One thing common to most Americans is existence of a childhood home, somewhere in their past. If I were to ask you right at this moment to close your eyes, you could probably picture your childhood home. You might remember grass in the summer time, the stairs or hallway to your room, or even the colors of the kitchen walls.
Memories of one's childhood home are more than just something to remember. It is actually ones first point or earliest point of reference in their lives, and that is why when you think about it you can almost go there and smell your mom's cooking or see the newspaper on the front porch, or even remember the room where your bed was.
It is actually a location in space that no matter where one goes in life is a point where all future locations are compared to, whether one realizes it consciously or not.
When I think about my childhood home, I return to Phoenix, Arizona in the 60's and 70's. Summers were hot, and you played outside usually only in the early morning, or late afternoon, because the heat was almost unbearable. I can see my mother calling me from the backdoor with the screen door open to come inside to see one of the astronaut broadcasts, and looking at my friend and deciding to skip it and continue playing baseball. After all, I was winning and he wanted to beat me.
I can still see the bright yellow walls with high gloss lead based paint that my mother had my father paint kitchen with, and remember the food fight with tomatoes that my brothers and I had one evening that splattered all over it. I can vividly remember seeing Michael Jackson and the Jackson Five's vinyl 45 record on the back of my cereal box from Kellogg's, and wondering where Battle Creek, Michigan was while sitting at the kitchen table at breakfast with my legs dangling from Mom's wooden chairs. Little did I ever dream that I would someday live there, and become a Realtor selling Real Estate.
So if you take a moment right now, close your eyes and remember your childhood home, you might recall your own experiences and memories. I hope they were joyful, and you open your eyes with a smile. As an adult, we often forget to remember the comfort of living under the roof of our parents, and not having a care in the world more than what you will do on your summer vacation or whether you will make the school football team.
Somewhere along the way, we get caught up in life.
However, our childhood home is still there, even just in memory. I went back to my childhood home in 2007, and took photos. My parents sold it twenty some odd years ago, and the neighborhood looks so different. Since I left Phoenix, a freeway was built that sliced the lower end of the street off, and some of the houses, but our old house is still there. The new owners have bars on the windows, and the trees that my mother planted are huge, and some are gone. Despite the changes, in my memories it will always be a grand place to remember. The photos in this post are what it looks like today. I wish I had some earlier ones to share.
So when we come into the new year in 2011, remember that we as Realtors are often selling someone's childhood home, or selling the home that will become someone's memory. Let's help keep our country moving and their memories alive as we continue to move through the decade ahead.
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