like a horse stable)..... I have never eaten a meal quicker than that day - and boiled potatoes - well ??
The back garden was worthy of Wimbledon or Lords - it was neat, manicured stripes - it we wanted to have a padding pool or toys out in the Summer we had to move them every two hours so that the grass would not suffer staining or sun damage - that when or sun-bathing too... move along, move along...
One year, he decided to build a pool for us - he was out there for months and months and months and months digging single-handed to make a BIG BIG hole on the ground - it was absolutely fantastic and we had many great Summers.
He spent ages lining and landscaping it but unfortunately as a teenager I was too embarrassment to admit to my friends that "we had a pool".... but not too embarrassed to swim in it !!!
My Mother was wonderful with her plating and flowers - each Easter there was a beautiful array of blue flowers, closely followed by a stunning Summer display, then Autumn ( bonfires abound) and finally Winter - when everything just slept.
Unfortunately, as my parents got older the pool was drained and made into a sunken garden, the grass was cut only when it got too long, the flower beds were seeded over and finally about 10 years ago we had to sell to fund my Mother's Care...
When I drive past now - it's not the same house - it has been extended over 50% at least - but I wonder if they will find the grave of my beloved tortoise, cat or the 25 pet mouses that I used to keep - but most importantly - have the same happy memories...
Off to find my black and white photo of the house in Suburbia where my parents built their dream.....
Place Marking and Blank space for photo as I can't remember which photo album it is in...
Not only the house I was brought up in - but the bedroom where I was born! In the late sixties, you were only allowed the 'luxury' of a hospital birth and 7 day stay if it was your first baby, or you were black. God alone knows why, but they were the rules. I remember my sisters and I all piling in the bed on a Sunday morning with our books to read. My Dad was dispatched downstairs to make tea and toast! They bought the house before it was built, and moved out 50 years later, earlier this year to a bungalow!
My first NEW BUILD.....
When I was little my Dad built me a Wendy House (out of old wooden pallets and other stuff laying around the house and garden).
I vividly remember that I had to eat two whole boiled potatoes if I wanted to get a split door (like a horse stable)..... I have never eaten a meal quicker than that day - and boiled potatoes - well ??
This is a line drawing of my lovely lovely family home.
Mom and Dad are still there and a mooting a swap with us, so the Chaotics can enjoy the massive garden, and enjoy a similarly outside childhood that I was privileged to enjoy. They are called in from play by the same bell that I was called in with. One ring to ClutterClearup nad the second one to make your way back up the the Mother Ship.
This was the view from my bedroom window, but when it was a working farm, owned by Mr MacDonald, who genuinely had a farm.
I played out in the fields all day after school and climbed trees all summer. Fab.
We lived in a normal housing estate, just right at the edge by the farm, it is now trendy houses.
Meant to add my two strongest memories are of by potatoes from the shed/barn behind that arch, I can still remember the strong earthy smell.
And going round to see a cow calving.
my old house is up for sale.....my mum and dad renovated it and the decoration is still the bloody same after 10 years of them leaving!
Thank you everyone for sending in such delightful pictures. We've SO enjoyed looking through these and never before seen such a sea of brown and orange 70s swirls . It was an incredibly difficult task to choose our favourite ten for the shortlist but between the editorial team at MNHQ and publicity team at Random House we've now chosen and can reveal the ten shortlisted pics with captions...
The House I Grew Up In shortlisted pictures
We'll be pm-ing all those whose pics have made the final ten and who have each won a copy of Lisa Jewell's book The House We Grew Up In. We've sent the shortlisted pics over to Lisa who will be picking the winning photo and we'll announce the winner of £100 John Lewis vouchers on Thursday.
Oh gosh I just love the house-proud one!! And the big map.
Makes me want to clean my house
Oh my days I LOVE THIS THREAD!
Well, the fashions in my picture mark this out as being the '80s. It was Christmas 1988, actually. I showed this picture to my mum when I scanned it into my laptop and she was HORRFIED at the suicidal tree! She is a real Monica Gellar about her trees and she can't believe that that one passed quality control.
Congratulations eatyourveg whose picture has been chosen as the winning photo by author Lisa Jewell. Lisa agonized over the short list for a long time as she loved them all but eventually decided on Eatyourveg's wonderful picture and caption. Lisa says:
'I love the brilliant accents of the white house, the white confirmation dress and the white daisies scattered across the bright green lawn. White was so much whiter in those days and blue was so much bluer. I also love the bittersweet tribute to the house itself, the sense that the house itself is irrelevant, it's the lives being lived inside its walls that make it a home'.
Eatyourveg we'll pm you with details of how to claim your £100 John Lewis vouchers.
Flapjacks - your photo brought tears to my eyes. I think it's the simplicity of birthdays past, when a beautiful home-made birthday cake, some bread-and-butter, Cadbury's fingers and tea cakes are all that is needed to celebrate a birthday. Wonderful photo.
I was quite shocked to see my photo in the short listed 10 .
Haven't had a PM yet and wondered if it's because I NCd for this. Didn't want to out myself under my usual name to anyone who knew me as a kid.
OMG I won!!! Never won anything before - never expected to win either. Thank you MN and thank you Lisa, look forward to reading your book
It's a lovely thread,the pictures are really interesting as site backtory
I was quite shocked to see my photo in the short listed 10 .
Haven't had a PM yet and wondered if it's because I NCd for this. Didn't want to out myself under my usual name to anyone who knew me as a kid.
Just in case you did not receive a PM from RachelMumsnet, could you please send your name and address to email@example.com. Thanks
Lovely thread, and it's lovely to have been shortlisted!
So lovely in fact, I'm going to get on and paint something big and fab on our boys bedroom wall for them to remember, just like mum did for us.
Loved this thread, and thank you to Lisa and Mumsnet for the copy of THE HOUSE I GREW UP IN. If you haven't read it yet, the book is fabulous: the Birds live an idyllic, bohemian life in a Cotswold cottage full of homely clutter and children. Tragedy strikes and each member of the family struggles to cope (or not), in their own way. The story reminded me of 'One Day' in the way it returns to the family on the same day each year (in this case Easter rather than St Swithun's). The characters get under your skin and into your heart - it's a touching look at how lives fall apart, and families survive the worst life throws at you.
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