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Hollow Tree Ventures parenting humor
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Home, Sweet (Terrible Illustration of) Home

I probably told you this before, but I lived in the same house from the age of three until I left for college.

But before you all go thinking I'm spoiled, it wasn't all sunshine and unicorn dust.

That's right, I was a deprived child, just like everyone else.

And it all started with the decor.

To prove that I survived a tormented youth, here's an overview of the house I grew up in.



  1. The laundry room, scene of many a freak-out tantrum, thrown by yours truly every time my mom insisted on washing my stinking, filthy Blankie even though I was 100% certain that washing it removed the Love (she said the Love was actually the Saliva from me drooling on it, but WHATEVER - potato, po-tah-toe) - okay, so there wasn't any "decor" in here, but  it was  full of cobwebs
  2. Basement family room, complete with original red/orange/yellow shag carpeting circa 1974 and our very own rust-colored modular "pit group" sectional couch onto which my friends and I frequently performed the Nestea Plunge and probably came quite close to concussing ourselves
  3. Living room, where we only watched TV when it was ceremoniously rolled in on its rickety metal cart (looking back, I have NO IDEA where this was Merlined off to when we weren't watching it), and when I say TV I do not  mean Mtv; I never saw a music video until late in my teens, much to the detriment of my overall coolness
  4. The kitchen, rocking the avocado refrigerator (What? It matched the upstairs carpet.)
  5. My room, chock full of teddy bears (94% of which were purple, because - like, duh - purple is awesome) and pictures of kittens torn out of calendars because I wasn't allowed to put posters up (But kittens are just as cool as New Kids On the Block, right? RIGHT? No, they're not. They're not even as cool as Menudo.)
  6. The hall bathroom, better known as the Gold Bathroom, thanks to the brass fixtures, goldeny swirl sink, and metallic wallpaper - if you didn't feel like throwing up when you went in, you sure did by the time you came out
  7. My parents' bedroom, which I think I only saw about four times in my life, or maybe I dreamed it, because for God's sake you didn't set foot in your parents' room back then
  8. The screened-in side porch, which was actually connected to the living room, not my parents' room, but I can only do so much with a floor plan I tried to make in PicMonkey, which, for the purposes of this post, I'm also blaming on my childhood somehow
  9. Haunted attic
  10. Rusty old cable antenna for stealing HBO from the neighbors
  11. OUTSIDE - because if it seems like I'm a little hazy on the details of the interior  of the house, that's because I was always out here instead, even though my mom lined our yard with bushes that produced poisonous berries (hint taken, Mom)
It's hard to believe I managed to turn out as awesome as I did, considering the environment in which I was raised, eh? EH? HELLO?

Okay, so the physical environment doesn't matter at all. I get it. Which is a good thing, really, because I'd hate to see what my kids have to say about the decorating in this house some day when they have a blog of their own . . .

Mine is a sad tale of deprivation and exposure to bad 70's decor, but by clicking on the banner below you'll make all the suffering worthwhile.

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I'm linked up today with Mama Kat's Writer's Workshop, responding to the prompt, "Draw, label, and share the layout of your childhood home."
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I hope you enjoyed yourself while you were here - and I hope you come back! Please share inappropriate giggles with me on Pinterest, Twitter, and Facebook, or subscribe via email so you don't miss a thing - and so I don't get all lonely.


29 comments:

  1. That was so witty. And a great illustration, too. I think all of us who lived through the 70s cringe when we think of the decor everyone thought was so cool then. When my husband and I were house-hunting in the mid 80s, we must have visited your house. Really, the TV on the cart, the avocado refrigerator and orange shag carpet were all there. Did the living room also have red and gold flocked wallpaper?

    I wrote about fire in my response to Mama Kat: http://proartz.blogspot.com/2012/09/flamed.html

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    1. I'm surprised to say that we didn't, but I'm equally surprised there was another house that fits that description! Oh no wait, not surprised - horrified. ;)

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  2. We must have grown up next door to each other. But we didn't have a baesment and I felt very deprived over this. We DID have the avocado appliances and we NEVER watched TV without parental permission. It never even occurred to us! Now? My 2 year old knows how to operate all of the various remotes necessary to get Disney Jr or The Transformers (the real movie with Shia LeBoef) to play.

    Oh, and I never watched MTV until I was 15 and it was a free weekend on Basic Cable. I totally screwed myself because when my parents realized that I was adhered to the TV they refused to order it. First Vid ever saw? Sting's Wrapped Around your Finger. Irony. I know.

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    1. Niiiiice! But don't be jealous of the basement; when we were teenagers my brother moved his room down there and got the WHOLE BASEMENT to himself. So unfair. He also got to cuss but I didn't, but you know what? Hell ass damn! I get to cuss now too! Ohhh, sorry about that. Where was I? The first thing I saw on Mtv was a rockumentary about Rod Stewart, which was when I realized I hadn't been missing anything.

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  3. We had fire carpet too in the basement, it was great, and I have no idea what my parents bedroom looked like as a kid, I am pretty sure I never saw it. We watched MTV, I had older siblings that knew how to get away with things, unfortunately for me, I didn't learn from them and got caught doing everything.

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    1. I'm so glad I'm not the only one who never went in her parents' bedroom - after I published that I second-guessed myself, realizing that maybe we were just crazy and everybody else back in the day co-slept and hung out in their folk's room daily. Whew, there's at least one thing I won't have to talk about in therapy.

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  4. Fantastic illustration! We had our share of avocado and gold everywhere too. With the exception of the living room, which sported a red brick wall and dark burgundy furniture. Depressing! :)

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  5. Not even as cool as Menudo...lol. Love it. Great walk through your childhood and your house. :)

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    1. Thanks! I'm still trying to get over how cool Menudo was for 5 minutes - shame on us as a society. ;)

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  6. Love the avocado appliances! Ours were that yellow/gold and I do believe we had a light blue toilet/tub. My memory has purposely pushed that away..Anywhoo, when I first saw your illustration, I automatically assumed that #8 was your laundry room balcony. I would have been extremely jealous knowing how far ahead of our time your parents really were. Glad to read you were just as stuck in the 70's as the rest of us :)

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    1. That made me snort! From now on that's how I'm going to try to remember it, even though the exact opposite was true - the view from the laundry room was actually the underside of the ground-level back deck. :)

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    2. Nice tie-in to As the Dollhouse Turns. We *will* have a laundry room balcony in our next home.

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  7. I subjected my kids to the same (nauseating) avocado & gold experience. MEA CULPA!! I now live in a stainless steel world--MUCH BETTER!!

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    1. It is much better - MUCH - but I have a feeling that in about 20 years there'll be kids blogging about how dated the house was that they grew up in, with its stainless steel appliances and granite countertops and oil-rubbed bronze fixtures. And I'll be thinking, "Ungrateful, judgemental jerks," just like my mom's probably thinking right now. ;)

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  8. Upon first look of the illustration I thought that was fire on your basement floor and assumed it meant that you felt like you were close to hell while down in the basement. Also, I saw Menudo in concert once.

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    1. Once again, you've far out-cooled me. But you're right, our basement was like being in hell, but mostly only if your idea of hell is a lot of crickets getting in from under the garage door and your cats tearing their legs off. Eww, I'd forgotten about that.

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  9. Like you I lived in the same house all the way to college -- my parents still do. I had to laugh a the metal TV cart. We had one of those. Or maybe a couple. Very clever image.

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    1. Thanks! Those rolling TV carts were class, all the way - this was before TVs were so important that they had their own ginormous pieces of furniture to hold them in a place of honor in the living room. ;)

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    1. Unfortunately, no (unless you're actually a 6'4" dude who lives in Oregon and grew up in the bedroom next to mine) - but I can TOTALLY fake it. That's it, we're sisters now. I'm off to paste your avi into all the family photos from my childhood. ;)

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  11. Giggling because our ghosts were in the basement. Also, the shag looks like fire. I thought the sofa was ablaze at first. Ha. Also, didn't everyone have a "colored" fridge back then?

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    1. I think they did - you'd be hard pressed to find a mustard-colored fridge these days, though. ;) We didn't have ghosts in the basement, but that's probably because there was a bathroom down there where the old BloodyMaryBloodyMaryBloodyMary lady lived, so she probably scared them off.

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  12. I'm sure my kids are going to have lots to say about our hideous wood paneling.

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    1. Install some red/orange shag carpeting - I can tell you, it really distracts from other nearby interior design disasters.

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  13. I love the flames (?) that make up the shag carpet. You make picmonkey your bit**, Baby. And the 'rents room was off-limits at our place, too. That's okay, though. We just snooped around in there when they weren't home, right before riding the daybed mattress down the stairs into the pile of pillows.

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    1. Ah yes, the days of riding things down the stairs...

      For the record, I think those are flames, but if PicMonkey were my bit** you probably wouldn't be able to tell! I bet we have some rockin carpet stamps in Photoshop but let's not forget that I'm l-a-z-y. ;)

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  14. LOL! At first look I thought the basement was on fire. 70s decor rocked all the houses. My mom is kind of artsy, so she wallpapered our bathroom in aluminum foil, which as kids, we slowly peeled off when we weren't wiping boogers on it. The Menudo reference cracked me up!

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    1. They are little flame stamps - hopefully I didn't accidentally do some kind of arson voodoo on the current owner of that house...

      Can you seriously wallpaper in aluminum foil? I'm so doing that. Judging by how much a roll of it costs it must practically be a precious metal - I bet I could bring up our property value by 40%!

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